Friday, August 06, 2010

Flashback Friday: When I Grow Up

What did you want to be when you grew up? Why did you want to be that, and did you do it? Did you consistently plan to be whatever it was, or did you change your mind often? Did you do anything like volunteering or interning to give you a taste of your future occupation/role? Were you as happy/satisfied with what you became as you thought you would be? What surprised you? Would you choose it again? Do you still want to be something else - either in addition to or instead of?
When I was a little girl, I wanted to be a teacher when I grew up. Then I wanted to be a nurse. I fluctuated between those two occupations all of my growing-up years. After my mother died when I was 16, I'd seen enough of hospitals and was beginning to grow squeamish about nursing, so I swung all the way back to wanting to be a teacher and stayed there. I wanted to teach Home Economics by the time I graduated high school, with a minor in English. I chose Home Ec because I love all things home and marriage and children, and I wanted to teach young ladies to prepare themselves to be godly wives and mothers. English was my second choice because I just love English.  I know. I'm weird.


When time for college arrived, I didn't have the money, so I decided to wait a year and save my money. Then I started dating Wes, and within that year, I was engaged. My dad questioned me about marrying instead of going to college, reminding me that rarely do people finish their education after they're married. Bills mount up, babies come along, and dreams get shuffled to the back burner. I glibly stated that I was willing to give up that education because I was in love and wanted to be a wife! I am not sorry I married Wes, but I have regretted not at least starting my college education when I had the chance.

Underneath all that desire to be a teacher was a stronger desire to be a wife and mother. In that respect, I have not been disappointed with my life at all. I have a wonderful husband, and our children . . . how can I describe how I feel about our children? I have this deep down satisfied feeling when I think of them. They are my heart, and I so look forward to their futures to see how God will use them. I'm not even dreading the empty nest as much as I thought I would, because my children leaving home means we have entered a new phase of life, and I'm excited to see what's around the next corner. Remind me I said that when we leave our baby and only girl at college next year! ;)

I'm now 45 years old and have been married almost 26 years. I've homeschooled for 14 years and have one year to go, so I have been teaching, to an extent. And I am dying to go to college! LOL In years past, that wouldn't have been possible because of money constraints and location. We still have some money constraints, but not those of raising three children, and with quality online classes, the location is not a problem either. So I'm hoping that within the next year I can finally start taking those classes I've put off for over 25 years. I'm still interested in courses that will help me teach girls and women to be godly ladies, according to Titus 2. I've been looking into Baptist College of America, which has a Biblical Studies degree that includes courses on biblical womanhood, counseling, and leadership that I find very interesting, and I'd love to throw in a few teaching courses too. I keep wondering if I'm too old for it to matter now. Retirement is only 20 years away if we retire at the traditional age. Can I justify the expense of college classes just because it's what I want to do?

Wes doesn't have a problem with it. We'll see what the Lord has in store!

10 comments:

  1. I think it is wonderful that you want to take some classes! You are never to old to learn! My grandmother was in her late 60's when she went back to classes to get her GED. She had never finished high school and wanted to finally get her diploma. What a happy day that was for her. They even had a graduation for those who passed and she got to wear a cap and gown!

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  2. Hi Susan, this is most interesting! My answer is also yes, you are not too old to go to collge. Would the Baptist College of America involve you guys moving to Indiana or could you stay in B.C?

    I taught business courses at a community college in Texas. Our two-year school worked with other schools to help students get academics and prepararatory transferable classes for the four-year schools. It was a big help finanically for the students to be able to live at home while obtaining a part of their college education.

    Best of wishes. I can pray with you.
    ..

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  3. Kay ~~ Your grandmother is an inspiration to me! I absolutely love stories of people who go back to school and earn a diploma or degree - I just feel a little insecure about doing it myself! LOL

    Jim ~~ I would definitely take correspondence classes through BCA. My husband and I are planning a furlough next year, which will require traveling all over the US/Canada, and I'm thinking that might be a good time to begin studying - lots of time riding and not as much homemaking and church responsibilities during that year. We'll see! Thanks for your prayers!

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  4. Absolutely not too late, I don't think! With the economy and SS (Social Security, not Sunday School! LOL) the way it is, who knows if anyone will ever get to retire 15-20 years from now!

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  5. You do have a point there, Linda! LOL I keep thinking how quickly the past 20 years have gone and wondering if the next 20 will be even faster.

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  6. I love that you're so excited to "go" to college! I'm not really one of those "liberated" you-can-have-it-all gals, but I do love stories of women who do the stay-at-home-mom thing and explore other dreams in other seasons.

    My parents are approaching empty-nesthood (my littlest sister is a junior in high school and no longer homeschooled) and my dad is urging my mom to go back to school to complete her degree. I think he has selfish motives, though--he'd really like to go to China. He figures he can do his line of work (computers) from anywhere, and all she'd need is a bachelor's degree to be able to teach English somewhere in China. They could get in some decent years of missions work before the grandbabies start pouring in (and they take up my dad's lifelong ambition of traveling by RV from one child's doorstep to another visiting grandkids and terrorizing the grandkids' parents :-P)

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  7. Hi Susan,
    We are never too old to learn. I think you would make a wonderful teacher of women. You have taught me many things and inspired me in my christian walk.
    Praying for you.
    Elizabeth

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  8. bekahcubed ~ My husband has always said he'd like to see me pursue college after the children are finished with high school, but they were our first priority while they were growing up. It's like a whole new world opens up! I wish your parents well in their around-the-corner! ;)

    Elizabeth ~~ Your words are very encouraging - thank you so much!

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  9. Your plans for a college major were much the same as mine -- I majored in Home Ec. Ed. for the same reasons and minored in English because I loved it. Sometimes I wish I had majored in English since I have an interest in writing now, but I think I really needed the Home Ec. course for myself as well.

    I agree it is absolutely not too late to take classes. They would benefit long past "retirement."

    I am feeling much the same way about the empty nest. The hardest part is just missing those special people who have been a priority in your life for 20-25 years, but it does open up a world of possibility.

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  10. Barbara ~~ I thought I'd read once that you majored in Home Ec Ed, and was pleasantly surprised when I read it. I thought for sure your major had been English! ;) I wasn't far off. Thanks for the "vote" of confidence. As for the empty nest, I hear so many mothers who feel that life is over once their children leave home, but so far, the Lord has been gracious to keep life exciting, showing me all kinds of possibilities ahead!

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Thanks for taking a minute to read my ramblings and leave a comment! I appreciate it!

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