You don’t always get what you want, but if you try, sometimes you just might find you get what you need.

Life gave me exactly what I needed today.

This past week or so has been tough. School and work have kept me busy and stressed, and my anxiety has been trying to knock me down. I’ve found myself thinking that maybe this career isn’t really for me, even though I’ve planned on being a teacher ever since I started school. For someone with anxiety, perfectionist tendencies and a need to please, teaching could quite easily be overwhelming. Hell, for someone who is completely mentally healthy, it’s an overwhelming career, especially in the first couple of years. And lately I’ve been wondering if I’m really cut out for it – if I can really handle being in a classroom for the rest of my working life, if I can connect with kids, if I can find fun and creative ways to teach the same old boring material, if I can come up with the ‘big questions’ that will make kids want to learn and discover, if I can be a good teacher, if I can make a difference.

Listening to some of my friends and peers in my program talk about their future classrooms and their lesson ideas and their big plans is terrifying sometimes. They seem to know exactly what they want and exactly how to get there. What if I can never reach that point? It’s easy for me to get drawn in to this vicious circle about how I’m not as good as everyone else and I’ll never get there so why even try. And just as my anxiety was about to pull me down that rabbit hole…

I had a class today with my new favourite professor who somehow managed to pull me (and several other classmates who, lo and behold, were feeling the same way) back from the edge. She was honest, and open, and told us all the things that we needed to hear:

“It’s not about being a perfect teacher. You go in to that classroom every day and you have to remember that above all, you are human. You will make mistakes and you will learn from them. You are a human first, and then a teacher. There may be piles of curriculum to get through, but all you need to remember is to put their well-being first, and then you can start to teach them because they won’t learn from you until they are ready. You won’t be a great teacher every single day, and that’s okay. You will have good days and you will have bad days and you will have days when you are an excellent teacher and you will have days when you barely make it through, but you are not alone in this and most importantly of all, you will be okay.”

I think that given time, I will be a good teacher, but more importantly, I know that I will be okay.

Advertisements

Anything At All (Cover)

Okay so I’ve always enjoyed singing and music in general – I played piano for about 10 years and I’ve been wanting to have an instrument in my life again but pianos just aren’t easy to have in an apartment, so I settled for a ukulele. I’ve been playing around with it for a couple weeks now, and just stumbled upon a song by a Canadian artist that I am really loving right now. These lyrics might as well be about my life, so I’ve been singing it nonstop lately and after a few glasses of wine on a rather lonely Friday night, I decided to record myself playing it. It’s not a very good quality recording and I didn’t really intend on sharing it with anyone, but I’m going to put it up here (I may remove it before too long but we’ll see). Music is a huge part of my life, but it’s a part that I don’t often share with other people in my life so I figured this might be a good first step. So anyway, if anyone listens to it, please be nice! Or at the very least, don’t be mean 🙂

This is Anything At All by Autumn Hill.

http://http://vocaroo.com/i/s0ivjlJO8ZTu

I got all this love deep down in my heart
Still right there from the day we broke apart
And baby I tried, but I couldn’t let you go
You were tied to me like an anchor to my soul

Ooh, all I wanna know

If there’s anything left of everything we had
Is there a small chance you’d ever want me back
Can you tell me right now should I unlock the door
Or will you come in the way you did before
Ooh, just like you did before
Is there anything left of everything we had

Well have I crossed your mind in the middle of the day
Do you sweep it under rugs just to make it go away
Did you leave us in the past where you’re too afraid to go
If it hurts too much, baby just say so

Ooh, I just wanna know

If there’s anything left of everything we had
Is there a small chance you’d ever want me back
Can you tell me right now should I unlock the door
Or will you come in the way you did before
Ooh, just like you did before
Is there anything left of everything we had

Oh anything at all

Goals

Inspired by a recent post by one of my favourite blogs to follow and read (shoutout to Brey at http://ordinaryadventures.co/), I’ve been thinking a lot lately about things I need to work on and what I want to accomplish in the next few months. I’ve never been one for new year’s resolutions, but this is a new school year, and it’s the start of an important one for me – aka my last first day of school (as a student) forever! I’m proud of myself for all of the things that I have worked for and accomplished over the past few years, but I’ve also let some parts of my life slide, and it’s time I take control back. So here are my goals for the next few months, broken down into a variety of categories, and how I plan to reach them.

Fitness Goals
– work out 3-4 times a week. I just cancelled my ClassPass membership which gave me access to all kinds of gyms and studios around me because it was too expensive to keep justifying it in my budget, but I don’t want this to derail my fitness goals. These workouts can be an online workout done at home (just signed up for an online barre3 membership), using a treadmill/bike/elliptical in my building’s gym, or something as simple as a walk around the block. This goal is mostly about keeping active even when I’m not scheduled for classes in a studio.

Mental Health Goals
– practice yoga, meditation and mindfulness regularly. My current goal is to actively practice yoga (either in a studio or at home) once a week, and to complete 3 meditations a week – these can be as short and simple as a 5 minute music meditation, or longer and more intense as I get further into my practice.
– spend less time on facebook/tumblr/netflix and more time doing more fulfilling things that I also enjoy (reading, scrapbooking, cooking, walking, painting my nails, colouring, etc.)

Nutrition Goals
– only eat out once per week
– plan out my meals ahead of time and log them in myfitnesspal
– take my supplements/pills regularly (this can also be filed under mental health)

Apartment Goals
– clean up my dishes after every meal (I have gotten so bad lately about leaving piles of dishes lying around until it gets so messy that I can’t stand it anymore or I run out of utensils).

Decisions, decisions, decisions…

My best friend is moving to the UK to start her teaching career next week. She has been my best friend since elementary school and we have gone through so much together. We have grown up together and we have grown closer and closer over the years and it brings tears to my eyes just thinking about saying goodbye to her. But seeing her start this next incredible chapter of her life has also made me want to go abroad when I graduate as well.

Next year, I will be applying (and hopefully interviewing) for the occasional/supply teacher lists in the school boards in my area. And I would also love to apply for some international positions, particularly in the UK. But there are just an overwhelming number of factors to consider and I have no idea how to decide what I want to do.

notbigenough

Because of the teaching climate in Ontario, French and Math are the two subjects that are being hired for the most. Next year, there will be about half as many teacher’s college graduates as normal, so there should be more openings available. I will be graduating with a certificate to teach French to students in grades 4-10. I want to take another course as soon as I graduate that would make me eligible to teach grades 11 and 12 as well. I also have the prerequisites to get certified to teach math, and I hope to do that at some point in the near-ish future as well. So, while I don’t have to make a decision quite yet, I do have to start seriously thinking about my options. And because I am the worst decision maker in the whole entire world (or so I’ve been told), I am going to lay it all out here, and hope that something will become clearer for me through the process. If anyone has any advice/opinions/stories/suggestions, I would be more than happy to hear them! Here goes…..

ifitscaresyou

Why should I go abroad? 
– I’ve always wanted to do an exchange or live/study abroad, and this would be a great chance to do it.
– If I want to go abroad, it would make more sense to do it now rather than waiting until I have a house/car/permanent job/husband/family.
– Easy to travel everywhere else that I’ve always wanted to go (Ireland, Scotland, Spain, France, Portugal, Greece, Italy, Belgium, Switzerland, and I could go on and on and on…..)
– Incredible experience.
– Don’t have to decide where I want to live/what board I want to teach with right now (it’s hard to switch between boards here – if I were to move, I would have to start back from the bottom as a supply/contract teacher before finding a permanent position again).

Why should I stay in Ontario?
– All of my friends and family are here.
– It shouldn’t take toooooooo long for me to get a contract position somewhere, thanks to my French teachable and fewer graduates.
– It would be (slightly) less stressful as a first year teacher to be in a place that I’m familiar with.
– Start collecting seniority time/pensionable years and such sooner.
– Teach the curriculum that I have been learning/preparing to teach rather than a new system.
– Avoid homesickness/extra anxiety that come with moving half way across the world.

Either way, next year will require me stepping outside of my comfort zone – taking control of a whole classroom and actually being a teacher will be overwhelming wherever I am. So the question becomes, do I want to step outside of my comfort zone, or do I want to step WAY outside of my comfort zone?   noshortcuts

I will be okay.

It’s been a month, and I think I’m slowly getting better. I no longer check my phone in the morning, expecting to see a text from him. I only cry myself to sleep a couple times a week now, instead of every night. It still hurts like hell, but I think I’m getting better.

I’m going to see him tomorrow night. We’re having a big reunion/going away party for one of my best friends, and he will be there, and I have no idea how I’m going to deal with it. Do I avoid him all night? Do I pretend nothing happened and act like everything’s perfectly fine? I’m scared that my heart is going to break all over again when I see him. God forbid we actually talk about anything real, I might actually break down. But this weekend is not about me, and I refuse to let him, or anyone else for that matter, see me at my weakest point. I will fake a smile and I will fake happiness until it’s not fake anymore.

I had a job interview last week, and I found out yesterday that I got the position. I’m so happy about it because it’s the perfect position for me and I need the money and need to keep busy this year. It will be busy, and I’m sure it will be stressful at times, but I also know that I can do it.

I’m also doing a yoga/mindfulness/meditation in the classroom workshop series over the next year that I’m so excited about. We met for the first time this week and it’s such a lovely group of people that I know I can learn so much from. I’ve already shared some of my story with them, and it’s so comforting to know that you’re surrounded by people who really get what you’re going through, even if they don’t know you. There’s a familiarity in the room from the minute you walk in, before you’ve even introduced yourself and it’s exactly what I need right now.

My anxiety has been all too present lately and I know it’s partially my own doing, because I haven’t been working out much and I haven’t been eating very well and I haven’t been taking my supplements regularly. It’s time to start taking care of myself again, mentally, physically and emotionally.

Everything will be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end. I will be okay. This is not the end. I will be okay. Things will be okay. Everything will be okay.

The Robin Scherbatsky Realization.

The more I watch How I Met Your Mother, the more I realize how similar I am to Robin. Actually, the more I realize how similar my life is to the show as a whole.

Let’s break it down:

We have Marshall and Lily, long-time couple who are adorably perfect for each other and are miles ahead of the rest of their friends in terms of relationships. In my life, that’s exactly what my two best friends are like: they’ve been together since high school, just celebrated their 7th anniversary, and though they aren’t yet married or even engaged, they recently bought a house together constantly make me realize how far away from that sort of relationship bliss I am. In a totally non jealous, over the moon happy for them kinda way. Okay, well, maybe a little bit jealous, but mostly happy for them.

Then we have Ted and Barney, the two guys who are always on the lookout for a new girl, whether it’s to date or sleep with. These characters don’t fit exactly into my current friend group, but we do have one that at least likes to pretend that he has a shot with any girl he wants.

And lastly, Robin Scherbatsky. The emotionally closed off, commitment phobic girl who has fallen in love, gotten her heart broken and fallen in love again with her friend. She likes to pretend that she is over him and masks her feelings when hanging out with him as friends, but deep down she knows she’s not over him and she knows that for whatever reason, they will always have some sort of chemistry.

He may not be a Barney in real life, but I swear he is the Barney to my Robin. Where my other friends see him as just a kind of nerdy, sometimes dirty minded guy that they would never dream of hooking up with, I see him as so much more. He is the guy that makes me feel things, good and bad, that I have never felt before. He is the guy who helps me tear down the walls I’ve built around my heart. He is the guy who has made me feel so safe and beautiful and loved when I was with him in the past. He is the guy I can see myself with in the future. He is the guy I wish I could be with right now. He is my Barney Stinson. And though my life may not be a sitcom, I don’t think he and I will ever work out any better than she and him.

Will we ever find our Neverland?

He shared a song on facebook last night. This is a person who rarely posts anything other than a once yearly “thanks for the birthday wishes” post. And last night, he shared a song. And I listened to it. And I fell in love.

I know I’m reading way too much into everything, but I couldn’t help but be captured by the lyrics.

We try to reconnect but can’t find one another, I saw you looking at the high, crossed, starry lovers, When I’m gone, what will you become? 

Will we ever find our Neverland? Drinking on a Monday, sleeping just to numb the pain. Will we ever be at peace again? Further is forever, restless til the day we die. 

And so now I’ve listened to it an excessive number of times for it only being 9 am and I love it. Maybe some of us just don’t get to find our Neverland.

I remember one summer, we went camping with a group of friends, and things had just ended between us but we were trying to be normal around each other and he stole my ipod and put on the song “I Need You” by 3 Doors Down. And I have the same feeling now that I had that day. That maybe he really does feel the same way I do, but it’s just not meant to be, at least not right now. Maybe he’s finding this as hard as I am. Maybe I just need to believe that for now.

Maybe he’s my Neverland, and maybe we will never be.