Continue to Grow
For the past couple of days I’ve been writing about my journey from theatrical professional to homeschool mom. Today I’m going to talk about what I do for myself as a mom and as a woman to continue growing. Thanks for reading!
When I think about what I do “for myself”, I generally land on some kind of art project or pursuing some kind of knowledge—or both. I love to learn and I love to read about things I’m interested in and pursue them—especially new forms of art. Photography has naturally collided with my life as a mother, so I’m always learning about photography and trying to improve. I’m not nearly as far along on that as I’d like to be, but I know I’ll be able to pursue it further someday. The best thing I’ve done for myself in this regard is my Project 365. I use the website, blog and podcast called “Capture Your 365” to motivate me: http://captureyour365.com/category/blog. It’s essentially a commitment I make to myself to take a photo every single day. I caption them and add them to a folder and, at the end of the year I create a book that tells a story about our year in photos. It’s not only kept me snapping away, but it’s forced me to learn some new photography techniques in order to keep it interesting (so many of our photos are taken in the kitchen, or living room, for instance…sometimes you need to change angles!). But I’ve also taken up painting over the past few years and, sporadically, have enjoyed it a great deal. I don’t have to be good at it to love it!
Since I happen to love research, I actually rather enjoy reading about new homeschool ideas, but I REALLY enjoy learning along with the kids. Every time we read a book about a historical event, for example, I get super-excited about diving in and learning more about that particular time and place in history. There was so much that I didn’t retain from high school and middle school…so much that I missed in the quest to get straight A’s… and now I feel like I’m making up for lost time. I guess if you’re going to live vicariously through your children, this is a healthy way to do it! So I’m inspired by learning and I’m inspired by the art that I make. I find that, for me, incorporating my children into my art keeps me focused on my priorities and combines my greatest passions.
I don’t get a whole lot of time to myself…but I speak up when I feel that I need it and my husband is amazing at giving me some space. My kiddos have also become incredibly adept at playing alone or with one another for stretches of time during the day, so I often get some time to edit my photos, do a little painting project or read a novel. If I had to pick something to do when I have time to myself, it would rarely consist of a taking a bath or going out with girlfriends…I feel best when I’m accomplishing something that I’ve had on my list for a while.
Everyone is so unique…and I feel strongly that you have to find your personality and your needs and go with it—especially as a parent. Something I’ve found that has helped me considerably is the Enneagram. It’s a personality typing system that has helped me to see my strengths and my weaknesses, but it also helps me to work on those weaknesses. It’s been such a great growth device for me and I’ve included the link here if you’d like to check it out for yourself! https://www.enneagraminstitute.com
I’ve loved being included in this blog! What a fun idea! I hope my journey adds something unique to the list of amazing women who have already contributed. Thanks for reading and feel free to contact me with any questions you might have about our path or leave a comment below!