Today’s Finish the Sentence Friday prompt is:

A typical day in my life looks like…

I could go a lot of directions with that one.

At first I thought I’d give you a window into how crappy interesting it is getting my girls and myself ready to leave the house in the morning. Then I realized I’ve already talked about that a lot- like when I wrote about how disorganized I am used to be in the mornings, and how I can’t put my makeup on without my toddler climbing on me.

Plus, I think you get a pretty clear view of my daily life when I share things like this:

 

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So I decided I’d talk about my job instead. You know, my real job. My day job. The only I job I actually get paid for. Some of you know that I am a music therapist and early childhood educator. I have a great schedule- I teach a few classes each morning, and one afternoon a week I teach a music therapy group. Here’s the thing: I actually love my job. I am going to include something I wrote a few months ago about what I get out of going to work. This essay is about a classroom of toddlers I work with at a Montessori preschool. Not every day of work is quite so serene and awesome, but this is a glimpse of what my job does for me.

The Circle

It is no secret that mornings are not my favorite. The untidiness of the rush to get out the door leaves me feeling irritable nearly every weekday. On Wednesdays, however, I am given the rare opportunity to purge myself of this prickly mood.

After dropping off my daughters at school and childcare, I arrive at the Toddler House at Cornerstone Montessori, a picturesque log cabin that houses ten children under the age of three. It is time for our weekly music class.

As soon as I enter the building, I am greeted with a chorus of sweet voices calling, “Hi Miss Stephanie!” In that moment, it doesn’t matter how little sleep I got the night before, or how frantic our morning has been. I forget all about the spilled milk and the hectic scramble the moment I sit down in the Circle.

The instant my body meets the floor, I find that I feel mysteriously rooted to the ground, and my spine seems to unravel itself, straightening higher as the rest of me relaxes. I look around the room at the toddlers, their eyes a tapestry of blues and browns, and it doesn’t matter that just five minutes ago I was counting down the hours until I would return home to tackle my seemingly insurmountable to-do list.

It is impossible not to be fully present with these small people.

When they begin to sing, “Hello, Stephanie,” the symphony of their tiny voices, filled with such zest, brings a smile to my face every single time. They shake their instruments so ingenuously, and each pair of eyes searches to meet mine.

I do not feel fully connected until I have had the opportunity to make eye contact with each child. Have you taken the time to really look into the eyes of a toddler lately? If you have, you may notice what a striking experience it is; they are able to gaze so deeply into your eyes, for much longer than adults find comfortable. I savor this uncommon encounter, as I feel it gives me a chance to truly connect with each child. It seems like an endless moment, where adult and child can join together in an energetic exchange.

For half an hour, I feel both peaceful and invigorated. After my music class with the toddlers, I feel renewed, like a layer of sluggishness and negativity has been peeled away. Their joy and affection has latched onto me, and I realize I have just spent thirty minutes completely focused on them, without the usual background clutter of my thoughts.

It is my job to teach music to these children- I get paid to come and work with them. And yet, it feels like a gift to spend this time with them each week, enjoying my space in the Circle immersed in authentic interaction with pure little beings.

It is both a gift and an invitation- an invitation to spend the rest of my day as present and mentally uncluttered as I was in the Circle.

 

You can find more photos on my website, Music With Miss Stephanie!

You can find more photos on my website, Music With Miss Stephanie!

So there you have it- a little snapshot of what I get to do at my day job. As coincidence would have it, I finished building a new website for my music classes this week! As usual, I have the unbelievably talented and patient Julie DeNeen of Fabulous Blogging to thank for it. She set me up and helped design my new site, Music With Miss Stephanie. If you have any interest in learning more about what I do, I’d love to invite you to drop by my new website!

OK, bloggers who are linking up- do your thing!

Your Finish the Sentence Friday Hosts:

Me!

Janine from Janine’s Confessions of a Mommyaholic

Kate from Can I Get Another Bottle of Whine?

Dawn from Dawn’s Disaster

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Finish the Sentence Friday




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