By Susan Levine on 12/28/2011 @ 11:37 AM
I always wanted to be a teacher. Of course I grew up at a time when mothers sagely advised their daughters to get a teacher’s license (do they still?), so I’m not sure if my motivation was my mother or the innocent idealism of a 10-year old; remember, teaching was still a highly respected, if not revered, profession.
So I became a teacher.
I taught elementary school and I taught Hebrew school and even though I needed it, I can’t say I did it for the money and I’m pretty sure there were no lofty principles or even passion involved, because when I transitioned to my first “real world job,” I can’t remember feeling any sense of loss or remorse.
I do remember ruminating, years later, how much my life still retained important elements of my original career. I was teaching or training staff; I taught direct marketing seminars at UJC conferences and from time to time I even ventured back into the classroom to “teach” or lecture young people on the importance of community service.
Perhaps there’s a learning in my career trajectory…a lesson. In the same way that we talk about “lifetime learning,” about how we never stop growing, perhaps we who have been teachers, never really stop teaching…and perhaps there is a teacher living somewhere in all of us.