After staying home with my children for a few years, I was ready to get back to teaching. At that time we were living in the mountains of North Carolina in a small, sleepy town of about 10,000. Great schools, great people, overall an awesome place to raise a family. But there's a problem, jobs are scarce. Back when my kids were born, the economy was thriving and so was my husband's real estate and construction business. After the crash, not only was I ready to teach again, but our budget necessitated a second and more steady income. I did everything I knew to keep my foot in the small school district's door. I substitute taught, tutored, offered PD and even volunteered, all to no avail. They loved me there, but there were no vacancies in my licensure area or for which I had the skills for. Even though I added several licenses, I was inexperienced in those new areas and too experienced as a teacher which means they would have to pay me a higher salary even though I was new to the field. Understandably, someone fresh out of student teaching was a better fit for some of the positions I interviewed for. I was disappointed but I was accepting that God would open the door for me eventually. And He did.
An old acquaintance called one day and offered me a job that would require relocation to a larger town, to Mooresville. Initially, I hesitated. Even though we would move, our new home would be only a 1 1/2 hour drive to the mountains, so my husband could continue his work and he was willing to commute. So it was all up to me. Interestingly enough, this was a town we visited often and my husband and I had even talked about moving there someday. Nevertheless, I agonized over the decision and fretted for months. I lost sleep and even cried a little. I felt I needed to do something and also knew it was a now or never situation. Furthermore, even though I really liked Mooresville, I really wanted to work for the Mooresville Graded School District, not the district where I was being offered the position. At one point, I interviewed with MGSD but wasn't hired. I was quite upset, I might add, but moved on. Somehow, I managed to accept the fact that I needed to move and so I accepted the position and headed down the mountain. My husband and I always said that we would try it for year and if it didn't work out, we could always go back. Well, it turned out fine and after three months, a friend of a co-worker who worked for MGSD notified me that the secondary ESL teacher would be retiring soon and suggested I make contact with the principal. I did and the rest is history.
So, what lesson am I thankful for having learned? I learned that we must take chances even when we are not so sure. So often what we think is a wrong turn is actually a brief detour that will take us to our intended destination. If I would have stayed in Alleghany County I would have missed out on so much. Probably wouldn't even be writing this blog post. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose, but you just have to go for it, 'cause you never know what's in store. In the words of Wayne Gretsky, "You miss 100% of the shots you don't take."