For Christmas, my husband got me a great gift! He enrolled me in a Spring Semester 6 week course called “Digital Photography for Beginners” at a local NJ community college. I was completely surprised, and I was thrilled! When was the last time I did something completely for myself? When was the last time I stayed out past 8:30pm on a week night?! It was time to get in touch with that side of me that seemed to be a bit buried-the side of me that was more than just a mom.
My passion for photography has grown since I got my DSLR camera, an EOS Canon Rebel T3i, just prior to the birth of my daughter. I’m just an amateur, but I love playing with the various camera settings, learning from online tutorials, and striving to get that perfect picture. My passion for “me time” has grown since the actual birth of my daughter, when I gave up all basic rights to privacy including using the bathroom alone!
Returning to a college campus for a class was surreal. This probably sounds delusional, but I still think of myself as college age (or not that far from it). As I nervously wandered around the campus in search of my classroom, I felt like a freshman again. That is until I looked at the fresh, wrinkle free faces of the young adults bustling through the Student Center. It was obvious. I may have felt like a freshman, but I sure didn’t look like one! Oh well, at least I wasn’t wearing mom jeans. Suddenly, I pictured all of these young, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed photography classmates whipping out various technological devices to take class notes. Would they make fun of my spiral notebook? Would I have someone to sit with? Did I look ok?!
Of course, my worries were irrational. I found my classroom. I wasn’t the oldest student there (not that it mattered). I even found someone to sit next to. As I listened to the instructor and tinkered with my camera, I felt proud of myself. It felt so good to be out, talking with adults, questioning, learning, and connecting with new people.
I think this will be a nice start to a new side of me. I think maybe next time I’ll try something even more outside my comfort zone, like drawing or flower arrangement. Why not? It’s so easy to slip into the mom routine and forget about the other qualities that make me more than just a mom. Here’s to pushing myself and carving out some real time for me.