Frustrations and Blessings

*Warning – Christian Spiritual Post Starting Now!*

There are some days that drain every last bit of energy, caring, and hope from my being (or so it seems). Days in which every student is on a crazy attitude bender, my child is exhibiting both the terrible twos of lore AND the clinginess associated with a sick toddler (third round of antibiotics and 4th of cough medicine for my 2 year old…NO FUN!), and no one seems to feel as though I can make my own decisions about anything.

This past week I have had people, NOT TEACHERS, telling me my lesson plans need to be looked over because I’m doing them incorrectly, people trying to take over my lessons or classroom, and well meaning family members telling me everything that is wrong with my parenting style, my daughter, and even my fashion sense (If they remembered what I used to wear 5 years ago, they would applaud my current style!). I have been stressed out, at the end of my tether, and left with no time to breath, let alone write. In short, I’ve been drowning. Oh the pleasures of being a teacher and single mother during the “Holidays.”

But these are also the days that I look back on and Praise God. Even as near by as 3 years ago, I would have either walked out or been so abrasive to these (hopefully) well meaning yet mostly un-helpful and under-educated or un-informed (at least about my classroom and lessons) people that I would have lost my job, had students removed, and probably lost the ability to be a teacher. My reputation would have been ruined because I was physically and mentally exhausted. However, God and The Monkey have helped me change my outlook drastically and I am more patient and less defensive (at least on the outside) than I was then.

It doesn’t stop there, however. You see, when God changes things and shows you what there is to be grateful for even the seemingly worst days can bring little blessings through your sad and frustrated outlook.

Take Friday for instance. I had teachers trying to give me advice that I cannot understand and which doesn’t really have much bearing on what I’m teaching (I’m Writing and Science and the only tech I have is a Smart Board that was just fixed a few days ago…so telling me about a great Apple TV MATH app is no help at all). I had a sick child and grandparents coming that night and I was NOT in a great mood. With all of the progress monitoring and practices for programs my students are not getting enough time in my class and it is now only one week to break…craziness ensues daily. But I bought a copy of my series for the classroom and my students were so sweetly excited that I couldn’t help but smile. Then a student who has been a big whirlwind of trouble since the beginning of school was withdrawn to move back to his home state. Though excited to see his mother soon, this young man was tearing up at leaving us. He hugged me tight and I gave him the new class copy of Dragon on My Neck, which he proudly showed off to every person he saw on the way out the door. The class will never be the same without him and, though they will be a lot quieter and a bit more on task, I know that he has left his mark on us all. He may have been trouble, but he was a blessing as well.

Then yesterday, on Short Story Sunday, as I was spending a lazy morning not going to church because the rainy weather was messing with both of us, I wrote a little whimsical poem about sheep on the bathroom wall…and within a couple hours I had 4 new followers for the blog. It astounds me how that happens. I am humbled and blessed beyond measure to have this outlet for my writings both short and not so short (like today!)

So even though I know that this week will be INSANE and FRUSTRATING and CRAZY…I also know that it will be full of hidden blessings and chances to realize just how amazing the life God has given me is. For the record, the week after this is reserved for naps and long writing sessions!

Have a not-too-manic Monday and a HAPPY Pre-Holiday Week!photo

My life

I am a single mother. I do not receive child support, my child has never met the ‘other side’, and probably will never knowingly meet them. This is not how I imagined things would go. I never thought my fiancé would deny us and beg to have nothing to do with his daughter, but these things happened. I never thought that I would be living in my parent’s house at the age of 28, chasing a toddler and struggling to set up an online persona for my writing and my handmade items store; but this my life. I am blessed in that I have somewhere to be, a family that took us in when I couldn’t support myself, let alone an infant, on the salary I made as a waitress. I don’t know how other women do it with no support at all.

Yes there are days when I worry that my daughter will have problems because she only has one parent. Yes there are times when I wish I had someone to take a turn with at 2am because my toddler is breaking in new teeth. Yes, every day is a struggle, even now when I am ‘used’ to being a single mother living with her parents (can you ever really get used to that??).

However, everything happens for a reason…right? We now live back in the town where I attended high school and parts of college. I have new friends, and some old, that I can turn to, whereas the ‘friends’ I had when I got pregnant have all but turned their backs on me because I’m ‘tied down’ with a baby now. I haven’t been on a date in over two years, probably closer to three, but that isn’t really important in the grand scheme of things. Not when I have my sweet baby to snuggle me while she doesn’t take a nap.

Now maybe you know a little more about me. I hope that any of you who may need an ear, know that you can at least leave a comment for me!

May all of your frustrations lead to great accomplishments, and may you always remember that problems lead to solutions, and pain can lead to hope. Have a Blessed Day!