the kids' NOT Back to School portraits, and while we were walking back into the house I had the thought that perhaps I should also take a picture of myself at the start of a new school year. So here it is, a selfie taken in the garage as my kids pushed past my knees on their quest for juice pouches from the fridge.
I am 31 years old this school year, in the midst of my eleventh year of marriage, tenth year of parenting, and embarking on my fourth "official" year of homeschooling. I am my ward's Sacrament Meeting Music Director, Choir Director, and newly-sustained Primary Chorister.
I've come to realize, over the last school year, that my big passion in life is teaching. Directing the ward choir helped me realize that. I like to do a good job when I sing a solo piece, and I push myself to do my best. When the performance is over, I'm proud of myself for a job well done, but start looking for a new project immediately. In contrast, when it comes to directing the choir, their success with a difficult song has me walking around in a euphoric stupor for days afterwards. It wasn't until a few months ago that I realized this significant truth about myself, and I'm so grateful that God opened my eyes and allowed me to see myself in this light of His making--I've felt guilty for so long about not wanting to do "more" than teach...but I've realized that this is what I like to do, and that it's OK for others to think I'm not rising to my potential, or not "using my degree," or that I could do better good if I taught outside of my home. I like what I do, where I'm doing it, right now. I'm not interested in it being different, and I don't have to change what I'm doing to please a naysayer.
My passion is helping others reach their potential, and my heart is naturally more invested in the potential of my children, and I choose to invest my time and energy in my children. I love what I do, even on the days when it is hard. I was sent here to teach, and I count it as an enormous blessing that I get to mix my missions of mothering and educating because I live in a time and place where homeschooling is legal, and even, in some circles, encouraged. I am a teacher, down to my bones, and I am so thankful that I get to spend this chapter of my life with my beautiful children, both during my "working" hours and my "home" hours.