I knew my placement would be eye-opening, but I didn't realize how hard it would pull on my heartstrings. The staff is phenomenal - they get paid next to nothing to take care of these students. A Barista at Starbucks makes more per hour than these folks to - this bothers me so much, you have no idea. These folks aren't in it for the money, they do it because they want to make sure these children are safe + taken care of. This week has made me so much more grateful for everything. Driving in traffic doesn't bother me - its the perfect time to call my mom + chat. Waiting in line? Hey, I can walk. Not spending enough time with Erich? We are getting our education + working to make a better life for ourselves. Believe it or not, I have been less stressed about, well, everything, because of this experience.
This week, my mom graduated from her program to become a medical assistant. This year was her first time going back to school in twenty-seven years. She spent hours studying, making flashcards + putting her all into this program. She never missed a day of classes + graduated with a 3.9 GPA. I am so proud of her - this was a totally foreign program for her + she passed with flying colors. My aunt + I attended her graduation + stopped at a local diner after the ceremony. It was a really nice evening.
Last weekend, I was offered a job. I would receive a 35%+ pay increase, 40 hours [no weekends] + more responsibility. After my first two days in the classroom, I decided to turn the offer down. Why? Well, if I take the job, it would be impossible to go on teaching interviews, substitute, intern at the magazine, or even do work on the blog. If I want to spend a weekday afternoon off with some of the littles, I can. If I want to take a drive out east + take pictures of the leaves changing, its possible. I know I could use the money, but to be honest, I want to enjoy my life + those around me. I've said it before, but after Dom died, it was like a reality check. Money isn't everything. I'll eventually snag a killer job + pay my bills off. I'm not going to settle for something that isn't what I've worked for.
Every night, I've been relaxing with a cup of tea + enjoying life, not stressing out about things I can't control. Even when I got sick in the middle of the week, I didn't worry about what I could + couldn't get done. I couldn't get to the gym, but I ate healthy + know that I will get back in a routine after the first week of student teaching. Usually, I would have freaked out about not being productive, but I have been productive, just in different areas.
I hope that all of you have enjoyed your week. I am looking forward to apple + pumpkin picking next week with Erich. We have been attempting to go for the last three years, but I think it'll actually happen this year!