Last week, I wrote about landing a job interview. Well, actually I had two. And I accepted a job as an interventionist at Vision Academy, a charter school just northwest of downtown Indy. It still feels surreal, especially because professional development starts in one week!
Six months ago, I couldn’t imagine being in this position. I couldn’t imagine working. I couldn’t imagine being back at a charter school. I have my natural worries of going back to work after an 8 month hiatus, but nothing too out of the ordinary. Instead, I’ve been able to be excited and celebrate. Chels took me out to lunch and I got a bison burger over a really yummy salad and she splurged in getting me a pint of coconut milk ice cream.
There are bittersweet feelings in this news too. Saying yes to Vision Academy means saying no to the Oaks. A few weeks ago, I tested positive for internal mold and I continue to learn about everyday mold exposure along with chemical sensitivities I have. I believe subbing at the Oaks two months ago made me exhausted because of mold exposure. I’m glad that Vision Academy is a new construction and when I toured the building, I felt fine afterwards! The Oaks was a school I hoped to stay at for the longterm, yet because of health reasons, that isn’t the case anymore.
Celebrating means taking note in everyday tasks that I am feeling better. Not every day, not all the time, but significantly better. I can think more clearly, organize information efficiently, have greater energy hanging out in a bigger group of people, not have to lay down mid-day everyday, have energy to cook (and clean up!), have energy to research new things to implement to improve my health even more. Taking this job is a good risk, a thoughtful and joyful risk. I am ready to go back to work.
Yet, as I meant with my spiritual director yesterday, we talked about the seasons of life. How intense loneliness and waiting is now bearing fruit. How the longing to be settled and rooted runs deep within me. How this season is going to be more busy, and yet solitude in the midst of activity is essential.
As I re-enter the work world, I want to do so differently. I want working to reflect that I’ve taken 8 months off because of sickness. That my students know the importance of rest, thinking deeply, that I’ve created a nurturing environment for them to work and fail and succeed. That I will speak to them more quietly, in a gentler tone, and with greater compassion and love.