Posts tagged ‘break’

Since I’ve Been Gone

“Woman in Discomfort” courtesy of David Castillo Dominici /

I miss spring break.  And my week of happiness. I really do.  I had thought it didn’t feel different.  I thought this week went by quickly.  And it did.  I was surprised by how quickly this week actually went by.  But the stress has been crazy.  My face was almost completely clear last week, and this week it is destroyed. Make-up free?  Not a chance now.  Sunday evening and Monday morning I was overwhelmed with the mounting anticipation of the week, exhibited through stomach-clenching stress and undulating tremors of fear.

As usual I had worked myself up way more than was necessary, but I couldn’t believe what a difference I’d experienced between last week’s in-the-moment week and the never-ending constant stress and fear of this week.  Am I exaggerating?  Yes.  But there was a noticeable difference.

I did have some great moments this week that helped me appreciate teaching.  An activity that went well.  A bond made with a student.  A compliment from another.  For a while I questioned why I wanted to leave teaching.  And then the weekend hit, and I became obsessed with worry about grading and planning, and that’s when I remembered a big part of why I didn’t want to be a teacher anymore.

I’m scared now.  I don’t know what’s going to happen with me.  With my life.  I thought about music therapy.  Now I’m considering dance/movement therapy, and I’m still interested in different types of healing.  But my doubts plague me.  I know I could be excited about all of this.  I should be excited.  The last thing I need is to be attracting more fear in my life!  But even when I can shut off my own protective, critical voice, I hear concern in the voices of others.  Why would I consider leaving a job when I’m not sure of its replacement? Isn’t this a bad economy?  Don’t I need money?  Education costs money!  How will you get by?

Everything will be fine.  I know it will.  I will not join the panhandlers near the highway (although I’ve imagined discussing it with them).  I will not starve.  I will find a way.  I know that I should appreciate what I have.  I also know that I can’t settle for what I have.  I have settled for years, trying to reason and work through the unpleasantness until the unhappiness consumed and corrupted every piece of me.  I will not fall into that trap again.  Nor do I want to leap from the flame to the blade.  I will be happy.  It’s time to move on.  But where?  And how?

5 Pieces of Happiness

"Young woman walking in meadow" courtesy of adamr/

“Young woman walking in meadow” courtesy of adamr/

I’m on spring break this week (but I still have tutoring), so I thought I would use this brief breather to try to set some habits.  Since my New Year’s resolution is to “be happy”, I’m going to focus on the 5 things that I have determined will most likely make me happy:

1. Health

2. Creative time/me time

3. People

4. Being in the Moment

5. Life Purpose

I plan on posting about my daily successes in those areas for this week —  beginning with posting about today and yesterday tonight — and any other posts I will schedule for afterwards.

On Schedule

"Scheduling A Meeting In Diary" courtesy of Stuart Miles /

“Scheduling A Meeting In Diary” courtesy of Stuart Miles /

Today I finally kept pretty close to my planned schedule for my teaching winter break (still doing some tutoring here and there): writing, ACT prep, Coursera classwork, creativity time, cleaning/schoolwork). I’ve somewhat followed it throughout break — when holiday activities didn’t interfere, but today I’m pretty satisfied with my work.  (This whole schedule thing may sound crazy, but I’ve found that I have to have some structure to my day, or I completely fall apart, getting nothing accomplished and then mercilessly berating myself — and I can be pretty harsh. :-/)

Beginning side note: I can’t believe how quickly I adapted to getting more than enough sleep. My body is right now telling me it’s time for bed, when last night I went to bed around midnight. I’m like: “Hey, it’s only 9:15!” My body is all like: “Um, yeah. Gotta make up for only getting 7 or so hours of sleep last night!”

Didn’t follow my schedule exactly, but this is what happened:

7:05 Hit Snooze Button

7:14 Hit Snooze Button

7:23 Re-set alarm for 7:55

7:55 Laid in bed for a minute, and then crawled out of bed.

8:00-8:30 Phone conference with Cindy

8:30-10:00 Finished book 13 Reasons Why (book club book)

10:00-1:30 Writing/ACT Prep: Math/Argument Class (2 weeks behind, but I’m hanging in there!)

1:30-2:30 Phone conversations & miscellaneous

2:30-4:00 Writing at library

4:20-5:00 Mall Walk

5:00-6:00 Dinner (lentils w/barbeque sauce; spinach, kale, and Gorgonzola salad) /Multiple failed attempts to reprogram the car garage door opener

6:00 Big Bang reruns & struggle with the scanner

7:00 – 8:00 Got scanning done (with A LOT of help from Brian) and successfully uploaded my September teaching picture to Facebook, LinkedIn, and Wyzant. (I’m keeping my same picture for WordPress because it makes me look all glowy and mysterious.)

8:00-10:00 Organized documents from office/ organized papers from work/worked on this blog/watched episodes of Battlestar Galactica

10:00 – Still working on blog /going to bed/beginning Gods Behaving Badly (book club book)

Don’t Wanna Go Home

Does anyone else dread coming home? Not because you’re in an abusive or annoying relationship, or you have kids to take care of. Nothing like that. But because you feel like you don’t know what to start? And by start, I mean, what work to get done first? Do I have a problem? Or is this normal?

My house isn’t clean. I have dishes that are sitting in the sink, laundry that needs to be done, a couch that needs to be de-furred, a bathroom that could be cleaned, and a floor that needs to be vacuumed. But only the laundry is on today’s to do list. (I’m down to my last few pairs of underwear, and they are that kind that I would only wear with form-fitting pants.)

I’m wondering if I should start working on my ELL report cards, my reading tests, or my lesson plans for the week. Or should I jump into the laundry for a bit? Do some job searching? Practice my band and orchestra music? Get in some exercise and fresh air?  Call my uncle for our monthly check-in?  Write? (Clearly you can see which choice I made. . .)

Home is not a sanctuary for me. It’s a place where I get work done. Or where I procrastinate before I get work done. I am sitting here, on the couch, typing this, and feeling positively awful. Sigh.

Well, at least I have had a nice day and a half so far. We had a movie and game night evening and morning with our friends up north. I was away from my house, and I almost didn’t think about my job at all, except when asked a bit about it. My sister asked me to look at some certification documents, but I successfully postponed the activity until next weekend. I needed a break.

How do I break this pattern? How do I organize my time and balance my life so that I don’t feel burdened all of the time? I decided this weekend that I want to be happy from now on. I want to look on the bright side. I want to feel that lightness and euphoria that I only feel at select special moments, or if I’ve had a drink or two. I AM A HAPPY PERSON!  I am a joyful, excited, full-of-energy, pleasant-to-be-around person, I swear!  It’s in there somewhere!

Then, how do I spend the last hours of my weekend before I must buck up and prepare myself to go back to work?

Image: ningmilo /

Tag Cloud

%d bloggers like this: