started and to see where we are now. Not everything has turned out the way I imagined it would back in 2011, but, man. Things really are better than I could have ever planned them out to be. And I guess that's how it usually goes, isn't it?
So, as an update, and for posterity, here's where we are right now, November 29, 2013:
I've changed things up a little. Or, you know. A lot. After a difficult start to the semester--one filled with sleepless nights, lots of nausea, and so many tears--I made the decision to withdraw from law school.
For a long time this was a really tender subject. I felt ashamed, embarrassed, and very defensive. I was so worried that everyone would think that I wasn't "smart enough" or "capable enough" or "good enough" to finish, so, I just kind of hid the information away and avoided the subject altogether. But now, after a few months, I am feeling much more comfortable with my decision. It just wasn't for me. It was a mistake (a very expensive and time consuming one, mind you), but that's it. It was a mistake, or "an experience" as my school's chaplain calls it.
I was good at law school, but it made me anxious. It made me feel bad about myself. And it made me unendingly insecure. I was unhappy with it my first semester, but when I did well in moot court I thought maybe it would work out. But as soon as this semester started, I knew I was wrong. It just wasn't for me.
So, how do you make this kind of serious miscalculation? Well, I think it has a lot to do with being in your early twenties and not knowing what in the world you're doing. In July 2011, knew I loved college and I knew that I wanted to help kids. But, at the time, I didn't want to be "just a teacher." I didn't think I should be "just a teacher." I wanted to be impressive. I wanted people to think that I was smart--that I was having a big impact on the world. And so, the fall of my senior year I decided I wouldn't be "just" a teacher. Instead, I would throw myself full force into the LSATs and law school applications and one day be a children's advocate, because that just sounded better.
But, you know, as it turns out, I do want to be a teacher.
I want to make art, sing songs, and immerse myself in the joys of learning new things.
I do not want my brain to be on a constant rotation between anxiety, fear, anger, and boredom.
I want to be active, run around, create, and dance.
I do not want to sit at a desk for 10 hours a day.
I want to have time for my family--my right now family and my one day family.
I want to be happy.
And, so, it may not sound fancy or impress the people I graduated with, but it is what fits. And to be honest, teaching preschool this semester has felt like being home. Being "Miss Haley" feels right and it fills my heart, and that's all that should really matter.
So, in January, I will officially leave law school behind and start pursuing a masters in PreK-3rd grade education. And I will bake things, and read things for fun, and teach my babies new French words every day, and support my husband.
Oh, and speaking of my husband, he is still rocking his way through his second year of medical school. He has signed up for the STEP exam (a big one), so, he is starting to get geared up for that, and he is sitting right next to me now at our favorite coffee shop...talking about bacteria, etc. He is still taking jiu jitzu when he has time and he is still making me laugh on a daily basis. He is constant, and joyful, and laid back, and he really is my favorite.
So, that's us. That's where we are at the moment. Two years from now...well, who knows. But I'm trying this new thing where I let go a little and stop planning so much. We'll just have to wait and see where life takes us.
As for the blog, we'll have to see with that one, too. But I hope that it sticks around--to collect all of the twists and turns and excitement to come :)
Friday, November 29, 2013
Thursday, November 28, 2013
This year I am so thankful for my family and friends--near and far, Louisiana, Illinois, California, Minnesota, South Carolina, D.C.--I am so blessed to have them. And, of course, I am ever thankful for my husband. His goofiness, love, and support--I can't imagine life without him. He makes each day bright and fun. This year I am also thankful for 26 three and four-year-olds. There are some days when they drive me batty, but I always miss them after a couple of hours and can't wait to hang out with them again. I am thankful for their joy and innocence and, yes, even their wildness. And I am thankful for the journey that brought me to them and to this new chapter.
I hope you have a beautiful Thanksgiving--one filled with family and togetherness, and lots and lots of food :)
Wednesday, November 13, 2013
That afternoon we all napped a lot (because a football game plus a slice of Gerri's amazing chocolate cake pretty much necessitated a couple hours of sleep). And then we topped the night off with the LSU v. Bama game, and, again, it was kind of a bummer. But, that's football for you.
Aside from all of the sports, we spent a whole bunch of time playing with Lovey Lou this weekend. She seems like she has fully adjusted to life with our family, and she is such a happy little thing (and she is so soft! like a bunny!). She loves the sofa, belly rubs, and chasing after her ball. And she loves people (she is a terrible guard dog--every new person is a new friend). But she has her quirks, too. James and I tried to take her to the dog park on Sunday and she was not having it. We didn't even make it to the gate. As soon as we got out of the car she pulled and pulled and pulled to get away from the park, and eventually just rolled on her back. It was pretty pitiful. She had an awesome time meeting her dog cousin, Rollie, on Saturday, but she was very much not interested in making any other pup friends. I think she's just more content hanging with her humans like this:
And can you blame her?
That looks pretty darn cozy.
Monday, November 11, 2013
Sometimes I try to think about 18-year-old James and what he must have been thinking on that surreal and terrifying fall day. Then other times, I try to think about 20-year-old James and what he must have been feeling during a three week stint underway, locked in that green and grey floating box. And then there are other times when I try to think about 22-year-old James and what he must have been doing during his days off on the Big Island. All of it, every single part of it, is so different from anything I have ever experienced. And as hard as I try, I really can't imagine what it must have been like.
Jim's Navy stories are some of his best stories...the people, the boat, the training...lots of color, lots of craziness, lots of grossness. You know. Sailor stuff. Those stories were some of the first things that really attracted me to him three and a half years ago. But even more than those stories, it was his drive, his determination, and his joy for life that made me truly fall for him. He is my favorite veteran. And I am so thankful for him.
Happy Veteran's Day, Jameson. And to all of the other veterans out there--thank you for everything that you have done for our country and our home. We are blessed to have you.
Friday, November 8, 2013
Anyways, we had a lovely time at the party. Our host did such a great job decorating and made a lot of (spooky) treats for us to enjoy (spider deviled eggs?!). We spent the night chatting with a lot of new people and playing many, many rounds of Mafia. Do you remember that game? We used to play it all of the time at summer camp. Well, let me just say, it is still lots of fun! And I got the chance to be the mafia, sheriff, and angel. So, you know. Good stuff.
In other news, this week has been pretty wonderful...lots of babies, lots of Netflix, lots of exercising. Even though I spend 90% of my weeks telling children, "please stop hitting your friends," "lets use our inside voices," and "takethatrockoutofyourmouthwhatareyoudoing," I'm really, really enjoying my job. 3 and 4 year olds, guys. They might be a bit nutty, but they are such awesome little people.
In other, other news, we saw The Counselor with a couple of friends last night and this is going to get rant-y, but that movie is definitely one of my Top 5, all-time, least favorite movies. Unendingly pretentious and intentionally incoherent, about 15 minutes in, I knew I was going to hate it (being talked down to is not one of my favorite things). Yes, I "get" it...greed and sex and the evils of man and the power of choice and "it is supposed to be uncomfortable," etc. And I'm not even, as a rule, opposed to films that don't have a true plot or movies that take themselves too seriously...but this one was so disjointed and so "omg, deep" I just couldn't deal. (and Cameron Diaz with the Ferrari...come. on.) This was one of those times when we should have read the reviews before paying the $10. P.S. Sons of Anarchy does it better, y'all!
So, all of that to say...I hope you have a beautiful weekend!
One filled with good movies :)
and time with family.
Thanks for reading my rambles.
Friday, November 1, 2013
When I got home from work, James was conked out. So, naturally, our date night started with a nice long nap. Post-nap (and post-Sons of Anarchy watching), I asked James how he wanted to spend the night. His response: mini golf. And, of course, I was on board.
Happy weekend, y'all! Hope it is filled with some happy little dates!
Thursday, October 31, 2013
Our only Halloween decoration this year. Another one of Jim's fabulous white board creations.
We have spent the last few days watching some scary-ish movies (Scream, The Nightmare Before Christmas, Event Horizon), and tonight we have been hanging around, munching on candy, waiting for some trick-or-treaters.
Halloween 2010: Jessica and Roger Rabbit
Last year we didn't get a single one, but we have had TWO this time around (granted, only one was in costume...but, you know. win some lose some).
Halloween 2011: Miss Piggy and Kermit the Frog
We aren't dressing up tonight, but we will be dressing up this weekend for a costume party. Can't wait! Until then, please enjoy these silly photos from Halloweens past.
Hope you are having a spooky (and sugar-filled) evening!