When I was little, I was really little. Born 3 pounds 5 ounces, 15 inches long, yeah, I was small. I had two parents and a brother, and the family dog who all loved me. Now to some memories.
My brother was 10 years 9 months older than me. He was always big and strong, my hero when I was very young he often took me across the street to the play yard on Sunday afternoons and we’d climb the fence (against the law maybe). It was fun to have the whole yard to myself, and he encouraged me to climb the jungle jim in new (to me) ways.
He taught me to throw a ball, read, swim deep, push my limits. BUT, he also teased me. As a young child it frustrated me, and angered me. Any argument we had he won, even when I knew he was wrong, he won, because I didn’t have the words to win, because I could not be convincing, and maybe, just maybe, I was wrong, though I felt I wasn’t.
Today I lost one of my jobs. It is significant though only somewhat so. It was my fault as well. Five weeks ago a lost all but 2 students at this place, and I resigned. A week later one of the students who had left came back, she had found work and could manage the lessons. I asked to be reinstated. Today, almost 4 weeks later, I finally met with the owner, and they would not reinstate me, saying I had been unhappy at the studio since the begining, 2 years 4 months ago, and that I was not a good fit. The part about me being unhappy with the studio, that is not true. Not fitting in, that may or may not be true. The other teachers barely know me. I was in fact unhappy about the low student population, for me. 5 students at the height last January. 2 students and the low. At other like studios I was used to having 12-15 teaching multiple days.
That feeling from my brother came up, that helpless anger that I had not felt in a long time, that small, insignificant, “I can’t win” feeling. Anger, I haven’t seen in awhile. I was very confused, it was so strong, and deep. I hadn’t felt it in a long time, and it has taken all day for me to realize what that feeling was.
So what do I do? Well, I can’t go back and change things and not resign, I can’t make things the way they were. I will have to let the 3 students I have go because I signed a contract saying I would not teach them for a year after leaving the studio.
Positively – I mediate on how this made me feel. I think of Fred Rogers and how he talked about how he felt when people made him feel small. AND how he said he would never do that to anyone. That everyone is important. Isn’t that a lesson worth remembering?? BUT, I will have to live with my bad decision, with the ramifications of reacting with my gut a little too fast (thought it took me 2 days to write the letter (an email) of resignation and send it. I could not take it back a week later, though I tried. Was it a bad decision?
It is a 45 minute drive from the University where I teach, and 20-25 minute drive home. The pay per student was not bad, but not the price I charge from my own small studio (where my retain rate is much higher) I had to draw a line, make it clear that I needed a certain amount of work in order to come as far as it was. I was not in the wrong.
OH, but I feel it, or rather the result. I am the one who will suffer the consequences. I am the one who will not have – what – enough work? Maybe, maybe not. I have other irons in the fire, I have other sources of income. And think of income – – –
I never wanted much. Enough to pay my bills, have a roof over my head, food on the table. What I have always wanted to do more is make some kind of difference in the world, a positive difference. When faced with almost always being in the red, one makes money too important. It isn’t important. I wish I could live without it. God knows most of life on earth lives without income, without money. Some have more than enough, some not enough. So what of it?
I am alive, I have will, I am able to rise, phoenix-like, and become better if I can simple learn from the experience. 1. Treat people always with respect even when they will not respect you, or your time. 2. The truth is never easy to see. Your perspective changes your view of it thus truth seems to change. 3. Turning the corner we are always blind until we make the turn. What is there, is whatever is there. 4. There are better things to do than pout.
Moira Levant November 30 2019