Robert and I spent a long time talking last night about the pros and cons of me teaching in the fall.
Some pros are:
1) That it would give me something to do that I enjoy. By being away, I am realizing that I enjoy teaching a lot!
2) It would be a way for me to get out of the house!
3) It would allow Karis to be in preschool. She really wants to go to school!
4) It would give me some more experience as a teacher.
5) I love the school, the teachers, and the administration. It is truly an awesome place.
But, unfortunately, the cons most likely outweigh the pros at this point in time.
1) I would have to put off getting my master's degree. I may not be able to get it at all. I just don't know that I could juggle all of that, realistically.
2) It would be a lot of work, and Robert thinks it's too soon because Levi will only be 6 months old in August, and Ethan will only be 2.
3) If I teach there this coming year, I will want to stay. I don't want to just teach for a year and then leave again. If I stay, we would put the kids in school there because the public school district that they would have to go to is the other direction. Unfortunately, putting the kids in school there is not really going to work out because of the fact that it's part time and on staggered days. With having three kids, all of our schedules will be staggered. If we lived 10 minutes away, it wouldn't be a big deal... but living 40 minutes away, it's just not realistic. If Karis goes to Kinder there, she would be in school T, W, Th afternoons, and if I teach, it will be T, Th or M, W, F mornings (just based on the subjects that I feel confident to teach- English and Math). Once Karis gets into 6th grade, she would be there M, W, F, and the other two would be there T, Th or T, W, Th.
4) Cost for putting the kids in is unrealistic (if it was just one or two it would be doable... but three is NOT). Robert's salary will never change much, so I would eventually have to work full time to put all three in, which doesn't work with the way their schedule would be. Again, it wouldn't be a big deal if we lived close.
5) Robert is worried that I'll eventually regret going back so soon and especially teaching upper elementary because that's all that's available next year. I really enjoy developing curriculum for all ages, but I'm not as passionate about teaching elementary as I was about teaching junior high. He doesn't want me to get a few months into the year and wish that I was staying home. I won't have a choice once I start again.
6) We are really thinking that we are called to be in the public school system... there are many reasons for this, but we're really feeling that public school is where God wants us. We're still praying through this. We might get into it and realize this isn't the case, but for now, this is where we're headed. It's tough for me because I LOVE Faith Academy, but God doesn't always call us to be where we're comfortable. In fact, much of the time, He is against comfort :).
Now... where do we go from here? A few things I do know: 1) I need to do something that I enjoy outside of here for my mental/emotional health, 2) Karis needs some outside interaction, 3) I want to do something that has to do with education.
Robert and I discussed what we can do this coming year to fulfill those needs/desires. One thing that he really thinks is that I definitely need to go ahead and pursue my master's degree. I have wanted to do this for years and I think I can handle one night a week this coming fall. It will help fulfill my desire to be back into education, it will be something that is outside of the home, and it will be something that I enjoy.
The only dilemma is what to do for Karis to have some outside interaction. My only thought is to find play groups or go to the library regularly, or something like that. I think it would be just enough to give her the time with other kids that she craves, but it won't cost me anything (besides the gas to get there). I might start going to MOPS in the fall (at our local church). In fact, they are doing some play dates this summer, every other week. I have many options, so I don't think we'll have a lack of interaction for Karis. It won't be in a school setting, but it'll be good enough for now. She'll be in school soon enough.
I'm still open for whatever God wants... even if that means doing something that doesn't make logical sense :). He does that sometimes! But, this is where we are based on our praying and discussing things (over the course of the past several weeks-month). Robert wants me to do something that I enjoy outside of our home, but he doesn't want me to "bite off more than I can chew." He wants me to be realistic.
I'm so thankful for such a wise husband! And I'm thankful that he is willing to share his opinion with me :). The more I get to know myself, and the closer he and I grow together, the more I see that he knows me very well and usually knows what's best.
One other long term goal/option is to get my master's degree, get the kids in school (at least 2 of the 3), then get Robert back into school. He thought that because he just turned 30 (and because we have 3 kids), that his dreams were just not going to happen. This isn't necessarily the case! We found out several days ago that one of the schools that he used to go to (Lubbock Christian University) now offers his "dream degree": Outdoor Adventure and Resource Management. He is currently the Maintenance Director here (he used to do Rec), and he is good at it, but it's not where his passion is. When we talk about what his passion is, he could go on and on for hours :). I want to give him the opportunity to do what he's passionate about!! My belief is that there is a reason he has the passions that he does. Just like I believe God gave me my passions and desires for His purpose, I believe the same for Robert. I do believe, though, that God has us where we are for a purpose as well. We'll just wait on His timing for the rest!