As I look around my house right now, it would be easy to focus on the half-unpacked boxes and general clutter that is left over from the move. But that’s not what really matters. Yes, I’m enough of a neat freak to want it all put away (now!), but have mellowed enough to understand life’s real priorities: peace and happy family members.
Tonight is the first full evening of summer, I think. I’m very glad for the hill and trees that block the summer evening heat after about 5 p.m., as it makes for a very temperate and peaceful living space. The cat has chosen some early favorite window spots, and particularly likes the wide window sills of this graceful old farmhouse. She can ward off any would-be avian, feline, and canine intruders from said window sills, but she mostly naps in the sun.
It is quiet. My husband is finishing dinner preparation, and the girls are quietly reading or playing games. At least I hope so…they’re past the age age where “too quiet” is a worry. I’ve been working on quiet projects that have resided on my summer to-do list for school. Each of us is absorbed, basking in the peace and safety of our little home.
It is in this lazy summery goodness that I contemplated a coworker’s suggestion that I should try for an ambitious and prestigious job change at my school. It would mean working 8-5 (conservatively) again and having only certain times allotted for vacation. Am I qualified? Yes. Do I want to go back to the 8-5 lifestyle?
That is the question, isn’t it.
It would be more money, but what would I lose? I have found that I enjoy my work so much more, now that I can choose my working hours (to a large extent) and have summers to work if I choose, rest if I want, and play with the girls whenever possible. In that realization — plus the fact that I am a teacher, which I would have to sacrifice for this other position — my answer was clear:
This peace, this lazy, don’t-have-to-rush, don’t experience the “wish it were Friday” feeling very often — this is worth more than money. Funny how peace clarifies priorities.