Intentionality

intentional

We’ve been trying for about a year now and there’s no Baby Hunt to show for it. It’s been an incredibly busy year so I haven’t had a lot of time to really dwell on it, and I know that in the grand scheme of things, the timing will work out flawlessly…but still…a year.

But for whatever reason, on Sunday night it hit me. And it hit me hard.

I was hurt and I was sad, but I’ve been there before. What really surprised me was the bitterness and the anger that I suddenly felt about it. THAT was new.

“It’s a really good thing I haven’t set myself up to be around adorable children for my professional life or that would make this REALLY difficult,” I complained to Dean.

In college, I remember starting into the downhill slope of my undergrad suddenly feeling like I had painted my way into the preschool corner with no escape and feeling incredibly claustrophobic. All growing up I had imagined myself surrounded by books and literary theme and figurative language. Instead, I had arrived at the corner of laminator sheets and velcro. I knew I loved kids and working with kids, but I really longed to be engaged in a really nerdy discussion on plot devices. I remember complaining to my roommates that my dream job would involve both preschool and high school, but that was a long shot.

UNTIL IT WASN’T.

I was blessed beyond measure to find that dream job at a Montessori school: primary in the morning (students ages 3-6) and then high school English in the afternoon. I felt like both sides of my brain were activated and happy. I loved the kids in both classrooms equally, and the actions of one age group would balance out the actions of the other. It was never boring telling people what my job was and seeing their reaction.

“Wow that’s both ends of the spectrum.”

“That’s a huge difference!”

“Do you have time to mentally make a switch before you go in the other room?”

Honestly, it was a dream.

The Littles provided no shortage of hugs, laughs, and silliness. But they also brought with them so many more bodily fluids, germs, and physical wear and tear. The Teens provided other opportunities: discussions on complicated intangible topics like economic inequalities, social injustices, and what this new political climate was bringing. But they also brought hormones, attitudes, and cell phones. The classrooms balanced each other out and it was a true joy.

Everyone says that spending time with children is the best kind of birth control. For me, it had the reverse effect: if I could feel so much love for these children that weren’t mine, what would happen when that tiny human was a blend of myself and the man I love most in the world?

But regardless–not even a twinkle in my eye and Baby Hunt has seemingly already started to display some of my less favorable traits—being consistently late and fiercely stubborn.

In my [limited] experience, the act of trying for a baby really factors a lot into your future planning. “What happens to XYZ if we get pregnant?” “What about ABC?” “Should we stay in this 1 bedroom apartment for another year?” etc. There’s a lot of external variables that I want to control but given my total lack of control of whether my uterus wants to cooperate or not, it’s nigh impossible.

I’m ready to be done with that attitude. I was a very strong advocate for the “don’t put your life on hold for marriage!” notion while dating and getting my education. Now for my own mental sanity, I need to have the same “don’t put your life on hold for baby” attitude because there’s no guarantees in this timeline.

Work has been the focal point of my life the last year but some recent transitions and changes has given me a little bit of downtime to step back, reflect, and re-evaluate on some things. Most specifically, I’m able to devote more time to accomplishing goals–or at least making meaningful progress towards them.

I’m a notorious Netflix binger and, while I’ve loved the ability to queue up my favorite Parks and Rec episode (though really–who can choose a favorite?), I haven’t been as productive as I want to be.

I want to be more well-read. I’m a book nerd, but I don’t feel like I’m an incredibly well-read book nerd. There are so many of the ‘classics’ that I have yet to read through, and I’m always a sucker for a good YA read.

I’ve wanted to be a writer since…ever. I found some poster I made back in second grade and it asked me about my goals for the school year, and I wrote down that I was going to have a book published by the end of the year. 8 year old Sydney was nothing if not confident and while the timeline may have been…extended…I feel like I owe it to myself to see what could come of actually devoting time and effort to that.

Healthwise there’s definitely a lot of progress that can be made, and a lot of progress that could in fact lead us to that end goal of Baby Hunt. Along the same line, I’d like to be a much better cook and actually be prepared to cook 5 nights a week rather than my typical “Oh…right…food… mmm pasta again?” kind of attitude.

But all of these things that I want to improve on kind of boils down to one work: intentional.

Intentionality can be defined as “the fact of being deliberate or purposive”. And really, that’s how I want to live.

There’s the cliche saying about “Fail to plan and plan to fail”, and I’m kind of sick and tired of failing at all of these different goals.

So I guess there’s really 3 reasons for this blog: 1) hold me accountable, 2) share an honest account of life for others trying to also be intentional, and 3) connect with others also trying for the same things.

Maybe “intentional living” is a little bit too hippie and granola for what I’m trying to communicate here. I’m just a girl trying to fight the urge to Netflix my life away.

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6 comments

  1. Have you read The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People? I don’t usually recommend a self-help {they usually strike me as quite cheesy}, but I’m even getting my mom to read it. My brother is also reading it {an educated chap working on his Masters in aeronautics}. The author offers some REALLY great tips to help us manage our time and meet our own goals — and figure out what our goals are. The book is considered a classic. I don’t mean to suggest a book can center a person, except that I do. I’m a lit student. Books are gold. 🙂

    Like

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