Tag Archives: decisions

Artist or Career?

Artist or Career?

So my childhood dream is to become a famous writer. My current dream is to be a know writer. At least known among a niche. And to teach writing as a professor.

I’ve done my part. Graduated with a 3.69 from the University Of Michigan with a degree in English and a teaching certificate. I’ve just applied to graduate schools’ creative writing programs and taken the GRE. I’ve also taken and passed the Texas teacher’s certification test.

The plan was, if I got into college, I’d drop everything and live the college life. Focusing on my art as a writer and living on ramen noodles and cereal without milk.

If I didn’t get into college, I’d teach another year and spend it focusing on my writing and applying to grad schools again. Living a much more comfortable lifestyle since my paycheck would be salaried (and not bad at all- teachers make a pretty decent income here- at least for a couple with no kids or pets).

A wrench was thrown into my plans yesterday. I was asked by a teaching coach (every school has one in the district) if I was interested in becoming a teaching coach myself. She said there was a position open and after observing my classes she feels I’d be a great fit.

When I originally gave up my dream of writing, I turned to Plan B- becoming a high school teacher. I thought it would be a most rewarding career where I’d be surrounded by teachers,administrators and students who loved and revered knowledge.

But after three years I’m left burnt out, overwhelmed and feeling like I’m the only one in the whole school who loves the idea of being a teacher. The practical and tedious process of being a teacher is only a small percent actual teaching, but a much larger percent being a mediator, sitting in meetings and trainings, teaching to a test, testing, being a counselor, being a caretaker, being a comforter, and slaving over tons of data that does nothing to help my students actually succeed.

Being a coach sounds like a great change of pace. One that not only allows me to help teachers and stay in the education world, but one where I won’t feels so helpless and exhausted.

What about my refueled dream of getting a masters degree in writing? The idea of living the broke college life again is so scary I just want to hide under my covers. I don’t like ramen noodles and I don’t even remember the last time I ate cereal. But I want to write so bad and I want to eventually get my PhD.

So many options and so many paths. I don’t know what to do. For now I’ll just try to get as many fingers into as many pies as possible and see which one pans out.

(Photo credit to Steve Rossman- steverossman.com)


Regret Me Not

Regret Me Not

I don’t regret things. Or at least I’m trying not to. I’d rather learn from my mistakes instead of look back and say “I wish such and such never happened” or “I wish I never did such and such” or “I wish I didn’t accept such and such”.

I used to resent the choices my parents made: to continue their marriage long after it was over, to move to and live in certain places in the world, to accept giving/receiving abuse, and to have so many children. But now, when I look back at their choices, I am grateful because without them, I wouldn’t have learned and decided on what I will and won’t accept in my own life as an adult.

Yes, some things just aren’t necessary and can easily be regretted, like the time I stayed in a relationship for three years when I knew it was over a year into it. Or when I had zero self esteem and confidence and let people walk all over me. Or boiling a bag of frozen chicken pieces with the bag still covering the chicken. Or the time I said something insensitive to a friend and realized it too late. But some of these mistakes I have to learn and grow from on my own.

Sometimes our mistakes are so painful, they’re easy to regret. We don’t understand the lessons behind them. But one day, they won’t hurt as much. One day we will understand.

Regret just hurts. It’s the disease of the mind. It brings us down, depresses us. It quells our desires and passions. It casts a shadow over everything we do. It makes us only a sliver of who we really are. Regret isn’t worth the damage it causes our minds and souls.

I’m working on looking back at my past choices and mistakes and saying, “I learned never to do such and such again” or “Such and such isn’t happening again” or “I won’t accept such and such anymore”. It’s worth the effort; to look at our mistakes as kernels of wisdom. If we didn’t experience them we wouldn’t have grown wiser from the lessons they taught us.