Life Update!

Hey, friends! Just wanted to drop in and give a little life update for y’all as some things are changing around The Average Teacher Headquarters! (Whoa, that sounds like, super official. It’s really just a super small room inside my home, but “headquarters” has a nice ring to it.)

If you caught my live on Instagram a couple of weeks ago, then you can stop reading now – this is nothing new. But, if you didn’t, keep reading!

As many of you know, I am having a baby in just a couple of weeks! We are so excited and cannot believe how quickly the time has gone by since seeing those two pink lines on the home pregnancy test.

Please forgive me as I get a little personal for a second, but I feel that the background information is important to this story. It has been my dream since I was a little girl to be a mom. That’s really all I ever wanted to do. When I got married in 2016, I honestly was ready to start trying right away. But, that wasn’t very practical at the time so for the first year of our marriage, we just went about our life as usual. I was in my 3rd year teaching, and my husband was a bartender at a local restaurant.

In August 2017 we decided that we were ready to start trying. Our life circumstances hadn’t changed a whole lot since the previous year, but we got to thinking and decided that there’s never really a perfect time to have kids. We both knew we wanted kids, and soon, so why wait any longer? So, we made the decision to officially start trying to start our family.

Given that our financial situation hadn’t much improved since we got married, I knew that meant I would probably have to continue teaching after having a baby, even though I desperately wanted to be a stay at home mom. But I was willing to make that sacrifice, as having kids mattered more to me at that time.

Well, ten months went by…and nothing. And not just NOTHING…I’ll spare you the details, but basically there were some things going on with my body that I just knew weren’t right, and it was very hard to be aggressive about getting pregnant with those issues. (Issues I’ve ALWAYS had, but that never bothered me until this point).

I finally decided to see a doctor. I’d seen doctors before, but they all just really brushed off my symptoms and acted like there was nothing to be concerned about. So I decided to go to a specialist recommended by friends that might be a little bit more knowledgeable.

In May 2018 I was officially diagnosed with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS). I say “officially” because I had suspected it for awhile, but the doctor confirmed it when I went in to see her. This explained the symptoms I was having and my infertility. Fortunately, my doctor was on board to help me and immediately got me started on some medication.

I found out I was pregnant on October 8th, 2018 – 14 months after our journey began. It seemed like FOREVER to us, but I feel very blessed that it ONLY took 14 months when so many people wait for years.

That 14 months was crazy hard and discouraging at times, but a lot of things happened over that year – good and bad – that led us to making a really big decision (which I’ll get to in a minute).

FIRST – My husband was promoted at his job from bartender to assistant manager, then to full time manager, then to general manager, all within a few months. This meant not only a pay raise, but also steady income whereas before most of his income was based on tips.

SECOND – My work situation changed a lot. Between a district-wide salary cut, schedule changes, curriculum changes, and other things, I began enjoying teaching a lot less. I love the school, my coworkers, my admin, my students…but something just wasn’t clicking for me anymore. And honestly, with the exception of my 4th year teaching (when we decided to start our family), this has pretty much been every year. I just didn’t quite have the passion for teaching that I wanted to.

THIRD – I started my Teachers Pay Teachers store in February 2018. THIS is where I rediscovered my passion for education. It wasn’t in teaching like I always thought it should be; it was in being creative and making learning fun for students. I never realized I didn’t have to actually be IN the classroom to do that until I opened my TpT store. On top of that, I put in a lot of work to my store over last summer, and by the fall I was seeing consistent income from this business. A few really good months even gave me a glimpse into seeing how profitable this little side hustle could be, and I realized that this was the perfect job for me. I could do exactly what I loved, be my own boss, work from home with flexible hours…which sounded like the perfect solution for someone who wanted to be a stay at home mom but couldn’t afford it.

So, taking all of these things into consideration, my husband and I made the decision earlier this year that I would leave the classroom to stay home with our baby and pursue TpT full time.

Two weeks ago, I packed up my classroom and said goodbye to my school family as I embarked on this new adventure. I’m so grateful for this opportunity as I know not everybody gets this chance. I do not take it for granted even slightly!

You may be wondering, what does this mean for you? How will my blog or Instagram change now that I’m no longer in the classroom?

The answer – it won’t! My goal has never been to sell you products. That is not the heart behind what I do. My social feeds and blogs will not become one big advertisement of my resources just because I’m trying to make a few bucks.

No, my goal is not just to create resources, it’s to BE a resource. I want to be a source of information and inspiration to you! I want to help YOU be the best teacher you can be to your students in whatever way I can. Whether that means sharing a helpful tip on Instagram, writing an informative blog post, or creating the perfect resource for your classroom – all of those things go hand in hand and I never want to get too sales-y because that is not what The Average Teacher is about!

So, I hope that you will continue following along on my journey even though I am not consistently in the classroom anymore (I will still be subbing here and there, but I won’t have my own class). I promise to continue putting out quality content that ALL teachers can benefit from, even if my products don’t work for what you teach or your district doesn’t allow you to purchase from TpT.

I am so excited for this next step in my journey and I hope that you will continue to walk along this path with me! I know I will need some advice from all the teacher-moms out there, so let’s help each other out, shall we?

If you have any questions for me, please don’t hesitate to reach out via email, social media, or commenting here! I would love to hear from you!

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