career help. I yam so sleepy.
December 5, 2011 7:33 PM Subscribe
Career filter: How to proceed if I am exhausted and unhappy?
posted by sucre to Work & Money (6 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I'm about 3 months into my first real teaching job as a special ed. teacher for 3-5 year olds in a public school. The kids have a variety of needs: some have Down Syndrome, some have autism, some have seizure disorders, and so on. I am technically a long-call sub, so I earn less and get no benefits (boo), though I'm doing the same amount of work a contracted teacher would do.
A bit of background: I studied art, child psychology, and French in college and went on to get my M.Ed in early childhood ed. and special ed. (a double license). So it seems that I have my career set out before me, but I'm unsure. I recently spent 7 months as an English assistant in a small French town and enjoyed myself beyond belief. I still love photography and painting and making stuff. I could see myself going back to school for psychology. I want to be creative and feel fulfilled!
My recent worry revolves around my current job. It's a really, really hard job. It can certainly be fun, and I have great co-workers. But it's freakin' hard. I feel like my life revolves around these kids. And maybe that's just what being a teacher involves. Work on the evenings and weekends, exhaustion, getting spit on and kicked, ridiculous amounts of paperwork, and so on. I'm just not sure it's for me (as all first year teachers say, I bet). The deal is, I will likely get a contract in a couple of months, which will bump up my pay quite a bit and make me feel much more willing to teach until the end of the school year. Even if this happens, I know the frustrations and tiredness won't go away.
Assuming that I continue teaching for another 7 months, I would love some suggestions for getting through it. What I'm doing now: I go to the gym 2-3 times a week and do a little yoga at home when there's time. I eat decently and take vitamins (fish oil, B, multi, calcium/D). I go to counseling every other week to work on some other issues, but have also started talking about my future, career-wise. I just began using a "happy light" because the setting sun bums me out. I usually get about 7.5 or 8 hours of sleep per night (and a lot more on the weekends because I'm so knocked out by Friday).
Any ideas for surviving this hard time? I know I should be thankful to have a job, and I really, really am! But I just can't handle feeling dead all the time.