I’m sure I’m not the only one who has seen Michele’s post and Sandy’s post about moving on from blogging. Saying goodbye. Making changes. I love both of those women, and am so glad that I will be able to stay in touch with them through Facebook. Coincidentally, their posts came at a time when I was trying to figure out what to do with my own little place in the book blogging world. My life has undergone so many changes in the past two years, and the biggest is coming on April 1st.
After 18 years as a stay-at-home, and sometimes work-at-home, mom, I am re-entering the work force. This is a huge big deal, in spite of the fact that this is a job I am completely comfortable with and that is only twelve hours a week away from the house. But to me, this signals an enormous sea change in our family’s home life. I have absolutely loved being a stay-at-home mom. Don’t get me wrong – there were days when I wanted to duct tape the kids to the wall, or shuttle them off to school so I could sit on the couch and read. No matter what choice you make for your family, even if you are certain it is the best choice for you personally, there are times of doubt and questioning. But there have also been sweet, sweet days: watching that spark of amazement in each child’s eyes as they sounded out their first words; cuddling up on the couch with piles of picture books; exploring science in the most messy ways possible; my one-year-old playing with math manipulatives while I teach his older sister about numbers. As the kids have gotten older, the scenes have changed. The picture books have become novels (hours and hours of reading aloud – my favorite memory of all!); the science experiments have gotten more sophisticated; the math has gotten harder (argh – algebra and geometry!); the conversations have become deeper and more meaningful. I wouldn’t trade a single minute of it for the extra money that would have been available had I worked outside the home.
But huge changes are on our horizon. Natalie will graduate in June – with both her high school diploma and an AAS Degree in General Business! She will be starting a Pharmacy Technician program the following spring. Noah will be entering Running Start in the fall, God willing. I will be down to only two boys to school; and can easily work our schedule around a twelve-hour work week. I am blessed that the perfect job was dropped right into my lap. Our church secretary is retiring after twenty years. Twenty years! I have been filling in for her occasionally since last summer, and began training in earnest the past month or two. I could not mention this in public however, until the church board approved me as secretary – and more importantly, as treasurer. I will work Tuesday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. Our new pastor is firmly established now, and I know that he will be easy and fun to work with. And so our homeschool schedule will be turned topsy-turvy, with the kids doing their independent work in the morning, and us doing our joint work in the afternoons. The boys will also be learning more housework skills – a fact that they are thoroughly thrilled about, I can assure you.
As I am looking forward to this new season, I am realizing that I need to let go of some things in order to keep myself from being overwhelmed. I know that many of you work full time and are involved parents, and so are probably rolling your eyes a bit at the idea of me being anxious about working twelve hours a week – but I know myself, and change has never been my strong suit. As I have looked at the things I spend my time doing, I have discovered the things that I am unwilling to let go of – and also the things that I can say goodbye to. Blogging is one of the latter. I have been toying with changing things up anyway: I stopped accepting review copies; came up with a new title; had Kevin start working on a design. But as time goes on, I have found that I’m not excited about it. It really is time to just let go.
I started blogging here at Books and Movies six years ago, in April of 2009. I have so loved my time in the book blogging community, and the friendships I have gained. Thank you to all of you who have enhanced my life in so many ways: the reading recommendations, the encouragement through health issues, the prayers and concern for Natalie during her Crohn’s summer. I am blessed to have shared this part of my life with you. I pray that you will all be blessed in the coming years. See you on Facebook! (If we are not already friends, feel free to friend me: Carrie Shannon Kitzmiller.)