Sunday, September 18, 2011

Change of Major . . . Maybe . . .

My creative writing teacher is saying some head turning things about the work I'm turning in. 'Makes me feel all kinds of good. Pardon me if this sounds arrogant--I didn't need to be told that I can write. I think I know that I can do that. The question in my head is always, Can I do it if I have to? If I don't want to? And if I don't have any good ideas when I sit down? And I think the answer is becoming yes.

A few days ago I told Gary that the last time I enjoyed a class this much was when I took a Children's Lit class last fall. He squinted at me and asked, "Why are you an elementary education major?"

"Because I like teaching well enough to do it full time. I love kids and I enjoy the classroom. Because it makes sense and it means that I can take some pressure off you."

"So why aren't you an English major? You could teach it on a high school or college level, right?"

"I could. And I'd love to do that, but English majors are a dime a dozen and I'm worried about finding work."

"You could substitute teach until something comes open somewhere couldn't you?"

"I could."

"Then why don't you go where your passion leads you?"

"It could be an expensive mistake."

"Or not."

I'd rather teach people about words, about books, and about writing. There. I've said what I've been circling for a year and a half. But it's just not that simple. I went down this path because I want to contribute to the household income and enable Gary to work less. Not to acquire more debt and not so there can be a second person in this house with a college degree that isn't paying for itself. I need to be practical. I must be practical.

Sigh. Why can't I stay on the path? Because of words . . . Because I like them almost as much as I do puppies . . .


Pencil Writer said...

What a huge decision! I wish I could give you some practical advice...but I love writing, not that I'm that great at it, but I love it and I love to read and I love to teach. I do not have a degree in any thing, have three daughters with degrees, one with one in English. She taught school for a few years and I think she's a really good teacher. Now she works at a library--lucky her--but has trouble with a salary that makes her budget really tight--partly because of paying off her college debt. None of my girls with degrees are making the bucks I think they have the talent to be making.

With that said, I think you have to "find your passion" and be practical, too. Perhaps you can weld them together and teach and publish your writing, too. May the Lord bless and guide you and your family in whatever direction you feel led to go.

Hal Johnson said...

I tip my hat to Gary. What a guy. I'd suggest you keep him.:-)

Hal Johnson said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Scotty said...

Take a chance, Mary - with Gary backing you, it seems like a good thing - go for it.


Mary O. Paddock said...

PW--It is/was a big decision. Jeremiah (oldest son) has pointed out that I could teach for a community college. This holds strong possibilities.

Hal--Gary said to tell you "thank you".

Scotty--Thanks for the encouragement. I mean that sincerely.