Free To Pivot

I had all but abandoned this blog. Life took a few ups, downs, and sharp turns in the past year. I look back at my previous posts and it is almost hard to picture myself back there, even though it wasn’t that long ago.

I am no longer selling real estate. I don’t have much explanation besides, I did not like it. It was exhausting working hours and hours only to pray and hope we would make it to the closing table. I think there are some people who are built for the tough sales life, then there are people like me who get anxiety and loss of sleep. So I retired my license.
I was looking to reset my priorities. I wanted more time with my kids. They are getting older, and I started seeing the seriousness of focusing on the people they are becoming. That is always important, but I felt a deeper concern and need to focus on raising them instead of focusing on a career.
I took a little assistant job at their school. The pay was basically nothing, but I would be on their schedule. That is what I wanted. To be involved, home for Christmas break and summers. Perfect, so I thought.

I look back now, and I see how it was completely God that allowed me to experience that job, and experience being in their school. This is not to completely bash the public school system, but I would not know what I know if I had not worked there. My eyes were opened to the abuse teachers go through, the anxiety these young kids have, and how nothing is operating how it used to. I was spoken to like a dog by kids I was trying to help, but the administration could do nothing. My daughter was punished for trying, while kids who have done no work were rewarded. I will leave it at that. Details are not necessary because the point is not how awful it was, but rather, God allowed me to see with my own eyes so I could take the step He wanted me to take.
For the past few years, I have been so focused on my career and trying to build something of value, that I ignored my kids when they were having a hard time at school. I told them key principles like “be a good friend, listen to your teacher, be respectful, be kind…”. But I didn’t truly understand their mental and emotional struggles until I was there for myself and saw with my own eyes.

Side note: God knows us so well, better than we know ourselves. He knows I am the type of person who has to experience things for myself to know for a fact it is not the path or the way. Had I not been in my kids’ school and experienced first hand the downfalls of the system, the struggles of my kids, I would not have made the bold choice I recently made.

I quit the assisting job, and I pulled my daughter from public school to be homeschooled. My meeting with the principal went better than expected. I intended to finish out the year, but some things happened, and I felt this pull to not return after Christmas break. I basically gave her a couple days notice before break. I felt awful. I just knew she would be upset with me. I truly believe that because I listened to that “pull”, I was not met with anger, but with favor and grace. The principal smiled at me, told me she completely understood, to do what is best for my kids and my family. She all but said “DO IT!” I was blown away. I finished out the week, ordered my daughter’s books, and got her all set to begin the second semester at home.
It took some prayer and thinking, but I decided to let my two youngest finish out the year at public school. They are young and are both having a good year. My daughter has struggled the most, so I think this will be a very key and important time for just the two of us together. I do plan to homeschool all three next year.

If I were an outsider looking in, I would think I was unstable haha. The total pivots and shifts in my career, my priorities, choices, I look all over the place. Truthfully, I went through a short period of thinking this about myself. I felt embarrassed. I look around and most moms have it together. They are consistent in their choice. They work and keep at it, or they stay home and have no intent to work. I am a trial and error person. However, God’s grace is the most beautiful and overwhelming gift we could ever hope for. He comforted my heart and met me in ways I never expected over this. He gave me a new found confidence in Him rather than what people may think.

Who really cares anyways?

His direction is far more important than what people think. My obedience to His gentle nudges is greatly more rewarding than doing things for the approval of others. We are FREE to try and fail. We are FREE to get up again, seek God’s plan, and completely change directions. How wonderful is that? We are FREE to pivot.

My hope and prayer for this year is grow closer to the Lord and hear His voice and direction more clearly. I want to grow closer with my children, and help them grow closer to the Lord. I want my family to be open to anything God has in store for us. I want us to be content with simple living and being unpopular. And honestly, I want to eventually get back to living in the country and have some chickens and a garden again ;).

Happy 2022! It is a new year, and despite a pandemic, God can do absolutely anything. Be open to change, be open to correction, and be open to new seasons.

🙂

Quarantine Real Talk

January 1st 2020: I remember the hope (to be dramatic), the newness, the potential. Oh the plans we made for the year. The goals, dreams, travels, etc. The possibilities were endless.

March something 2020: stuck. at. home. Worldwide pandemic with stay at home orders. School cancelled.

April 14th, 2020: still at home, like the rest of the world.

I wish I could say that I have taken this time to nail down a new hobby, organize my house, have all of the laundry done, and flawlessly be a Pinterest mom. However, that is not my story.

Bless those precious teachers when they teach my children day in and day out. Bless. Them.

Please know, I have had multiple breakdowns. I’ve cried sitting at my desk while working because I am overwhelmed. I have cried at the table when my kids were stir crazy and wouldn’t just sit down. I cried thinking about how many times I have snapped at my kids because I am stressed. But then….I was tired of thinking about ME and MY complaints.

  • I may have cried sitting at my desk = I still have a job
  • I cried when my kids were hyper = My kids are happy and safe at home
  • I cried feeling like a failure as a mom = I can show an example of how to apologize and show I am human also.
  • I’m stressed because my husband is gone at work and everything is on me = We still have two incomes when many people have zero income in this time.
  • I have piles of laundry and dirty dishes = My family has clothes to wear and food to eat

Changing my perspective changed my attitude. Please don’t misunderstand me, I am sure to have more breakdowns. However, taking a minute to re-evaluate, adjust my heart, and be thankful changes how I react to stress. It is a choice. Definitely does not come naturally, but I would rather choose thankfulness in the midst of chaos than be a complaining ball of stress.

Happy quarantining, folks… we got this.

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Coffee and laundry forever loyal

Here we go!

This feels strange to start this. I’ve had blogs before and deleted them. Usually it would depend on the time of my life, what I thought my content should be, and that would fade. Funny how we grow older and realize who we are and become more confident in that.

So here I am. Almost 30, starting a blog that basically has no limits. I’ve thought about what I want this blog to contain, and I can assure you… there is not one topic. I want this to be a place to share almost anything. But to narrow it down, what can be expected on this site is simple.

It is called Henley Happenings because we are the Henleys! I married a Henley, therefore I am one, and we have three little Henleys. What goes with Henley? Happenings. It is a site of our happenings, life, my side of being a mom, my encouragement to other moms and women, recipes (if I’m feeling fancy in the kitchen), outings, stories…. happenings.

Welcome, and I hope I’m not too boring. 🙂 13679969_1252176801472933_277013525988134873_o