At the age of 40, I am going back to school to get my MBA. Yes, indeed. As if motherhood, marriage and a full-time job (with lots of travel) were not enough, I am now a student again.
Why, you might ask? I have asked myself the same question many times. And I don’t have a solid answer for that. Perhaps there are so many reasons that I just don’t feel like I need to pick a single one. But here are a few of them: 1) career advancement; 2) set a good example for my kids; 3) I love learning new things; 4) it’s free (my employer is paying for it!); 5) I love learning how other people tick.
It is rather difficult fitting classes in to my life, which could be the understatement of the year for me. My first class was beastly – a great class but it took a chunk of energy out of me and I had to dig deep just to get through it. Attending classes and studying means I am missing out on a lot at home, too. Not just big stuff, like ceremonies and sporting events, but also important stuff like hanging out with my husband and kids, and other stuff I love to do, like tending the garden and mowing the lawn.
I don’t really know many people who have that elusive “balance” figured out, but it sure has become a lot more difficult for me. All of the things that are important to me – family, exercise, yoga, friends, reading and learning for fun – have suddenly become something to schedule in, instead of just letting them happen organically.
Will all of this be worth it in the long run? I have to believe it will. I prayed and meditated a lot on this decision before I made the leap, and I am following my heart. Truly, this is a leap of faith.
Over the past several years, I have learned that my body and heart have a way of telling me when something is wrong. After several weeks of minor injuries to my body, all related to overdoing it physically, I figured it’s time to reassess and retune. So I went to see the sports medicine physician and I’ll be doing some physical therapy and have no doubt I’ll be right as rain in no time. My hope is that this work will help me to correct whatever it is I’ve been doing wrong with my body!
Then over the past several days, it’s become clear that there is also something amiss in my soul, which I can tell because my heart is hurting (in an emotional sense, anyway – nothing physically wrong with my heart!). I think this will be more difficult to pinpoint and fix. Since a quick trip to the doctor can’t help me with this, I plan on praying, meditating, and listening a lot. I’m not always very good at listening, so I have to be careful to listen with smart ears and a quiet mind.
Hurting is not very enjoyable, but it is very human.
I have a new job at a new place in a new city. My family has not yet moved to town to be with me, and many (okay, most) things I do every single day are still unfamiliar to me. Before we made this move, I told my husband I was going to look at each day as an adventure, and just ride the waves as they come.
Being a creature of routine, this was a giant leap of Faith for me (yes, Faith with a capital “F”). I made the move even though I did not know how I was going to get through it, feeling lonely and out of place every day. Before long, though, I realized if I just took each new task one piece at a time and made a bit of progress on it every day, that I’d be making noticeable progress before long.
By jove, it’s working! Big pieces of lots of tasks and projects started falling into place this week, which is actually a lot sooner than I expected. Not only has my Faith led me down good paths, but my strategy is paying off in big dividends.
I do think this is going to be a key piece of living fully to be 100 years old: looking at each new day as an adventure, tackling huge projects bit by bit, and truly enjoying the ride. Now, if only I can remember this when things get tough…