I feel I have lived several lives, written an abundance of chapters and I have played many characters or roles over my lifetime. No, I do not have multiple personalities. Let me explain.
My first life: I grew up on a 263 acre farm in northern Wisconsin and I attended a one room school built and named after my grandfather. My family and cousins made up most of the population of Rockland–try to find that on a map. Life on the farm was wonderful for a grade school student who only knew the one room school. However, as I grew older, milking cows every day, the back breaking summer work in the fields, and those scary green tornado skies helped me realize that I wanted more. I did not have a vision of what I wanted, but I knew I wanted more.
Life as a college student in Mad Town–Madison was much more eye opening than the rural community could provide. Remember streaking? I loved to dance and one night I danced the night away with a very handsome man from Egypt. I knew the minute I laid eyes on him that I would marry him. (It took him a little longer.) But we were married about 10 months after we met. Of course with couples from two different cultures there is a bit of adjustment–the most important being are we living in your country or mine? After only one interview, he began working as a professor at UCLA. My country. Now our country.
Married Life, staying home taking care of three children while my husband traveled all over the world was….trying. We did, however, travel as a family and lived in Europe and Egypt for a year . We had a wonderful time, but I can’t give blood because I was there during the Mad Cow crisis. We all survived the toddler years, it was the teenage years that almost did us in.
Life at home is great, but if you do not use your mind, it starts to atrophy. I wanted a job in which I could do it all. I wanted to think, meet interesting people and have lots of time for my kids. Teaching! Now, when I was in college and someone would have suggested that I should go into teaching, I would have used the vernacular of the time and I would have quickly squelched that idea. Teaching was perfect–I worked when the kids were in school and I stayed home over the summer months. If you need to know my most perfect job–it was being mom. My most difficult job was being mom and then principal–but that is a another lifetime.
Life in the work a day world gives more character to our lives and gives us more fodder for both funny and sorrowful stories. Working for over 17 years as an administrator in the Los Angeles Unified School District, was a fantastic job. This is a job in which you give and give and give and solve and solve and solve. I loved it. My husband did not like the long hours both at work and at home, but it rejuvenated me daily. Working with the future of our nation and having the responsibility to assure that they will be productive individuals and great citizens is a HUGE responsibility. Some days it got a little overwhelming, but I always loved it.
Now I am starting a new life. I am retired. I retired because my job required that I give 200 % daily and I just couldn’t anymore. I needed to pass the baton to the next one.
I have always loved writing and now, I have another “job” that I really love.