Enrolling in school was a portentous decision. Working in health care means you are never permitted to stop learning. Beyond just the necessary learning requirements, I’m also attempting to advance my education to move into a different arena. I want to teach nursing students, to influence the next generation of our health care workers. Teaching is something I am passionate about. I love training new nurses at my hospital, and I enjoy being involved in the education that goes on there. It’s been an amazing adventure so far.
My life has been changing lately. There is a transition going on in my home. My oldest offspring are adults. They don’t always act like it, and they still live at home, but they are legally independent of my guardianship. They have graduated high school and moved on from there to pursue work opportunities and higher education. It didn’t immediately feel all that different, maybe because they’re still here physically. But lately, I’m seeing the changes in our relationships, feeling less the need to teach them and admonish them, and more openings to just support them and encourage.
I do not have it all together. I do not know how to parent adult children (is there such a thing?). I try to remember how my mom treated me at this age. It’s so hard to remember a time when she wasn’t just my best friend. I’m learning to be more honest with them. There are things children don’t need to know, things that would harm their sense of security. But with these older ones, I’m starting to be more vulnerable, more open with my faults and my doubts. Maybe if they see me struggling and fighting through it, they will give themselves permission to not be perfect.
I am so grateful for these people in my life.
In theory, your life is in your hands to do with as you please. I read a book recently where the author is talked about making the choice to step away from the life she had been living and seek peace. What do I want to change in my life?
The biggest negative in my life right now is the stress that I feel like I’m living with and under. I don’t know how to let go. I am tense, I have frequent headaches, and I’m not sleeping as well as usual. It is so difficult to get to a place of surrender. I need to see and believe that I do not have to be perfect, I do not have to be everything to everyone around me.
One of the pitfalls of being a single mom is attempting to do everything on your own. I don’t like to ask for help, but I am finding that when I reach out to others, they have so much to give. It’s not just about having people do things for me, which has been necessary at times, but about living life with a community. When I tell my friends the difficulties I’m having right now, I am not just asking for help, I’m sharing my life with them.
After going through a divorce, my world was ripped apart. My husband had been my best friend, and the other people in my life were mostly shared friends and family. After the divorce I lost about 75% of my support system. My mother and brothers stuck with me, but because of the pain and betrayal, I wasn’t very open to relationships with anyone.
What I have learned and am still learning is that having friends is necessary to leading a satisfying and productive life. When we sit down and talk, when I have the chance to bounce my feelings and ideas off of my friends, I not only hear myself more clearly, but get constructive feed back from them. Without them, I would not be where I am now.
I like the idea of being called to something. I listen to and watch a lot of preaching and teaching. I feel called to do something like that, but I’m not sure what. I hate not knowing. I want to do good things, I want to share my faith, share my story, let people see what God has done for me.
That’s why I turned to blogging in the first place. To be able to say what I need to with anonymity. My story is very much like everyone else’s, full of up’s and down’s, pain and joy. But if I tell it, and it helps anyone to see God, and him working, it is worth the time. It is worth being open.
I have been on my own for over three years. There has been some dating, but today, there is no man in my life. It takes some practice, some intentionality to enjoy being alone. I cling to hope that there may be someone to share this life with some day, but that cannot be my focus. How can I be productive, and achieve my goals if my main goal is to find a man? Being alone is difficult, and I have a strong desire to change my situation, but so much of life is difficult. If we spend our time attempting to change what we cannot change, we have wasted our lives.
I gave up dating for Lent. It has been a successful experiment. I have intentionally not looked to see if a man has a ring. I have left the house, knowing that if I run into someone I’m interested in, I have to put them off for a little while. It has been liberating. By intentionally keeping dating out of my head, I’ve had a few very fascinating conversations with nice looking men, that may be single as well. Because I wasn’t worried about impressing them, I said what I was thinking, which is often quite amusing.
I’m learning so many things lately, and most of it I’ve learned before. I don’t know how to keep track of everything I know, the lessons of life and how to live it. I know I’m not the wisest person out there, and I don’t even know how much I don’t know. Despite that, I want to share what I’m learning. Don’t know if it will help anyone, but maybe by putting some of it into words, I’ll solidify it in my own understanding, make it stick a little better in my own mind.
It might all fit in this post, I might remember everything I want to say right now, or this may be a series of posts. I don’t really plan any of this.
First of all, stay humble. It’s funny to me that I even have a problem with this, because in my own mind I’m pretty darn humble. But somewhere along the way I started seeing this as a virtue. I attempt to learn every day, and am learning, but see my increased knowledge as another virtue. God has had to knock me down a few pegs to teach me that none of this is of me. “My” virtue is only of him, not myself. This is a lesson I have been taught before, and may never fully grasp, but hope and pray sticks with me.
My second lesson recently is to stop trying to do it all on my own. As a single mom, or maybe it’s inherent stubbornness, I don’t want to be a charity case. I know I’m strong, but not allowing others to help me is a weakness, and robs them of the ability to be a blessing to me. I actually caught myself at work the other day when a coworker offered me help. I knew I could handle my difficulty on my own, but by allowing her to participate, it eased my work load and brought us closer.
It’s been a long day, and my bed is calling my name, so I’ll end there for now. Hopefully I’ll have some other lessons to pass on soon. God is patient with me, continually showing me what I’m missing.