I’ve been feeling pretty grateful recently and felt I just had to share my gratitude. (Cue eye rolls.) You see, a year ago, I made a decision that changed my life completely. I made the decision to leave my job.
Now, it may not seem like a big deal, but I really loved my job. Don’t get me wrong. Every profession and every school district for that matter have its issues, but I genuinely loved where I was. I had tenure and just finished my 5th year teaching. I loved my students (most of the time- haha). I loved my co-teacher (Shout out Steph!) and my colleagues (team 5A all the way). I had a great relationship with my administration and I was having great success in the classroom. Sounds perfect right? So what would make me give all that up?
Traveling. My fiance at the time had been offered an opportunity as an Occupational Therapist to get into the field of Travel Therapy. When he first brought it to the table, it just seemed too good to be true. We pick the place anywhere in the US and then recruiters place him in a job in that area or as close as possible. Seriously?
I learned my lesson before about things that seem too good to be true (stupid NADS) so I was not going to be fooled again. We started looking into it and speaking to friends and other people who did it, we found it to be the real deal- I know awesome, right? Now, it was just a matter of us making the decision. Ray was all about it and since the demand is so high for OTs he really could get a job anywhere. So that left me.
Should I stay or should I go?
Choices like this remind me of a poem I taught my students by Robert Frost called, The Road Not Taken.
“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
I remember using this poem to examine the depth of figurative language and the symbolism, and analyze the author’s meaning and– sorry old habits die hard. Anyway, I remember discussing with my students the importance of following your heart, taking risks, and not always doing “the norm”. “Be a leader and make your own path.” I’d tell them.
So I spoke with my closest friends, my family, and even my coworkers, about this pickle I was in, in order to get some different opinions and viewpoints on the subject. Thing is-I kept getting the same answer; the answer I wanted to hear. DO IT. I ended up having so much support from everyone, that it really made the decision a no-brainer.
This was an opportunity to explore the country and visit places I’ve always wanted to go. It was an opportunity to learn about ourselves, two newlyweds and a car full of essentials (yes, an X-box is an essential). It was an opportunity; an experience we couldn’t pass up.
So I’m grateful. I’m grateful that we had this opportunity in the first place, so thanks Ray for choosing a job that offers us this experience. I’m grateful for such supportive friends and family. I’m grateful for the priceless memories we’ve created along this journey so far. I’m grateful for puppies, Walt Disney, and dark chocolate and- sorry, getting a little off track.
You live once. It’s such a cliche but it’s true. So why not take a chance, go out on a limb, or whatever other analogy tickles your fancy. Life’s too short not to live it- and live it your way.
It’s like ol’ blue eyes once so eloquently put it,
“I’ve lived a life that’s full
I’ve traveled each and every highway.
But more, much more than this,
I did it my way.”
Countries visited: 10
States visited: 25