Anyone who knows me well knows that one of my favorite movies of all time is “You’ve Got Mail”. In fact, it is a movie I know so well that my sister and I quote it to each other via text message whenever one of us is watching it. The witty dialogue is engrained in my vocabulary and involuntarily pops up in my life on a regular basis. And the scene when Kathleen Kelly is closing up her little bookstore for the last time never fails to bring tears to my eyes.
Today I feel a little bit like Kathleen…closing up a chapter in my life that I have loved and moving forward…”marching into the unknown armed with…nothing. (Have a sandwich.)”
Today I taught my last regular SilverSneakers class. I’ll still be a substitute from time to time, but for now I am stepping away from group fitness instruction and, I have to admit, it feels a little weird. I’ve taught the wonderful, amazing, lovely senior citizens in my SilverSneakers class for about 5 years, many of them for the entire time that I taught the class. I’ve seen some of them face illness, severe auto accidents, loss of children or spouses, and the general effects of aging. They’ve given me advice on parenting, celebrated the birth of my son with me, and taught me how to talk to people. I am the photographer that I am today because of my SilverSneakers people and I have loved it more than any other class that I have ever taught!
So then why am I stepping away from teaching? It all comes down to times and seasons. For the past few months I have felt a distinct need to simplify my life. The needs of my family have changed and my own needs have changed. My son will begin preschool in the fall…he has some unique challenges, which leads to attending specialized preschools. My daughters will soon be old enough that hanging out with mom will no longer be the cool thing to do. I need to take advantage of this window of time. So something needed to go. I evaluated my options and faced the truth. Not only can I not do everything, but I don’t have to do everything. I could let something go. And that was it. The hardest and easiest decision, all at once.
Maybe someday I will go back to it. I surely don’t know what the future holds, but if what is to come is anything like what I just left, I look forward to it.