Friday, August 24, 2007

The Principal Thing

The principal thing is perhaps the hardest thing I've done, professionally. There are many days I question my sanity, wonder at the wisdom of my judgment, doubt my decision-making ability when I think about having chosen to become a principal after 26 years of being "just" a high school English teacher. I've not given up all the English classes. I still teach four classes (senior English, Honors English, journalism, and freshman study skills), but the majority of my time is taken up in problem solving instead of lesson planning, penny pinching instead of essay grading, and phone conversations with parents instead of face-to-face conversations with students.

I miss full-time teaching! Even though I am looking forward to the school year, and I have a feeling (intuition if you will) that this will be a good year, there is a hollowness inside when I think about the things I have to do as opposed to the things I want to do. We have a good team. We like each other. We respect each other. We get along. This makes it easier to work together. But right now, I just want to go to my room, make a few bulletin boards, line up the desks, and not have to worry about the gym, the storage shed, the playground, the finances.

Maybe I'm just tired. Maybe I don't have the energy right now to step back and look at things objectively. Maybe it's the fact that I haven't had a day off to speak of since the middle of July. I don't regret my decision. It was right for the time. But the little voice in my head, the wisdom of self-preservation and to-the-bone satisfaction, tells me that I need to find a way not to internalize things I have no control over. That I need to trust. That I need to keep full in my consciousness the fact that God can still the storms inside and out.

Wisdom is the principal thing. Ironic, isn't it, that I find this quote at Snapshots of Joy just when I'm wondering the wisdom of the principal thing?!!!


Lindah said...

Ah, Rondi! I know you are a good principal. I can tell by your professed love of God and his boys and girls. Remember Mother Teresa's admonishon: We are not called to be successful. We are called to be faithful.
He will do the rest.
Blessings on you, dear lady.

Rondi said...

Lindah--thanks for the encouragement.

Inland Empire Girl said...

You do have a full schedule. It is good that you take time like in your newest post for yourself. My day is split between teaching and Title I director... so I hear you.