The Skeptical English Teacher

Questioning the Norm

Too Many Options

I have not been an official teacher for long, only 5 years, but I have worked in schools as a teacher’s aide, substitute, and a student teacher for about 10.  Teaching is my life. I’ve always known I would be a teacher, and I know I will always be in the field of education in some way.  But like many Millennials, I am discontent with doing the same thing each year.  That is why I don’t.  I will never be a teacher that repeats the same lesson or unit each year. I am an introvert at heart (even though my students balk at the idea that I could be an introvert), and so I thrive on creativity and thoughtfulness.  Honestly, I have never been much of a creative writer (fiction writer), but I have always been a writer.  My favorite types of writing have always been simple journaling or critical thinking-like picking apart bias and general academic expository writing.   Just recently I have realized my passion for curriculum writing, grant writing, and now blogging.

The instant gratification part of me needs feedback NOW!!  But the logical part of me realizes that I need to continue to write, after a few dozen posts, I may pay the extra money to start getting more readers, and continue to trudge through this difficult process while learning from each and every post and mistake.

As much as I don’t relate to most of the stereotypical millennial thinking, I have to admit that I am one. I fall on the earlier side of Millennials, and I was raised by my father who is a retired Sergeant Major in the Marine Corps and Vietnam Vet.  I have grown up with the blue collar worker mentality to earn what I get and work harder to earn more.  But as a Millennial want instant gratification and I want to change the world immediately or I lose drive and hope quickly.  But since I know I am this way, I fight my nature.  Each blog post I complete, I think about how this is just one small step toward one of my goals.    Whether this becomes a successful blog or not, I don’t know.  I hope it will become one but I can’t force people to want to read my ramblings.  But this is a means to an end of finding out exactly what and how I will be successful.

Today after church I started talking to a local natural grocery story owner, the only one in our town, and he recommended that I start listening to Sean Croxton- Quote of the Day.  He said that as an entrepreneur he has had to change his thinking about success. He has to constantly remind himself of what he wants and how he’s going to achieve it.  He knows that success won’t happen if he’s stagnant and negative.  I know that his store is very small but successful.  I attribute it to who he is.  He opened this store that provides something that this little town didn’t already have.  They didn’t have a natural grocery store.  But also he is a man of great integrity who takes amazing care of his family and is in the store carrying bags out for people and each day he spends his time chatting with his customers.  He is currently renovating a newer larger store to open in a few months. It’s been very interesting for me, as an observer, to see this process he and his store is going through during the past year or so.  They have hit so many road blocks, with the county, construction problems, and on but he is always positive and helpful to everyone he comes across.


I have NEVER thought of myself as an entrepreneur until this year.  This desire has welled up in me to do more, be more, and know more.  I have to admit that I’m not content in the classroom.  I want to do more practical things for people who appreciate me and that I have the skills to make their dreams a reality.  Just in the past 3 weeks I have considered all the things that I want to do:

  1. Get my Masters in some sort of educational program:
    1. Leadership to be a teacher leader.  Most of the time these teacher leaders become principals but that sounds very scary to me.
    2. Technology and literacy: I want to know how to use technology to create wonderful curriculum that I can publish and sell.
    3. Curriculum development: I already have about 20 units that I can finish and publish.
  2. Get my PhD and help with the push toward school choice.
    1. Open up a school where we present a better balance of viewpoints, focus on morality, are proud Americans, and do projects do change our communities and our country. If I get my masters in Educational Leadership, this would be a natural next step.
  3. Go in a completely different direction: creative technology (website design and educational technology), business-focused writing, and be a freelance writer.  I realize it is possible for me to do this while doing the other things.

Now I could just simply go get another teaching job.  But then it would push all these goals farther and farther into the future.  The logical, single mom in me wants to put all this on hold.  But the entrepreneur in me wants to make 100k so that I can buy a nice house in San Diego and build a great life for my daughters.


Now, these are my options, what am I going to do about it?

  • Where should I go to school and what should I pick as my major?  Going to school for leadership (Principal education) scares me to no end.
  • How am I going to take care of my daughters in the process?
  • How long is it going to take to make all this schooling worth it?
  • What if everything falls apart?


Let them shape you but don’t let them define you.

I’ve already said a few times that I am not a typical entrepreneur.  I was not born to speak in large crowds; I am actually an introvert by nature.  I have never sold anything in my life and would die of embarrassment before I would become a salesman, at least in the typical sense of the word.  I am so bent on being myself that I fail constantly.  I say the wrong thing, I am not a perfectionist, and I am continually dwelling on what I am not.   Even saying the word entrepreneur when referring to myself makes me shake as I type.

This desire to do more has sprung out of me mostly out of necessity.  I need to make myself indispensable.  I need to make myself successful so that I’m not stressing about money every month.  I am creative and constantly have ideas but have the problem that most of us have, follow through.


I live my life constantly reminding myself what not to do and who I don’t want to be.  I don’t want to be a person who needs instant gratification.  I don’t want to be content with the minimum.  I don’t want to get to the end of my life and realize that I was capable of so much more than I did.  I don’t want to waste my life on Facebook.  I don’t want to give up after any mistake no matter how large it may be.  I don’t want to be stressing over money forever. I don’t want to rent an apartment or have roommates forever.  I don’t want to see people who need help and not be able to help them.  I don’t want to waste the gifts that God has given to me.  I don’t want to do it all on my own and have to rely on my own strength because, to be honest, I am a single mom and EXHAUSTED most of the time.

I know my weaknesses, almost too well.  But I also know that God uses people’s weaknesses for His glory all the time.  I rejoice in my weakness because through my weakness can reveal God’s strength.

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 2 Corinthians 12:9

I will not succeed in my goals if I don’t take steps toward them.  I must believe that I can succeed.  I must believe that any level of education is possible for me PhD or whatever I choose.  I must learn from mistakes and not get overwhelmed.  I must make goals but complete one task at a time, one blog post at a time, one semester or class at a time, one day at a time.  I must not waste time.

But I also must spend time with my children and love their youth.  I must manage my household effectively.  I must take care of my body, my health, and my relationship with God, friends, and family.  I must realize that instant success will be worse for me than the gradual building of it.  I must manage each set of responsibilities in each season to my best ability.  I must be content in my circumstances and be thankful for what God has provided.  I must allow people to help me if I need it and ask for help if needed.

I detail every way that I’m failing in this current season of my life, but this season will last until June, I must accept this.  Now what will I do after that?  I have no clue.  I do have ideas, but I must be content and thankful that God has provided me with time to plan out my next steps.  When I think about all that must take place for everything to go back to school, I almost give myself an anxiety attack…. Housing, costs, school for my soon to be 2nd grader, childcare for my 3 year old, what exactly to major in, how long will I need to go to school, will I start a PhD immediately following or just get my MA,  how is it possible to find affordable housing in San Diego close to the university, which college should I go to,  should I start applying for scholarships now, should I go to a Christian college or just use my beliefs to influence my program… and much, much more.

But I know that God knows my future.  He knows what’s best for me and my girls.  I will trust Him even in my most anxious moments because He brought me here.  He has always taken care of us.  He will use the problems in my life to bring Him glory… and truly I could have much worse problems in my life than these.


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