Life- On My Way Google 20% Project EDT 211 Lynn Swift

Google 20% Project Introduction

This Google 20% Project has been modeled after Google’s policy of allowing employees to spend 20% of their work time on a project of their choice. I have chosen my Google 20% Project topic to be ‘Life- On My Way’. I chose the title because this project will explore my journey from being a wife and mother in an abusive marriage, to reconnecting with my teaching career 20 years later.

I will introduce background about my initial teaching career, my marriage, children, life progressing, my recovery process and especially the past year that has led me to my goal of finally, and healthfully, moving on. Each section will be highlighted with pictures illustrating these milestones in this process.


I once was a teacher...

After Graduating from St. Mary's Notre Dame in 1989, I followed in my Mom's footsteps and became a teacher. I taught for three years in elementary, four years in high school, and 'retired' from junior high when i was about to have my first child. I loved teaching and coaching, and thought I would do this for the rest of my life.

But life sometimes gets in the way...

I became a Mom- the very best part of my life. My true blessings.

So I became a stay-at-home-mom. But something else happened.A terrible thing called abuse.

i became a victim of domestic violence when my children were 6 months, 2 years and three years old. Life turned upside-down, and nothing has been the same since. that was 2001. i was able to get out in 2009, but the abuse and constant harassment did not stop. I was diagnosed with Ptsd in 2012.

But I kept going. I had to for my kids...

They now are 19, 18 & 16

Now one has autism & adhd, another has complex mental health issues, and my oldest is not very close to me presently. this situation with their father has affected us all very deeply. But they are all ok- good students, strong faith in God, doing activities and they all have friends. but between the time of 2010 & 2016, I was pretty close to frozen. I was functioning; volunteering at my kids' schools and getting my kids to where they needed to be, but I was unable to personally progress. frozen- fear of failure, fear of people, fear of everything had taken over me. I could not name why, and i could not fix it.

This all changed in July, 2016.

my daughter started volunteering at an autistic center in Northville, and they said my son with autism could try a program. i started talking to the teachers, and the owner asked me if i wanted to work there. i took a leap of faith and said yes- and life has been changing ever since.

I knew I had to make the leap...

I had talked myself out of teaching. i solidified in my head that it would be too hard to teach all day and come home to my autistic son. little did i know that i was doing this because my self-esteem had been destroyed. i knew that i was an excellent teacher, and that I loved it. what was wrong with me?

Around this time, I found an excellent therapist that specialized in PTSD, Narcissistic Personality Disorder and healing from abuse. This was my gamechanger. I knew I had PTSD, but no therapist before had ever pointedly treated me for it. Now the hard work started, but it truly is changing my life.

I also found the courage to take two classes at U of M Dearborn to renew my teaching license. The classes were excellent, with very inspiring professors. Another step forward- I started substitute teaching at schools i love, and being validated again as an excellent teacher. this made a huge difference.

On my way...

I just finished my classes, and am applying to renew my teaching license. that step is so freeing, and knowing i am taking control of my life is giving me strength. I am feeling healthier from my therapy, which is helping me with my self-confidence in all areas of my life, especially my relationships. i just turned 50, and life is looking much better on this side of the road. i am very thankful to god for all of my blessings, and also for his help getting me through the hard times. i know i will be a much better mom now also, as i work on inner peace and healing. i was always told this, but never believed it but it is true...

Things do get better.

My greatest blessings.


Created with images by pixel2013 - "stone tower zen balance"

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