July 5, 2022


Dear June,

June held a lot of bittersweet feelings -- and more than normal. The end of the school year is always an inhale and exhale all at once. Inhaling to prepare for the end of the year events at school and then the exhale into summer. 

This year was no different. Lots of last-minute printing to make sure the preschool scrapbooks were ready. To-do lists for graduation and our all-school carnival. And the outfits planned for Spirit Week. 

But behind the scenes and after grading hours, I was also preparing for interview for a position outside of teaching. While I was excited and eager to join this team, expand my skills, and be challenged by something entirely new to me, I was also grieving the idea of leaving my comfort zone and my identity as an educator.

To be honest, I've been burnt out since the moment I started teaching nine years ago -- it's both a  physically and emotionally demanding job that's also under-appreciated. And this past year, I've gone through more trauma and compassion fatigue than I ever have before. A couple months ago, it became apparent that I needed to prioritize myself for once in my career and removing myself from teaching, even if it is only for a season, sounded like the opportunity I needed to truly start healing (and not just "heal" by taking summers off).

So it was an extra bittersweet June. I didn't find out about the job offer until after the school year ended so as the end of the year festivities were going on, I wasn't sure if it would be my last and final celebration in preschool or just another one for the books. I tried to savor it all, soaking it all in and enjoying every minute of it. 

It took me a couple weeks to process all my emotions -- the grief of leaving a job I thought I'd be in forever and an identity that I've clung to so tightly since I was a child. Teaching was the aspiration I've held onto consistently for years. But there was an equal tug toward the excitement of starting something new. The sadness of leaving the school I've worked at since I graduated college. And the anticipation of making new friends while simultaneously grieving the thought of leaving my team and friends behind. 

The ironic thing is, this new job is located extremely close to my school, the one that I've worked at for the past nine years. So while it feels like miles away, I know that my school will always be close and only a short walk away. 

Closing this chapter feels wrong in some ways (as a teacher, I thought I'd be one forever and I'm going to miss the silliness in early childhood education) but so right in others (the excitement on working on some of my passions within the field of early childhood care and education!). I'm not sure what lies ahead, but I'm excited and ready. 

July, I'm excited for what's in store. 

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© IN ITS TIMEMaira Gall