My Life as I Know It

As most of you know, I accepted the call back to teaching this Fall.   It has been going incredibly well.   I often stop in my tracks (I make a lot of them these days) and am amazed at how all of us are handling it.  For so long I felt that I just had to be home (not that I ever was actually home) with the kids to be who I needed to be.   Sure, going back to work was the right timing.  Not two years ago, not last year.  But now.  I could not believe that teaching other people’s kids could help me be a better person.  A better mommy.  A better wife.  A better follower of Christ. 

I was wrong.  Having such responsibilities on my shoulders has only humbled me more and made me look at who I am and who I am called to be.  It has been no casual stroll in the park but I can honestly say I know I am where I should be.  That could change instantly for whatever reason God decides but I am thankful I took this huge leap of faith.  I actually took the sweet nudging of my husband (and lawyer principal) to convince me this was the right thing. 

A fifth grader cornered me on Thursday and asked if she could interview me for our school’s newspaper.  She said it was b/c I was new and all.  Well, kind of not new but new to being the First Grade core teacher.  Of course I agreed thinking that it was simply her asking me a few questions about myself.  Like where I grew up, my family, my school, etc.  No biggie!  So on Monday morning during our rushed interview, I realized that she had put way more thought into those questions than I had given her credit!  I actually had to dig deep and think.

I don’t know about you but I am not deep very often but definitely not at 7:45am on a Monday! 

First Question:  What would you do differently in your life? 

Hmmmm……….  I wondered if that 11 year old really knew the depth of that question and how much she wanted to write down.  I noticed quickly how we would be there FOREVER if I gave her long answers so I shortened my answers for the sake of all involved. 

But the answer?!  I could of listed a hundred or more!  I gave her one.  One that sounded good coming out of the mouth of a teacher.

I would have read more for leisure.  Sounds weak? 

Yeah!  Oh well!  I love to read now and find it absolutely enjoyable.  I can’t imagine why on earth I did not find it this pleasurable when I was “given the opportunity” to read Beowulf and The Scarlet Letter.   The wonders! 

Extended answer: 

-I would have finished my Masters program before marrying and having tots

-I would have saved more during my single days of teaching.  I tend to remember that I spent a ridiculous amount of money on my classroom. 

-Part of me would say that A and I should have waited longer than 9 months after marraige before getting pregnant (babe #1 born 18 months after we said I DO) but how can you even truly think about your child not being in existence?  Let me insert here that WE DID NOT PLAN on this timing but our good Lord did.  And we certainly did not plan on babe #2 coming 15 months later!   Surprise!!! 

-I would have worked out more consistently in the early days of parenting.  I LOVE working out but you can’t tell it by looking at me.  I am exerting most of my energy to rid myself of that rolly stuff that evolved in all those years of just being mom.   That falls into the category of taking better care of myself.  I would add taking care of my hair, my skin, my grotesque feet, dressing better, etc. 

-A and I were friends for almost four years before I even considered the M word.  I know it was the right timing but sometimes I mourn those extra three years we could have been husband and wife.   I was blind!  Good thing it was love!

Question #2:  What advice would you give to those reading this paper? 

I stole a recent quote from my brother: “You can be anything God calls you to be.” 

I think that speaks for itself.

 Question #3  What was an obstacle you have overcome?

My severe speech impediment.  My second grade teacher told my mother I probably would not make much of anything.  Needless to say that ticked my mom off -and if you know my mom that is HARD to do!  I am pretty certain that even back then my mom believed in my brother’s quote.  I struggled but somehow my self-esteen was not injured too dramatically in my early years.  Mom overheard me responding to a kid who was making fun of me (that happened frequently cuz kids are just mean), “God made me this way and I am going to speech and I am getting better.”  I walked away.  But I am positive it might have sounded more like this: “Ga ma me iz wa an Im gon to spee and ge bette.” 

Folks were always making me repeat myself so they could understand me.  My Dad wanted me to put that practice-makes-perfect philosophy into practice.  So, I am defending myself right now that it is not MY FAULT that I talk so much.  I was forced to!  Do you have pity?

Question #4  Who has influenced you the most?

I answered this in continutation of #3.  My parents, esp. Mom, influenced me the most.  She was my biggest advocate AND fan.  You can bet a pretty penny that I would not have made much of myself if my two godly parents did not push me AND love me in the process.  My “disability” was never to be used as an excuse for not doing my best.  And can you believe that in the first year of my public education I was segregated from “normal” kids?  Thanks to the IDEA act back in the mid 70’s, I ended up getting a “regular” education.  I love how God used my past to lead me to my profession.  I not only received my teaching degree from Baylor University but I majored in Special Education.  I have an understanding. 

I will not leave out my dear mate.  My best friend.  My encourager.  My rock.   He loves the Lord with all his heart.  Really he does.  I have never seen anyone more genuine than him.  How could I not look up to him and adore him?!?!  He keeps me grounded in a gentle and real way.  Sometimes he is too gracious.  He does not want to hurt me.  I adore him.  Have I said that already?  Oh!  I really do admire and ADORE him! 

Question #5  What do you enjoy? 

I enjoy so very much.  Mom still calls me a study in contrast.  I am sensitive and moody but think being tough is a sign of strength.   I didn’t even cry when that cop pulled me over a few weeks ago and had the nerve to write me a ticket!  I saved it for later.  My husband appreciated that! 

Here are a few of my favorite things that I enjoy.  (Julia Andrews just busted out singing in my head…)

-cooking (esp. baking)

-scrapbooking

-the sound of streams (I love the mountains!)

-working out

-reading

-The Sound of Music

-Little Women

-Paul Overstreet 

-Caedmon’s Call

-camping

-playing games (esp. cards with other adults – it just does not happen too often these days)

-Fall (real Fall – we don’t see much of that here in Texas!  That is what I LOVED about living up in the D.C. area.  I loved the colors of Fall!)

-Flowers!  I have recently started to enjoy gardening  like my mother.

-Eating!  I love good food and good company.  I have fun going to a restaurant and asking the waiter to bring me whatever he/she likes.  I have never really regretted it. 

-laughing

-snuggling and reading with the kids

-taking walks

-chocolate

I do believe this is the longest post for me.  It is also the first time I might have come close to going deep.  Enjoy it for you won’t see it for a while. 

Good night my computer friends!

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One Comment

  1. EJ
    Posted September 19, 2007 at 9:58 am | Permalink

    I loved this, Cyn – thanks so much for your openness and for taking the time to write from your heart. I love you and thank God that you are in our family!


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