It’s fair to say that I fell into teaching. From 8 to 18 I had my sights firmly set on being a dentist. Even in my fourth year of my BEd, I wasn’t sure if teaching was right for me. In many ways, it was – I loved my students and the structure of teaching was perfect for me – but in many ways it wasn’t – teaching has high highs and low lows and can be incredibly unfulfilling at times. I also have an anxiety and depression disorder, which wasn’t properly diagnosed until after I’d stepped out of teaching.
For a long time, I was out of teaching completely. When my eldest son was born ten years ago my husband and I already knew that we wanted one of us to be a stay-at-home parent and, for us, I was the best choice at the time. It’s been a privilege to be the stay-at-home-parent for our family, and I’m grateful that my husband and I were able to do that.
But, you never really stop being a teacher. Whether it’s using my teacher-voice on my own children (unintentionally, I swear), or giving the ‘i-know-what-you’re-doing’ look to some kid in the playground, or getting into the proper scaffolding with my kids teacher, it seems to be in my bones now. And all the teachers and former teachers I know are the same.
This year I’ve stepped into a world that I feel is teacher-adjacent, creating learning materials for teachers who are still in the classroom (or, at their computer screens at least), and it’s like I never had a break from planning lessons or creating resources. I don’t know if I’ll ever step back into the classroom, but I know that it’s never truly left me.