The other day I was pulling into the dentist (the first problem) and there was a lady walking out of an office building across the street. In a cute skirt and heels and looking beautiful, and accomplished. I was pulling up wearing a t-shirt and jean shorts, after spending my morning playing with Addilyn at a friends, putting her down for a nap and bringing the five year old I babysit with me to the dentist, while my mother in law watched Addilyn. I felt nervous, frazzled, ugly and so not accomplished. It made me miss dressing up. Putting on nice clothes, getting to work, feeling purposeful in a career.
A few months ago, my close friend that was on my third grade team got to downtown for a three day conference, learning about a new math method, then got to come back to school to present it. She did so well that they want her to work with some other schools and present at another conference. Not that I would be close to as knowledgeable in this subject, but we used to do a lot of planning, creating and teaching together. If I was still at school I would have been the one that went to the conference with her. It made me miss teaching. Miss the opportunity to impress people, to feel proud of an idea, and to make a difference in a ton of kids' lives.
The same week when I was tutoring one of my students I asked her if she was sad that school was over or happy for summer. She said both, and that she was only said about leaving "Mrs. Rempert." Again, I felt sad. I used to have students that said that. And as time goes on, the majority of the students do not know who Mrs. Vale is.
Later that week my timehop picture was of me and six students that moved up with me when I went from teaching second to third grade. Six of my favorite students ever. When I think about my first few years of teaching, it was so much of who I was. I loved teaching so much. Of course there's parts that weren't great, but it was what I was meant to do and I loved it.
About 85% of the time I feel really confident and content with my role as a stay at home mom. I know that God has made me to be Addilyn's mom and that even though I have no idea what I'm doing many of the times, that I'm a good mom. I feel so grateful that I am able to stay home with my daughter and don't take it for granted, when I know so many people would love to be able to do the same.
But I think I'm surprised that I still have feelings like this. When school started back up last year, I went through a phase where I had some second thoughts about staying home. I felt like I missed the beginning of the year excitement, felt like maybe I should have tried to find a part time teaching job and wished that would have worked out at my school. Seeing back to school stuff and pictures of teachers setting up their classrooms, brings back some of those same feelings again.
The older I get and more experiences have it's clear that I struggle with change. With leaving something behind and accepting that things are different. I struggle with this in terms of blogging. I miss when blogging was filled with deeper connections, more validation, more success. I struggle just accepting that it's just different now and that's fine. I struggle with change in relationships, circumstances, anything. I think that I expect to feel completed confident and satisfied in my "new" role by now, and I don't. I think that I need to start accepting that I'm probably always going to have a part of me that misses teaching because it was such a big part of who I am. And there's a good chance it will be again. But I'm reminded over and over that this is where God wants me right now and I sure am thankful for that.