small pieces of joy

pieces of joy in each day

let them eat cake!

on June 1, 2011

Yesterday’s small thing: celebratory margaritas and cheeseCAKE.

Last night two of our friends came over to celebrate a very important life change…I now have a full time job for next school year!

I received the phone call yesterday evening from the principal of the school I’ve been substituting at this school year. He sounded very excited and asked if I wanted to work for him next year. This is the phone call I have been waiting for since I submitted applications for teaching jobs LAST February. It has been a long, winding, dusty road to this place…so I was jumping for joy!

I couldn’t fall asleep for at least two hours last night. I was going over things in my head; ideas for lessons, decorating, reading lists for the summer. I even looked at the school’s website for a while, getting a feel for how the school works. My brain could not slow down!

This long, winding, dusty road has included many pit stops and distractions. When I first moved here I left a wonderful job. It wasn’t perfect, but it was comfortable. I was making a decent amount of money, I had good relationships with my co-workers, I had just finished my master’s degree, and I was finally starting to own the curriculum. Giving all of that up was difficult, especially when fall came and I didn’t get a full-time teaching job. I felt that all I knew was lost and that caused me to hit a pretty big low. I was crying all the time and wondering if getting married was worth giving it all up.

Since I didn’t have anything to do, I spent a lot of time in the adoration chapel at a local church. There I spent hours with Jesus, telling him how mad I was, how worthless I felt, and asking for him to reveal his plan sooner rather than later so all these bad feelings could go away.

In those hours of quiet contemplation it was revealed to me that I needed to ‘actively wait’. WHAT? I thought waiting was sitting around, wasting time until what you were waiting for comes along. This active part makes it so much more confusing! So I challenged myself to figure out how I was to actively wait for His plan to be revealed.

I felt drawn to apply to substitute at schools in the area. I got applications for 3 districts but I only filled out the one for the Catholic schools. I’m not sure why, its just what ended up happening. Through a few email exchanges I was added to the list. The HR lady told me to call some schools and introduce myself in order to get calls to sub. I called 3 schools and only one was receptive to my request to visit. I went to visit the school, was given a tour, and the next day I was called to sub. From then on I averaged about 2-3 jobs a week. Through that experience I met the entire faculty and created good relationships with them, including the principal. All of this led to an interview and then the job offer. God’s plan continually became clearer as all of this unfolded.

Another part of my active waiting was knowing that I couldn’t rely solely on substitute pay. One day I was curious and started to look on Notre Dame’s website to see if there were any interesting job postings. I was led to a tutoring position which sounded exactly perfect for me. It was working one on one with low performing students on literacy! The day after I applied I was called for an interview and was hired on the spot. Through that job I have gained so much knowledge about reading skills and how to work with lower level students. I also learned about a completely different demographic than what I’m used to and I feel I’m a more well-rounded teacher because of it. I’ve met some great people through this job and I feel those connections will be helpful in the future. I never would have thought this would have been a part of the plan too.

So last night our friends brought over a cheesecake to help celebrate. I am thankful to all who have shared prayers and words of encouragement this past year. I couldn’t have saved my sanity if it weren’t for you. I know I am still called to ‘actively wait’ for the next chapter of my life, so this summer I will be reading a lot about teaching, as well as saying many prayers of thanksgiving for all that has been given to me, even if it didn’t feel like gifts at the time.

What do you like to to to celebrate??


2 responses to “let them eat cake!

  1. Kathy says:

    Congratulations, Kari! I’m so proud of your sticktoittiveness and positive attitude!! You are so right, everything happened to prepare you for this moment. Details, details …… name of school? teaching subject/area? bldg. student population? (our K-6 bldg will be 700 after this year – oh my) did you actually sub in the position for which you were hired? I’m so happy for you.

    Ecclesiastes 3:1-13 “To everything there is a season….

    Did you haul out a lot of your “teacher stuff” to South Bend? Do they have a good teacher supply store nearby?

    What a wonderful summer you’ll have preparing for August. Should Nancy and I take road trip to bring stuff out and help you get your room “set up?” This is so exciting!! Since I can’t help with a shower, reception, or wedding brunch, let’s do something I’ve got experience with…. getting ready for August. Luv – Kathy


  2. Josie says:

    Your blog title is “All the Small Things,” but this a BIG thing! So happy for you, a job is a fine way to pass the time until you come back to KC where you belong! Can’t “wait” 🙂


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