One of the reasons I returned to blogging after a 3-year hiatus was to examine the life season I am in and to have some motivation to write about it, while reconnecting with the blogging community. It has been quite a ride the past 10 years- from changing profession briefly, leaving the classroom behind and learning to care for sick animals, to a major CFS relapse which took 6 months recovery time, starting and finishing Irish dancing and fiddle lessons, to finding out that my first born was due the Winter afterwards.
Then followed a tumultuous journey in amongst the joy and a gradual return to the education profession , assisting students with learning difficulties as a tutor in the months before and recommencing several years after my son’s birth. At times I worried that lesson preparation time was time that I should have been giving him, but I did give him quality time often and he enjoyed learning using the games and materials I created, quite incredibly becoming a semi-fluent reader and avid mathematician before he had even commenced school.
Once again, after waiting an extended time for another child and finally falling pregnant when I had almost given up hope, I return to that season of questioning and doubting. I am flourishing in a new role as highschool learning assistant, helping students every time I work, despite the uphill journey that many of them face. I have the privilege to keep track of their social and emotional wellbeing as well as supporting their learning, so it’s a rewarding way to interact with students, attending to their individual needs and teaching them study skills and organisational strategies that they can use to succeed in the future.
I have a toddler- almost pre-schooler, who is growing so fast and still wakes up to several times a night. There’s very little time to think or reflect, and in the busy time since her birth, many of my friendships have dwindled, for I simply do not have the time or energy to keep them alive anymore. It was a sad realisation that I could not sustain regular contact with most people during the most sleep deprived times. Many had no idea just how I struggled. I longed for contact with people, but just like in those early months of CFS, I couldn’t muster the physical and emotional energy to spend time with them regularly. In the past year I have been blessed with new friends and contacted some of the old ones, grateful that not everything has gone to the dust.
Just prior to applying for the job I currently have, I reached the point where I had to find out if I still had what it took to flourish in a workplace. It had been ten years since this was the case, and I knew that if I left it too long to reenter the workforce, I may struggle to do so indefinitely. I was nervous to begin with, but I soon found my feet and my passion for the job was there from the beginning. Supporting others to be their best seems to be my calling; I know what it is to struggle and long for a hand with the right expertise and empathy to pick me up.
While all this was happening, I transitioned from feeling like I was young with endless possibilities, to reflecting on all the many things I thought I would do but hadn’t found time, energy or ability for. There’s a line in the film, Little Women which I relate to very much. Jo March, when it was suggested that she should have been a lawyer, replied, ” I should have been a great many things, Mr. Mayer”. In most recent times, I have taken a more philosophical look at it all. What if all those possibilities are still to come? What if, I clearly will not run a marathon, but I may mentor someone who will? What if, in this support role I seem to have an affinity for, I find those endless possibilities unfold? Perhaps life (lived to the full) will begin for me this coming decade. Or perhaps it is never a starting point but a continual process of live, love and reflect.
What do you think about your life as it is unfolding?Are there regrets and are there triumphs? Do you live your life so fast-paced that you never really stop to think?