Seven Weeks. Fourteen Days.

I am grateful that my windscreen was smashed. We have not found out who was responsible for it. But, I feel no anger, just gratitude. I hope that the child responsible finds the support they need to be able to fill the hole within them that lead them to the point where they believed their actions were appropriate and necessary.

Regardless, I am grateful.

Education no longer serves my highest self. This is no judgement on or against anyone else; these are just my thoughts and my perceptions. If you are a happy teacher, power to you. I no longer am.

I love children. I love working with them to empower them to fulfil their dreams. I love those light bulb moments when they get it. I love the jokes, the loving teasing, the rapport that is built through symbiotic trust. I love inspiring them to see the world and their place in it, in new ways. I am still a passionate and idealistic teacher. I always will be.

However, I do not respect or like the machine that education has become. I do not like the lack of humanity embodied in the broader leadership, and I cannot fathom or respect machinations that regard teachers and students as robots and tick a boxes.

I do not have the passion to fight it. There are too many who just follow it. My type of teacher is in the vast minority. I don’t see enough commitment to want to change; people don’t stand up and fight for anything anymore.

I will stand up and fight for me by being true to me, and putting me first. After all, no one else will. It is not anyone else’s responsibility; it is mine, and mine alone.

So, I have fourteen working days left until I hand in my keys. Keys that I will have held for very close to twenty years.

I have no intention of ever going back. I thought, when this time came, I would feel more heartbroken. Maybe the grief will come; maybe it won’t. At the moment, I feel like I’m finally answering a call to let go of fear and to start living. I feel liberated.

I have been sick this week, my body has been purging stress toxins, I’m sure. I have not been at school since the incident. I feel liberated. In the past, when I’ve been sick and had to take a couple of days, I’ve felt sooooo guilty that I was letting other people down. This time, I was able to prioritise my health and acknowledge my own worth. Illness requires rest. No one is let down; it just is what it is.

I feel happy. I have felt exhausted this week, every afternoon, as I’ve headed out to work with my clients. But my energy thrived as I arrived to the first door step each day and sustained itself until I arrived home. I feel very present when I work with my kids. I feel a happy heart and fulfilled soul; feelings, that in teaching, have been eclipsed by ever increasing administration demands and the systemic disregard for the welfare of teachers.

I know I’m a teacher. I always will be. But, at the end of the day, I am worth more and am more valuable than the system/broken machine of education decrees, and so, like all abusive relationships, I will move away from it so that my soul can thrive. I will not allow myself to be made small again in my life. This lesson is learned ( fingers crossed lol).

This time, I am breaking the abuse cycle that has ruled my life. This time, I empower me. This time, I am truly free.

Complicated

I was chatting to a friend yesterday about how complicated we make our lives. This week has really demonstrated to me just how true this is.

My leaving teaching has been years in the making, and I mean, years. For some people, it must be the most cliche and boring mantra ever lol. But, it had to be a process for me, and by being a process, I made it all a lot more complicated.

I still remember the day I raced home and informed my Mum that I was going to be a teacher. I just knew. I was five. I was so excited. And, I didn’t really or seriously ever from this path, until a couple of years ago. I’m now 47. I have been teaching since 1993. I was insanely passionate about it for the vast majority of those years.

What killed my passion?

Politics, bureaucracy, stupid decisions by the Department of Education, and their inability to see and respect teachers as a vital part of the education machine. Basically, teachers are required to sacrifice their soul, their personal ethics, their personal ideals, their identity, their lives, for a system that never supports their welfare first.

Yes, I still love my classroom and I adore my kids, but the stupidity of the bureaucrats is increasingly forcing its way into my classroom and into what I teach.

One of the best teachers I know refuses to play this game, at her own expense, but revitalizes my teaching every week. I will miss working with such a creative and empowering soul.

I want less fight in my life. I still want to create a different world. That was my motivation in my twenties, and it is my motivation now; however, the mode for achieving this has changed.

When I entered teaching, I was a victim of my childhood. I wanted to save others so that I could save myself. I succeeded, on both counts.

I have matured, and I have done a hell of a lot of healing.

My core values are still the same: we are all worth a lot.

Once I realised that I was worth something, it became difficult to stay somewhere I do not feel valued. The school I work at doesn’t make a difference because the system that underpins education in this country is broken. The management of it, is conducted by people who truly have no idea what teaching effectively involves and requires. The ‘system’ thinks one size fits all for schools, for staff, for kids, ironically, as they force more administration duties for differentiation onto staff.

I shake my head in disbelief.

The investigation year was difficult. I felt so guilty and so shamed. This triggered healing on different levels for me. Eighteen months after its conclusion, I realise that it is not me who was wrong. The system is.

My values no longer align with the values and philosophies of the system. I still believe that every child, every staff member, every family, is the most important thing and deserve, and are worthy, of being treated as such. One size does NOT fit all. Far from it.

And, if you’ve never experienced childhood trauma, if you’ve never set foot in a difficult classroom, if you’ve never programmed a unit, or written assessments, or spent hours marking, you shouldn’t be writing policy for education or legislating for Child Protection. It really is as simple as that.

The smashed windscreen forced me to stop living in fear of not having enough. My soul does not belong in a system that does not look after its people. My values no longer align. It is my responsibility to move to something that suits me better.

Last night, after an afternoon and evening of tutoring, I drove home with a full heart and a smile on my face. The same thing happened on Thursday night as I drove home.

I’m still making a difference in children’s lives, and they are still making a difference in mine.

I still program, I still teach, I’m still ‘saving’ kids. And, I’m doing it without fear. I’m not looking over my shoulder. I’m just being and doing, breathing and loving. Myself and them.

Maybe, I just reached a point in healing my own trauma and pain, and I’m ready to fly. Maybe, I’m ready to grow and live large, and really own my potential in changing the world. Maybe, I’m just remembering the whole of who I am, and systems don’t support the individual expression and accumulated knowledge.

And, maybe, I’m just overthinking it all, making it more complicated.

Anyway, I’m on the bridge. I’m almost to the other side; eight more steps. It’s scary and it’s liberating, all in one.

Doing what fills my heart is the right thing. I don’t know exactly where I’m heading, but I know I’m heading somewhere. I’m doing what makes me happy, where my skills and talents are at the fore, I’m living a passionate life, and I feel truly blessed.

I wish this for everyone who doesn’t have it. It’s scary changing course, very scary, that’s why it’s taken me so long. It’s hard to leave everything you’ve ever known and take a leap in faith.

Today, when I leave for a long day of work, I will feel light and happy. Tonight, when I arrive home, I will feel full and extremely grateful for the opportunity to work in a job I love so much.

Today, I won’t be sworn at, my windscreen won’t be smashed, my things won’t be stolen, I will only have the paperwork and admin to do that benefits myself and my clients directly. I’ll still be programming, targeting the needs of my kids, supporting their holistic learning, and connecting with community. I’ll be doing things that are purposeful and soul filling.

That’s the difference.

It’s time for this bird to fly. I might crash, but if I do, it will be on my terms and because of my actions.

Clashing

When I was a young girl, I really struggled with any sort of injustice. Injustice really hurt my heart. I would cry, I would write emotional poetry, I would hurt for days. And, I would wax lyrical about how I was going to change the world.

When the nuns were found, murdered, in an African country in the eighties, I was going to become a non-Catholic missionary and go out to save the people. Yes, I now know what a missionary is in its fullest extent – romantic idealism does not take into account limitations. And, when I saw a documentary about sows chained in little pens, I cried and cried and wrote one of my favourite poems, and cried some more until I became vegetarian. Now, my soul cries for all animals.

I had a dream when I was very young, between 9 and 12 years old, where armies were converging upon one another on a dark night and I stood up between them, hands outstretched, dressed in white, instructing and inspiring them to stop, in a speech that Martin Luther King Jr and Barack Obama would have been proud of.

The systems were wrong, even then. There is something wrong with humans and the way we have organised our society.

When I first started teaching in the early nineties, I was interviewed by a local newspaper. They asked why I wanted to become a teacher. My answer, predictably, I want to change the world.

Typical Tina.

Over time, with maturity, or was it growing cynicism, I realised I could change the world only by changing the lives of individuals. They would then do their part, and in time, our world would become a better place. Instead of me being the saviour, I accepted that I was a part of a bigger process.

At 46, almost 47, I don’t know where I sit with all of this. The changes in education, the changes in the way people lead, the lack of change that is needed yet not delivered, bamboozles me.

Education has become so right wing, so totalitarian, that I just don’t get it. Everyone needs to do things the same way, everyone is a cog and no longer a human being, and playing the game gets you ahead. Being true, being authentic, being real, does not. The systems no longer fit the individual, if they ever did.

I don’t like it. But, I don’t care to fight it either. Well, not as a part of it.

Something fundamentally necessary has disappeared from education in NSW, probably worldwide, except Finland, and that is the passion of its educators and legislators for the welfare of children. It’s become so day to day that we have forgotten the why. We no longer strive to be better, even though we pretend we are with continual changes in syllabi that do nothing except alienate the underclass further. Changes that don’t further education or our kids or our world.

The system sucks. It’s broken.

So, how am I settling back into the machine after a year out of it?

Five days a fortnight is working for me. As a classroom teacher with no leadership stresses, my love for my classroom practice is thriving. I love my students. I manipulate what I want to teach to fit what I have to teach. I refuse to become entrenched by the education machine. And, I know my time is limited.

I love my kids. I love watching them navigate their own learning. It’s such a gift. I love playing with them in our classroom. I love seeing their smiles and I love seeing them engaged. I love the relationships that build and I love loving my kids.

On Tuesday, another teacher gave me some feedback from one of my new students. She said that the student had said I was inspiring. Beautiful. If I can help that child know their value and enjoy their learning, I’ve achieved what I set out to achieve.

I’ve changed the world.

The Gift of Teaching

Possibly ironic as I prepare to leave the profession; however, timely in my life as a reminder that my years as a teacher have not for a single second been wasted.

I caught up with an ex-student for breakfast this morning. She is now 34 and the universe conspired for us to run into each other at a library last week. There are no coincidences.

She wanted to say thank you to me. This morning she articulated the impact my existence had made on her; humbling and beautiful. To offer any child some semblance of hope or inspiration or something positive at all is why I became a teacher and what drove me for twenty four years.

She has lived her life in service and she has fought many difficult battles to be accepted for this and to be able to do this. She is truly inspirational. And realistically, what I gave her was permission to be her and to follow her bliss.

What an amazing gift. And one that good teachers provide for their students every single day.

We all fulfill a role in this world when we follow our bliss and live our best life.

Those of us who are agitators and disrupters of the status quo have a hard road to follow in some respects, but man, the rewards, like this morning’s catch up, make the bumps and ditches worthwhile.

Ultimately, we all need validation. If we say we don’t, we are lying to ourselves. I received that again today. And I gave that today.

Who can you validate today?

๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿ™๐Ÿป

Perplexed

I often stay away from using those little ads-ons on Facebook. You know, those things you can attach temporarily to your profile picture. I think the only ones I have ever attached were for the Syrian crisis and miscarriage awareness. I might be wrong, but I don’t think so.

I realised this morning why I stay away from them. I’m fairly open with what I believe, and most people can predict what’s my politics lie after even a short conversation with me. This morning I was scrolling through my newsfeed and one of my friends has one of those things on their profile picture. Irrelevant what it is about, but it goes against what I believe and I felt jarred when I read it.

One of my fundamental beliefs, lying at the core of all of my beliefs, is that we all have the right to do whatever we want to AS LONG AS WHAT WE DO HURTS NO ONE ELSE. I try very hard to not hurt others, and when I feel that I have, I own it and try to make good.

I understand why we need laws: to protect the rights and freedoms of all. But, for the life of me, I do not understand why marriage comes under that, for two consenting adult people anyway.

It perplexes me that this is such an issue in my home country. We tout ourselves as a welcoming and inclusive country, very relaxed and happy people living the good life.

I think we must mean though, only if you are white and a Christian and heterosexual and mainstream and you don’t push any buttons or believe in weird things. As long as you fit into the box.

My whole teaching career, I never really fit into that box, the one that makes you an acceptable teacher, a role model for others. No one looked at my practice and said, “Man, she really gets the kids to work hard and they seem to enjoy it. We should try to learn from what she is doing.”

Instead, I was marginalised, talked about, targeted, judged, shut down. People perceived me as arrogant rather than knowledgable. People think I pushed the boundaries too far rather than doing what I needed to inspire my kids to want more from themselves.

Interestingly, the qualities I felt condemned for in schools, that I believe made me an exceptional teacher, definitely one of the very best, are the qualities that are growing my business. I am grateful.

I think society, meaning all of us, needs to be careful how we judge other people, and really look at the boxes we confine people to. I think, too often, we are stopping integral people from being exactly who they are and exactly what this world needs.

I think we need to check ourselves on this. All of the time.

Sick ๐Ÿคข

I have been coughing and feeling very ordinary since Tuesday. So much internal change and processing in recent times; it was bound to catch up.

I worked in a local primary school during the week. I had a Stage 3 class. I like having one class for a whole day; you feel like you are doing more than babysitting. I had a few beautiful moments with this class.

The best one resulted in tears.

In primary school I spend some time handwriting the roll to get to know as many kids as possible by name. It also provides an opportunity for the kids to see me as our pack leader. I find that it sets the tone for the day. This is also the time that the cheekiest kids will show themselves. And, as a result, we set the boundaries for what is acceptable and what is not.

I love this part of the day, and I always fall for the kids who show themselves during roll. On this day, that became reciprocated.

One of the kids participates in a group at the end of the day and leaves the room to do this. He had been looking forward to it all day. The other kids had told me he was usually really naughty, but today he was behaving perfectly. I was surprised when ten minutes after the start of this session, he arrived back in the room and stayed. I acknowledged him and when I had the opportunity, asked what had happened to his group. Bless.

“How come you’re back from your group?”

“I chose to come back. I figured that this might be the only day in my life that you are my teacher, and I didn’t want to waste a minute of it.”

I kid you not. Tears fell. I hugged him. He looked suitably abashed and absolutely chuffed.

That connection is what I miss not teaching every day, but that connection is the same as I build with my students through my business. There is more than one way to achieve what gives us greatest joy.

And, some of those ways don’t include the grief that comes with every day teaching.

Almost at the end of eight months of leave. I have three and abut months left before I heard back to full time teaching in December.

What a break.

I hold anger towards one participant from the events of last year. I hold that person in absolute contempt and am not looking forward to working with them again. I need to come to peace with this, need to move myself to a point where I do not care, one way or the other about their existence. From that point, I can work towards coming back to love.

I have been thinking about why I feel so strongly against this person. I think it is because they have never really shown themselves to be of integrated character. They are insecure and very ego driven, and impact a lot of other people in a negative way. They are divisive and consistently deceitful. They back kids into corners and do not hide their favouritism, marginalising and wilfully hurting the kids who are not favourites.

Picking up the pieces from broken kids is never fun, even less so when the damage is intentionally caused by a colleague. For me, their work and the intention behind it is so at odds with my own intention. I’ve stood up to this person many times, but I don’t think I should have to.

As adults, we should reflect, continually, on whether we are bringing light and love into our place, or not. If not, we should try to change our actions, ourselves, or move from that place to a place where we can manifest light and love. If we aren’t here to heal, ourselves and our people, then why are we here.

It is definitely not to self serve at the expense of others, particularly children.

As I push the soap box back underneath the bed.

Have a beautiful day.

๐Ÿ™๐Ÿป

I’ll Tell You Whyย 

Warning: bad language in this post; it was directed towards me today – not from my mouth. 

                                       *****

It isn’t just young teachers leaving teaching. I’m an old teacher and I am leaving teaching. Today consolidated the decision and has accelerated it; I am motivated more than ever to find something else and build it. 

The hours are insane, the paperwork is ludicrous, but beyond that, teachers just aren’t respected anymore. We are treated like sub-humans. Continuously. 

I was humiliated today. Absolutely humiliated. I wanted to sit on the floor, rock myself and sob. But I couldn’t. I was on class. I was teaching. 

It’s a hard thing to deal with. You know you are worth more, you know that you don’t deserve it, but there are too many kids who don’t value us. 

I started the day positively. I was organised. I love the kids. I was happy to see them again. Happy to be there. The start of the final four days of a block in a faculty I love, run by a great Head Teacher whom I adore. 

One of the kids had other ideas. It started with whining and talking. It became whistling. It developed into tapping with swearing,”Fuck you.” Belligerent refusal to stop, to move, to put the phone away, to complete the work, to stop talking. The phone continued to be out. I confiscated it. I confiscated the pen that was used for the tapping. The child started arguing, loudly proclaiming that they weren’t going to follow my instructions until I gave them the phone back. They then started bullying other kids, pushing the buttons of a student they knew would freak out and react; he didn’t too much because he respects me. The child just kept going and going and going. They were removed by the Head Teacher. 

During Assembly, I politely asked a student if they were in the right line and I copped another mouthful, and when she finished her friend started. I was polite and just doing my job. 

Next two periods and playground duty were fine. 

Last period, the child from the morning banged on the classroom door as I was settling my class. The child then went to the windows, smiling and laughing, raised the middle finger to me and called out, “Fuck you”, “dickhead” and “arsehole.” 

Yep. I just wanted to curl up and bawl. This isn’t the life I want. This isn’t the world I want. 

Were there positives? Sure. A student who usually won’t do anything for me was so mortified that someone (except her) could treat me so badly so worked exceptionally during the lesson. I thanked her. The small windows we get. 

Teachers are leaving because we aren’t validated by our employers and their representatives. My Head Teacher applied for a formal caution. She received it. But I think the Deputy and the Principal should have suspended the child. For three out of the five periods she belittled me. 

I don’t deserve this. 

I left work feeling like a failure, mentally modifying the work that was left to try to mix things up for the kids, to try to engage this child. 

It isn’t right. Kids have license to abuse at least one staff member before they learn that their behaviour is unacceptable. 

And I’ll keep seeing the articles, Teachers leaving the profession, and reading everyone’s shock. Really? Kids have changed and as their behaviour has become worse, Principals and the Department have become softer. 

We need to look after the child’s welfare.

Sure. But who is looking after the teachers? 

I had to see a friend to debrief so I could come home relieved of pain. I’m now taking time out of my life to process it a bit more. And I’m exhausted. My plans for tonight will go by the wayside; my energy is depleted from staying calm and being professional whilst abuse was hurled at me repeatedly. 

Seriously. 

Goodbye teaching. We will be parting ways very soon. You have changed. It is you. And it is me; I know I’m worth more than this, and my life and the people in it deserve better than this. 

A Very Quiet Weekย 

Warning: further on in this post there are potential triggers for survivors and victims of childhood sexual abuse, and their parents. 
Between the business and casual teaching, I have had a work filled week which has permitted not much of anything else. But it’s been a calm and soul filling week. 

The kids at the school I am working a lot at are getting to know me and I am getting to know them. I like the staff I work directly with and am becoming a little emotionally connected. I have some blocks coming up too. 

But the exciting news is that tomorrow I leave for the US. In forty eight hours or so I will be reunited with two of my tribe (from our meeting in India last year) and I am so excited. Nervous – I hate being in the way (a value thing) – and excited. I can’t wait to be in their space and share energy with them. 

And the following week I head to Las Vegas for a friend’s wedding. And we are getting tattooed at Pussykat Tattoo Studio. And then she gets married and then I go to the Grand Canyon and then I fly home. A whirlwind trip incorporating time in two places I never thought of going to. 

This is what my gap year/mid life crisis is about: exploring life’s potential and trusting that where I am drawn to, I am meant to be. 

I have found a stillness within me. I’m meditating more and there is a calm in my mind and life. I am finding it infinitely easier to be and to exist for sustained periods of time in the present moment. I talk to my fear, to the odd pop of anxiety, to acknowledge it and then let it go. As a result, I am enjoying the things that I do because I am wholly present in them. 

Teaching is my means to an end. It pays the bills. My business, my study and my writing is my soul work. These light me from within and bring me home. 

I have always struggled to find inspiration and creative freedom to write whilst working, until now. During the week a block that I have found whilst writing my novel was lifted and I have been able to write in small chunks of time, at lunch, between clients, wherever I can, and it has just oozed out of me. 

I am at peace. I have found a type of balance. For now. Interestingly, I’m not taking a laptop with me on my travels – iPad yes, phone yes, laptop no. I hate taking it out of my bag continually at security checkpoints and don’t use it enough to justify it. I will use my phone and transfer it when I get home. 

My novel is about a teenage girl who is raped at a party. In the course of processing it, she learns more about herself, her friends, her family, and the world, than she ever wanted to know. It’s been easy to write at times and more difficult at others. I’ve been researching and have decided to include her mother’s perspective because the role of the mother, whilst pivotal, is never really explored. 

I think my recent experiences of helplessness – through the issue that resulted in the investigation last year – will enable me to empathise with the role of mother in these circumstances – the paralysis, the fear, the not wanting to open a hornet nest, etc. I will obviously also research in other ways. 

If you are the mother or father of a child who has been raped or sexually abused, I would love for you to write to me about your experiences if you feel that you can – not the specifics of the situation necessarily, but definitely your emotional/psychological journey. If you can

Our children live in such an unsafe and disconnected world, I fear for them. Manchester’s events rocked all of us during the week. Targeting young people specifically is a very cruel strategy. But when I reflected further, we always have targeted young people, just not as noisily or blatantly. 

The number of kids in care, or who should be, is ridiculous. The number of kids with parents who work so much they aren’t really present, grows. The number of kids subjected to sexual abuse, physical violence, neglect and emotional abuse, grows. CASA state that 20% of women and 10% of men have reported non-penetrative sexual assault occurred before they turned sixteen, and these numbers are significant disproportionate for indigenous adults. 

Childhood sexual abuse really has become and has stayed a silent epidemic. The long term impact of sexual abuse incapacitates adults, which impacts society. It is an issue that requires a higher social profile because it needs to stop. 

I know, am blessed to know many, and be, a survivor of childhood sexual abuse. I’m not whole. I am close to being whole. It has taken, and continues to take, effort and work to maintain emotional and psychological health. At forty six, the impact is significantly less on my life now than it used to be. I have worked hard and for a long time. 

I love that practice, I think Chinese, where the cracks in a bowl are filled with gold – a beautiful metaphor for survivors of trauma. It is our cracks that make us vulnerable to breakage but when filled, make us more resilient and more beautiful than we otherwise would have been. 

Yep. A quiet week but apparently not so quiet in my mind. 

Namaste ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿป๐Ÿฆ‹

The Inevitableย 

It’s 1.35 in the morning. I fell asleep on the lounge around 9.30 last night, waking up an hour ago. I’m now in bed but can’t sleep. I’m reflecting on my week. 

Last night I realized that the inevitable had happened. I have emotionally connected with and become attached to a group of adults and kids at another school. And, I’m okay with it. 

I’ve also realized that whilst I can come across as very arrogant, and at times, behave arrogantly, it’s mostly because I am really good at what I do. Not perfect but really good. And not acknowledged by those in charge, in a very broad sense, for it. I think the arrogance, if that is what it even is, stems from that quest for someone to acknowledge it. A result of damage and trauma no doubt. 

I had a success at work. It made my heart melt. I smiled inside all afternoon. I felt connection. 

There is a boy who struggles with change. The first few times I relieved for various teachers, he couldn’t even come into the room. On Monday he came into the room, and he stayed in the room even when he had the opportunity to leave. 

Yesterday he was reluctant to come into the room but did. And then he started to tease me and play with me. He smiled and he laughed and I just watched him blossom right in front of me into his potential as a happy person. It was so magickal. This transformation. Wow. He trusted me. 

It is such a gift to become the custodian of someone’s trust. As a teacher, it is our reward.

He completed no work but I have always maintained that to learn, we need to trust the teacher, and building that relationship takes time. Small steps. Being consistently in the unit is enabling and empowering me to build the relationships, with kids and with the staff. 

I think I’m feeling a return, from deep inside of my soul, to my passion for teaching, separate from the bullshit that can be the profession. A return to wanting to make a difference in people’s lives. To caring and to trust that caring is okay. 

And inevitably, this leads to an understanding of the extent to which last year has damaged me. I always trusted that my employers would look after me, and they didn’t. And this is why, even with renewed passion and yearning to make a difference, my days in the profession are restricted. 

Teachers need to feel empowered and inspired by the leaders in their organization, and that doesn’t happen. To ‘succeed’ you need to be a certain type of person, and that isn’t me, can’t be me, not interested in it being me. I have always created my own success in partnership with my kids. And that was enough for a very long time. 

But it isn’t anymore. I’ve lost respect for the institution. I don’t trust that the organization knows what is in the best interests of its ‘clients’, and that teachers are no longer empowered or supported to undertake their core duties. You need to look no further than NAPLAN reform and continual syllabi changes to see this. 

There needs to be fundamental change in every aspect of and at every level of the education machine in this country, and unfortunately, apart from the odd random twinge of politicalisation, I’m not interested in the fight. Maybe that spirit will return one day, but I don’t see it happening just now. 

Still too damaged. 

Such is Lifeย 

An interesting day, today. I had to have an ultrasound for my upcoming surgery to ensure all is okay with my gall bladder and then needed to go to the gynaecologist for a service. Appointments away from home and close enough together yet far enough apart to not bother coming home. 

As I am prone to do, I also arrived to both appointments early which interestingly resulted in me being seen earlier than my appointments; a rarity to be sure. First went smoothly. Picked up the images a little while ago. Second one threw me a curve ball. 

I had internal and external ultrasounds done a few weeks ago due to ongoing bleeding. My doctor wanted to rule out the cancers and horrible stuff. I took the images with me. My gynaecologist looked at them. 

No service required.

Hospital it is. As soon as possible before I travel to the United States in a couple of weeks. 

Trying a curette first. Inserting Mirena. If unsuccessful, lasering everything. If unsuccessful, hysterectomy. 

Day surgery. Fifteen minute procedure. An hour recovery. Home. 

She’s trying to book it for tomorrow afternoon. 

We both giggled at the irony of this IVF repeat failure reproductive system at forty six still being so fertile that even the gynaecologist said I was years and years away from menopause: life’s cruel ironies. After IVF I’m at higher risk of developing some type of cancer in my reproductive organs, especially endometrial cancer. 

Who knew. I think I vaguely recall reading that in my own research earlier on during that process. Meh. 

I always say, IVF is the gift that keeps giving. I just don’t wish it on anyone. 

As a result of those two appointments and having to wait around, I went to The Square to hang. Well, after my first appointment which I had to fast for, I really went there for breakfast, and just in the knock of time, my sugars were going out and I started to get the shakes. But, I also ran into a few ex students and friends, made through teaching. 

Man, if teaching isn’t the most powerful profession in reaching people I don’t know what is. And if ever I’m having a day questioning my own value and impact, I really need to just hang out at The Square. We raise compassionate and caring kids at my old school. They go on to become such beautiful people, trying hard to make life work and to give to others and become the best versions of themselves.

Us teachers are truly blessed. And if you’re a teacher who doesn’t work hard, doesn’t reach out to your kids, you won’t understand, but deserve to, so work harder. 

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