Friday, 17 September 2010

Exit Strategy?

My life has been a little crazy lately - which is the reason for my blog hiatus...but I'm back!

Here's the synopsis:

I was offered a teaching job last June. I accepted it. Mid-August I had to go to teacher training - which I loved. I love learning about curriculum. I love learning about classroom management. I love planning. And I love being in the classroom! It was all complicated by the fact that I was leery to quit my current job. The contract I was offered was only for 3 months. I didn't want to quit my other job until I knew if I could get something else after. If nothing else I'd sub - but I'm afraid that might not pay the bills.

Previously I worked 6-8 hours a day. With my teaching training, and then in September with my teaching job I was working 8 hours a day at school, coming home and doing all the mom stuff I need to do (although I have had a LOT of help from my dear husband and a lot of patience on the part of my children) while trying to squish the 6-8 hours I was working into 3 or 4 - which is practically impossible.....although I was pretty much managing. However, it has been painful. I never rest at school.....I run run run and don't even take time to eat or visit with other teachers. When I come home I make something easy for the kids to eat, and then sit down at the computer until I'm too tired to do anymore. Then I go to bed, set my alarm clock for a little earlier, and then do it again. Run! Run! Run! All day long. Originally I figured I could do anything for 3 months. Now, after a full month of it, I'm not so sure.

Things with my other job are rather unstable too. Crappy projects. Poor outlook for new projects, website issues and more website issues and more website issues, poor management who seem to think shoppers and schedulers are disposable, etc. Bottom line: it's been nasty. My manager decided she didn't like me only working a few hours a day. She didn't think I was performing up to par and so has decided to take away some of the work. In October I'll have about 1/4 the work of what I was doing before. At first I was mad.....but the more I think about it the more relieved I am.

I have a few friends who've quit the mystery shopping industry lately. It's been interested to hear their comments. We keep in touch on Facebook. One said:

It’s hard to believe it has been 5 months since I left my crazy, stress-induced, 60+ hour/week, no vacation/sick day job that I had for the past XXX years. Miss the thrill of scoring on a project and my boss/friends – but life is SO lovely right now. *Sweet loveliness*

She sure summed it up well. Then today another friend talk about what a great time she is having on a long-awaited vacation (only able to happen when you LEAVE the mystery shopping world). She talked about what a great time she was having. In the conversation her husband said:

We have been traveling for the last 7 weeks and finally XXX is able to enjoy herself, she always worked as we traveled before using our air card. She scheduled the day my mother died, the day after giving birth and during holidays. I think she was never appreciated for all her hard work.

Later he said:

The thing is Dawn that she always gave all her effort. She fell asleep almost nightly with the laptop in her lap, only to wake up and work some more before going to bed. She literally worked 18 to 20 hours a day, waaaay to much devotion. She hated to fail and took it personally. I could go on and on about all the sacrifice she made, but it would be a book. Appreciation and reward just did not come her way at all the last couple of years and enough was enough. Life is good for our family now though!!! :)

That about sums it up. When people hear that I work from home they say they wish they could do that and muse about how great it must be. I just smile and nod. I know that most people aren't cut out to do it. You have to be willing to work way too many hours, ignore your children and your house, and not leave the house hardly ever to be really successful at it. Don't get me wrong, I've been very grateful for it for the past 12 years. I'm so glad I was able to be at home when our kids were little. I think it's time for a change though. Recently I've been praying that another teaching position will come up quickly that I could apply for and therefore, feel more comfortable in totally quitting this job. I keep hearing there's a big baby boom amongst teachers. Here's hoping those openings show up soon!

Today wasn't quite how I planned an exit, but the more time goes on the more relieved I feel. Truth is, it isn't an exit - but it sure frees up a lot of time.

So why am I disappointed that they're not giving me as much work? I figure I work for $8 an hour or less in that job the past couple of years. Teaching definitely pays better! I guess the thing is I once made much better money at it and I keep hoping that things will get back to the way they were. I can only wait so long though. I've actually been thinking of quitting for quite a while but kept doing the "it'll be better when they get the new website up"...then they did and it wasn't better. So I said, "it'll be better when we get some new projects"...which they've been talking about for months but it never happens....and on and on it goes. So I guess eventually it's time to give up on it.

In the meantime, I'm grateful to be doing something I love! I really do love it. I'll blog more about that later!

What will I do with all my time if I don't have to rush home to sit in front of the computer? Maybe I'll clean my house! Maybe I'll hang out with my children! Maybe I'll get caught up on Swim Club stuff. Maybe I'll get organized for primary! Maybe I'll read!! Maybe I'll do some marking and planning! Maybe I'll read!

It kind of makes me giddy to think about it. October 1 can't come quick enough!


Kelly said...

It sure is interesting how life works out sometimes, even when we aren't planning on something, it seems to happen anyway!

Gilly said...

I;m glad you are teaching. That sounds so much better. I'm sure you will find another position when this one ends.