‘Only at 40 did I start to rise’

Candace Bremner (Oupa Nkosi)

Candace Bremner (Oupa Nkosi)

High school English teachers always have something to mark.

Every weekend and every evening was spent working. That is why I resigned the first time. Not because I didn’t enjoy it.
I have to tell you that I loved teaching. I loved the people that I worked with, but I resisted it because of the hard work.

I probably fought against teaching for 15 years. I thought there must be some easier way to make money. So, I left teaching three or four times to go into something else, but I hated that, pretty much every minute of it, even though I was earning three times more.

At around the age of 40 or so, I finally accepted teaching, because I had pretty much made a mess of my personal life. I had married someone whom I later divorced, and I had two children to look after.

Out of desperation, I took a job, but it came with a managerial position. I had resisted leadership and management, but I was forced into it. Ironically, by accepting leadership, it led me back to teaching.

When I finally went back to teaching, but in a leadership position at a private school, I saw that there was more to a job than an everyday drudge. All of a sudden, I could use my vision and creativity to solve problems that I never had to solve before.

This is where I developed the skills of leadership, and I discovered: “Oh my goodness, I can see the point of this.”

I can see the point that helping people is the only way to being happy. When I accepted that, I became content.

I have 10 years until I have to retire, and I hope that I can continue teaching, even if it is just part-time.  — Candace Bremner as told to Gemma Ritchie 

Gemma Ritchie

Gemma Ritchie

Gemma Ritchie works in the Mail & Guardian's online department. She majored in English Literature at a small liberal arts college in the USA.  Read more from Gemma Ritchie

    Client Media Releases

    Cash injection for lung cancer control
    Prof Monica Ferreira gets honorary doctorate
    Distance learning and the workplace of the future
    SMS API in retail stores