Wednesday, October 07, 2009

When Your Job Gives You Lemons

Forget about your job and remember other things that have nothing to do with it.

Sometimes, I lay in bed at night and dream about finding a nice secretarial job. You know the kind. Something low key, with a higher salary than teaching (somehow I doubt that's hard to find), with benefits, and a boss who gives me a nice Christmas bonus and an occasional, "Thanks, Katie, you're really good at your job." Maybe even a raise when he sees how fabulous I am. A nice secretarial position where I work from 8 to 5. When I go home at night, I'll be done with work. I won't have to think about it until the next morning. No papers to grade. No lazy teenagers. No homecoming ballots to copy, and stuff, and count. Let's face it: I'd make a killer secretary.

Instead, I work in a job where being good at it means I get added responsibilities with no additional compensation. And, while I work on my additional responsibilities, the stacks of papers I'm supposed to be grading just keep piling. The piles keep getting larger. And larger. And today, around the time that I agreed to be an emergency sub for someone's Spanish class during my prep period, while struggling to repair the technology that I needed for a lesson I was giving after lunch (which I wouldn't be eating because I had lunch duty), I almost cried. Almost is huge for me. I'm surprised I didn't lose it.

A lot of days I love my job. It makes me feel all warm fuzzy inside. A lot of days, in fact most days, an email from a parent thanking me for what I do for her child is enough. Having a student write, "I love you, Mrs. R!" on my whiteboard is enough. Watching a kid really GET something, and knowing I made that happen is enough. Today is not one of those days. Today I am tired. I am tired of feeling so physically exhausted. Tired of hearing, "This is boring." Tired of watching kids sleep through class. Tired of an honors class that didn't even bother to read The Great Gatsby and massacred what could have been an enlightening discussion. Tired of working twelve hour days and not getting paid for it. Today is a day I contemplate searching help wanted ads for a new profession.

Now, here I sit at home, and it's time for me to prove to myself that my life is not completely and utterly crappy. Here it goes.

On Friday, Lauren and I went shopping in Goldsboro. My mission: finds for the house. I love doing anything with Lauren, but shopping with her is especially fun. We are very thorough shoppers. We are bargain hunters. We start in one corner of a store and leave no stone unturned. We fondle every fabric, and we smell every candle. It took us about five hours to circulate three stores. Shopping is hard work, I tell you, and I'm hoping three hard core hours of it will compensate for the weeks I've neglected to go to the gym. I found some great stuff for the house at amazing prices (gotta love Ross and TJ Max). Some of my finds helped contribute to the completion of the sun room (well. . . somewhat completion) after we repainted the wicker furniture Joy and Bruce gave us. The finished product, for now, looks something like this:

Here's the wicker furniture pre-paint job and during paint job:




And the finished product:


On Saturday, Chad and I joined Cameron, Lacey, and Cassie for the U2 and Muse concert in Raleigh. U2 has long been on my list of bands to see in concert before I die. Considering this is the first time they've toured in the United States in twelve years, I'd say I kind of lucked out getting to see them. I have started to refer to this show as the highlight of my life, but since that seems to hurt Chad's feelings (something about our wedding day maybe needing to fill that spot in my memory), I'll just say this concert will forever be a close second. Muse sounds as amazing live as they do on CD; I would definitely pay to see them in concert as the headliner. And U2? I don't care if they're old. Any group that wrote songs two years after my birth and is still rocking out is just cool. Period. It was a fabulous concert. Feast your eyes and ears on the highlights:

First, here are the photos of us being amazed by the stage and excited for the concert to start. We got there VERY early, which was a super good thing. Apparently, a lot of folks were stupid and got stuck in traffic. These losers missed Muse, and in some terrifying cases, even part of U2's set. Another good reason for arriving early was getting free parking in a bank parking lot a mile away, instead of paying $20 to park at the stadium. Plus, when the security guards told us we couldn't have backpacks, it gave Lacey and I time to walk all the way back to the car. The security guard also told us we could bring treats but no water bottles. Funny how when we got back from the car, a different security guard said there was no food allowed. Don't you worry, we got to bring in our Almond Joys and Sour Patch Kids! We held the first guy to his word.

Chad and me:
Cameron's first concert. I'm pretty sure every show afterward is going to savor of anticlimax:

The whole crew, ready for the show to start (you can tell how early we were by all the empty seats in the stadium):
Lacey and me being our typical, solemn selves:

Lacey and Cassie (I loved listening to these two sisters bicker. It took me back to my Moses Lake years. I love these girls!):
Just before Muse performed:


A short clip of the concert, for any of you Muse fans out there:



During a few key moments the stage lit up enough to get some decent photos. Here's are a couple of shots of U2:


And video footage for your enjoyment:


My one regret is not getting any footage of the drunken Brazilian lady doing the samba during every song. Man, she had some energy.

Then, when we got home Sunday morning, I had this surprise waiting for me in my dining room:


Merry Christmas to me! This corner, china cabinet belonged to Chad's great grandmother. She recently passed away, and this is a Christmas present from Joy and Bruce, who bought it for us from her estate sale. Thank you so much! It's beautiful, sentimental, and I love it!


Yup, I'd say my life is pretty far from being crappy after all. That was therapeutic. Thanks for indulging me.

14 comments:

  1. Sorry you had such a tough day. I know my dad had lots of those as a teacher. I think anybody that wants to be a teacher is an amazing person and will have a special place in heaven for what they do. :-)

    Yay for U2 and "new" furniture! Don't you just love what a little bit of paint can do? The china hutch is beautiful too.

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  2. We all have our days!!! I know I have mine!
    I think I live a very borning life! I have never been to a concert like that!! Now that was one cool stage!
    Hang in there, I'm sure all the kids love you! How could they not! Maybe it was something in the air!?!

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  3. Your sunroom looks so pretty! I can't wait until we're settled enough to actually decorate somewhat. I love the pillows! And Trevor liked the wicker (he's pretty anti-wicker so there you have it).

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  4. I love your posts. I bet you make an AWESOME English Teacher. Waaaaayyy better than Mrs. Kittrell, although really that isn't tough, so maybe that's an insult. haha. Really I think I'd enjoy going to your classes.
    I love love LOVE the house! I'm so jealous. It looks NICE. And that corner cabinet is gorgeous. awesome.
    I dream of living in one place long enough to get a home, decorate it, and make my mark.

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  5. Jared Jensen8:37 PM

    Katie i love the photos...also that stadium is really nice. Oh how i imagine being down in the pit, but tickets were probably very costly. Both of the vid's are of U2 so you might want to fix it.

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  6. I have that job, it's not all that it's cracked up to be. In fact, it's pretty much so utterly boring it's almost depressing. On a happier note, I am loving your house more and more with every picture. I can't wait to see it in person some day! So fancy!!!

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  7. Katie...This is Taylor that grew up with Chad, or like Mrs. Joy used to always say I said "CHAAAAAAD." I just found Meredith's blog today, and then found your link. I am so excited I get to finally keep up with the Reese family again. Please tell Chad I said hello!

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  8. Hang in there, teaching is a thankless job, but you have to know you are making a difference for some, if not many of your students (I remember, I promise!).

    Glad your sunroom is looking so great, and we're so happy you like your early Christmas present. I think it is so perfect for that spot.

    Thanks for taking Cameron with you to the concert. He loved it! Life is good for sure!

    Love you,

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  9. Somedays I really wish I could teach. Only somedays. I hate that teachers are so under-appreciated and you really always have work to bring home with you. I have no doubt you are awesome at it. Loved this post.

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  10. I just met a friend of yours at the YSA Fireside that Howard and I spoke at. Her name is Suzette Mitchie (spelling ?) She is so fun and really likes you! After we talked she came up and said she was from Moses Lake. When I asked her if she knew you she got so excited! Very sweet girl!

    I really need to be on Facebook!

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  11. I can totally relate! I hear ya girl! :D Hang in there!

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  12. Katie....I literally said the same thing the other day, "I wish I could just be a secretary!!!"

    It sounds like you have a lot of fun stuff making up for it though!!! That's what we (teachers) have to do to keep ourselves sane!!~

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  13. I would say you definitely made lemonade.
    What a great weekend.
    I want "in" on your next leave-no stone-unturned-five-hour-shopping trip.

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  14. This sounds stupid because it's probably so common-place for you, but your hair is super cute. And, if you ever need any Gatsby stuff, I can email whatever you want. Glad to know that teaching woes are the same no matter what part of the country you're in.

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