The past week has been a crazy one. If you have read my last two blog entries, you know that I found a job in Oregon and got very close to moving, but then had a huge series of panic attacks and couldn't go. And that the school offered to hold the job for me, but then several days later retracted their offer with no explanation.
After writing that last post, I sent an email to the principal of the school asking if there was a particular reason for the sudden change, and reminding them that they had offered to hold the job for me and that I had been looking forward to coming. When I'd spoken and emailed with the principal earlier, she had sounded so enthusiastic about holding the job, saying that she thought I was such a great fit for the children there. So I just wanted to know... why the very sudden change of heart?
The principal shot back a one-line email message: "We have decided to restructure the program in a way that changes our staffing."
It still makes no sense to me. They were so warm and welcoming before, only to withdraw the job offer in such a cool and impersonal way. And who just randomly restructures a program a week before school starts? A day after assuring me that there was going to be a substitute there for me until I was able to come? There has to be something else going on.
One possible reason could be that they may have found this blog. I have taken a lot of precautions to keep this blog separate from my legal name, and have avoided even mentioning the names of the towns where I was having interviews, for this reason. But I just can't think of any other reasons for them to suddenly reject me, after all that! And if there was a reason, why couldn't they just tell me? How hard would it have been to say, "Uh, we ran your credit report, and we don't think you seem very responsible after all," or "One of your references told us they secretly think you are really stupid and annoying." Or whatever. Wouldn't that have been kinder than a cold, one-line email?
I would like to call them up and scream a huge "@#$% YOU!" for the hurt this has caused me. But that wouldn't be very professional, now, would it?
So, instead, this is an open statement to the staff members at that school, and any others that might somehow find this blog.
I have ADHD and Aspergers. I struggle with depression and anxiety. Sometimes, these conditions get in the way of my everyday life. However, they rarely, if ever, get in the way of my work with children. When I am teaching, I am at my best.
My conditions also give me a special quality, as they allow me to connect with and understand children with special needs, in a way that many others cannot. I know first hand how these children and their families have to fight for everything. I care about each child as if he or she were my own. I try to be a role model, to show them that they can live a full life, even when their special needs sometimes hold them back a little.
Your school works with many children with mental health diagnoses. I would hope that you would teach them to advocate for themselves, and to realize that they deserve everything that their more neurotypical peers deserve. And I hope that you, and the rest of the world, show those children more understanding and fairness than you showed me this week.
I am hurt that I did not get the opportunity to prove what I can do. But if I really was rejected for the job based on what you read in this blog, then this school probably wasn't the best place for me after all. I'm going to move forward, now, and not look back.