Wednesday, January 29, 2014

I have a story to tell….

Thank you for stopping by.  My story needs to be told.
In words.

Interspersed with images.
And some artwork.

It is difficult and scary for me to begin.

I have been steadily employed in corporate America since 1979.  Not always with the same corporate employer, mind you. As time has passed, and employers have changed, and now policies have changed, several common threads are blindingly apparent to me.

The path has brought me here, right now.  I am sure of that.  I have been employed by a large urban school district since 1997, and still am employed there.  I am a science teacher currently holding credentials for Biology and Chemistry.  I love science.  I fell in love with its majesty, complexity, simplicity, sensibility, beauty, immensity, and curiosity at the age of 16.  I knew then and there that I would center my life around this academic discipline, in some fashion.

And I have done that in my professional life.  I worked in healthcare for about 15 years, at two different and very large medical centers.  I'm sure you have heard both their names, they are in the news frequently.  I decided to change careers and become a teacher, which I began in 1997.  My teaching career has been very successful, with thousands of students I have had the privilege of spending time with, making connections and laughing while working very hard and overcoming difficulties and celebrating successes.

All corporate structures have a defined hierarchy of positions and various policies regarding employees and practices.  I get that.  It must be so, in order for that corporate entity to function.  The first common thread is that the welfare of the entity comes before the welfare of the individuals which comprise it.  

When I became an educator I had a very strong sense that 'I wanted to make a difference in the lives of my students".  I still feel that way.  However i have been betrayed by the corporate structure where I am currently employed.

In the spring of 2012 I was sitting in my classroom, working and listening to internet radio.  A song by Van Morrison came on and I heard it down to my very soul.

When listening to this I realized that was exactly how I was feeling about my teaching work.  Specifically about my employer, not so much the teaching and my students.  It all seemed so wrong. So disappointing. So frustrating. So unjust. So unfair.  So immoral. So wasteful.

Many untruths have been told.  Collaboration is a thing of the past.  My self-confidence, professional pride, classroom practice, and employee loyalty have been shaken to their foundations.  

After a deep depression and dehumanization at work, alongside my employer's lack of valuing my talents and services, I am feeling much more MYSELF than I have for a very long time.   I have been on a medical leave since November and am preparing to return to work in few weeks.  Same employer. Same situation. There is a big difference now though.  

I am not the same as I was when I left in November.  Thank goodness.

I am ready to bloom.


~*~Patty S said...

Dear Gaye ~ Thank you for sharing your story and journey with us.
I wish you every happiness moving are a trooper.
I had never heard that Van Morrison before...
Sending Peace ♥ Love and Light to you always!

One Creative Queen said...

You put that amazingly well. I wish you nothing but success, peace and love moving forward. You are blessed to have found what you are unhappy with, and to fix it as best you can. Many spend years and years looking for what makes them happy or unhappy, never to find the real answer. I can tell you that your art inspires me and makes me happy. It is absolutely gorgeous!