Two summers ago, when we first bought our house, the weather decided to make a run for making the record of the most days over 100 degrees. As you might imagine, it was hot. Jared and I were still euphoric about moving into our first home, so we didn’t let the heat stop us from starting to move our things from our apartment to the house.
That is, until the AC stopped working.
Even though we had the controls set to mid-seventies inside the house, the temperature rose into the eighties, and eventually, the nineties in the afternoon. And there is not much motivating about moving and cleaning up things in a house that is trying to cook you alive as you do so. As we investigated, we realized the problem wasn’t with the controls, but that the AC unit itself. It wouldn’t turn on.
Jared’s first thought was perhaps that it was a circuit breaker issue, but when we looked at the box in the garage, there was nothing labeled for the AC. So we did the next natural thing when you have a home warranty that is mandatory to get when you are buying your home: we called for an AC guy to come look at our unit.
A few days later, he showed up, and after about 15 minutes, decided that there’s nothing wrong with the unit and it must have been something with the circut breaker. Jared explained the dilemma about nothing being in the garage labeled for AC. The AC guy just stifled a laugh, shook his head with amusement, and walked us around the house, to point us to the circut controls that are on the OUTSIDE of the house.
Until that moment, we did NOT know that box even existed. He opened it, pointed to the somewhat clearly labeled AC part, flipped the switch, and immediately the AC unit turned on. We paid the guy, and thought it was over.
Until a few days later, when the AC stopped working again. We flipped it again. Then the next day. And the next day. And the next day. Then it increasingly got worse and worse, to the point where it would only last a few minutes, if we were lucky. So like the smart people we were, we called the electrician, who when he came, opened up the box, and showed us the circut breaker (or what was left, at least):
The electrician held up this charred piece of plastic and metal next to a new, bigger and better breaker. He then patiently explained to me that the circuit breaker was technically the required # load for the job, but a solid, good breaker that would be capable of standing up to the load that was needed (especially in one of the hottest summers ever) would be nearly twice as thick as this one. This poor guy just couldn’t take the load it was labeled for. He then put in the bigger breaker, same # caliber as the other one but twice the size.
Our AC has been amazing ever since.
I bring this up though, because lately, I feel like I’m the fried circuit breaker. Despite the many things I’ve done to “flip the switch” to get things back on track, it’s not enough. Even the positive experiences I do have only last a short while before it runs out.My metaphorical batteries are run dry (apparently, I didn’t get Energizer brand) and every task I do takes so much more energy than I could have ever predicted. Getting up out of bed in the morning is a chore.
And teaching… All my previous years, I was excited to go back. Even after my month in June, and YWC, and a few weeks rest, I am unsure if I am doing the right thing. If I’m even GOOD enough to do it. I’m plagued with all kinds of doubts. Example: If I was GOOD enough to be a teacher, wouldn’t I be able to teach a grade level I want? If I was GOOD enough, wouldn’t have somebody at a high school taken me on by now?
Generally we want to be the hero (or heroines) of our tale. Somebody brilliant, brave, talented, who can stand up to any challenge thrown at us. The Harry Potter, Bella Swan, Ender Wiggin, Aragorn, Kendra or Seth Sorenson of our own life.
But right now, all I am is a broken circuit breaker, trying to make it one day at a time.