How a Mommy Capstone Project was born…
Photo Credit – Susan Peterson
A Mommy Capstone Project was born as I saw these milestones heading my way.
- My eldest graduated from high school before heading off to college
- The youngest finished middle school and eagerly left me for 6 weeks of camp.
- My husband left for 7 weeks of training in his new career as a commercial airline pilot. He was a money manager for 30 years working from home for the last decade.
- Our rising senior earned his driver’s license and started his first job. He is also focusing on his dream – to be a professional video game player (DOTA). Luckily, he’s still planning on college.
- After 14 years, I no longer have a child attending our local public school.
- Both of my parents were suddenly very frail.
“Enjoy this. These are the best days of your life.”
Flashing back, I grew up in Colorado ski racing. During evening practice we skied the singles lift line. The two-person ski lift was slow, affording great opportunities for conversations with strangers. “Enjoy this. These are the best days of your life,” working-aged men kept telling me. Many felt life’s responsibilities trapped them in their jobs. I found it sad. I resolved not to peak young, enjoy each phase of my life, and continue to embrace adventure.
Learn from the examples around you
In their post-kid years my parents furthered life-long interests. My dad fly fished, wood-worked and remarried while my mom became a Master Naturalist. In contrast, my Grandfather’s life passion was the company he built. I worked for him one summer long after he’d retired. He’d still go into the office, sit in his CEO suite and take a nap. They each lived the lives they wanted. My path will be my own, in part because I’m more extroverted.
Milestones lead to my mommy capstone project
As the kid-focused phase of my life started to wind down, I thought about what I wanted next. We were visiting colleges and discussing with friends what mattered in education. I keep hearing about the value of a senior capstone project to integrate the last few years of learning. Why should the young have all the fun? I decided to do a mommy capstone project and STEMshoots was born.
In today’s world we don’t need to be as trapped as those men felt on the long-ago ski lifts. We have more freedom to create side projects that interest us and explore. It is up to each of us to make that a blessing. These are the best days of our lives. Thanks for joining me on the adventure!
Photo credit goes to the wonderful Susan Peterson.