This is a personal post so it's ALL ME, not my district or even much to do profession wise. FYI. Proceed knowing that. I'll regret oversharing and want to delete it but anyway. Two "awareness" months that have super affected my health the past year ended in May and if oversharing maybe helps one other teacher know they are not alone than so be it.
One ... for heaven't sake, be nice to yourself. Mental health people ... make it a priority. Even those with super strong families and spiritual bases and common sense can one day (or night cause insomnia is THE WORST) wake up and realize all is not well. Please understand the kids are still awesome. They need us. I wanted to be there for them and be on fire for them but this year has been HARD. My own health has to be a priority as well, right? I have tried to get a change in scenery over the years. Heaven knows I have tried. Applied and interviewed so many times it became kind of a joke because it always went to someone else. Could tell myself "they knew someone" (because in many cases prior connections came out later, even they the person ended up doing well anyway). Could tell myself "there's a reason you are supposed to stay" but why was that true when I felt so stagnant and alone? When I was so ... I don't want to say unhappy but no longer inspired? I wanted to be but it got to where I couldn't get anyone to do interesting things and couldn't get anyone higher up to listen (I avoid confrontation like the PLAGUE) and it felt like all I was doing was checking books in and out and not even getting to talk to kids about what they were reading and that was just not fulfilling. I was exhausted and in pain before the mental health issues started and a cycle of dwelling too long on the issues of education today and how frustrated I was at so many policies and procedures that were harmful to kids did not help. Glad to say tiptoeing down a better road now. It's a precarious road but a better road.
I truly don't know whether it was the chicken or the egg but they say stress can contribute to the onset of autoimmune disorders (docs have been super less than helpful ... I was doing half marathons 6 years ago) but pain and exhaustion and mental fogginess are real, no matter what the cause. They are real. And until I can get that under control the former issue will probably always be a bit of a spectre at the edge, waiting to jump back in if I let it.
So. Still have a week and a half to go but then it's summer. Time to relax and recharge. Some thoughts.
First of all ... the first couple of weeks means no thinking about school. Just get back into reading. That is one thing that has been a real barometer of just how much was wrong over the past year. Super hard to sit for anything but the audiobook on the commute. I'd either fall asleep or just not have the ability to concentrate. I have a backlog of Goodreads but I'm sure there are new titles that hopefully my local library will have? They are a smaller rural system so not many branches to choose from. Haven't tried the heavy duty ILLing from other systems. They are under renovations this summer so it should be an adventure going to pick up any titles!
Then I also joined my old gym. I've been going to Pilates and that has stretched tight muscles but it hasn't gotten the heart rate up all that much so it's time to work on that. Two times a week at Pilates and three times a week at group training classes. Hopefully I don't die or start crying. Eeeek!
Renew some interests outside of school or find some new ones. Haven't figured that out yet. I used to watercolor back in college. That would be cool but seeing as how it's already been 100+ (NOT SUPPOSED TO HAPPEN UNTIL JULY! SO UNCOOL!) not sure I want to be outside. Maybe hand lettering?
And some crafty things. Both for home and school. Just have to decide what.
When school starts again I have to figure out how to connect more with the other teachers even though my introverted self craves some time to just be quiet. This year I really withdrew ... without an assistant I ended up eating in the library because I was trying to get caught up and people still ended up sending kids during my lunch and that needs to stop (even though I've taken the same lunch pretty much since my first day there 14 years ago and I was always asking for it to stop but no, I can't lock the door). Back to the lounge even when it feels awkward to break into team tables or I end up sitting by myself because they are all sitting with their teams.