And this is still kind of risky, but I've got a solution to my work-related troubles. Or at least I hope it will prove to be a solution. Way back in October I received a call from a guy named Ernesto Diaz from the Human Resources department at Howard County Public Schools where I was a student teacher and also applied for a regular position upon graduation from Towson. Mr. Diaz had an open social studies position he was hoping I could fill. Unfortunately, I was already under contract with Montgomery County so there wasn't anything I could do. However, he asked that I contact him again in January to discuss possibilities for next school year. I've really wanted to work in Howard County ever since I student taught there, so this seemed like a fabulous opportunity. In January I called him back, scheduled an interview, sent in some paper work, and just last week he offered me an open contract. Actually, the day I found out about our team leaders stepping down was the day he offered me the contract. I haven't mentioned it to anyone at my current school yet, but I accepted the offer and signed my contract on Friday. The "open" contract means that they aren't sure what positions will become available therefore can not specify what subject or grade-level I'd be teaching, but they are confident enough in me that they are promising me employment nevertheless. It also means I am confident enough in them that I am accepting employment without knowing those specifics either. There is a multitude of reasons why I'm more comfortable in Howard county than Montgomery, and I won't bore you with all of that. But I will say, I'm feeling exponentially better now that there appears to be a ligth at the end of the tunnel.
Don't get me wrong, I've talked to enough teachers that I know every school and every school system has their problems. I'm not expecting that everything will be perfect at whatever new school I end up. I do know that many of the little things will be better or gone altogether. One good example is that right now my classroom is growing mold. I have a heating/AC unit in my room that leaks condensation onto the floor and the cracks between the floor tiles are now disgustingly molded. I have never been in a single school in Howard County even approaching that kind of disrepair. We also have lead in our water. Our building is just old and very ugly with many problems. And with all of the other things going on there, having a repulsive and (let's be honest) unhealthy environment makes all the rest that much less tolerable.
Let me stop before I get on another rant, here. I've decided that in the mean time, and for the future as well, I'm finding at least one thing to get excited about every day. I tried that out last week and I really liked it. It made the week much more pleasant. I'm hoping this will keep me from wishing all my time away like I have been and really forcing me to live in the moment and "smell the roses" so to speak. I don't want to miss out on the great things happening in my life each day. So now I'll have long term things to look forward to as well as something to look forward to each and every day. You should try it too, just for fun. Some things I was excited for last week were- shopping on Thursday (Josh gave me a gift card to the mall for Christmas so I spent about half of that and got some fun new clothes, which I would otherwise never buy for myself), a birthday celebration downtown last night at one of our favorite places, Howl at the Moon, and of course, sleeping in on Saturday! Today was very lazy and wonderful. We had pancakes for breakfast, watched our last season of The Office, and did some little chores around the house. We ran a few short errands, and now we're getting ready to go to a friend's house for the evening to play video games. I'll be packing a magazine and my laptop :o) Tomorrow we have sleeping in, and another birthday celebration!