My best laid out plans always seem to fail. Fall down seven times, get up eight, right? It's not always easy, but now that I have kids I feel more compelled to do it.
I'm a teacher, with 12 years' experience, a Master's degree and two additional certifications. That's all great, but I live in rural western Kansas. In a town with one of few state universities, which graduates hundreds of new teachers twice a year. Finding a job in my area is virtually impossible. The last time I checked, there were 279 teaching jobs available in my state (yes, all of it) and there were over 3,000 applicants for them.
My husband has had his job with the USPS since 1997 and my stepdaughter lives 23 miles away and we barely get to see her the way it is, so moving for a teaching job isn't an option for us. I've done everything from subbing to a grant position that I knew would only be a year to driving 130 miles a day to opening my own preschool, just to be a teacher.
In the last month or so, I've accepted a new position, this one *only* 35 miles away. Except this one is a special education job. You'd think with all of my experience and education it'd be a no brainer, right? WRONG! It's new. It's scary. It'll be challenging (like all teaching jobs). But I trust the man who interviewed me who felt I was the best choice for the job and I trust God for leading my husband and I through prayer to close my preschool and take this new position.
Who's going to fill me back up?
I know the canned response to this is GOD, only The Lord. But let's be honest. Sometimes, we're weak, we need our husband to to be there. We need our kids to do a little pouring too. And if you're lucky enough to have girlfriends, they can be filler uppers (yes, it's a word) too.
Does anyone notice me?
I struggle with this one on the daily. Especially in regards to my role as a step mom. I've actually recently turned down an opportunity to be flown to Chicago, all expenses paid for three days to be on the Steve Harvey show to talk about my role as a stepmom. That'd surely get me noticed, but not in the way I'd want. It'd be a whole can of worms that isn't worth opening. Plus, it just happens to be taping the second week of school. I'm already going to be gone for two days in October to go to MOPS convention in Kentucky, so I don't think it's a good idea, in a lot of ways. But it's reassuring to know that people do notice, even if they aren't close to me.
Does God care about me?
I know He does. I wouldn't have the life I have if He didn't. It's because He does that I'm even here. In immeasurable ways. I'm unworthy of it all and I know this, and it keeps me humble and appreciative every day.
Is it wrong to treat myself?
I know it's not, but I always feel guilty. I always feel like that time away from my family is time I'll miss something amazing. I know I need to do it and that my husband and I need to make time as a couple, because in a blink of an eye, it'll be just us, but I still struggle with it. I don't want to miss anything.
I'm a work in progress! What can I say?