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January 28, 2011

Again?   Or still?  I don’t know.

I am crawling out of the mountain of used tissues that cushion my head to say hello to you.  You should really plug your nose while you read this, then you can hear my nasal voice.  You are, of course, spared of the sneezing sessions as well as the hacking cough.

Thank God for Advil.

So, I am down for the count this morning.  I have canceled appointments in order to lay on the couch and watch bad TV.  I may correct some papers just so the stack will lessen a little, but I promise nothing.  This afternoon I will have to go and find food for my family, buy white tights and white anklets for the girls and pick the kids up from school.  They have haircuts after school today, and they each are looking more and more like “Cousin It” from The Adams Family.  After the haircuts it is home to eat and then to the dress rehearsal for the Winter Show that the girls dance in tomorrow.  Nicholas has go to the “weigh in” for his Boy Scouts “Pinewood Derby” tonight too, but Jeff is taking on that detail.  I have to save up my strength.

I hate being sick.  Jeff said that he thinks I have been sick since NOVEMBER.  I disagreed, but I did have a weekend (of my birthday no less) where I was sick in November as well.  I seriously don’t remember the last time I kissed my husband.

So today, I have a question for you.  Do you ever feel like an imposter?  I have been feeling like this a lot lately.  I have students who come in and ask me questions and I answer them, but after they leave, I think, “Well, I faked my way through that.”  I know that it takes a while to know what you are doing well in teaching.  In elementary school I was always told it takes three years in one grade level in order to really know the curriculum and how to run your class well.  I never had the luxury of teaching three years in the same grade level, so I don’t know if it is true or not, but it seems about right.  I was talking to another professor this week and she said the same thing, that it takes her about three semesters to figure it all out before the course runs smoothly.  This made me feel better, but it keeps my mask firmly in place.  I feel like I am faking my way through this job.  I just hope I am giving my students what they need to be successful!

Your turn:  How long did it take you to feel like you knew what you were doing in your job?  Is it just teaching that makes you feel this way?

  1. January 28, 2011 9:48 am

    I am so sorry you are sick, sick , sick! Do you think it’s being exposed to all the extra germs this year? I mean, I know you have three kids bringing home germs, too…wish I could bring you a smoothie full of good stuff and a pot of chicken soup!

    I have no idea about teaching – I know I definitely felt I was flailing when I taught GED, especially because everything seemed to change or I wouldn’t know the roundabouts because I was offsite. I still have moments where I wonder who let me be a mom? :) But I am sure you will only feel more confident as you learn and work with your students! You are so driven to be an effective teacher so it will all come together!

    • February 1, 2011 11:14 pm

      I am totally faking the mom-thing. Totally. And that is the best word, “flailing,” it is perfect! Exactly how I feel. Thanks for the virtual chicken soup. Mmmmm-mmmm-good!

  2. January 28, 2011 4:41 pm

    I think it definitely takes longer to feel acclimated in a new job than anyone every expects, and I would say the minimum is a year…I don’t know that teaching would have a longer lead-in time, but I’ve never taught, so. And I agree with Sam about feeling exactly like that in regards to being a mom: I fake my way through it CONSTANTLY. In fact, this whole adult thing? Yep: faking.

    How awful to feel like you’ve been sick that long! URGH. I hope you feel better ASAP!!

    • February 1, 2011 11:15 pm

      Faking constantly here too…and yes the adult thing too. When is my mom going to pick up the house I wonder? I keep tripping over stuff…

  3. January 31, 2011 8:06 am

    Back in the good ol’ days when I used to teach, I almost constantly felt like an impostor… even when I was teaching ESL to kindergartners. Now that I’m out of the traditional workplace, I get my impostor thrill as a mom (spot on, Sam!) and an adult (spot on, Liz!)… and a wife and an expat and a churchgoer and a blogger and basically any role at which I might possibly look like I know what I’m doing. I don’t. :)

    On another note, I’m sorry about the sickness. Maybe your husband just made that comment about November because it feels like he’s gone that long without a kiss. ;) I hope you’re starting to feel better!

    • February 1, 2011 11:18 pm

      Laughing out loud at your comment! You totally fake EVERYTHING very well indeed. I used to feel the same way with my kindergartners too. Sometime we should totally teach Kindergarten together! That would be such fun! As for the kissing, well, we are an old married couple. He probably hasn’t noticed!

  4. February 1, 2011 1:44 pm

    So sorry you’re sick! Hope by the time I’m writing this comment you’re feeling better!

    And yes–I so know what you mean about feeling like an imposter in teaching. I feel it all the time as a grad student too, and felt it a LOT all last year doing dissertation research in Barcelona. Maybe it’s a question of faking it until it really is who you are–until we see ourselves the way others see us?

    • February 1, 2011 11:22 pm

      I am feeling MUCH better, thank you. Still stuffy and gross, but not the walking dead anymore. And, to everyone’s relief, I have stopped moaning. For the most part. Only an occasional moan after the coughing.

      I love the way you put that: “faking it until it really is who you are-until we see ourselves the way others see us…” So. Perfect.

      I am so thankful that your voice is here. It makes me happy. xo

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