As I've mentioned in previous posts I've been applying over and over again for jobs in my own field of expertise (wildlife biology) but in the mean time I've been working as a Preschool Teachers Aid as well as substituting fairly regularly at the local elementary/middle school. You know that old saying "When one door closes, God opens up a window", well apparently that's whats going on with me right now. I've been so frustrated not being able to find stable work within wildlife but have found such joy working with the local kids that maybe God is trying to tell me something.
A few days ago the supervising teacher (kind of the same thing as the principal of the school) called and asked me to come in for a meeting about a possible position she had available. Frankly I was a little surprised, though I know that whenever I went into the school to sub she was always excited to see me come in and we had some great talks over the lunch table in the teachers lounge. Obviously my background isn't in teaching but I do have fun when I'm there and my heart lifts when I see that new look of understanding cross a child's face when they finally get something they've been having a hard time with. So yesterday I go in for our scheduled meeting and was told that she had been watching me for the past year and was very impressed with the way I handled myself when working with the various students, especially those that are within the special education program at the school. She said that I always came in with a smile, a positive attitude, and willing to take on any challenge that came my way and those where qualities she was looking for in staff members.
So after discussing the duties that the position would entail and discussing what kind of flexibility I might have to deal with I was offered a position as a Special Eduction aid. This would be a 3/4 time position which is great because that means that I still get to work with the preschoolers for the other 1/4 of a 40 hour work week which is something I REALLY REALLY REALLY didn't want to have to give up. So I'll actually be working full time (meaning I get health, life, and retirement benefits) just between two programs at the school. I have to say I feel blessed and grateful for the opportunity and am currently just waiting on my approval from the school board, which shouldn't be any problem because they already approved my preschool contract and even gave me a raise so I must be doing something right. I should know within a week or so and I'll have to start going in and meeting with the new special education coordinator for the school so we can work out lesson plans and scheduling. I also have to see what kind of training and certification I need to get in the next month or so but those are things that I'm really excited about completing.
That being said though I am beginning to wonder what all this means for me in the long run. Did I make a mistake in college when I went into wildlife. Deep in my heart I still want for that dream to come true and make a career of it, but am I being told that I'm mean to do something else? My mom always told me even as a little kid that I had a way with people and was a natural with the extremes of life meaning caring for the elderly and understanding little kids. And at various points of my life I've worked with both and have never denied that I enjoy it. So I guess what I'm saying is that while I'm not closing off the possibility of working in wildlife and natural resources, I am going to let go of the reins a bit and follow the road I'm on right now. Things happen for a reason so who am I to try to explain things that I can't seem to explain.