I reread all my entries last year and I thought to myself, “I’ve come a long way. I’m now happy. The once stressed and exhausted teacher is now a happy one.” Happy even though I’m not in my “dream place” – my dream profession which is that of a public school teacher and a policy maker at the Department of Education. Sometimes my natural mind cannot comprehend it. That this is the happiest teaching stint in all my teaching journeys combined. Last year, I thought that getting my prayers answered and teaching in the public school would make me happy.
I am wiser now. Joy is not being in the middle of our “dream place/job” but it is being found at the center of God’s plan for our life. And most of the times, I have learned, it is far different from our original plan. Growing up, teaching in PCGS would be the last thing to enter my mind since I have always seen it as a strict and very conservative institution. As a teenager, there were a lot of times that I did not want to conform to the school’s culture. That’s why I find it ironic that the very thing I promised to myself (which is not to go back to PCGS) has become one of the reasons for my happiness at this point of my teaching career.
I’ve been through all the levels. I have completed all five: preschool, elementary, Junior High School, College and now the new Senior High School level. I have taught in a private school, in a public school, in a university, a college, big and small schools. I’ve taught in a school where only the richest kids study and handled the last, poorest and most disadvantaged class in a public school. Yes, teaching extremely different types of learners. I never expected though that I would find happiness in a very conservative environment.
Of course the teaching load can be exhausting during some days but I am amazed that seeing the kids’ faces and hearing their voices and greetings is always enough to snap me out of my tired reverie. I would say that it’s the kids who make teaching fun, who make you happy even when some can be noisy and create ruckus in the class but I would not trade these kids for anything in this world. Yes, I still feel a bit of restlessness within me at times like that desire to pursue my graduate studies in Manila but then again I remember my promise to Dr. P to wait for this first ever Senior High School batch to graduate in 2018 and I tell myself to wait for one more year.
I am grateful. Happy and content. It’s not a walk in the park but this is the happiest I’ve been as a teacher and for that I will always be grateful for God’s second chances, grace and mercy in my life and my career. Thank you, Jesus, for each and every young person in my care in my Grade 11 and Grade 7 classes.
The students make teaching worth it.