Sunday, March 4, 2012


I was just reading my friend's blog post about February kicking her a$$. I can relate...too well.
I don't like to complain about being stressed, because we ALL have life issues that cause us concern. Many have it way worse than I do. But for my own sake I am going to blog about my personal stressors.

I am teaching a new class. It is kicking my a$$ into a whole new territory of stress. I am teaching Advanced Placement United States Government and Politics. Let me tell you what. This is NOT a class I would have taken in high school had it been offered, and I know I wouldn't have passed! Everyday at school I am pouring over about five or six different AP workbooks, the book, online sites, heck anything that can offer me help. I also teach another class, so that needs my attention. Then at night between the kids' stuff, I spend anywhere from 1-2 hours on it.

I DO NOT UNDERSTAND THIS CLASS! I'm sorry, but I have no clue (but I'm learning) about PACS, Super PACs, Election Laws, and okay I could write until the cows come home. So not only do I have to get it, but I have to present it in a way that the kids think I sort of get it. These kids are the best and the brightest in our school. It's no secret they are more intelligent than I am. Almost daily they ask me questions that I can't answer. The best part? I have a student teacher who seems to be able to answer the questions. They call him "prof." Yeah that's not a kick to the gut. I've been in tears more times over work since January than any other time in my job.

This is what I need to tell myself each day...:
I will get through this
I am healthy (okay except for the awesome 24 hours migraine I had for the first time in my life this weekend. I blame "the class.")
My family is healthy
My husband supports me and lets me work as needed
I am a better person because of this class
A professional challenge is good
So I have to give up a week of my summer vacation to learn more about this stuff this summer. So I can't apply for a history seminar. So what? I am so happy. (okay that's a lie)
And again one of my favorite mantras: What doesn't kill us makes us stronger.

Back I must go to work on my presentation about Interest Groups. Sounds thrilling huh?


Stephanie said...

That would be extremely frustrating. Sorry :( It sounds like you are doing everything you can possibly do to work through it, it does not make the process any easier, but you will walk away a stronger person in the end. Being an adult can really suck at times. I try to put things into perspective as well, such as my health and the health of my friends and family. Sometimes it's just the unexpected crap that eats away at us and causes us all kinds of stress. If you ever need to vent, send me an e-mail or text!

Ben said...

Heya, Bonnie! That sounds frustrating, but don't beat yourself up so much, and certainly don't put yourself down. You're no dummy. It's a complex topic that has changed a lot since we were in school. I think you'd have to be very much into the topic to keep up with it and have a deep knowledge. Heck, *I* don't even understand most of it these days (especially not PACs and SuperPACs). Politics is a frightening thing these days.

I don't know if you're allowed, or if you've considered it, but maybe you need to setup a few special speakers? There are probably poli sci profs from local colleges/universities who could come in, as well as a few local politicians (or former ones). Your dad may know a couple (e.g., Morrie Lanning), and I'd be happy to ask my dad for referrals as well. A fun one could be Congressman Peterson. A call to his office might get you a visit before the end of the year (it's an election year, so it could be a big presser for him!!). Etc. Those might help you make it real for the kids AND give you a little break. fwiw.

Hang in there!!

Be the change... said...

I can't wait for you to teach my kids! To have the patience to be a teacher has always amazed me. You have the right mindset, have a great day!

ABCDH said...

I don't know how teachers handle never having an end to their work day! I guess summer break but then you are still "working" for the next sememster! I applaud you for caring enough to try and get a grasp on a difficult topic.

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