Six years ago I left a comfortable office job to become a teacher in one of the most "challenging" schools in Sydney. I started half-way through the school year and taught a kindergarten class of only 16 children. They would come to school each day excited to see me and eager to learn. Inside my classroom things were happy and safe.
When I left my classroom I was thrown into the violent chaos that enveloped the rest of the school. Playground duty was the worst as I would regularly have to break up fights between boys who were bigger than me.
The next school year saw that violence and chaos come into my classroom. I would cry each morning on the drive to school and cry on the way home remembering the awful events of the day.
At the end of the first term my friend encouraged me to apply for a position going at her school. It was a private, Christian school and I knew from talking to her about it in the past that it was a great place to work. I told her that I would think about it but in my mind I had already decided that I wouldn't bother. A lot of other people would be applying for the job and I still had six months of study before I would finish my final year of university to get the additional teaching qualification. I also only had 9 months of teaching experience. My husband (who was my fiance at the time) encouraged me to give it a shot and even spent about 3 hours redoing my resume for me.
Well, by an act of God I was given the job to teach second grade. My new classroom had clean, white walls, my own office, a computer room for the children and a wet area with sinks and art supplies. I had a large, noisy class, but they followed the rules and respected my position as their teacher. Playground duty was actually fun as I could walk around and get to know different students. The principal and the staff were caring and supportive and every morning we would gather together before school for devotions and prayers. It was probably one of the best schools in Sydney.
In September last year I left that school to have a baby. I was given 12 months maternity leave with the option of returning to a full-time or part-time position.
Well my 12 months leave is almost up so today I went back to my school and gave the principal a letter, resigning from the second best job I have ever had. I don't want to be a teacher any more because now I have the best job I have ever had. I get to be a mum.
I wake up every morning excited about what the day will bring. I can't wait to hear those little waking up sounds coming from my daughters room as she begins to stir in her cot. I can't wait to pick her up and feel her tiny arms wrap tightly around my neck and feel her soft cheek smush up against mine. I can't wait to see what new thing she will learn how to do today.
Do I miss teaching? Sometimes. If I think of a great lesson or craft idea that I'd love to be able to do with a group of students. But then I remember that in a few more years I'll be able to do it with my own children and it will be even more fun.