I tortured myself for a long time. I was overwhelmed by self doubt; the desire to do this became stronger. Logic said, again and again, that it was a stupid idea; my heart sang at the thought. I made the grave mistake of turning to others for reassurance — I should have known better: there is always somebody willing to take my doubts and magnify them before returning them to me. It happened again. And yet, I kept telling myself, if I have learned one thing so far, it is to listen to my heart. On and on it went like that.

March came and went, and with it my birthday. I stood above my candles and wished for “a class of children of my very own — but only if this is the right thing to wish for.” Confused doesn’t begin to describe what I was. I was stressed, depressed even. April came and went. I let it go for a while — and it came back to me. May came and went, and the world gave conflicting signs. Some said yes, but some said “I don’t know”; some said one thing one day and the opposite the day after. And yet I became a little surer as time went by, and then a little surer still, and by June I had made up my mind. Given half a chance, I would do it.

I spent June waiting to be given that chance, waiting and waiting. I wished on a bamboo shoot, and stuck it in some water. July was a mess. One day I was almost given the job –I was this close– and it felt like everything was right with the world. I forgot what I couldn’t do and remembered all the things that I could do; I bought children’s books; I started planning my first lessons in my head. But the next day the job was given to somebody else, and my heart was broken. That night –and the ones that followed– I burst into tears when it was time for bed. They were tears of loss, and of frustration, and of disbelief — how could something so right go so wrong? I cried, and I wondered — why did this mean so much to me? What other answer could there be but that it was meant to be? That only made me more sad.

“But my name is written in the stars next to the children’s,” I told Martijn one night. “Can’t they see that?” Well, apparently, they couldn’t, and there was nothing I could do, so I decided to quite wondering and go to Indietracks instead. (This turned out to be an excellent decision, although that is a whole different post.)

And you would have thought this was the end of that, but it was not.