Power is the thing we crave,
We strive for the keys and the clipboard,
To walk the shop floor in a suit,
Picking out things that look slightly wrong,
A tine that is dented, a browning banana,
And with a click of the fingers it’s fixed.
But the day that the keys are placed in your hands,
Marks the moment when life will see change,
And for those with a doubt lodged in their heart,
That power can fester and eat you alive.
When I was doing my teacher training last year, I was about half way through when I hit a real low moment. And I was reminded of it today because I felt an echo of that feeling; not as strong, but still rather uncomfortable.
The day in question, I had a bad lesson with some Year 9 students and the teacher that was observing me pulled me up on my behaviour management. I was fine with everything that she said to me, until she told me that I deserved respect from the kids and they hadn’t given me any during that lesson.
She must have hit a nerve that I didn’t even know was raw and exposed because I just burst into tears on her. And it wasn’t a few delicate tears rolling down my cheeks; it was full on sobbing and struggling to catch my breath.
I remember the thought that ran through my mind was ‘I don’t deserve respect from anyone. I am only worth my job at the petrol station and that is where I will have to go back to at the end of this training.’
It was a horrible thought and it was all consuming. And I felt a little bit of that today. There was no sobbing but I wavered when some students were really rude to me. I felt like I deserved to be treated that way.
After 36 years of being in the lowest paid jobs where nobody respects you (sadly), it’s going to take me quite some time to really believe that I am worthy of respect.
If you are struggling to believe in yourself, I’m here with you. I’m hoping it’s just a case of practice makes perfect – because that negative voice in my head is really spiteful!