“What’s Next?”

My master’s degree took three school years, including two full summers of class every day. Now that it’s over, people keep asking, “what are you going to do now?” The answer to this question is complicated. I want to do nothing, and I want to do everything!

I want to feel relaxed while accomplishing things I wasn’t able to put the time or energy into while attending classes. First on my list includes evenings with my husband. I’m looking forward to sharing more meals, and even reminding him I do know how to cook. Recipes that take time and fresh ingredients are high on my list (salmon and fresh salsas). I can’t wait for these dinners on the deck this summer to turn into evening walks just soaking up our neighborhood before the sun goes down.

My “to-read” list only continues to grow, and I’m craving the morning sunrise from my porch while pouring over pages of text that transport me into the stories.

I’m anxiously awaiting unplanned time with my best friends where we aren’t consumed by other obligations. Rich conversations and plenty of laughter with my favorite people are the opportunities God gives that truly fulfill me.

Professionally, I have goals to revamp some units for my classroom and get a head start on the next yearbook. I want to keep in touch with my classmates from grad school who are some of my best positive teaching resources. I long for time to just brainstorm ways to better reach my students. And I look forward to spending time teaching Religious Education to stretch my comfort zone in the classroom and challenge my faith.

I eagerly await quiet running on the trail in the early morning or late evening. The coolness before or after a summer heat is as refreshing as the milage. I smile thinking about not having a race goal in mind so when I no longer want to run, I walk.

Ultimately, my new goal is not a three-year school commitment. It’s not a four-month marathon commitment. It’s a daily commitment to reflect and be thankful because most simply put, I’m happy and healthy. Isn’t that the ultimate goal?

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