Monday, May 26, 2008

Mental Health

I met with Human Resources last week. I don't think I convinced them two schools is too much for one person. On the other hand, they did agree to give me medical leave through the end of the school year. My buddy, Bob, has been telling me since January that I went back to work too fast after the open heart surgery. I believe him. As I see it, I had no time to ease back into routine and get used to working again--I jumped back in with both feet at a dead run. The bottom line is that I am not keeping up, I am aware of making mistakes, forgetting things, and feeling so much anxiety.

I even had a coworker tell me it was "time to step up" by which she meant, I assume, that in her opinion I was cured and needed to get with it. Not true. The fact that I am walking upright, doesn't mean everything is back to normal. At no point did any administrator suggest we might ease the workload slightly. When my two principals worked out my alternating day schedule, my workload actually increased. While I was able to keep up with it, I enjoyed feeling so productive. I was visiting five or six classrooms a week, and running four or five groups per week. I also mad an attempt at keeping a daily log of all that I was doing--that ended up feeling like even more work...extra and unnecessary paperwork to prove to someone unknown that I am actually working.

One principal is never around to notice when I stay until 5:30 finishing things, but she sure did nail me for taking an extra 10 minutes at lunch the other day. Maybe I should have interrupted the teacher's math lesson to talk to her about a student, but instead I took time and caught her at lunch. Of course, lunch is supposed to be duty free, according to WA state law.

I do wish I could just work with the kids. I don't know how to set that up. I know the person to ask for help, if ever we had an opportunity to talk and share ideas.

So...I am job hunting.

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