A JOB, a job.

Many of you are regular blog readers and know the story of our son Karl.  For those of you who don’t, I’ll do a quick little summery.  Karl is our fourth child.  He’s my more quiet and thoughtful kid.  He’s super forgiving, super tall, very considerate of others…I guess I would call him a gentle giant.  There really is no way not to like him as he stays out of every dramatic event all the time.

My dad was the fourth child in his sibling group and his name was Carl…the two of them are very much alike.  Here’s a photo of the two of them at Karl’s confirmation.  Sadly my dad pasted away a short time after this.

Karl took the round about way through college.  He started out majoring in Spanish with the hope of teaching.  Then someone told him he really needed Spanish teaching and a double major in teaching Spanish speaking students English.  That added on a couple more years so he ditched that idea and decided to get a Spanish major only.  He thought he was on tap to graduate and then was told credits didn’t transfer right and because of that he’s need to go two more semesters.  With that in mind he decided to get a degree in Elementary Education instead.  So…that left him in college even longer.

Last fall he was ready to student teach and had signed up to teach in Houston, Texas.  I have no idea what prompted that.  It certainly wasn’t my suggestion.  He was in Texas about two weeks and the hurricane hit.  It was a scramble.  Karl ended up staying with Cheryl, my blog friend, in Dallas for a couple days and then came home for a week.  Then back to Houston he went….and stayed until Christmas.

At Christmas he came home…his girlfriend who lived in NYC broke up with him and his plans all were in an upheaval.  We told him to come back home and stay while he sorted it all out.  Well Karl had bills to pay and substitute teacher pay is terrible so he got a factory job and watched as the teaching jobs opened up.  He was very disappointed to find that most Iowa jobs required a reading endorsement for their incoming teachers.  Karl didn’t have one.  So many jobs he was unqualified for.  He was SUPER disappointed.

He debated about more college classes but then decided that he would go back to Texas to Houston and see about getting a job there.  It seemed there were jobs there that didn’t need it.  Then as he teaches he hoped to pick up the remaining classes her needs so at some point he can come back to Iowa and hopefully get a job as an experienced teacher with a reading endorsement.

I’ll admit to being a little sad about it all.  I’m going to miss him terribly…but I know I have to do what’s right for him even if it doesn’t feel right for me.  That’s what being a mom is about after all anyway, isn’t it?

Next hurdle was to find a job.  Houston makes it super easy to apply for jobs.  He got his paperwork in to one central place and then simply clicked on jobs he wanted to considered for.  He had a Thursday interview in the morning.  It was the same day Kalissa was setting up for White Barns.   It was to be a face time interview.  He dressed up in his suit and tie.  He came through the kitchen and asked, “how do I look?”  I said great but then Emery one of my childcare kids asked, “Why are you wearing your pajama shoes?”  He was wearing his slippers….bahahaha!

I scrambled the childcare kids outside to play and the interview happened.  A short time later Karl came and told me about the interview.  I snapped a picture of him…see his suit with his “pajama shoes”?
I knew it was time that he really needed the lift that finding the job would give him and he really needed to move on to something else, but I was sad at the prospect.  Seeing him so happy after the interview was just what I needed to feel better about it all.  Why does letting your kids go have to be so hard??  He was so happy and so sure he had nailed the interview.  I needed to see him happy.

He said that the school had done interview the day before and had another this day.  They told him they would get back to him later in the day.  WOW!  That never happens…but they did get back to him and ….HE GOT THE JOB!

The school is in Houston.  It is a magnet school for the arts.  He’ll be teaching fourth grade math only.  The school has a population of 99% black students and 99% black staff.  The principal had asked him how he felt about it and in typical Karl style he said “I guess we’ll all be learning.”  He’s so right.  I am guessing from the little Karl said it’s in a tough area…that worries me a bit but like he said, they will all be learning.

Right now more than even he needs a school.  He needs some students.  He needs to find out if teaching really is him niche.  I am glad that the school is giving him a chance.  Now my hope is that the teachers around him and the staff around can be helpful.

So now he’s switching from job hunt to apartment hunting….and me…I have to get myself ready to lose him again.

25 thoughts on “A JOB, a job.”

  1. I know how you feel, my 26 year old got married, and now he’s moving 4 hours away. The mom in me wants him to stay near, but I’m also proud he’s able to be independent. Why can’t they stay little a bit longer? Congrats on the job Karl and hugs to you Jo as he spreads his wings.

  2. Jackie Goosen

    Congratulations to Karl! I, too, just went through the teaching job hunt. This process is not for the weak in spirit! I did a happy dance when I was offered my position. It is very exciting and I also had the opportunity to meet some of my students so I can wrap my brain around what my job will look like. I will be teaching elementary special education. As a parent, my oldest is on staff at a local Christian camp and I thought I would see her more. I have seen her less than when she was an hour and a half away at college. My youngest daughter will be heading to camp on Monday to counsel for the week. I will not hear from either one of them unless I go out and volunteer in the kitchen. I might have to! LOL Empty nest week. It is going to be weird! Here’s to change and the learning that comes with it for all of us!

  3. Anne Deedrick

    Our daughter met the love of her life, the only problem was he was British and was in the Royal Navy. They married and she moved to England . I know how hard Karl moving to Texas will be for you! Hopefully he will not stay too long just enough time to get some experience. I’m happy to say that after 16 years our daughter just moved back to MN and her family is living with us until her husband finds a job and they can start a new chapter in their lives. God has a plan for Karl. Many hugs to help you get through missing him!

  4. Congratulations to Karl on getting a teaching position! Sounds like it will be a great learning experience! Karl sounds like a wonderful young man and will make his way!

  5. Hi Jo
    Just wanted to let you know that my brother became a teacher in his late 40s and teaches junior high school math in a not so nice section of the Bronx. The school demographic sounds like the one that Karl will be teaching at. I think that my brother is one of the few white people that these kids have met. They love him and he loves them. He’s never had a problem in the neighborhood. I’m sure my brother would be happy to chat with Karl via email if he has questions or concerns.

  6. You wont lose him Jo. They always come home! I’m so happy for him, getting a job. My son teaches at a not so good school where most of the students are single parent families and English is a second language type. Some of them aren’t that well behaved either and they skip school a lot. I think Carl looks like someone they will take a liking to!

  7. Everywhere that Karl goes, he will find people who love being with him. Imagine what a gift he will be to kids who need a gentle male presence in their life….

  8. You’ll never lose him. Ya’ll raised those kids right. One of mine ended up in Afghanistan for a year. Talk about HARD! And the other took an dream job in Oklahoma. We are a super close family too, but when your kids are doing what they are meant to do and loving it, it makes the miles apart easier. May this be the beginning of new adventures for Carl.

  9. Debra Z Grbavac

    Congratulations, Karl. I am a retired math teacher and you will have a rewarding career making a difference in kids’ lives, both in the classroom and out. Blessings and good wishes.

  10. Congrats to Karl!! Jo, you and Roger did an awesome job with your kids, Karl has this. He is going to learn a lot, but so are his students!

  11. Jo – I have followed Karl’s adventures whenever he appeared in the blog world – he seems like such a nice guy. We live in Fulshear which is outside Houston (in the burbs so to speak). You have my email – please tell Karl he’s welcome to any hospitality or encouragement he wants. I suspect he’ll be more inner city than country so if he needs a mom’s encouragement or dinner or just a face that’s somehow connected to your family, have him get in touch. We’re here.

  12. Congrats Karl! I see more delicious Tex-Mex food in your future!

    Hugs Jo, you’ll make it through! Search out cheap airfare and visit him. When you’re snowed in, south Tx is warm.

  13. With the love and stability you have given him, your son will be able to provide some of these qualities to the kids he will teach. You are so obviously a natural teacher, he just has to follow in your wake. I wish him luck and hope he has fun with those 4th graders!

  14. What a great development! My parents were both teachers and said many times that the first year of teaching is the hardest. There is much to learn, you don’t have a lot of lesson plans and experience to lean on, but if you enjoy it, it just gets better from there. Male elementary teachers are a pretty rare breed, and I expect Karl will soon have a flock of folks that love him and will make him feel needed and welcome. Best of luck to him.

  15. Boys! Mine have been to college then came home. Navy and then came home. Left again. Came home while doing grad school. Left again. My two boys now share an apartment in Dallas. Don’t get to see them much, but they call me often. My daughter and SIL have now moved when while saving and looking for a home. It is really hard to get use to the empty nest once they each leave again, but eventually I do, and then it’s ok again and I spread my quilting out to several areas of the house!

  16. Cheryl in Dallas

    Way to go, Karl! I am so glad for you. Those students NEED you.

    Jo, you are not losing a son, you are gaining lots of Tex-Mex recipes.

  17. What an amazing young man you’ve raised, not many would take on the challenge that he is about start. He’s going to be such a great influence on those kids.

  18. Susan the Farm Quilter

    This is what you have raised him for…a contributing member of society, independent, caring and adulting!! It is hard when our babies leave the nest but we would not want them living at home at 40, right? I hope he loves teaching as much as I did!!

  19. Congrats to Karl on getting the job. A friend’s son who lives down there & used to be in real estate gave me a name of someone who might be able to help Karl with finding a place to live…or at least might give him a referral to some one who might. Kate Malito, (832)588-1156, katemalito@gmail.com.

  20. Good luck to Karl on his new adventure! It is disappointing that his college did not make sure he got the reading endorsement with his degree.

  21. Congrats to you Karl! It sounds like you were meant for this job what with your schooling and credits not transferring like they should have and then landing a job back in Houston, it’s your calling! I have a Granddaughter and her boyfriend living somewhere around Houston, they are around your age if you need some more friends in the Houston area. As a bonus my husband and I live in Corpus Christi, so if you want to visit Padre Island beaches your welcome to stay in our spare room. I feel like we are distance (quilt related) relatives lol.
    Jo, I know your empty nest feelings oh too well with 6 kids spread out from a nearby neighborhood clear to Bulgaria (missionary work). I’m finally accepting that my little birds have to spread their wings whether I like it or not…sniff sniff.

  22. Paulette Voit

    Being a Mom can be so hard sometimes. We want what is best for our kids, but sometimes it hurts. Best of luck to Karl and his new job, I pray he will fit in well and enjoy teaching.

  23. Congratulations Karl! you have a great attitude about you new adventure and I know you will be a wonderful teacher. Hope you find a great place to live and I wish you the best that first week. Our son lives in Austin and we are in TN, yes its far but the visits together are special memories.

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