When I’m washing dishes or making dinner and the boys are playing outside, I can watch them through the kitchen window. Occasionally they’ll glance up and notice me, but usually they don’t realize I’m there. In that moment, watching my boys playing happily together in worlds of their own imagining, my heart is completely full of happiness. If those moments could stretch on for an eternity, I don’t think I would ever grow tired of them, or lose the joy of them (well, probably I would because I’m human and need sleep, but you get the idea).
Being a mother and a wife has challenged me socially, emotionally, and practically in a myriad of ways; there are so many aspects of relationship and home-making that are utterly unnatural for me that I’ve had to work and grow a lot over the last few years (and I’m not at all saying that there isn’t still quite a bit of room for improvement, either). But if I’m honest with myself, I feel like I’ve gotten intellectually lazy over those years. When I was in school, I was constantly stretching my mind to learn, to remember, to think critically, to analyze – and I just don’t have the same opportunities for that anymore. My mind is hungry. Sometimes it feels like it’s starving, ravenous for new information to devour and assimilate; sometimes it feels like a dull knife, aching to be sharpened.
I’m just not sure where to go from here. I’ve considered a few graduate programs, but there aren’t any that I can do part-time while I work, afford, and really want to invest the requisite amount of time and money into. Hopefully a door will open soon…
There’s an interesting tension at play here. On the one hand, I want to be able to find contentment and joy where I am, and to a large extent I think I have succeeded. On the other hand, I want to use the skills and talents God has given me, instead of letting them idle, and I don’t think I’m doing that right now, which means “where I am” needs to change. I hope I can seek that change wisely, without letting myself become discontent or resentful about the circumstances I’m living in right now.