Before I started this journal, I had to check exactly what I'd said about things in the last one. It was this:I also want to mark the day that I've come out the other side of what has seemed like a very long month. I think marking 361 literature exams made it seem like a particularly long period of time, in which quite a lot has happened - or a lot to me, anyway, after life has been ambling along fairly comfortably for the last four years or so. Now, some things are still up in the air, but perhaps I can tell you all about it after the marking deadline in a few weeks.
Well, the marking deadline is this Tuesday, but I've finished. And okay, so last month I went to the zoo, marked some exam papers (hundreds, actually
), went to a meeting in Cambridge and spent the night in Travelodge... things of absolutely no significance to anybody but me (except for maybe the students whose papers I marked). But here's what really
made June seem like an eventful month...
On the last Saturday of May, I was working in my safe, supportive little tuition centre job as usual, knowing that my boss (whom I love, honestly I do) had called a staff meeting to take place at lunchtime. I take a long time telling this story to members of my family, but cutting it short here, she told us that our rented premises had been sold, she hadn't been able to find anywhere else and though she would keep trying, we might want to look for other work.
I've loved it there, I really have, and I've done some good work too, even by my own admission. Emotionally, I wanted to stay, but practically I knew I couldn't really stay forever. It paid well in job satisfaction, but not so well in money; student intake seemed to go down every year, and (hopefully this doesn't sound too dodgy) it was the kind of place that Ofsted doesn't trust very much. Besides that, as you may recall, I've just got my full post-14 teaching qualification. What timing!
My last day there was the second Saturday in June, and by then I'm sure I must have applied for at least one job. I applied for three, all the while remembering the last time I was unemployed, going to countless interviews only to be rejected over and over again. Not to sound melodramatic, but it pretty much destroyed all my confidence.Aside:
Ha... I didn't remember writing journals about my unemployment back then, so I just had a look back and - oh dear - I wrote about it all right! I couldn't read very much of it because it seems all I did was complain. I can understand why I felt like that at the time, but it can't have made pleasant reading for you guys, just as it doesn't for me now. Aside ends.
Two of the three places I applied to ignored me completely, but let's focus on the positive, shall we? The other place - in fact the first I applied to - invited me to an interview on the very last weekday of that monumental month of June. I wrote my latest journal entry two days later (you know, the one with emus pecking the toilet windows), having recently had my interview and come away from it with a very good feeling. Again, it's a long story when I tell it to my family... now what's the short version? Oh, I'd love to tell you about all the things that impressed them, particularly my planned-on-the-day micro-teach, and how someone else got sent home before we even reached the interview stage (mean of me)... well, I guess that's the gist of it right there.
Not quite everything happened in June, since I got the bad news at the end of May and the good news on July 1st; in fact June was straddled by the most significant events. Anyway, one of my two interviewers called in the morning to offer me the job, saying 'You obviously have a teacher's brain' and various other things, but that's the one I remember.
I'll come to my other feelings in a moment, but overall I feel very, very positive. Whereas up to now I've been doing bits and pieces of teaching and marking where I can, including working part-time at this tuition centre, this is my first (and perhaps will turn out to be my only) full-time job. One place, one income, with people there to take care of the paperwork. Provided I don't mess up completely in the standard probationary period (which is hard to do - employers always do everything they can to help you through to the other side even if there are problems), this is secure permanent position and, my goodness, by my standards it pays an absolute fortune!
I have to confess, once or twice I've thought, oh but I wanted to research this and write that and NaNoWriMo the other...
...and then I thought, well why haven't you done at least some of it with all that free time you've had, you silly woman?! Honestly, the more time I have on my hands, the more idle I am.
I intend to put my all into this exciting new opportunity, and we'll just have to wait and see what else I might do.
When I think about it, I feel incredibly nervous, so I try not to think about it.
I also feel sad about my old job, and I feel horrible for my ex-boss, who will either have to do without her English teacher (she likes me a lot, and there's a chance she may not find another), or do without her whole tuition business, which she has loved and nurtured for a number of years.
There, I knew even the short version would be long, but I guess that's it now. Well, let me just add that I've been reading some of the offerings from FFM and intend to continue. If there are any pieces you particularly like, be they your own or others', please link me to them. I'll keep looking for myself as well; I've basically just been clicking on the best titles and hooks as I find them. Well done to you all!