Ebenezer. The boarding school where I didn’t think I’d stay. I’m still here though. It’s been 2 weeks since first arriving, and the emotional rollercoaster I’ve been on, has been whacky ride.
The story so far: My last update, I had reached a decision to stay and rise to the challenge. However, the day after writing myself towards strength and clarity, which was last week Monday, the 7th, I was again in despair. I had to leave. I wanted to break free. The feeling of misery was heartbreaking. I had to take action. But I wasn’t too sure if I had the courage and strength. I had to confront the vice principle and tell her I wasn’t happy. At that point there was still nobody who knew just much I hated being here and how awful I felt. I had to speak to someone, even if it was a woman holding such a position of authority. So for once in my life I was going to say exactly how I felt about the institution I was working for. It took so much for me to sit across from her stern look and tell her my reasons for not feeling that I was able to teach here. I didn’t break down though! I stayed strong and said exactly what I was dealing with. I told her I felt uncomfortable, I wasn’t able to be myself, my method of teaching wouldn’t be appreciated by the school and my confidence has suddenly gone and therefore I’m not doing a good job! She suddenly went from being the ice-queen to being a human-being with a heart. She placed her hand on mine, as I sat across from her, and told me the school would support my needs and that she was understanding of what I was going through. She was going to speak with the agency I’m working for and see what could be done.
I walked away, knowing that I still didn’t want to stay. I felt like a failure for not saying what I already knew to be true: I wasn’t planning on staying, no matter what she would do. I went to my room and broke down for the ump-teenth time since arriving. I had reached my all-time low. I couldn’t even bare the light of day anymore, I had to have darkness, I couldn’t stop the tears and my heart was breaking. I was homesick, I wanted to be in Ireland. I wanted a plane to get me out of here.. This was the first time since the start of my travels that I actually longed for home. Wouw.. What was this place doing to me?
The rest of the day, I was numb. I couldn’t smile, I didn’t speak. I was a zombie and felt so alone. I had to keep acting though. I had to keep making my “prison-break” happen. So the following day, again I gathered all of my strength and sanity together and went to meet the vice principle once more. Now they had arranged a meeting with another member of management. Things were getting serious! I went in and cut straight to the chase. I blurted out: “I’m leaving, I can’t stay here anymore”. Panic is what I saw on their faces. I hadn’t really thought too much about their situation, I was too focused on doing what I needed to do, for the sake of my sanity - no matter how selfish that my sound. I didn’t want to think too much of the consequences and about the students because I knew it would make it harder for me to leave and I’d be persuaded to stay. So I instead, I spoke clearly, expressing once more that I’m uncomfortable, not happy and don’t have the energy I usually would have to bring my classes to life and therefore for them to be a success and I’m simply doing a bad job and nobody is benefiting from my lessons right now so it’s best for me to quit while I hadn’t made any impact.
They were so understanding, but still requested me to stay until the other English teacher arrives from England, which they said would be on Thursday (the 10th). They said they’d then respect and accept my decision to leave as soon as I wanted to. So, as I started to see how it would upset the school, I reluctantly agreed to stay, as a “favour”. It went against what I had wanted. But for the sake of the school, it would make the situation a little better..