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Books. Where have you been all my life? …

I begin this new post by saying hello. Hello from someone who has lived the last 9 years with books other than the ones I love reading, under my nose. Someone who has spent the last 9 years trying to juggle a marriage, kids, blogging, reading, life in general, with late nights, text books, practicums (which are not paid, by the way), essay writing, case studies, due dates and exams. I have tried to keep this blog alive through it all because it is the one thing that I have consistently done for myself. One thing that I have kept in my life because it brings me life. The readers, the authors, my fellow bloggers, the incredible friendships I have made along the way. They give me so much life, I’m honestly not sure I would have been able to make it through the last 9 years in one piece without them.

Some of you may have noticed my absence on here and social media these last few months. Most of you probably didn’t! ha! But in short, I have been studying for the last 9 years to complete my Bachelor of Education (Primary). I began this journey before I had children. I was able to complete 1.5 years before my husband and I decided to have our first daughter. She was an amazing baby, so I continued to study part time while I was at home with her. When I fell pregnant the second time round with our son, my pregnancy was horrendous. I was sick for the entire 9 months, so my study went on hold. Once I had Dominic, he didn’t sleep and was really clingy. Always wanted to be held, but just by me (of course!). Fast forward 1 year, I had to pick up studying again in fear of losing everything I had already done due to the length I had postponed my degree. So at that point, I was dealing with a 1 year old who woke between 4 – 6 times a night, part time study that I could only do once the kids were in bed, mum duties to a 5 year old and 1 year old, a husband who works shift work so is hardly ever home and part time work for myself because the bills were getting out of control. My life was all these crazy days that just felt like they rolled into one. I honestly had no idea how I was going to manage it all, and pass my units every 12 weeks. Break downs were happening more often and my relationship suffered so much.

Today, I can happily say that through it all, my husband and I have come out the other end. It wasn’t easy at all. In fact, some days I can honestly say that it wasn’t looking good for our marriage. Having people try and understand the mental and physical exhaustion one goes through when having all these things happening in their lives is incredibly difficult to explain. My husband found it hard to see where I was coming from most the time, and that wasn’t his fault. I was just tired. He was tired. And we all needed a long ass holiday to fix everything. My final practicum was a 10 week teaching block. 5 days a week. Unpaid. That was the biggest test. Having to get up at 6am, take the kids to school (or work out on a daily basis who on earth would be taking my kids to school and picking them up every day) getting to prac by 8am, teaching all day, leaving at 4pm. Picking up my kids from their friends’ houses who’d so kindly offered to pick them up for me on the daily. Go home. Do all the usual after school activities… homework, dancing etc. Dinner then bed. But my nights didn’t stop there. After getting all the lunches ready for the next day, cleaning up after dinner, I would sit down at my laptop and plan my lessons for the next day, marking work from that day or assessments. I wouldn’t get to bed until midnight and then I’d be up again at 6am to do it all again (let’s throw in a 3 year old who still wakes 2 times a night), so my time allocated for sleep was always cut short and disrupted.

My final practicum was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. And I can’t forget to mention that my beautiful grandfather passed away right in the middle of it (I’m totally ok though. He was an amazing 91 year old man who I will miss for the rest of my life. But he lived and loved 2 children, 5 grandchildren and 5 great grandchildren and we all have the most wonderful memories with him that we will cherish forever)

So, after 9 of the longest years, 2 kids, soooo many sleepless nights, arguments, and failed mum moments later, I can proudly say that I am a fully qualified primary school teacher who just wants to get back to reading books for the rest of her days.

I apologise for the long post, if you’ve made it this far, thank you. Thank you for your constant support, love and encouraging words over the last few years. I have read and loved every single message. I look forward to getting back into doing what I love the most.

Reading.

Reading and recommending all the books that everyone needs to have in their lives, and reconnecting with all the wonderful people that make up this community. I’ve missed you all dearly.

Maree xx

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