Zillah-Bound, and My Future

Day’s Verse:
“Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.”
Matthew 6:34

This is the last training I’m scheduled to do for the foreseeable future: Thursday and Friday in Zillah. Right now I’m comfortable with that. After last week in the Pomeroy/Dayton region and the prospect of an extremely challenging class in Zillah (more on that in a moment), I’m ready for a break from these trainings.

Zillah’s looking challenging because of the six participants, one tore her ACL last year and can’t pedal a bicycle and another may not even know how to ride a bike. When I spoke to the organizer on Monday, he expressed some surprise at our need for a classroom that we could use for the duration of the training. And, last but not least, all the participants have to leave by 3:00 pm both days. My challenges:

  1. Including and making the training meaningful for participants who cannot ride a bicycle at all.
  2. Adapting to the classroom space available.
  3. Covering all the material in an hour less than allotted while not making it feel rushed and providing time for people to absorb the information.

After I finish the training, I have another interesting challenge: What do I do with myself? The trainings are expected to resume in mid- to late August and go through October. Between now and then I’ll have a number of open months. After the trainings finish, I really have to give some serious consideration to my long-term future.

Do I want to continue teaching bicycle classes? That could go a couple ways: I could resume teaching for Cascade Bicycle Club, which always needs LCIs; or I could try to start my own small business teaching bicycle classes. I’ve thought in the past about focusing on bicycle commute classes for businesses, since larger companies all have commute trip reduction responsibilities. When I think about starting my own small business, I immediately start feeling overwhelmed, but that doesn’t mean I couldn’t do it. It’s a fairly nerve-wracking, high-commitment prospect.

Do I want to stay with nonprofits or go back to the corporate world? I’m enjoying the flexibility I have right now, but that looks an awful lot like uncertainty in a different light. Nonprofits so often depend on unstable funding sources (as I’m coming to understand); also, working for nonprofits always involves a certain amount of ambiguity and multiple hat-wearing. I don’t know if I want to stay in that world. To some extent, I’m ready for a more cut-and-dried “this is your job, now do it” approach taken in most corporate environments.

Do I want to volunteer and bide my time for a few years? Ian’s job can provide for us, although the extra income I bring in will help pay for things like the new roof we’ll be purchasing in the next 5 years. I have my $4,750 AmeriCorps education award, which is good for 5 years from last November; I could go back to school, take a long trip, or who knows what.

All I really know is that I’m not cut out to sit around the house by myself all day. People are meant to use their skills, and not doing that just leads to misery. What that’ll look like for me remains to be seen. In years past, that uncertainty about the future would have unnerved me. Now I’m learning to let Future Katie worry about that stuff while I, Present Katie, focus on living the moments I have right now to their fullest.