So I read this post yesterday, about a woman who is a mama with a full-time creative job. She’s fortunate in that she’s able to be home part-time, but that doesn’t make her commitments to work any less–it just means a lot more juggling of her time to get her work done. (Is creative work really ever done?)
I posted it to my personal Facebook wall and haven’t been able to stop thinking about since. There have been a lot of changes in our family life this year, and I’m getting to a point where I’m feeling contented with the decisions that we’ve made and the direction that things are heading.
My husband changed jobs at the beginning of the year. He is no longer working for a big corporation; he’s found his customer-service niche working at a non-profit retirement community and he’s happy. Let me tell you, a happy husband is a wonderful thing to have.
I took the first quarter of the year off from signing classes as we struggled to find our footing as a family. I had one amazing student (with an even more-awesome mama) who finished off the 16 week course and graduated from Play & Sign classes just as the new group started up. I committed to teaching a four-class session every month through the end of the year, and I’m thrilled that so many families have joined us through the year.
Today was our last class of 2013. NINETEEN students have graduated. ❤ I am so proud!
As I mentioned yesterday, I am passionate about signing with young children. There are SO many benefits and it’s fun! Teaching classes is a fun way to bring my three passions together: the importance of family & supportive community, empowering parents to be their child’s first & best educator, and sign language.
But, I work all of the time.
If I’m not teaching a class, I’m planning the next one. Or organizing my materials and shopping for new ones. Scouring the Internet and library books for new and better ideas. Sharing those ideas with parents on all the necessary social media sites. Sending e-mails and Facebook messages. Reading and responding to additional messages. Networking with other moms and bloggers in the city (and beyond). Thinking. Writing. Creating.
I have taught each of the sixteen Play & Sign classes at least five times…and I can’t help but make it new and better each time. I am passionate about teaching.
It can be difficult for my family, because my “work” often looks like play (or wasting time on the Internet). It’s hard to quantify and justify thinking, especially when that thinking is taking place in front of a computer screen with Facebook or Pinterest on it. I tell my husband over and over again, “I’m working. I promise, I’m working!”
And he’s the sweetest, most supportive husband in the world. He’s known for ages what I just realized last night. I need to teach. To write. To create. It’s the very part of me that allows me to breathe and grow, and without it, I become a lesser version of myself.