Thursday, November 17, 2011

Here we go again...

I’m a little overwhelmed.  Again.  At least it’s becoming a familiar feeling.  I’m very familiar with stressed.  But somehow overwhelmed seems like a more fitting description right now.  We have a sick baby on our hands.  Again.  I suppose I knew this could happen when she started at daycare, and I’m not even saying that’s the reason she’s sick because they take excellent care of her there.  But she really didn’t even have so much as a sniffle for the first 6 months.  Maybe she’s a baby super genius and this is her way of trying to get more time with us…
We just went through about a month of congestion which turned into a sinus infection.  Towards the end of her course of antibiotics and for the 2 weeks following, we were congestion free! I almost didn’t know what to do with those extra minutes in the morning not spent suctioning her little nose so she could breathe.  Then, just as we started to relax again, the boogers hit again.  So this time we were on guard for the signs of a sinus infection and pretty much figured in the past few days that it is indeed back.  This time, we have the pleasure of her coughing also. And for as noisy as she is, her little voice is now hoarse (which I have to admit I think she’s enjoying a little because she can  make new sounds now).  And then we got the confirmation (of which we were already assuming) that she has some kind of blockage or fluid in her ears and had a flat tympanogram again. 

On top of all this I’m trying to cope with the fact that I have a higher percentage of students failing (a lot of this has to do with circumstances beyond my control) than I’m comfortable with and a group of freshman advisees that seems to keep getting themselves in trouble.  See this is the part of teaching that a lot of people don’t understand.  Yes we get summers and holidays off, but we also have to deal with the emotional attachment and disappointment that goes along with instructing 180 students a day.  I don’t feel good that students are failing, getting in fights, and to be honest, acting like idiots some of the time.  I know they are still teenagers and that comes with the territory, but honestly, at 16 and 17 years old, it’s time to come to the realization that emptying someone’s bag and turning it inside out and then putting all their stuff back in it (this is called nuggeting for all you non-educators) is just plain immature and a complete waste of time and effort. 
I don’t like the fact that I’m burned out by November and that there’s a lot of disrespect for teachers all over the media and society.  Teachers do not teach because they cannot “do”.  They do it because they love kids and want to see them succeed and have an impact on them in a positive way and hopefully help them to realize their potential as successful members of society.  They do it because they love to learn and want to share that love of learning with young people.  They don’t do it for the money (and yes some of us do make a decent living but we earn it), or the accolades, or the time off.  I have spent many nights awake worrying about how to reach my students and make sure they don’t regret their decisions.  I have spent hours at night and on the weekends and during the summer grading and planning  (and just to clarify, there’s no overtime pay).

Ok, I’m done.  Like us or not, respect us or not.  But the next time you want to criticize a teacher or hear someone else doing it, ask them to try doing it for a day and then see what they think. I don't claim to be better at other people's jobs than they are and I just ask for that same courtesy. 
I’m off to grade some tests and take my kid to the doctor…

Update: I wrote this earlier and just didn't post it.  She does have a sinus infection, is on a new round of antibiotics, and has large amounts of fluid in her ears but no ear infection.  Hooray for the small victories...
Being sick doesn't make her crabby, but it does make her tired.  Good thing she has some comfy new pj's that actually fit...

1 comment:

  1. Oh, poor girl. Hoping this one clears up soon. And hugs to you. I am very thankful for all you do as a teacher.

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