Tuesday, January 10, 2017

#sol17 Last and Best

I'll admit to a few tears in my eyes as the school board voted 5-0 to approve an early retirement package for our district. Greg and I have talked about it for months. If it was offered, I would take it.

And now, it's real.

So why the tears? I really don't know. I told Greg when I got home that they were happy and sad tears.

Can you have both?

My wonderful husband told me I didn't have to take it if I didn't want to. If I wanted to stay a couple of more years, I could.

But I don't. I am ready to retire. I am ready to be done with lesson plans and grading papers. I am ready to be done with the politics and defending summer "vacation".

But I am not done with kids. And that's where the sad tears came from, I know.

This will be a semester of lasts. But it will also be a semester of BESTS. I am determined not to be a short timer and be my best as I count down the lasts.

Stay tuned as I DISCOVER how to do this and find the future.

15 comments:

  1. Best of wishes in these months, Deb. It's a journey that holds good things, and sad goodbyes as you know. Your students and school have been very fortunate to have your expertise and dedication and just plain love all these years!

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  2. Hooray for you. Endings can be bittersweet. It's the same way you feel when you change schools, only this time there isn't another school on the other side. I hope your last semester if the best ever.

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  3. All such endings are indeed bitter sweet. The end of this school year is going to be a humdinger of emotions. Best wishes on your next chapters.

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  4. Journey's like this are bittersweet! When I left Deaf Ed to become a librarian there were plenty of things I was just sick and tired of. There are also many things I miss dearly. Best of luck to you!

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  5. Congratulations Deb. Or maybe that is not the correct choice of words. It is a difficult decision to leave teaching, especially the kids and all the great people you work (and have worked with). Many of the people will be around (and will be very glad to have a talk with you) but some will be "lost". Could you think of it as giving another person a chance to have all the great experiences you had? It makes it easier, in a way. Best of Luck

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  6. Wow, Deb. It's a hard decision no matter what. Happy and sad tears for sure. I know you will continue to give your heart and soul to your kids this last semester. Think of what you will DISCOVER ... live it to the fullest. Then you can turn your discovery to your family and discover other ways to make a huge impact as you have (volunteering perhaps?). Here's a high-five for the happy tears and a hug for the sad tears.

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  7. Congratulations! You have a heart of gold for both the students and the people with which you work. God bless you. Now everyday can be lakeside day!

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  8. What a decision! I know it's a difficult one to make, but the heart knows when it is time to step aside and begin a new journey. Savor these last months, I know the students will miss you.

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  9. Deb, you have so much fantastic work to do in this world with kids! Now you will have free time to really plan your awesome ideas. Look out world! (after a long, well-deserved time-out). ; ) I know this will be a bittersweet journey. I'll be thinking of you!!

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  11. Theses decisions are not easy ones to make, but somehow we know when the time is right. I look forward to reading about your "lasts" as you fulfill the rest of your year and hearing about your "firsts" as you look forward to retirement.

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  12. I admire you for making this decision. So hard. You will be finding new discoveries, but saying goodbye is still sad.

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  13. I can only imagine the mixed feelings you must be having. Savor these moments because I am sure there will be many, many bests.

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  14. Yes, happy/sad tears are totally a thing! I love that you've decided it will be a year of bests... and I think you will do a great job savoring all of those special moments as they come. I also think you might find a way to not be done with education or kids... do you think? My mom (a principal) definitely had mixed feelings when she retired a couple years ago, and she has found some ways to stay "in the game" while also enjoying her retirement -- presenting, consulting, visiting... making new connections and keeping the old ones strong. Maybe you will find a similar balance!

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  15. Deb --

    My decision rolled out in much the same way. We suddenly had a five-year contract after many years of one and two-year contracts. The five years coincided with my first possible retirement date, and the retirement incentives were likely to go away after the five-year contract. It would have been financially irresponsible to not retire at the end of that contract. To top it off, the full retirement incentives were only available if I declared four years in advance. So, away I went.

    With no regrets.

    You've heard me say this before. I was helped enormously by the realization that my job and my work are not the same. Although my work and job had significant areas of overlap, when my job ended my work did not. My work has continued to do this day and hour.

    Nowadays I set my own schedule. I reflect on and act on my own priorities. I do only what interests and excites me. I don't do anything just for the money, but I also get paid for most of the work that I do. (When I work for free or almost-free, it's my choice.) I'm never bored, always busy, and I'm pretty sure I'm being productive.

    Retirement from your job is a big step. Congratulations. You've earned this honor and deserve a rewarding future. There is more ahead of you, if you want it.

    I'm a couple of years ahead of you on this path. If you ever want to talk to someone who about how all this feels with someone who admires you and your work, I'm here, and I get it.

    Gary

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