June 11, 2014

Happy Summer + My New (Old) Job

{but really}

There's no way to describe this year other than to say it's been a whirlwind. Three years ago, I left my job as a Montessori teaching assistant to join Teach for America. Almost a year ago to the day, I moved back to Charlotte after finishing my TFA commitment in rural Eastern North Carolina. Nine months ago, I started teaching at a TFA school doing exactly what I'd been doing as a corps member (middle school special education). Six months ago, I met a cute guy on Tinder (believe it). A little after that, the quarter-life crisis kicked in.

Still with me?

Personally, this year has been my best yet. Besides meeting Patrick, I've made amazing friends at my job, started working out at Carolina Barre (bye bye, 15 lbs), and have just generally been enjoying life back in a city.

Professionally, it took me most of this year to admit out loud what I already knew to be true: teaching middle school just isn't the right fit for me. Even working under a great administration and with all of my best friends, I still had a really hard time. I said yes to too much and allowed myself to burn out in like, January. (And January-June is a very, verrrrrrry long time when trapped in a room with middle schoolers.) By the time it dawned on me to ask for help, it was too late. I was exhausted.

While I have no one to blame but myself, I also believe that if you're going to complain about something, you need to take action. Knowing that I loved Montessori and that I wanted to work with younger kids, I applied for a new job...at my old school. And I got it.

Beginning in the fall, I'll teach a mixed-age 1st, 2nd, 3rd grade classroom at a public Montessori school here in Charlotte. I'm beyond excited to go back, but mostly I'm proud of myself. Just a few years ago I probably would have stayed in a situation where I wasn't happy simply because I didn't want to let people down. What I've come to realize is that the only thing worse than disappointing others is disappointing yourself. While it will be hard to leave the fabulous people I work with, I know it was the right decision.

So there you have it. After months of grade school applications, job applications, and general histrionics, I've gotten myself a new (old) job. And it feels even better than the first time around.

Cheers to summer!


  1. While I'll miss seeing you everyday, I'm so excited you have this new (old) opportunity! It is a perfect fit for you and I can't wait to hear about this next adventure :)

  2. #imabeliever
    but seriously...so proud of you too! you=awesome

  3. You go girl!!!!!!!! So awesome Ensley! xoxo

  4. YOU ROCK. So happy for you. I mean...next is the bouquet thing coming ture ;)!

  5. you really freaking inspiring me :*

  6. That's great that your year has been so wonderful for you! It takes people a lonnnnng time to figure out what they want - so that's awesome you're well on your way to that! :) I'm going to school to teach prek-4th, so it will be fun to hear your experiences with them! :)

  7. My fingers are crossed that you will be taking over a certain class that lost it's teacher at the end of this year. B's are too ;) Regardless, we are SOOOOOO happy you are back!


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