Patience, Purpose and the PTA

4 years ago

Whiny, self-indulgent, privileged people annoy the crap out of me. Which is probably why I’ve been so filled with self-loathing this last week.

Thanks to lifestyle changes and my husband’s new job, I have the luxury of not worrying too much about my slower than expected freelance workload (though that hasn’t stopped me from worrying). Instead I can focus on volunteering at my daughter’s school, running, going to yoga and writing this blog.

I’ve got a pretty sweet gig at the moment and it feels pretty damn privileged, which made my blue-color blood run cold. To make matters worse, I invented a first-world problem: I got depressed because I have no sense of purpose.

Yes, in a world where people are struggling to stay in their homes, put food on the table and clothe their children, I’m worried about my lack of purpose. By all means, start the pity party now!

If I could punch myself in the face, I would.

But it’s hard to punch yourself, so yesterday I instead gave myself a stern talking to, counted my blessings, reminded myself why I chose to leave a full-time job and told myself to be patient. I told myself things like: work will pickup. You will find your new role in the world. It takes time to settle in. Stop being a spoiled brat.

And then I went to the PTA meeting. Not going to lie, I had nauseating visions of bake sales and helicopter moms. I really didn’t want to go, but I felt obligated since one of the goals in this lifestyle change was to be more involved in my daughter’s life and school.

Much to my surprise, halfway into the meeting, I was psyched. Their communications committee needs help with their newsletter. The outreach committee desperately needs help raising community awareness about the school and planning for the school’s 35th anniversary next year as perhaps the only public French immersion school in the country (Milwaukee French Immersion School).

My mind was spinning with ideas. As the former director of communications for a nonprofit organization (Morris Animal Foundation), my entire job revolved around producing newsletters and raising awareness. Before I left the organization, I spearheaded many of its 65th anniversary efforts. 

My role on the PTA doesn’t have to be running bake sales and being a room mom, both of which I would suck at and not particularly enjoy. I can actually tap into my own skills and talents and be useful. I haven’t been this excited about a project since I started my blog last year.

Ah, a sense of purpose.

To add to my giddiness, this morning I was approached by a potential new client, and my inbox was full of projects from my current client.

I remembered the quote of the week at my yoga studio on Monday. It was something like: “When you stop worrying about who you are, you become who you are meant to be.”

Ah, a little lesson in patience.

I love when the universe talks to me through a whiteboard.

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