On Thursday, my lovely and wonderful husband arrived in America to begin the U.S. chapter of our life together. He is now an official permanent resident of the United States, on his way to citizenship in a few years (if all goes according to plan, which it rarely does).
I have to say that for the last month, I've been in a major funk. Most of this is attributable to my job struggle and stress (which I absolutely must blog about, but felt very uncomfortable doing as it unfolded for a variety of reasons--not the least of which was what might happen if potential employers discovered my blog) and not having my own place for the first time in my adult life without a definite plan for obtaining (and affording) one soon. With Min Gi here again, I realize that a big part of it was also missing him. He calms me down from my often irrational and uptight self and brings me back to reality. So, it's good to have him back. He has also promised to start blogging (mostly in Korean, some in English perhaps), so I will be linking that blog soon.
As I mentioned, I have been offered and accepted a full time English teaching position at a small high school in the same county where I worked before going to Korea. The position is for ninth grade regular level and an inclusion (half special education students) class, but my schedule is not completely definite at this point because the long term sub who I will be taking over from has been teaching a history elective that will be moved back to the social studies department, leaving me one class short. It's A-day, B-day style block scheduling, but the ninth and tenth grade classes that are not honors level meet every day to prepare for the Maryland High School Assessment (HSA) which occurs at the end of English 10. This is good for both the students, who get extra practice, and for me, who will have a smaller overall student load.
I took this job for many, many reasons beyond the fact that it was the first full time, contracted teaching position offered to me (though it was that, too). In fact, before accepting, I had been very excited by a long term sub position in another county with an offer to move me into contracted as soon as a spot opened up--a county with a much better reputation for both education and for teacher support than the one I'm working for (again). However, this school impressed me. First off, I ran into the woman who trained me in the Resident Teacher Program I took to become certified six years ago while waiting for my interview. We caught up, and since she works there as an Instructional Coordinator, she was, as always, very straight with me about the good and bad things about the school. In the interview itself, one of the Assistant Principals (about five minutes in) said, "I'm not supposed to say this at this point, but I'm going to: I like you. I want you to work here." It's flattering, but more importantly, being desired as a teacher at a school goes a long way towards winning administrators over to your side, which is absolutely necessary as a teacher new to a school. Finally, they all but promised me Advanced Placement classes next year (which I LOVE teaching) and that they would support me in establishing a school theater program (this school has none). I was sold.
The school is a bit out in the country, but I like that. Yesterday (with the great assistance of my brother and good friend Michelle), Min Gi and I have moved to Waldorf, which is in Southern Maryland, a five minute commute from my new job and about 30 minutes from DC. We took a two bedroom townhouse for us and the cats, ensuring plenty of space for any family members or friends from Korea who would like to visit. Fortunately for me, Waldorf is also an area where I have a number of friends, thanks to my previous work with a community theater in neighboring La Plata, the Port Tobacco Players. (As a welcome home present for Min Gi, I got us tickets to their production of Arsenic and Old Lace, which was fantastic, although it closed this weekend.)
So now, other than the insomnia from drinking too much caffeine to help with moving yesterday and the fact that the cats and a few boxes are still at my parents' house (hopefully this will be resolved today), we have accomplished my major goal for the year, which was to move us all here and find a good job. I start teaching Monday, and while I'll do some prep work this week and attend back to school night this evening, I don't intend to stress any more about jobs until after I've begun working!
And that's what's been going on.