I just read a blog post called “Climbing Mountains” on infertility which spoke to me. Even as I sit here, growing larger with my second bun in the oven, it was written in a way that A) helped me to find empathy on a deeper level than I had before B) felt so universal, and C) opened my eyes to new gratitude.
Some of the piece hit a very personal note with me – seemingly articulating my own challenges, though of a very different variety:
If I could tell myself one thing…[i]t would be that no matter how this all turns out, this time of wanting and waiting and hoping is so valuable. That’s all. It’s a life lesson for all stages, no matter if what you’re waiting for is a baby or a partner, or a job, or a train. This is an opportunity to grow, to learn, to experience joy that’s not dependent on life’s circumstances…
I hadn’t known when I started this climb how long it would take, or how hard it would be. Or I how much I would learn and grow and stretch and be changed. Or how beautiful the view would be from up here. But as I sat there, I decided this moment was well worth the journey. That’s the thing about mountains, I guess. People wouldn’t go through all the work to climb them if there wasn’t something amazing at the end.
My student teacher started today. I am so grateful.
I was talking with him yesterday about his plans for the week, and he was so full of energy, life, creativity, and ideas. My first reaction was to beat myself up for not bringing that kind of passion lately. Though I don’t think I have been slack or doing a poor job, he is just so full-to-the-brim with vitality and verve.
Then I realized that I am so grateful that he is here right now to bring that idealism and that creativity to our classroom. I am here to help funnel that energy into productive lessons. He is bringing the newness; I am bringing the experience. It’s a good balance. And one that I need so badly right now.
This is a time for major transition for me, and that’s okay. Spending my outside “free” time working on new ideas for school is just not my truth today. It has been, and maybe it will be again, but it’s not right now. This experience with hosting a student teacher has granted me time: time to take care of all of the necessary, logistical, and professional things that are required of me. The gift of not having to use my outside time to take care of nuts and bolts, which must come before creativity, but often does not!
And if I get those things taken care of, then maybe I can use some of these gifted days to find my creative thought again, though they may be less of the teaching variety and more geared toward the new version of my life. One with two kids, no day job, new ventures, a possible new home.
It’s time to put my creative energy toward this new portrait, and also toward my own writing – in a journal, on the blog, in some stories. Our story is changing and I am so ready and so excited.
I would like to remember how I built some of my favorite lessons and apply those habits and skills to my new writing life. I have felt proud, energized, and successful in those moments of inspired teaching and planning, and I would like to continue to experience the joy of that kind of satisfaction and productivity.
I will have about a month of teaching left after my student teacher wraps up his tenure here, and I have no doubt that in these meantime weeks, I will find my most favorite, most cared for, most loved, most thoughtful lessons to share with my classes before I officially exit this building.
Who knows exactly what’s next, but I embrace this changing chapter.
Earlier this year, I posted this brief tidbit about recognizing the balance of “good” years and more trying ones. I don’t think any entire years are throwaway ones – good things happen in the more trying years, and hard things occur in the most prosperous ones.
I am grateful for all of the growth that has come from this challenging year, but I must admit that I am breathing a sigh of relief to bid adieu to 2014, and I am welcoming this symbolic/calendar fresh start with open arms.
And though this has been a tough year, so many good things have happened, and there have been so many joyful moments. Here are my favorite photos from 2014 – a reminder that every day is an occasion to make something great happen, and a dark and cloudy time has beauty as well.