Tuesday, May 7, 2013
Graduations & Blessings
I graduated with a bachelor of arts degree in December 2012, but last Friday I walked in the College of Humanities Convocation Ceremony. At first I didn't really see the point in participating, I already had my degree and it just seemed like a silly tradition, but in the end I am grateful that I did go. I have always planned on earning a PhD, my original plan was to go to graduate school immediately after finishing my undergraduate work. However, during my final semester last Fall I was pregnant and that changes everything. I still planned on returning to school during the Fall in 2013, but as I pondered what that would mean (namely Husband and I both going to school, having to do homework while taking care of Squeaker at the same time and continuing to go deeper into debt) and I decided that it would be better for us if I stayed home to take care of Squeaker. Daycare expenses are so high and I am young enough that I could go back to school anytime down the road. In fact, at my graduation ceremony there was a woman standing near where I was sitting and holding a camera. When the PhD candidates were announced and a woman (in her 50s) stood to be hooded the woman sitting near by stood up and cheered yelling, "Go mom! Woo!" She started taking pictures like crazy and after her mom sat back down the woman turned and left, probably to sit with the rest of her family farther away from the graduates. I realized that if I didn't earn my PhD until I was in my 50s then Squeaker would be in her 30s and I would be totally OK with that. School will always be there, but Squeaker is changing everyday and I don't want to miss any of it!
After having Squeaker I found myself feeling even more passionate about staying at home with her than I had when I was just pregnant. Although I love philosophy, campus life, writing and reading scholarly articles, suddenly I felt more than ever before in my life that raising this beautiful human being was my calling. There are some things in my life that I am fairly good at and many things that I am not good at, just like anyone else on earth. I am sometimes a self conscious person who worries about silly little things beyond my control and I even get quite emotionally fragile when I think negative things about myself. Since I have been a mother, on the other hand, I haven't ever felt more confident and sure about what I need to do. I obviously make mistakes and learn the hard way, not everything comes easily, but I have more courage. I am more sure of myself and my abilities as a mother than I am when doing anything else. This career, being a stay at home mom, comes more naturally to me and fits me better than anything else ever has and I am proud to take on the role.
It is amazing how life changes and how our choices change us as we move along the difficult path. There was a time in my life when I didn't think I would want children at all because the world is so harsh and sad, plus having children would just get in the way of my career ambitions. Now I literally can't imagine enjoying my life so fully as it is without Squeaker in it.
Squeaker also had a kind of ceremony this past Sunday, she was blessed by Husband at our church. I grew up in the LDS church and saw many babies be blessed in a similar fashion, but it was simply wonderful to be experiencing it for myself. I was so filled with a loving spiritual bliss that I couldn't help but cry a little as I found a renewed testimony of the gospel I believe in and Heavenly Father's love for all his children. I know (through personal experiences and testimony) that believing in love, the possibility of peace, and upholding virtues over vices in this life is the best chance that Squeaker has for finding happiness. I have found a strong belief in these things and I hope to help her find a belief in them as well. This is my career, my calling, and my life now. I have graduated to a new pursuit and been blessed with motherhood.