Monday, April 17, 2017

Adulting Month Four

Hello lovelies, thank you for coming back to keep up with my blog posts and not giving up on me. Yes, I haven't blogged in over a month, but I think I have a pretty good(not so good) reason why.  

First, let's begin by rewinding to my last and first adulting update. If you didn't read it, then check it out here. I had navigated my first month of adulting, shared a personal anecdote of how I was feeling a little lost, and was hopeful for what month two would have in store for me.  Well since then, have been two and a half months filled with adulting. These past three months have been a complete rollercoaster for me. 

Month Two (February)
Things that I thought would happen in month two: 
"I'll be searching for open teaching positions to apply for, updating my digital portfolio, continuing my fitness journey, celebrating my twenty third birthday, taking a weekend trip, and watching my little brother being his college lacrosse career." 
Looking back, all of those things I thought would happen did occur. These were what I thought would be the highlights of month two, but they ended up being the small things I experienced.

Breast cancer took on a new meaning for my family...
  During the first week of February, my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer. My family realized in an instant that life as we knew it was about to change, but we just weren't quite sure how. The rest of the month was spent figuring out what the best course of treatment(s) would be for her, what her options were, and what our roles as supporters would be. For me it seemed like a month filled with anxiety and fear of the unknown. 

I started working...
Despite what was going on with my mom, life still had to go on. I started working again at my part time job. It was nice to be back with my wonderful co-workers in such a peaceful place to work. I also began substitute teaching. I was initially nervous to enter buildings and classrooms that I knew close to nothing about. However, the classrooms I was in during February were fabulous. I enjoyed being able to pick and choose the days I wanted to work or have off without any repercussions. I learned a lot about different teachers' methods of organization, classroom management, routines and procedures, and tricks for writing substitute plans. I was excited to add more ideas to my imaginary bag of teaching tricks. I also loved the short five to twenty minute commutes I had in comparison to my student teaching commute (65 minutes plus). 

I got an interview...
My job search continued, I ended up going through an interview process with a semi-local district. I had applied to the position in early January, but I figured nothing would come of it. During February, I endured three rounds of interviews, which included teaching a demo lesson to an actual class of students. This process was exciting for me since it was my first set of teaching interviews. I prepped a little for them, but I went into each interview with an optimistic attitude that I had nothing to lose and everything to gain whether it was a job or just interviewing experience. At the end of the month, I still had no idea if I would be hired for the position or not. 

A weekend getaway happened...
My fun for month two was a weekend away with Todd. This year we decided to skip the gifts and go away to celebrate our birthdays. We spent two days and one night in D.C. It was a fun trip filled with lots of walking, delicious food, navigating public transportation, several museums, some sight seeing and of course a little bit of shopping. More details on our trip to come in the future.

Lessons learned during month two: 
Perspective is everything
Mammograms save lives

Month Three (March)
March Madness is usually all my family talks about during March, but this year it was rarely brought up outside of the reminder to fill out our individual brackets for the annual family pool. Our pool has no bets involved just a year of bragging rights.

Mom's journey with breast cancer continued...
On March 1st, my mom finalized her treatment plan. Her surgery was scheduled for March 17th. The first two weeks of the month were filled with more doctor appointments and preparations for her to be out of commission for awhile. I helped her shop for items she would need after surgery and prep some food that we could freeze for future meals. March 17th came, and she endured a six hour surgery. Her surgery went beautifully! A few days later she came home from the hospital and her road to recovery began. Her spirits were high considering everything that had happened. Less than a week after her surgery, we found out that they had successfully removed all of her cancer (insert happy tears here). The month didn't end as she had hoped. Complications from surgery forced her to return back to the hospital. The second half of the month my dad and I took over all house responsibilities (cooking, cleaning, taking care of the dogs, taking care of my mom, grocery shopping, etc.). I didn't realize how much my mom actually did for us until she wasn't able to do these things anymore.

My interview process concluded...
The first day of the month, I found out that I advanced to the fourth round of interviews for the teaching position. This fourth and final round was with two assistant superintendents and a middle school vice principal. It was probably my favorite interview of the process- very conversational and allowed me to share who I truly am. My interview was on a Thursday morning, and by Thursday afternoon I found out I was hired for the position- a Long-Term Substitute for 7th grade math. I was so excited to accept the position. I found out that I would be taking over for a teacher who would be out on maternity in mid April. For the rest of the month, I served as the middle school's building substitute. I  went to the school five days a week and filled in where they needed me. 

March ended with a fun weekend...
The last weekend in March was definitely one I will forever remember. My best friend got engaged to her college sweetheart. They moved to the mid-west in early August, so I don't get to see them much anymore. However, they came back to their college alma mater (just a few hours from where I live) for the weekend, so I was able to surprise them to help celebrate their engagement. I am so excited to help them plan their wedding. Not many of my friends have gotten engaged/married yet, so this was definitely the realization that we're all growing up and the adult world is oh so real. I spent the second half of the weekend visiting my brother at his college. My parents plus Todd drove up and I met them there. We went to his lacrosse game, enjoyed some of the best brick oven pizza, and ended the weekend with Sunday brunch before returning back home. 

Lessons learned during month three:
The power of positivity is real.
Everything happens for a reason.
You don't realize how much moms do around the house until they stop doing everything. 
My family is lucky to be surrounded by wonderful friends/family. 

Month Four (April)
Here we are half way through my fourth month of adulting. Life as I knew it still isn't the same. My mom is still recovering from her surgery, so I still have a lot of responsibilities to tend to at home. I'm definitely learning how to balance adult responsibilities with fun. I'd like to think that I'm mastering adulting much better than I did back in January.  The first few weeks of the month I continued to be the building substitute for the middle school I will spend the rest of the school year in. Last week, I had off for Spring Break. I spent a few days working at my part time job, went to my brother's lacrosse game, switched out my winter clothes for my spring wardrobe, and enjoyed time with my family. 

Tomorrow I begin my first big girl job. While it is temporary, I am excited to begin the career I have been working so hard to achieve for the past five years. I feel blessed to have this opportunity so soon after graduating. I know the next two months will be filled with personal growth as well as challenges, but I am optimistic for what the future holds. 

It's hard to believe that there are only two weeks left until May. We are closer to being half way through 2017 than we are to the beginning of the year. I'm hoping to hop back onto the fitness train. With everything going on with my mom, I haven't been taking the time I need to take care of myself. My goal is three workouts a week right now, which should be realistic to conquer. I'm also striving to get back to blogging regularly. I know posting five days a week is just not going to happen, so I've decided to start posting two days a week- Mondays and Thursdays. I'm moving more towards quality of quantity in all aspects of my life. 

 Before concluding this post, I just wanted to say a quick thank you. Thank you for coming back to read my blog posts after my month-long hiatus. Blogging is something that I love, and YOU, my readers, keep me motivated to continue posting. An even bigger thank you to everyone who has helped my family the past few months. Life certainly hasn't been easy for us, but your words of encouragement, home cooked meals, cards, and overwhelming support have made it easier for us. 

Thanks for reading. Have a fabulous Monday!