Monday, October 01, 2007

Laying if Bare

Okay, I know I haven't been posting much lately. I'm sorry. Really. There are two decisions I've been wrestling with, and I wanted to wait to write until I'd actually made up my mind.
The first decision is in my private life. Bear and I have talked, and he's agreed that we can switch our birth control method from the pill back to condoms. We aren't having enough sex for the cost of the condoms to be prohibitive, and after eleven years of taking a pill every day, I'm ready to be done. I'm twenty-six and am growing fat and hairy because of my pill. Who knows what long-term side effects I'm going to have because I'm screwing around with my hormones? I've never been someone who enjoys taking a pill every day. It takes an act of God (almost) to get me to take even an ibuprofen if I'm in pain. I admit that I'm a bit nervous about relying solely on condoms, but as long as we exercise a little willpower, all should be fine. It will just be a relief to finally feel as though I'm living life completely as myself, with no additives. I'll keep you posted on how that goes (I have another week and a half of pills to take before I quit).

The other decision was a tougher one, as it deals with my professional life. In talking with fellow teachers, it has come to my attention that I am not being paid for the work I am doing. I am a half-time teacher and a half-time ed tech. This year I am doing teacher duties for ed tech pay, including teaching classes and monitoring study halls. Basically, they are using my teacher qualifications to bypass what a normal ed tech could be asked to do. They also failed to give me my yearly pay increase based on my work experience. They can't do what they have done, but they've done it. So what can I do? I'm working my second year at my district, which means I am up for tenure at the end of the year. If they rehire me, I have a job for the rest of my career if I want it. However they can choose not to rehire me at the end of this year and not even give me a reason why. So that begs the question: Do I let them screw me to offer myself a better chance at tenure, or do I speak up for myself and possibly lose my job?

I've decided to speak up. What they are doing to me is wrong, and if they are screwing me, they are probably screwing other people, too. People who are too afraid to speak up. People who could benefit if I am successful. I am beginning the grievance process this week at school. This could create a MAJOR shit storm, and it makes me a little sick to my stomach to think about it. But in the long run, I can't let them walk all over me because if they do it now, they will think they can do it whenever they want. I just can't let that happen.

Years ago, I came across a quote that stuck me as profound, and has given my life some kind of direction:
"Expose your ideas to that dangers of controversy. Speak your mind and fear less the label of 'crackpot' than the stigma of conformity. And on issues that are important to you, stand up and be counted at any cost."

I'm trying to lead my life by these words. Wish me luck. If you do that kind of thing, say a prayer for me. Please?


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