As I write this, I’m battling with quite a few competing emotions; anxiety due to going back to work tomorrow (in a completely new school for my second-school placement), joy at my infant daughter beginning to hit some awesome milestones over Christmas, regret at not having written this blog sooner, relief at having been able to get through the first term of my teacher training, and a general wistfulness as I look back on 2018, and how far I’ve come in the space of a year. There’s also some trepidation going into the new year and what it might hold for me and my family, but that’s normal…right?
Anyway, I know it’s a few days late but I’m not sure I could even continue to call myself a blogger if I didn’t write something for the new year, so I wanted to share a couple of resolutions that I’ve made, as well as some plans for the future.
#1: Stick with the teacher training.
This might seem weird, I know. It’s the equivalent of “Try not to quit my job”. But I feel like I have to make this a resolution because most of my waking thoughts over Christmas have been about how good it would feel to pack it in. November and December sucked harder than a nuclear-powered vacuum cleaner. The workload was nuts, I constantly felt like I was playing catch-up just to keep my head above the water. It didn’t help that in late November I got called into my lead tutor’s office and told that I wasn’t doing enough, and that I needed to produce more. I could have handled that, and if the talk ended there, I would have been fine. Then I got hit with: “Are you serious about the training?“. That broke me. All the hard work I was putting in, starting my days at 6 and working till midnight on lesson plans, reports, marking, evidence-collecting, sacrificing my social life and speaking less to my friends as well as juggling my family responsibilities, and still my tutor thought I wasn’t taking it seriously. I broke down in tears in her office and couldn’t teach for the rest of the day.
And still, I understand the importance of completing this training. Once it’s done, I can at least take a step back and evaluate whether this is what I truly want to do before accepting a teaching job. All everyone keeps saying is ‘”Stick with it, just get the training year done and the rest is downhill”, but good lord that’s starting to grate now, I’ve heard it so much. I joked with my dad over Christmas that it was like someone who’s first learning to skydive, who gets up in the air for the first time but becomes anxious about jumping out of the plane, being told by their instructor: “Don’t worry, it’s scary at first but you’ll be fine once you’re down on the ground.”
So we’ll see. I do want to see it through because in spite of it all, I love being in the actual classroom. Like I said earlier, the plan is to stick with the training and see what the summer brings.
#2: More family time.
It’s really begun to suffer as a result of the training, which is made all the more soul-crushing as my daughter is really showing major signs of development. The language is coming along nicely and her general confidence is skyrocketing. It’s been amazing over Christmas to really notice more of her personality coming through. I’ve been paying some Hearthstone over Christmas, and she cheers when I open card packs and even mimics an explosion when one of the heroes blows up at the end of a match! So more time with the family has to be a must. Day trips or even just walks to the park; anything to keep reminding me how lucky I am to have this family and help counter-balance the suckiness of the training.
#3: Aim for one blog post per month.
The fire still burns. My God how it would be brilliant to earn a living as a writer one day….so I’m determined to keep up the blogging as well. One of the reasons why I look back on 2018 with a degree of wistfulness is that it was the year I decided to start blogging, and I’ve absolutely loved it. It’s crushing to not be able to do as much of it as I’d like. From researching the posts to the writing itself, as well as the amazing collaboration projects; I enjoy it more than the Doomguy enjoys ruining a demon’s day. The Games that Define Us project in November from the incredible Normal Happenings was the highlight of my blogging venture so far; getting to write about the most impactful game in my life and read the stories of other bloggers with similar experiences was simply mind-blowing. So, one blog post per month. Even if it’s a short, couple-hundred words on why I’m excited for an upcoming game. I’m hopeful I can manage that.
So, my three resolutions. It’s been a few years since I had any, but I feel good about these three. Let’s see how we go. And I know it’s way overdue and belated, but it needs saying.
To everyone reading this, thank you for you patience. Thank you for sticking with me. Thank you for taking the time to read this. Thank you helping me to share things I can’t really say to people IRL. Just…thank you. You’re the goddamn best.
I sincerely hope that everyone had a truly epic Christmas period, and that you got to keep it in the manner you hold most dear. And I wish every single one of you a happy, prosperous, vibrant, peaceful and joyous 2019!