After that summer, I vowed never to have that feeling again. The summer after my second year teaching, I looked for a summer job. I didn't really care what it was, but I wanted something that wouldn't be too hard, and would pay just enough to afford an international vacation. I applied for everything remotely adequate for this on Craigslist and landed the perfect summer job. I won't disclose what exactly it is in order to maintain my anonymity, but it involves minimal amounts of teaching, teenagers (not at-risk), and lots of fun. It doesn't pay a lot and the hours are flexible. I can work more if I want and less if I want. The best part is that I can keep coming back to it every summer and I have for the past 3 years. I have also traveled internationally (for vacation) every year that I have worked there (twice one year).
Even though I am currently working nearly full-time hours at this point, it is so different than teaching in a public school. I truly enjoy my hour-long lunch break in the park. I can relax completely and read a book or listen to my ipod surrounded by people and nature. The workplace is located in a great neighborhood where there are lots of stores, shops, and restaurants. I love window shopping and sampling different foods. I get home after work and never ever stay late and the best part is that I don't bring my work home with me at all. I have no emotional baggage from my day. I feel so free at the end of the work day. I have planted a garden, made dinner almost every night for the past two weeks, read a novel, and visited a museum since summer (and my summer job) began. I have made dinner plans with two different friends this week without even batting an eye. During the school year, going out to dinner was so hard during the week because I was always exhausted. I feel like a normal person again. I feel like me. I wish that I could have this feeling all year long.