Wednesday, November 6, 2013

The Commute

I live in New Jeresey.  I drive into Brooklyn.  Every.  Single.  Day for work.  Commuting is brutal.  It is officially the worst part of my day.  It used to be a close second to pumping, but commuting takes the cake.

What should be a 45 minute drive into work can take me close to, or sometimes even over, 2 hours.  I've been commuting for 8 years since I left Brooklyn to buy a house here.  It's never been this bad.  I mean sure, every so often there's an overturned bus or an eight car pile up that causes you to be late for work, but the Staten Island traffic is the worse it's ever been.

Blame sun glare...blame long running construction that doesn't have an end in sight.  Blame numerous and ridiculous merges.  Blame rough roads.  Blame it all.  Staten Island traffic sucks.  Commuting sucks.

People keep asking me why I haven't tried to find a teaching job closer to home.  The true answer is fear.  I'm scared to loose 9 years of teaching towards my retirement.  I'm scared to start over.  I'm scared to lose my tenure.  I'm scared to take a pay cut.  I'm scared to leave what's comfortable and familiar.  I'm scared no one will want me.

But that's just my tune isn't it?  I let fear hold me back...cripple me.  I can't tell you how many things I want to do or try, but my fear strangles me.  Chokes me until I put the thought in a box and bury it far away.  How do you shake fear's grip on you?


Ariel @ Dreams To Do said...

Wow that sounds horrible! Wish I had suggestions for the fear, but you know that I struggle with the same damn thing. Maybe one of these days one of us will figure it out and fill the other in.

The Dose of Reality said...

Oh, that's such a difficult spot to be in, Melissa! Losing tenure and a potential pay cut are no small matters. I'd be really anxious about a job move, too. But...gah...that's a terrible commute. It really seems like you are between a rock and a hard place. It does sound like the commute is just draining, though. I can't imagine doing that every. single. day.

I'm not great with fear. Usually when I have a decision to make I pretend like I've made the decision one way and live with my feelings about it for a day...then the next day I pretend that I've made my decision the other way and see how I feel about that. Usually there is one way that I discover made me less happy that the other, so it helps me see where my heart really lies, if that makes sense.

Dana Hemelt said...

You must use some good relaxation techniques during your commute - that would drive me batty! It's hard to conquer fear - I try to be logical and weigh the pros and cons. What's the worst that can happen? The best? Then I take a leap of faith and cross my fingers.

mtendere said...

Change is always a little bit scary. As a teacher who started over in 4 different states, though, it's not that bad. Most districts will give you credit for your years of experience, so while it may be a paycut (if the base starting salary is lower) and you will technically lose tenure, you'll still be considered an experienced teacher and generally treated as such. Look around a little. Can't hurt to find out just where you'd stand! I can NOT imagine commuting that much every day, but only you can decide how much it's worth to you.

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