Well, first of all I would like to share with all of you something that has been bothering me for about five months now. As I’m starting to heal, I realize I need to let go and forgive, which is SO hard to do. I fall short every time, but I thought if I shared this experience, my frustrations, my anger, and my disappointment with you, it might do ME some good.
Maybe I can finally start to heal that part of me that has hardened, but of course, I need a good therapeutic vent first. 😭😄😣😁😅😥😩😱😏😮💩
I’ve never ever used the expression #sorrynotsorry, but I think this blog is finally one that I can use it for. I used to think that was rude, “why would someone apologize and not really be sorry?” But, I think I understand now.
So, with that being said…I’m sorry but I’m not sorry. There are things that need to be said and if I’m the one that has to say them than so be it.
On a positive note: I would first like to brag on my coworkers and students. They have been awesome through this awful experience and they have always been supportive and had my back. They have fought my battles when I wasn’t there to fight them myself. I always knew my coworkers were my friends, but they are so much more than that. They are family.
My students have always had my full attention, even last semester while I was working and also dying (I’m not exaggerating) I tried to always put them first. Fake it until you make it. I didn’t want them to know that something was wrong, but they still knew. I guess I wasn’t very good at faking it. They have also fought my battles. They tried to save the art program, by speaking at board meetings for me. They tried to keep me full-time instead of part-time and it’s so honorable and I’m so proud of them!
They are still constantly sending me messages, pictures, and emails telling me that they miss me or they are sending me pictures of their artwork. And I miss them. I miss them so much! I miss inspiring them, teaching them, making them laugh, telling stories, I also worry about them, and to be honest they are like family to me too.
Both have been such good support systems for me, it’s unbelievable. I’ve been so privileged to have touched so many lives, but more importantly they have touched mine and changed me…for the better I hope.
With that being said, I’m now going to talk about the other side of my experience at my district and I’m sure there will be backlash, and I’m sure I will get a phone call, but it’s only fair for myself and for all of you that I share my story and show you exactly what’s behind that blue and orange curtain.
Not once since I left, have any of my bosses or the school board called, emailed, texted me, sent cards etc. to see how I am doing. I will tell you that it’s nothing for them to call and “discipline” me over the phone or mail numerous “official” letters to my house repeatedly, that my husband is now having to deal with since I’m not there. He has to go to the post office each time to pick them up. Several times, it’s been the same letter three or four times. To be honest, I was shocked, but even more disappointed.
No joke, since I’ve been gone, January 5, I’ve had two letters put in my file. I’m sure this blog will result in a third one. How can someone get into trouble when they aren’t even there? Side note-I’ve never ever had anything ever put in my “file” since I started working there six years ago.
For example, they made me take down the Art Club Facebook Page (which I did immediately) the day I repeated what was said at a PUBLIC MEETING about the art program being cut to part-time.
What happened then? I got a letter in my file and a wonderful phone call. That, my friends, was public knowledge held at a public meeting, but it got people talking and they didn’t like it. I’ve had that page for over a year now, never a problem until that day. Side note-other clubs still have their pages up. (No offense other clubs)
b :harmony of conduct or practice with profession <followed her own advice with consistency>
I also got a letter put in my file because I didn’t call in for a sub the first day back to school, January 5. The sub was there ready to go, the adminstrators and myself had agreed previously that would be the start date of the subs first day, but I got a phone call while I was at the doctors office and then shortly after that an official letter went into my file. (No warnings. No, we understand your going through a lot…simple mistake. No, how are you doing?)
I will tell you that I met with my bosses back in November and they encouraged me to go on disability. Promised me my job would be here waiting when I got back. Told me it wasn’t a problem at all. Everything would be fine. That they completely understood. Now I wonder how genuine that meeting was afterall.
So, here I am now. Thinking this “family” or “support system” I have through my administration and the board is a joke. It’s transparent. It needs to be said, and right now I am probably the only one that doesn’t have a whole lot to lose that can say these things. I know other things have gone on with other teachers that are just terrible, but that’s not my story to tell.
To be honest, this has really nothing to do with the fact that they cut me. I know we are in a financial crisis. I’m not an idiot. Things needed to change and things will continue to need to change. But, it does have everything to do with dignity and humanity. I have wondered often how can they all sleep at night? Because, I haven’t even told you what the worst part is…in my eyes anyways.
They have basically forbidden anyone, students, clubs, teachers to support the benefit they are having for me. They don’t want the school’s name or the school to be affiliated with it at all.
How can someone who worked there for six years mean that little to you? How can they tell other people what they can and can’t do when it comes to a benefit? Kids and teachers including myself got into trouble for doing the Lyme Challenge. How can they not support me after all that I have done for them? Don’t they want the youth to be educated about Lyme Disease in a rural area and how you can prevent it? Isn’t the school supposed to be all about education?
It’s so sad. It’s so disheartening. It’s so disgusting.
My husband’s district is awesome. They are ALL so supportive and encouraging. That’s how it’s supposed to be. That school district has it right. Good job Altamont!
Here’s the kicker, I have been the Art Club Advisor for free for five years (I loved it by the way), and in the past five years we have donated so much money to Breast Cancer month, Austism Awareness month, Christmas Shoeboxes for children in need, etc. (Which are all great causes and I would do it again in a heartbeat) but they won’t allow a teacher to be supported of a deadly disease? They won’t let the students help? The teachers can’t get involved unless it’s off school grounds?
The district won’t support me or help me at all? I’m not even talking financially here, I’m talking about a good old fashioned card that says, “hey we are thinking about you, let us know if we can help.”
But, then they would have to admit that I was sick and so maybe that’s why they aren’t supportive? Maybe they want me to quit and not be part-time next year? Either way, for the past five months they have handled this whole situation without grace, wisdom, courage, or compassion.
In fact, when I got here to Arizona and was starting my treatments, I was having to deal with them basically threatening to increase my insurance or find another one because TRS (my disability) was taking too long. That was all out of my hands, but it didn’t matter to them. Heaven forbid they show some compassion and turn the other cheek while it’s getting figured out.
So, I’m done with the bullying because that’s what they are doing. They have caused me more harm physically and emotionally these past five months than I ever could have imagined. In fact, I think that’s why I got sicker so much faster because of the stress and all the crap they were putting me through.
When your life flashes before your eyes you suddenly become aware of your priorities and your perspective changes, suddenly telling the truth isn’t such a bad thing or scary. The community needs to know.
I’m not going to sit here any longer and hear about how admimistration is still trying to control things that the students want to do for me or for Lye Diaease, or what the teachers want to do. It’s about time someone called all of them out on their lack of compassion, their blatant lies, their petty micromanaging, their bullying, and their fake smiles, because it’s all a charade.
So, sorry not sorry.
Telling the truth was liberating and you guys are so big on anti-bullying, which is ironic because you have done nothing but bully me this entire semester all while I’m weak, too weak to fight, and too weak to stand up for myself. Was I just an easy target? Was there a hidden agenda? I will never know seeing how telling the truth seems to be a difficult task for some.
But, like I said before. I was harboring so much resentment and hatred for their behavior that I knew it was unhealthy and it was in the way of my journey to health and happiness.
If I could pick one word: disappointment.
But, I’m a fighter even if I am really sick and I’m no longer scared of a district and their threats. I’m here to heal and get better for my family and friends. No one can stop that.
So, I will continue to pray for them and hope that their hearts are touched, and that their burdens are lifted, and that their eyes are opened. Because, that’s all I can do right now, but I know prayer is powerful.
I thank you all for listening to me vent, and I hope if you are praying people that you pray for our administration and our board too, because they desperately need it.
Thank you always for your support.