A New Day

I remember waking up one morning and knowing I needed to go back to school. I was a school counselor and my job was perfectly fine, but I wanted more than perfectly fine. The voice in my head told me that if I wanted to teach this was the time to do it. I was fifty years old. Not a youngster. I had always wanted to teach but I felt I didn't have the time or the money to go back to school. I knew I would never have the time or the money to go back, so I followed that voice, my intuition, and I jumped off the cliff feet first. I applied to graduate school at the University of Virginia, got my letters of recommendation and applied for school loans. My boss was not happy with me. This degree would not be applicable to my current job. Teaching Reading had nothing to do with counseling. It became obvious they wouldn't work with my class schedule. I had a wonderful supervisor but the system there was very rigid. The expectations were set in stone. It became obvious I would need to choose, keep my current job or go back to graduate school. I was terrified to make this kind of choice, but the people around me were supportive. Not my supervisor, but other people. I chose to go back to school and have never regretted the choice.

Mattie Coll is a retired teacher living in RVA.