I woke up on Friday morning with the brightest idea…”You will decline your offer letter at work.” I knew my momma and friends would think I’m crazy or believe I may have lost my mind. I could only imagine their responses: “Do you have another job, chile?” “It’s hard out here, girl!” “I don’t think that was smart.” OR “That was dumb!”
I usually valued their opinions. But this time was different. I didn’t care what they would think of me. I was doing this for me. For my sanity. For my happiness. I was going to step out on faith and believe that everything will be alright.
That morning when I entered my principal’s office, I wasn’t nervous. Actually, I was too excited. I couldn’t believe I was finally about to do it. I was going to depart from my comfort zone.
“Alright, let me have it. Is it good news or bad news?” my principal smiled while staring at me from across the round table.“Well! It’s good news for me. Maybe bad news for you.” I replied.
As humbly as I could, I gave him an ear full. I thanked him for considering me as a strong, passionate, and hardworking teacher. And I truly appreciated him for inviting me back to teach next school year. But I reminded him that I had outgrown the classroom. I was mentally and physically exhausted. Teaching was beginning to suck the life out me. And I made sure to clarify that thought. “I don’t regret one bit of it because it was worth it.”
I mean seriously, who else can tap into a child’s imagination and push them beyond their limits? Teachers.
I’ve build life long friendships with my students and their families.
I exposed them to a world outside the four walls of our classroom.
I gave each student every single piece of me. And I did it all with a purpose.
But although it was fun and rewarding, I need to make a greater impact on the world. I want to touch the lives of people, pour out my talents, and sprinkle wholeheartedly all of my love doing something else within education.
“If it’s the money, we can talk about it and work something out.” he sincerely replied. I paused for a second to give it a quick thought and shared, “Money can buy love. Perhaps, it could buy me everything I need or even allow me to pay my bills on time. But you know what? It can’t afford my love. I can’t sell my happiness, anymore. I’m sorry, I won’t negotiate.”
And in an instant, my principal had lost one of his strongest teacher and there was nothing he could do about it.
“Well..” he paused, leaned over, and continued to say, “If you ever change your mind, let me know. If I am able to create a position that fits into your interest, I will keep you posted.” I gave him a soft smile and gently replied, “Thank You.” Soon thereafter, I was providing my signature to decline the offer.
I felt powerful afterwards. It was the most liberating feeling ever. I was smiling from ear to ear as I sashayed my way down the hallway. I was thrilled that I finally stood up for my happiness. I was proud of myself for having faith and believing that everything will be alright. It was such an amazing feeling until I got home and shit started to set in.
“Girl, what the hell were you thinking? Now what, dummy? What about your health insurance? What are you going to do about Sallie Mae? Her ass is not going to stop calling, emailing, or sending a text to you just because of your economic hardship. Duhhh! Sallie doesn’t care. ” I nagged.
But I immediately dismissed all of those negative thoughts. I couldn’t have them clouding my mind. They could become my actions. I had to reiterate to myself that everything was going to be OK. No one said it would be easy, but it will definitely be worth it.
And on that day, I made a vow to myself. I am going to keep doing my thing but be happy while doing it.
So on that note…
Cheers to my retirement! 🙂