There was a moment, during my final year of college, when I wigged out (to myself only) about what would happen once I'd be done and would have to go out and get a real job.Scary. Maybe that's why I went to Mexico for a year...which was one of the best years of my life. Another was 2006, but I digress.
It turns out, I had every reason to have been frightened back during that last year of college. To this day, I've yet to identify ONE SINGLE career and say that's what I'd like to do, or let me re-phrase that, I guess I can identify a couple, but it's too late in the game (of life) and I'm not trained or prepared for them.
It also seems like I have a 3 year expiration date when it comes to jobs. Sometimes by my choice, like now. And sometimes by fate, thanks to company reorganization/downsizing etc.
So here I am, beginning year 3 as a School Counselor and completely NOT enjoying it. It started to "get" to me at the end of last school year. Maybe that expiration date is 2 years now?
My reasons are many but one of the big ones is the shame STILL associated in today's society with seeing a counselor or therapist. The feelings of shame exist in this school too. As a result, most people don't seek out CASUAL conversation with me, I'm left feeling like I have the plague...seriously. I am friendly to EVERY.SINGLE parent and/or co-worker here (unless they've backstabbed me, which only applies to two wacko co-workers). It's not so much that I'm seeking recognition or a "thank you" - although that would be nice once in a while - it's this overbearing feeling of negativity associated with the position/job of School Counselor. Oh hindsight...
The middle schoolers, of course, don't want anyone knowing they've come to see me...granted, this is the majority. There are some kids who are completely fine with it and actually last year I had a couple girls even say that my office is "awesome" or "cozy" etc and they didn't care who knew they came to see me. Because I made them feel better.
I know a lot of this comes from their parents (or mean-spirited peers) but what it comes down to for me, is that I'm not cut-out to be in a position year after year where no one wants TO BE SEEN talking to me. Or is embarrassed to be seen w/me. etc. You get the point.
There's also other things...like no stipend for being bilingual...because they claim they use their "Hispanic Liaison" person...but just 30 minutes ago I was already asked to make a phone call to a Spanish-speaking parent. And this will continue to happen all.school.year.long.
Another lovely note for this year would be the additional 2 committees I've been assigned to as well as the addition of lunch duty & dismissal duty. FOUR more tasks. NO more money. Fair? I think not.
And the icing on the cake...this year, the shoes we wear MUST have a backstrap..i.e. no flip flop sandals...even nice ones. Of course, all the women are up in arms about this and rightly so...I've purchased two new pair of shoes (not cheap ones either) just so I can go to work. Totally sucks. In fact, the black pair I have are MORE casual then the old black pair I usually wear to work, but since they have no strap on the back, I cannot wear them. Stoopid!! I now have shoes in my closet I don't wear - because they were purchased LAST year for WORK - and I also have clothes in my closet than I can no longer wear to work because I do not have shoes to go with them and I refuse to buy ANOTHER pair JUST for work. Did I mention this is a private school...which translates into LOW salaries. I hate being FORCED to buy something I do NOT NEED!!
I have no solution. No answer. Nothing to make myself feel better about being in this crummy job. I've applied elsewhere but I may be stuck here for the school year. Total drag.