Thursday, August 7, 2008

"For Such a Time As This" - Esther 4:14

If ever my blog could be an outlet, today is the day. I have a confession to make. I got a job. I'm not talking about being a mother and a wife and all that goes with it "job". I'm talking about actually cutting a paycheck "job". I can't believe it! I haven't worked outside my home in over 30 years.

In the past, I've thought about working when things would get tight financially, but we always seemed to work things out. Now, in my old age, I had really put it out of my mind. Me in the workforce? OH, NO.....NO......NO.....NO....NO!!! People think about retiring at my age. And yet, here I sit, hired to substitute teach. I won't go into all the details of our finances, but suffice it to say, with rising gas prices and more, and in spite of us tightening our belts; I have been pushed into joining the ranks of the employed.

I felt like it was the right thing to do as soon as it crossed my mind. It almost seemed natural and I confidently moved forward to apply, but I've grumbled about it. As I put my resume together, ordered transcripts, and asked for letters of recommendation; the preparation of my application became a time of apprehension. Before actually submitting my paperwork, I wondered if it would really happen. I kept looking for a sign to do differently. I kept looking at our budget trying to see what I could change to make things better, but still, it seemed right to move forward. The truth is, I'm just so surprised.

During the past weeks, while waiting for my interview, I would labor throughout my house and periodically cry out with this angst in my voice, "I need a job!" My family would giggle at my comic relief, but the reality was I was scared and worried at my coming employment.

No doubt there was fear in just applying for a job. My children helped me put my resume together with their suggestions and up-to-date guidance, but still the thought of actually going to work and punching a time card.....Why it just seemed foreign to me.

I very much value my time and to think I was going to give it up to the almighty dollar. "Ugh!......They really couldn't begin to pay me what I was worth," I thought. I've heard how many feel an affirmation of their significance when the money starts rolling in, but the thought has had the opposite effect on me. "I am of infinite worth" and chagrin at the notion of a paycheck. It somehow seemed to devalue me and yet with our situation I'm happy to add the cash to our income.

I have happily incorporated the stay-at-home state of mind. I have faithfully lived and enjoyed my position. Even though it has not always been easy, it has always been worth it. The wife-mother thing has enveloped me and even though I know many women "work" and still have marriage and motherhood encompass their lives; I felt like it was the end of an era and I didn't want it to end.

I imagine my feelings are akin with those who go through the empty nest syndrome, but then that's something I'll probably never experience because my nest is so full. I'll fly the coop before all of my bunch leaves home. Even so, empty nest people are still parents, but their circumstances have changed - no children at home. I too, in spite of working, am still a mother and a wife. Nevertheless, here I am, sad to see my stay-at-home situation ruffled.

As I weighed my plight, I complained on the phone to my son, Billy. His comment was, "Get over it Esther, 'for such a time as this' (Esther 4:14)!" I thought about that and realized he was right. I am very much prepared to take on this roll at 55. I have my bachelors degree (BYU/1975). I took the CBEST test 14 years ago. I have volunteered in my children's classrooms for the last 25 years and in doing so have gleaned beneficial knowledge observing educators in action. I also have some added talents to bring to the table with music and art from earlier learning experiences in my life, and 20 years of service with children in Primary has been invaluable, plus I'm a MOM.

I can do this and it is a miracle to see how it has all come together with such relative ease. I have truly been blessed, for all this learning has come through my everyday living. What's great about substitute teaching is that I can still stay home when I need to, when I want to, and happily I will. Wish me luck!

Official Substitute Teacher

"As Latter-day Saint mothers blessed with a
testimony of our Father’s great plan of happiness,
we must never lose sight of the fact that our
efforts and time spent in rearing our families
in the safe refuge of gospel-centered homes
are our most lasting legacy of all."

Camille Curtis Anderson,
"The Fruit of Her Hands", Ensign, September 1996

1 comment:

  1. Oh, never mind my question as to whether or not you took the job. I should have read further ahead before asking.