I’m going to have a really hard time describing the last 3 months, but I’ll try.
I had the awesome chance to work as an adjunct teacher for Anat&Phys 264 and 265 Labs. It really was, well, awesome. I had so much fun being in back in the education setting, but this time on the other side! I also had so much fun getting to know myself again, by getting to know others. I think a lot about the times in my life when I was the most social (junior high through my single college years) and wonder if I’m still able to relate to people socially, more than just “How old is your son?” and “How far along are you?” Not that those conversations bother me, or I feel like I’m above them; I enjoy small simple interactions with people. But I just wondered if I was still fun to other people. That sounds really arrogant and cocky; like I think I was always the life of the party back in the day or something. But I remember feeling like I fit in almost anywhere, and I enjoyed that feeling because, yes, it made me feel important and liked. More than that, though, I think I just really enjoyed getting to know different people and laughing and having fun with them. Life gets so routine, especially with school, that I’ve wondered for a long time if that past, fun Tanya was still around somewhere. I felt like Logan was just getting the hum-drum, boring, same-today-as-yesterday Tanya when he would come home from school. I play and have fun with Mac at home, but it’s different with kids. SO, this chance to teach was also a chance for me to see what I’m like with other people anymore. And I didn’t realize it until the very end of the semester when I asked my students to provide anonymous feedback through an online survey of the things I could improve as an instructor, but also the things they felt I did well. Holy cow, it was such a sweet and humbling opportunity for me to get to read their responses. They were all SO kind and thoughtful in their feedback of what I did well. I was SO grateful and happy to read things like “You made me want to come to class,” “You were fun and energetic,” “You were passionate about the material,” “I loved your spiritual thoughts at the end of each class,” “You were always happy and loved coming to class.” It probably doesn’t sound like much to anyone else, but to me, in searching for some evidence of my former self, it really means just about the whole world. I didn’t know I came across that way to people at this point in my life. I thought I had become dull and flavorless to others because I am mostly isolated from adulthood (which I’m not complaining about, at all. I could be more social with other adults and do stuff like go to movies or whatever, but I choose not to because I’d rather be home. But that doesn’t mean I don’t like people, or conversations, or whatever. I really still love those things. I’m just a home body when push comes to shove, I guess. haha). So that was one huge blessing of the semester.
Secondly, it was a awesome to have something forcing me to study things other than Pinterest or other mindless pastimes. It was incredibly rewarding to spend even a few minutes between other jobs of the day studying and preparing lessons.
It was also a great semester for Logan, though a stressful one. We will never be free of the stress in that regard, but Logan was extremely blessed to do well in his classes, while actually increasing his time spent at home above other semesters. His efforts both academic and at home were rewarded and compensated by the other so many times, and I am so grateful for that. Mac lights every time Logan walks through the door, so it’s a major bonus for him and Logan both that Logan has been home so much more.
And, not to gloss over the “small things,” I had so many small prayers answered over the past few weeks. I lost wallets, keys, etc. and was able to find them every single time after a simple prayer. Those were the daily reminders that Heavenly Father is watching, listening, loving, providing.
The blessings have been, as they say, TNTC (too numerous to count). I’m not trying to broadcast these things to brag or say, “Look at us, everything’s going our way!” because I know there will be harder times to come. Probably soon. It’s actually with a bit of nervousness that I think about all of these good things because I can’t help but wonder when the bad will make its appearance. But I’m trying to use this time to strengthen my testimony against the inevitable storms in life. Thinking about how many suffer so greatly and yet still endure and are faithful has always been so hard for me to imagine, but also an example I try to look to when I feel discouraged and worried.
I am grateful for the love of Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. I’m grateful for Christmastime to remember them more.