So this likely belongs as a blog somewhere with a cute title. But I would spend far too much time registering a unique blog name and would likely fall discouraged that all the "good" blog names are taken. Not so sure that this is a vent. Might turn out to be one. Or a hormonal tirade. Maybe a healthy mixture of both. Who knows. This is my 10th year teaching. I make 31,000. I do not have a graduate degree, but I do have a BA and am professionally certified in my state. I have never, ever taught Public school. Not so sure why. I love teaching religion to primary students for sure. The Bible is a great moral compass and listening to the children talk about God and pray together is sweet. My first 3 years teaching were in a Northern state. I was in grade K. It was around that time that I rushed into a marriage (hey, all my friends from college had that cute little accesory called a husband and I wanted one too). That lasted 11 months. Around the end of the marriage, life was becoming really hard to cope with. Saw some doctors and several therapists. The decided I had a mental illness called Bipolar II. I'd never heard of it, but ok. Weekly therapy sessions and meds were in my future. Therapy was okay. Lots to talk about re: divorce. Medications were harsh. Fast forward to March... One morning I woke up, ate my cereal, drank my coffee and downed my eleven different psychiatric meds. I got in my car and noticed it was icy on the roads. I burst into tears and didn't stop crying for about one week. During that week, one of the nights, I checked myself into the ER because I worried I was dehydrated. They would do nothing for me unless I said I would hurt myself -- or others. They sent me home at 3:00 AM. I had had a friend drop me off hours earlier, so I decided to walk home. I will never, ever forget walking home in the cold night and calling my Mom at 3:00 AM sobbing hysterically and feeling so... helpless. She was on the next plane to see me and stayed with me for weeks. I had to take a medical leave of absence from work that year. Naturally that hurt me financially so my parents suggested I move into their winter home in So. Florida. There I was, age 24, on eleven pills with no prospects... moving back "home." That long background is important to my current problem. While I am, thankfully, only on 2 medications to control my depression (the doctors later rejected the first diagnosis) I still have an INCREDIBLY difficult time balancing work and life. I have no hobbies. I do not go out at night. For the past 6 years I taught at a grueling school and usually went to SLEEP on school nights around 7 PM. Getting dinner on the table for my amazing husband was rare. Watching TV that wasn't recorded never happens. I can't ever save laundry to school nights. I can do barely any schoolwork on school nights due to the fatigue. During those 6 years, doctors and therapists played with my meds... played with my diet.. Encouraged me to hit the gym every afternoon. Did the thyroid tests... lots of blood work... there was simply no physical reason to be so fatigued at age 31. I was talking with my husband last night and said.. "I don't know how I am going to handle being a mother when our baby arrives. I can't even make dinner for you! How am I going to take care of a helpless little one while balancing work?" My husband is super sweet and always suggests I "take it down a notch" at work. He doesn't understand why I work so much and so hard. He certainly respects what I do, but he likely doesn't understand the amount of work it entails. He always sees that I just expend too much energy. You simply can not do a half-assed job as an educator. It's not fair to the children. But.. it's absolutely draining me physically and emotionally. I knew this year would be challenging moreso -- I am at a new school, a new grade and pregnant. But I am finding myself questioning that while, even though I absolutely love teaching, maybe it's not the best fit for me. I've been at this for 10 years and am confident enough to say that I know I do a very good job with the kids, the parent communication, the curriculum, etc. I guess I just want some semblance of a life outside teaching. If I can't find that balance, perhaps its not for me. Thank you for reading and absolutely no worries if you didn't make it this far. I certainly did not write this to grasp a wave of pity -- just trying to see if anyone's ever been in that boat. Happy Friday.