Day 17: One thing that is different from a year ago that I am grateful for…
is my husband’s schedule. There are lots of things that are different this year, but this is, honestly, the biggest. Last year, I taught all day, tutored after school until 6 and came home to an empty house (except for my wonderful little dog) every day. My husband had class during the day, worked evenings, and usually didn’t get home until after I was in bed. Sometimes, if his night class ended early enough, I saw him on Thursdays. To say the least, I was lonely. We were both exhausted and our home got neglected because of it, which meant that either A) we were disappointed with ourselves and B) much of the weekend was spent cleaning. Both my job and his school work suffered.
This year, many things are the same. I still tutor after school, and I’m often exhausted by the end of the day. But my husband quit his job this year. Yes, we lost some income, but we do okay with what I make teaching and tutoring. His job was taking a serious toll on his mental health, and it wasn’t worth it. He has more time and energy to focus on school, AND he cooks most of the meals and does the lion’s share of the housework. Most importantly, when I get home in the evening, he’s HERE. We talk. He lets me vent. He doesn’t know much about education, but he offers suggestions and lets me bounce ideas. He is the heart of my “offline PLN”. I hear about his day. We watch TV together and do all the simple, little things that I had come to take for granted before last year.
Lots of things are still difficult, but now I feel like we’re in it together in a way that we simply couldn’t be last year, when we only saw each other on the weekends even though we were living in the same house.
So this doesn’t have anything to do with my classroom or my teaching, but it really, really does. If my wonderful husband weren’t around all the time now, I don’t know if I would have made it through this year so far. Without doubt, I’m a much better teacher this year than I was last year. There are many factors that go into that, but I know I wouldn’t have had the time, the energy, or the mental strength to do what I’m doing now if my husband weren’t around in the evenings.