Know Thyself

Today was the first day of school for my younger 4.  Emily began high school last week.  I cried.  There have been tears each August since I walked Emily two blocks down from my house to Zion Lutheran Preschool.

I plan on being really happy by Monday.

Then I will probably cry though the month of May until they finally release my babies from that work camp and I won’t have to pack a lunch, fight over homework, or turn in another form.

My emotions could win the ping pong championship.

My entire life is a long series of contradictions.

In May I attended a home school graduation in which the parents all wrote a letter to their graduates.  One mom read “Your education has not been an accident, for we have planned on this since your birth.”  I went home and wept.  And even though I’m ending a three year streak as a home schooler , it wasn’t really about that.  It was about the KNOWING.  She had a plan for 18 years and followed it through.  I long to have that comfort of a decision made and the need to never look back and reevaluate.  But that’s not how I roll.

I simply wasn’t designed like that.  I don’t have a grass is greener on the other side issue.  I have a need to live life as an adventure issue.  I love the unknown.  To try many things but only master a few.  A friend of mine was training to become a yoga instructor because she tried yoga, loved it, then simply had to discover everything about it.  Um, I tried yoga.  Loved it.  All 8 times.  Check that box.

People are so good at making decisions.  I can in the moment, but the thought of deciding on something for the rest of my life is overwhelming.  Even for the next ten years.  That is stifling.

How many kids do you think you’ll have?  Well, 5 today.

How long are you planning on breast feeding?  At least until he goes to bed tonight.

Are you going to live in Tinley Park forever?  Oh praise Jesus I hope not.  Suffocating to simply live in only one place forever.

Are you sending your kids to Christian or public high school?  I’m just trying not to change my mind at the semester break.

Do you think you would ever buy a second home?  Then I would have to vacation in the same place every year.  I don’t want to miss a spot on this earth.

About two months prior to my wedding there was some freaking out on my part.  Jon took me for a walk and said, “Don’t marry me forever.  Just give me 50 years and we’ll make it the best adventure possible.  At 78 you are free to go with no questions asked.”  That’s a man that can speak my language.

I don’t want to be defined either.  I’m so leery of putting labels on myself.  I hardly eat meat and went months without doing so, but I can’t call myself a vegetarian because tomato season will come along and a piece of bacon will fall on top of my BLT.  What’s a girl gonna do about that?

And then sometimes I love being defined.  Am I a runner?  Well sure…… if there’s a rabid dog chasing me.

Am I a teacher?  Yes.  No longer in a classroom, but my knowledge and desire from that part of my life remains.

I know me.  Without even understanding what this year – the first one in 14 where all my kids are in school – will bring.  Who will I become?  What will I do?  I have no freaking idea.  And that is really exciting.  Craving the new even makes the permanent things in my life so much more thrilling.  The things I know will remain constant: my love for Jesus, my marriage, and being a mom, become passages of growth.  I refuse to allow even those to remain stagnant, for that is where the boredom sets in.  I am growing and changing in all.

Sometimes I wish I could tell you my life’s path and what it will look like.  Jon could engrave my tombstone today.  A small part of me thinks that there is comfort in that.  But to know myself means to realize that the stress of such a commitment overwhelms me.

Today I am a writer.  Obviously.  I just posted this blog.

Tomorrow is yet to be defined.