Tuesday, June 9, 2009


Thanks to all my sweet blogger friends who have sent comments and/or emails and asked about me this past month. Things have been a bit crazy around here and I have just not had my heart into my blog posts.

First of all, things at my job (preschool teacher) have been very stressful this year due to the fact that we got a new Director. Words cannot begin to describe this woman. I have never met anyone like her before. She is the coldest person I have ever met. As a Christian, I know we are to love everyone, but this woman is hard to love.

The director started working a year ago during the summer and our precious secretary put up with her for one month and then quit. She couldn't stand the director and was so belittled by her that she decided life was too short to put up with that.

When the teachers started working there in the fall, we knew right away that the school was in trouble. The director began changing things right and left and the teachers were very unhappy with the changes. The director is very power hungry and wants things done her way or no way at all. The ones of us who have been there forever tried to make suggestions and let her know that parents don't like that much change at the preschool, but she wouldn't listen to us.

Needless to say, the school has begun to suffer as a result of the director's poor leadership and lack of "people skills". The director has no people skills in dealing with her teachers or the parents. Parents don't like her and have begun to take their children out of the preschool. The director blames the problems at the preschool on the economy. That is a joke, because our school teaches the children of some of the most affluent families in our town. The families are just moving the children elsewhere.

We normally have around 180 children at our preschool and next year there are only around 80 children enrolled. Because of that, my job was eliminated for next year, but the director did not even tell my associate or myself. We found out from one of our parents. The director had sent a list of classes for next year out to the school parents and our class was not listed. The parent saw that and came in to school and asked us if we were teaching next year. That was news to us. We were shocked. We went to the director that day and she just said that she thought she had told us.

She also told us that no ones job was secure for the fall and that this year she was going to control the contracts and would decide who was coming back and who was staying. I told her that I had been at the school for 16 years and my associate had been there for 14 years. She said that tenure did not matter to her. She was going to pick who she wanted to stay and she was even going to change teaching teams as she saw fit.

This was around March. She told us that the contracts would come out the first of May. We anxiously awaited the contracts coming out in May. She did not give them out on May 1st, but finally told us on May 5th that she would call each teacher into her office that day and give out the individual contracts.

I was never called into her office before the children left that day at 1pm. I went down to help with carpool and it looked like a funeral had just taken place among the teachers. I have never seen so many sad faces and lots of ladies looked like they had been crying. I still did not know anything. After helping with carpool, I went back up to my classroom and I was just getting ready to leave and she came down to get me to come to her office.

She immediately handed me an envelope with a bonus check in it and then proceeded to say that since my class was being eliminated for next year, she was not renewing my teaching contract. I asked her how she could justify keeping teachers on staff who she had just hired last fall and let me go when I had faithfully served that church preschool for the past 16 years. Her excuse was that since my degree is not specifically "early childhood education" and is Home Economics Education, she was letting me go. She stated that she is working towards having all her staff have early childhood degrees. That is just her excuse to get rid of me.

Since I have been there for so long, I feel like she thinks that I am a threat to her. I am loved by the parents and the students and she is jealous of that, because she does not have that same rapport.

In December she fired another one of our teachers who had been there a long time. I think she was intimidated by Ann too, because Ann was a wonderful teacher. The director barked up the wrong tree with Ann, because Ann's husband is a lawyer. Her husband's senior partner is representing Ann in a lawsuit against the director. Ann doesn't want her job back, but it is just the principal of the situation that Ann wants to prove her point to the director. I don't have the money to sue the director over my job loss, but Ann is hoping that my situation will help fuel her case and maybe in the long run, the director will end up losing her job.

I have had so many of my parents write letters to the minister and the Day school board on my behalf, which really makes me feel good. I have gotten so many wonderful notes, letters and emails from my past parents thanking me for shaping their children's lives and what a great teacher and role model I have been to their children. I have taught so many families and many families I have taught all their children. My gastroenterologist has 4 children and I have taught all of them. My own 2 girls went to my school, so I have a long history there.

It breaks my heart to leave, even though things have been so stressful. I have so many wonderful friends there, who have been like family to me. We have shared in the deaths of lots of family members, shared in the joys and sorrows of each other's children, I have had cancer while being there and so have some of the other teachers, etc. I will still remain friends with these precious ladies, but it is never the same as when you are working with them.
As one friend said to me, "You can leave the school, but your spirit will always remain a part of that school." "Your heart has been in that school and with those children and your impact on their lives will play a part in the people they grow up to be."

On the last day of school, we have a chapel program and we walk into the church with our classes and the children sing for their parents. My daughter, Adelaide and some former teachers at the school who used to teach with me, came and they all sat together to support me. They were sitting on the pew by the door as I walked into the church with my children and they gave me a big smile. I cry real easily, but I had prayed and asked God to give me the strength to get through that program and leave that day without breaking down. God answered my prayers and I held my head high and made it through the program, telling the children and the parents goodbye and leaving the building. As we walked out, Adelaide said, "Mom, hold your head up high and smile, because this is a celebration". " You are moving on to bigger and better things!!!"
I do believe that God has closed this door for me, but he has something even greater in store for me, but I just don't know yet what it is. He will open another door for me when the time is right!

I am not ready to retire. I still have Adelaide in college and I help with her college expenses. Plus, I love children and feel that teaching is like a ministry for me. I have met with another preschool director here in town, but am waiting to hear back from her. She was interested in hiring me if she has enough new students to start another class. Both of my girls just feel like this was a blessing for me to lose my job, although it has been extremely painful. They knew that I would have never quit on my own. I hate conflict and would have stuck it out and made the best of it.

Because of all the stress this past year, I have lost a lot of weight and I wasn't that heavy to begin with. I guess we can all stand to lose some weight, but hopefully I won't lose any more. Needless to say I am glad all this is behind me. When I walked out of school that last day, I felt like the weight of the world had been lifted off my shoulders. A group of my special friends from school took me and Adelaide out to lunch that day to celebrate. This Wednesday night they are having a party for me at a friend's house. They felt so bad, because the school did nothing for me when I left.

In fact, the director sent a letter out to all the parents saying that another of our teachers was leaving to take a position elsewhere (lucky lady), but did not even thank me for my years of service, or say that I was leaving. The last day of school, she did not even tell me bye. Last week, she sent me an email and said that she had forgotten to tell me bye. I think the woman is sick, but at least I don't have to put up with her. Life is just too short and I don't need that stress in my life anymore. I am ready to move on to where someone will appreciate me for the person I am and what I have to offer.

Sorry, I didn't mean to write a book, but I have just had this on my heart for so long and I have not been able to blog. Lots of you have emailed me and I have written you back, but I just wanted to let everyone know what had happened and why they had not heard from me in a while. It's really hard to explain a job loss to someone and I never dreamed I would be so bummed out, but it was like experiencing a death. I know I only work part-time, but it was still my job and I loved it and I loved the children. I am married, so I have a husband who works and supports our family, but I also helped with college expenses, etc. I guess it is like cancer, until you have it yourself, you just can't imagine what it feels like.

From the time I found out about my job on May 5th until I got out of school on May 28th, that time was like a blur. I was going through the motions, but felt like the air had been sucked out of me. Adelaide and I went to the beach and to Charleston with a dear friend of ours after I got out of school and stayed for a week, so the rest and relaxation and "girl time" was a blessing for all of us. We had the most wonderful time!!! I took lots of pictures, so I will blog about that later. I just had to get all this off my chest and move on with my blogging. I have tried to read and keep up with most of you, but have just not been online as much commenting, etc.

I plan to spend my summer getting my life (and house) back in order. I am also loving having Adelaide at home this summer. We have had the most fun being together so far.
Thanks ladies for all your love and support. You are the best!!!!

Love & blessings to you all,


  1. God Bless You! I am so sorry you have had to go through all of this. I am just certain that God has something bigger and better in store for you. You will be in my prayers. I hope you have a wonderful, stress free Summer!

  2. Oh, Melinda what a shocking tale.....I am so sorry you were treated so poorly. BUT, I have a feeling justice will prevail someday, and she will find her due. I'm sorry it hurt you so badly in the process. Well, we'll all look forward to see how God will work this for good in your life. Enjoy the time with your daughter!


  3. Oh sweetie, don't be blue. All things for a reason. You have obviously blessed many lives during your time teaching. You are correct, when one door closes, another one opens! Enjoy each stress free day you know have with the ones you love. Catch up on things you've been meaning to do so you are ready when that new door opens to embrace God's plan!
    Sending a hug your way.

  4. Oh my word, Melinda, I'm so sorry! This sounds like a *terribly* unjust situation and I'm so grieved that you had to go through this. Adelaide sounds like a very wise young woman (no surprise, given who her mom is!) and I'm thrilled that you were able to have some downtime with her and your friends at the beach. You said it correctly, job loss (especially one to which you feel called and is a ministry) is like a death. You will most definitely be in my prayers as you process all this and I hope to hear that you will be ministering to some *very* lucky little ones soon!

  5. Yay - you are back!! The more I read about this devil-rector, the more I say you are LUCKY to have gotten away from her. She will be the DEATH of that school and then you can return - haha

    Hey, I have pretty much decided to do some subbing next year. I won't go back to the school where I taught, but I will try to sub at the elementary and middle schools. They pay is decent and you can say no. I know you aren't ready to retire, but if nothing else turns up, you might consider this. Did we already discuss this??? I am nuts ;-) haha xoxo

  6. I'm so sorry for all you have been going through. I work in a preschool too and I can't imagine being forced out by someone like that. Our principal is retiring as of the 30th of June, but we know the new principal and I think we will be fine. God has a very special plan for you, I'm sure. Enjoy your off time. God bless.

  7. Melinda

    You've been in my thoughts and prayers since I received your sweet e-mail. It's so hard sometimes to know what to say or do to help someone who is hurting. Believe me I know since I recently went through a hurtful situation. (I'm actually still working my way through it.) I don't know you personally, but I think I know your heart so it's hard for me to understand how this person could do something like this to you.

    Here's a message that another blogger sent to me and it's so true. I hope it helps you too.

    Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the LORD is the one who goes before you.. He will be with you; he will neither fail you nor forsake you. Deuteronomy 31:8
    People are human. Sometimes they let us down, and sometimes they hurt us. When you're disappointed by another human being, remember that God is perfect--he'll never abandon you.

    Sending you hugs sweet friend!

  8. People like that are awful. Not only is the preschool going to suffer, the church probably will too. There is no need for someone to treat people this way & I hate that someone as sweet as you had to go through it. Maybe you should spread the word that you are trying to get the other job. Sounds to me like she'll have folks beating down the door to register their children. I know I would! Have a great summer & glad you are back!

  9. Wow--I stumbled upon your blog and have to say I am SO sorry about your losing your job at the preschool and having to deal with that nasty woman. I just quit my church choir because after 10 years I decided I had had enough of how the people "in charge" managed the group. I too am waiting to see what the Lord sends my way. I also want to mention that I publish an online magazine for empty nesters: http://www.emptynestmag.com. Please check it out and sign up for a (free) subscription if you like (and recommend it to your friends). Thanks! Good luck! Robin Bonner, editor, Empty Nest

  10. I sent you an email just before you went to the beach.

    I'm happy to see you back blogging...glad you were able to write about all of this. I look forward to seeing some pics of Charleston!

  11. I am sending good thoughts your way. Please know that you are in my prayers.

  12. I just linked to your blog from another site, and I'm glad I found you. I am happy that you seem to know that your job loss was about the problems of the preschool director (who does indeed sound "sick," as you say), and not about you. You sound like the kind of preschool teacher any parent would want her kid to have! I pray that all works out for you very well.

    By the way, your blog name caught my eye because I just recently wrote a post about an empty nest on my front porch. If you'd like to read it, go to http://impartinggrace-richella.blogspot.com/2009/06/rest-of-porch-story.html . Perhaps it would be a blessing to you.

    Take care! God bless you.

  13. Sorry to hear about your stressful spring. I hope you will be able to relax and enjoy your daughter and summer. I firmly believe when God closes a door he opens a window. I will keep you in my prayers.

  14. First, I wanted to say thank you for the sweet comments you've sent my way. My mom got the dress cookie cutter at Sur la Table. They have a lot of cute cookie cutters. If you don't have the store nearby, maybe you can find it on their web site.
    I am so saddened to hear what happened with your position. You sound like an amazing and loving teacher and have so much experience. It makes me sick to think that those with power-trip issues take advantage of the wonderful people in the world. God must have a different plan for you. My mom taught preschool for many years and is a parapro in kindergarten now. They are going through similar things with a bad principal. Keep your spirits up and don't let anyone rob you of your joy! That's what my mom always tells me.

  15. Just found your blog. I'm so sorry you had this awful experience. While it all may turn out for the best, it hurts right now. Blessings.

  16. look for the open door....the one where God stands, quietly waiting...

    the door which takes you on your new journey!

  17. Whew! Don't you feel better to get that off your chest! I am glad that you are finished with the school year and that you are moving on to better things. I know that He has a great plan in store for you! I love you!

  18. I am so saddened to read this. You have such a HUGE heart and I just know you make an amazing teacher. Some people are just on their own high horse and many no longer even acknowledge loyality. It is very sad. Like your girls said, this is for the best and God has a divine plan for you keep. Keep holding your head high and good things will come your way!

  19. I've been keeping you in my thoughts and prayers.
    Bless your heart!
    God has something wonderful in store for you. I just know it.

    I'm glad you gals had a wonderful trip to the beach.
    I can't wait to hear more and see the pictures.


  20. On the other side of this situation, God has something SO much better planned for you. Your gifts and talents will continue to be a blessing to others. From one educator to another.........

  21. You know I've been praying for you and when I finally had some blog time today and came and read this, well I am shocked. I will never understand people like this woman. I know you will hold fast to your faith and know that God has big plans for you. And I'm proud of you and how you handled your last day.