As we enter another holiday season, I’m reminded of the reality that the anticipation of the celebrations and the initial enthusiasm for the traditions can sometimes be derailed by the nuance and contradictions of the season. Excitement can be deflated by stress and unrealistic expectations. The busyness of the holidays can distract from the joy of the season. While navigating this year’s festivities , I took the opportunity to reflect on a past post, “The Little Things”, and to revisit the question of “What is saving your life right now?”
As we mark our third blogiversary of The Unexpected Ever Afters, I’m reminded of our goal and mission for this blog: to establish connections, to share stories of everyday life, to support and encourage one another, to remind that we are not alone in our thoughts, anxieties, hopes, and dream; that together, we can tear down isolating boundaries and build connections. In a way, our mission really is about friendship.
On my “smash the glass days,” the reminder to create “space” seemed to have an opposite effect: instead of the stress escaping, the space seemed to make room for my anxiety with a reminder that “the world is a terrible place.”
The parallel between my attachment to my possessions and my obsession to constantly be productive went much deeper than emotional spirals. I realized I was allowing both to define my worth as a person.
Although the ongoing changes of the past few months have created a season of upheaval for my family, there is something about this transition to Kindergarten that feels so final, even more permanent than a change in address or employment. It is something that we cannot turn back from. The school years have begun.
Ultimately, I guess there’s never really a convenient time to start something new. Procrastination will likely always be a temptation in every life season, and there will always be some inconvenience that seems to delight in delaying the pursuit of a goal. However, as I navigated the procrastination cycle during my family’s most recent move, and as the waiting continued to stretch into its fourth month, I hit a point in the cycle where I realized I couldn’t put my life on hold anymore.
Even through the difficult days, I know that meeting students where they were at, caring for them as they were, encouraging them to be themselves, all of it mattered. It is the students I will miss the most.
Significant change, even good change, is hard. Sometimes it is enough to just get through it.
That even in the midst of endings there is still the hope and excitement that accompanies beginnings. At times the changes have felt a lot like leaving a portion of my heart, with the memories attached, to specific buildings, schools, jobs. But, isn’t that part of life? That we leave a little footprint behind on all of the places we go. And yet, there always seems to be enough left to begin again.
I decided to go way back for my final summer throwback piece, to December 2019. I almost laughed out loud as I reread my idealized vision for achieving complete balance, and then had to pause as I realized I still cling to the notion that at some point in my life I will achieve perfect …