Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Things I am Struggling With

I am struggling with balance.  There are only so many hours in a day and over 12 of them are spent at work or commuting to or from work.  The reason my days are so long is because of the athletic schedules of my kids, so having to stay for 12 hours won't be a requirement for more than 3-4 more years which is when my kids will all have graduated.  It's a lot easier now than it has been in the past when I had 4 kids at home, and I wasn't at the same school as them.  It's relative, though.  I am still pressed for time, even if I am not traveling as many miles. 

I guess it is just that it is the last six weeks of school, a period when times seems paradoxically too short and too long - too short for all the things I want to do with the students and too long until summer.   It's also, fairly reliably, the period of time with the nicest weather and it kills me to be inside.  I know that chances are quite good that as soon as that last song is sung at graduation, it is going to start raining up in Gloomville and it's going to rain all summer.  Or at least those portions where I am not working on my extra summer work.  It's just how it goes.  July has been, in our small microclimate, the rainiest month on average.  I am not just being pessimistic; that's just how it is. 

Gardening did happen this weekend.  I planted kale, collards, turnips, and radish, and weeded around the citrus and olives and in the sweet potatoes.  However, the deep cleaning didn't happen, the making and freezing of breakfast convenience foods didn't happen, and the making and canning of turkey stock from the Easter bones didn't happen, either.  I just can't do everything I set my mind to - everything that seems to be necessary to reach my goals of self-sufficiency and my ideas of a well-run household. 

And, to tell the truth, I am bone-deep tired.  I am not sleeping well because my mind sees fit to tell me what I didn't finish during the day, and I am just tired - 3rd quarter in any school feels like full court press and it is also the time when the scholarship and financial aid and taxes all need to be done.  Those things are very stressful for me - just the absolutely antithetical set of skills which are my strengths.  At this time, I have deep sympathy for learning disabled students who are often asked to do things repeatedly that are antithetical to their strengths and who are frequently in trouble for things which are.  In short, I feel like I am good at nothing for a good long chunk of the year and by the time April rolls around, I am exhausted and frazzled.  No fun, but at least I, who was always really good at school, have a taste of what so many of my students face year in and year out - more, to tell the truth, than when I was a new teacher in the late 80s.  It keeps me compassionate, or at least I hope it does. 

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