Funny how I have constantly downplayed the negative, and had to really dig it up again to face it. I know it's a survival tactic, but it's too akin to a battered woman staying with an abusive boyfriend. Not to say that I was physically harmed or even threatened (well, maybe that once), but there was a tremendous amount of psychological pain. It's hard to feel constantly that you're failing, especially when you're working as hard as you can.
That, more than anything, was why I made finding a new job my summer job. I spent the first half of June wrestling with the idea of looking for a new job (dozens of conversations and hours ruminating, boiled down to two paragraphs!), and the second half of June actively doing so. Applying for a teaching job requires jumping through many hoops, and I applied for a bunch. It may be this way for everyone, but I had to pull together multiple references, both personal and professional, several letters of reference, scans of my certificate and AEPA test results, and more. Then there were the personal essays, which I perhaps should spend careful consideration on but tend to just knock out, proof read once or twice, and then submit. I figure it's me. If they don't like me, they shouldn't hire me.
July 1, a job posted at a school I knew about. I drive by a few times a week. I applied, was invited for a screening interview, then a formal interview the next day, and I had an offer in my inbox within four hours of that interview.
Today I accepted their offer, and resigned from my old job. Now I can have some real vacation.
(*) The sculpture is not called "Victory" but it certainly represents how I feel right now. It's on the grounds of Highfield Hall at Beebe Woods in Falmouth, MA.