Saturday, January 17, 2009

afraid of being stuck

Have you ever seen Mr. Holland's Opus? Since moving from Columbus 3 1/2 years ago, I have been deathly afraid of becoming him. Even though his story is a great one of touching lives, eventual moral triumph and reconciliation, the premise of the movie never escapes me.
Since taking my most recent job, which I really do like, I have always looked upon it as a stepping stone, an means to an end, if you will. The end goal was and still is to work my way up the ladder to the top. An admiral goal, and one that is longer and more arduous than someone with a big name or someone with the best connections. Someone once told me that in my profession, prepare to be pool for 10 years before you make it. While I accepted that at the time, unforeseen circumstances may make that harder than once anticipated.
Most recently, I have stepped into a position at the high school. While it is a great team, a wonder community with amazing people, Mr. Holland's opus is always playing in the background. I know this could be a permanent gig very easily. In fact numerous people over the last month have alluded to just that fact, suggesting that I start teaching at the high school and just become a "Bremenite" as they call themselves. So now I find myself thinking, "Would this really be that bad?" or "Maybe I could just do this for a few more years and then continue up the ladder." The problem really lies in the fact that my window for climbing is a young man's game that is closing rather quickly on me these days (incidentally, a few of the high schoolers pointed out my first noticeable grey hair today, possibly prompting my crisis level today. I'm seriously distraught about this). 
There is also the consideration that I absolutely hate the wintry bluster of the midwest now. I can't imagine living in this weather for the rest of my life. But, I did immensely enjoy the competition today, and passing my knowledge on to high schoolers who genuinely want to improve, respect me, and have a team philosophy that people dream of. So the dilemma continues: risk possibly becoming Mr. Holland and living in Bremen, or continue to risk not making it at all.

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