I’m Melissa Roy, a ballerina, homeschooling mommy to four. I write regularly about my parenting adventures and live by the motto “Life is never boring when you’re never alone, but I know somewhere out there, there is life Beyond Mommying!”
I am currently a full-time stay at home mom of four: two beautiful daughters and two sweet little boys.
My past lives have included a being a world class ballerina who retired to start teaching dance before returning to school and becoming a childcare expert after which I took the time to travel and see the world.
Of course that is all exaggerated, perhaps the life I would have had if I had had my way! The truth is much more bland, a mix of dance and childcare jobs with some babies thrown in the middle. But still, it is my truth and I’ve loved (nearly) every second of it.
I grew up doing ballet in my hometown of Arvada, Colorado. I got bored in high school and decided to focus on dancing, going on to earn my B.A. in Dance Education from Jacksonville University in Jacksonville, Florida. I, unfortunately, never had a lot of natural balletic ability but found I really enjoyed teaching and was pretty good at it so pursued that side of the dance world. While in college I discovered I also really enjoyed choreographing and perhaps most importantly, I also discovered my husband.
After completing our undergrad degrees we set off across the country to OOOOklahoma where hubby completed his Master’s degree and we both took the best low paying jobs we could get in order to make ends meet. Even with a teaching certificate in Dance I was unable to find myself a full-time dance teaching job so I turned to the only job in education that didn’t require certification: preschool. I began working at Oklahoma State University, Oklahoma City’s Child Development Center (try fitting that on your resume!) where I worked for the two years we lived in Oklahoma. I loved the program more than any other I’ve ever had experience with and with the love and guidance of great co-workers found I also had a knack for working with young children.
I continued taking ballet classes 5 days a week and also taught ballet at a small local dance studio. After another year of failed attempts at getting a full-time dance teaching job I decided to begin my M.Ed. in Early Childhood Education through the University of Missouri, Columbia’s online degree program in order to be able to further my career in the field. The journey to obtaining my degree was a busy one spanning a broken foot; engagement; relocation to Ft. Lauderdale, Florida; wedding; pregnancy; hospitalization for pneumonia; loss of my beloved Nana; and birth of my first daughter (in that order over a span of a year and a half!) during which time I completely lost my footing in the dance world.
I returned to the dance studio when my daughter was 7 weeks old, teaching 6 days a week at 3 different local studios while still doing childcare part time. It was an exhausting year and when my husband got offered the opportunity to relocate to Dublin, Ireland for a few years, I was ready for the change! The process of getting to Dublin was much longer than we had originally anticipated and we decided expanding our family couldn’t wait for his company. So at 14 weeks pregnant with my second daughter we boarded a transatlantic flight with an 18-month old and began our European adventure.
During our time in Dublin we traveled extensively, returning to the states at least twice a year (including for the birth of our 2nd daughter) and visiting a total of 25 different countries, all with our daughters in tow. Our 2 ½ years overseas were some of the best times we had but the day to day became exhausting and overwhelming with two children, no family, no car and a husband that was away from home at least 1-2 weeks a month. So, when the opportunity for a promotion and relocation back to Ft. Lauderdale came our way we took it.
We’ve now been back in Florida for over three years and added two little boys to the crew. After many stressful years in the traditional school system, we undertook homeschooling and have been able to return to our traveling ways.
I’m by no means an expert on parenting or childcare, but I do have a lot of experience and stories to tell so I now balance my days juggling babies, homeschooling and keeping up with Beyond Mommying.