That's exactly what I need right now. More energy. More verve. More purpose. I feel adrift and definitely lacking in motivation. While I believe staying at home with my kids is a very important job, one that I alone can do better than anyone else, I still wish I could make more of an impact, more of a difference in the world. I wish I had more to do some days than just laundry, cooking and cleaning along with frequent games of Candyland.
So, I read this article with interest. Yes, I do need to add more zest to my life. I need to pursue those dreams that I have always held close. I need to make time for my interests, the things that get me totally energized and excited.
But here's the problem that these kinds of articles never really address: what if you don't entirely know what your dreams are? Or, what if the things you would most like to pursue are completely unreasonable for this season in your life?
One suggestion I have read is that you go back to childhood and think about the dreams you had then.
That has not proven to be very useful; my biggest dream was to score the role of Little Orphan Annie on Broadway. Never mind the fact that I couldn't act or sing to save my life. I memorized every lyric of every song on my cassette tape and acted out each scene with my sister and friend. Alas, I have never been called upon to sing, "It's a Hard Knock Life" or "Tomorrow" for any audiences, on or off-Broadway. And I doubt this is likely to happen any time soon, seeing as I am waaaaay beyond pre-teenhood.
Other more recent dreams are more likely pipe dreams; they are completely unattainable right now. I am very interested in Occupational Therapy and working with kids with Sensory Processing Disorder and autism, but the nearest school with an OT program is 3 hours away. I just don't see how that could be an option right now.
And I really, really miss teaching, but though I scour the Internet, I have not found any part-time openings at any nearby community colleges, and unfortunately, Bil has forbidden me from applying at the many correctional centers in the area. Why he thinks teaching at a jail is any more dangerous than in the Chicago inner-city high school I taught at is beyond me. The year before I started, the principal and another teacher's cars were shot in a gang battle. At least the jail has armed guards.
And as for hobbies, I feel like I need something new. I love to read, but that doesn't really make a difference in the world. And volunteering is limited, seeing as I still have two kids at home. I am able to take them on my Meals on Wheels route once a month, but it would be pretty impractical for them to accompany me were I to volunteer as a literacy tutor, for example.
So, what should I do? What do YOU do? What sorts of passions are you pursuing? Dreams you are making time for? Any advice for a clueless stay-at-home mom? I could sure use it.