What Happened?! Looking back 👀

Four years ago on the first of June, I retired from teaching. Not in the traditional way but I haven’t done most things by taking a traditional path and for that I am thankful!

I had reached and completed my 20th year of helping children become the best they could be while at the same time battling what I now know and ‘own’ as a lifelong chronic illness. Well, let’s make that a few chronic and lifelong illnesses 🙂 But, I was proud of what I had accomplished. I had made a huge impact on many students, and on some, at least an impact into making their lives a little easier and thus a little better.

Looking back, I realize that while I thought I was doing a ‘ministry’, and in many ways, I was, I was also really doing something that laid the foundation for me to lead this glorious life I have had so far.

Here’s how it happened. Over 27 years ago, I took a leap of faith and left social work administration after only working in it for a year. Each day I worked, I felt drained and sad. I was trying to fix what I called, a broken world and it tugged at my heart daily. I hit so many walls trying to help children and saw so much heartache that when I left San Diego, I decided that I was also going to change careers. And, so I did.

Fast forward to a few years later, i started my teaching career. And, my philosophy was to start educating children early, providing them with a strong foundation of knowledge, experiences, self confidence, a sense of empowerment, and to instill and encourage a lifelong love of learning.

Little did I realize until just recently that I had lived my entire life this way in each and everything I (we) did. It’s how we raised our children, it’s how we spent our lives, working hard, fighting for the underdog, spending our free time and our summers gaining knowledge and understanding through experiences, and finding ways to always push forward and never give up no matter how I or we felt.

Now, we have a place ‘in the country’ near a lake and we loving living our lives here. This was also part of our plan for many, many years although it doesn’t look exactly the way we dreamed it. And, while I also planned to embark on my 3rd career while living here, things have had to temporarily slow down for me. As I write this, our kids have come home for a weekend visit and everyone in the house is still asleep. There is a roadrunner out on the front lawn playing in the sprinkler. It’s the cutest thing to watch. And, of course, the birds never stop talking and the peacock is awake and celebrating its voice. This is yet another joyous time in my life and I feel grateful and blessed to have it.

Back to my story, had I not lived the life I have lived and had all the experiences I have had because my philosophy of teaching was also mine and my hubby’s philosophy of life, and thus dictated how things would be done…..my life would be drastically different and I would now feel sad and unfulfilled.

I can remember from 8 years old on feeling pretty much constant discomfort/pain. Over the years, surgeries have helped but never fully taken away the pain and discomfort. I hid it from everyone and instead pushed forward as if I was like everyone else. Not going to lie though…there were many times I couldn’t wait to just sit down sometimes😊 because it got so intense😬.

Today, though, I want everyone to know that I have so far truly lived a life where I have literally slid into the 3rd act, body all bruised and tattered, ‘skidding in broadside, almost all used up, and saying: WOW! What a ride’ and what a life! Thank you God for the many lessons and blessings so far!

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