Tuesday, March 8, 2011

If You Could Read My Mind

Today, I'm grieving because a wonderful, wonderful time of my life is ending.

This was my job for the past five years. I taught Musical and Theater at a high school in our neighborhood. The pic was taken just before last year's show, and you can see we are all happy about what we achieved in a year of hard rehearsing. The kids are proud of themselves, and rightly so. Nearly all of them are from migrant or socially challenged homes and learned, in this class, for the first time how great they are and what they really can achieve if they just believe in themselves. I invested many hours, many weekends, many extra hours in this project.

And it was MY project, right from the start. I brought it to this school, first as a volunteer, then paid a pittance (200$ for 16 hours a month, when I really worked at least triple that time). I didn't mind because I loved it.

We all loved it. And we worked hard.

Here is my son Mario, singing Neil Diamond's "I'm A Believer".

He is not a student at that school but a young medical doctor, but he enjoyed working with us so much he just took to the stage after helping us set up the light and sound for the show.

And here's my other kid, playing his role as announcer, with Bryan.

I'm not free to say why I had to quit the job, of course. There is a confidentiality agreement in my contract that makes me feel like I used to work for Stargate Command. That's ok. Let me just say, working with that school administration has become impossible due to mutual distrust, and too much anger on my side. I threw the job in their faces. At some point you've just taken enough, and then it is time to let go.

I will let go of my worries and watch them sail away like ships in the night. They will simply leave, and I will not even listen to their horns calling out in the darkness.

It was a great time. The kids taught me much, and I hope I helped them find joy in an otherwise often dreary life. and now it is over.


  1. Aw, I'm so sorry that office politics got in the way of those kids. I'm sure you did make a difference - a BIG difference, in their lives. It's sad, yes, but it's time to move on. There's a book tour to plan! :)

  2. I'm so sorry for their loss, as well as yours. I know wonderful new things will take over your life soon!

  3. I can only say that everything you have written here is exactly how it was!

    You put in so much, not only working hours! But heart and soul!

    All the kids have gained a unique experience working with you and being a part of something special. I for one am really sorry that it must end this way.

    Sad to say that this school has just about killed every chance it had to keep its status among the other schools in the area!

    Thank you for many wonderful moments!

  4. Fiona, dear heart, thank you for all the help, the wonderful photos and the many laughs we had together there. We will just have to meet somewhere else in the future. Your son Bryan rocks. :)

    And Leslie and Bunny: you know what I want to say to you. :)

  5. Sorry it went that way, you obviously enjoyed it so much! But there will be other opportunities to use your talents, and your love of music... and until then, you will have so much more time for writing!

  6. Change is so hard. So very, very hard.

  7. Some day they will come to their senses and realise their mistake and their loss. It is a damn pity, because you created a whole lot of good Karma through working with those kids.

  8. I'm so sorry to read about this. All I can say is that I walked out on a well paid teaching job because I could no longer cope with the staff politics. I thought my world had come to an end but that was just before I started to write and now I may be a lot poorer but I'm so much happier. It's scary walking away from something but it is true what they say about doors opening as others close. Good luck.