Friday, February 14, 2014

The New Ordinary

I both love and loathe how busy I have been lately.  It's almost 11 p.m. and I gave up grading papers because I just can't muster the enthusiasm to encourage students when I'm this tired.  And my day started early too. I've also had some insomnia lately, so I'm waiting a bit to get sleepy before I go to bed.

So those are the downsides. I'm tired and I don't have enough hours in the day.  My job is stressful and sometimes makes for a much longer week than normal-bleeding sometimes all the way through my weekend.

The upside is that I'm incredibly happy to be doing what I'm doing right now. I know teaching 4 classes is considered an overload here. I've done more. Part of me is like "pssht, y'all don't know what you're talking about".  Then I have to grade 107 papers three to four times in ten weeks. And I go "Oh, yeah. Hmm."

My work for the Dean of Student Success is also highly interesting.  It involves travel, meetings with the research folks, meetings with the committee I'm working on, writing, meetings with students, writing, research and literature reviews and more meetings.  I really think my office hours, when I meet with students, is my stress relief.

I got to have sushi for the first time in what seems like two years.  I love it.  G does not. I can't bring myself to drag him to a sushi counter where he will have a miserable time.  I invited out a former student (now friend) whose husband also does not like sushi and we had a great meal at Oyama in Ellensburg.  The chef drew pictures on our food and carved a carrot slice into the shape of a bunny for garnish.  He even made us a little appetizer and said it would help with digestion.

The food was delicious!

So if I work pretty hard, I can also take time to connect with my "kind and very understanding husband who knows that I'm a workaholic but I can't help it that I love what I do and overextend myself so he's putting  up with me".    The new mantra is that this only for another 5 weeks.

Mantra: as in "It's only 5 more weeks. It's only 5 more weeks. It's only 5 more weeks. It's only 5 more weeks."

I'm sad and happy for my friend Kim.  She was the first friend I made here in Ellensburg.  She's the manager of the office where I work.  She has literally thrown herself in front of students who try to get in to see people without appointments and she does a great job of managing people, resources and time.  She got a new job on campus and yesterday was her last day.  So I'm happy for her and sad for me. We'll still be friends outside of work- we are making an appointment for early morning coffee on Tuesday mornings- but I'll miss her constancy in my daily routine and her ready smile and our silly chats with Joy, the other amazing lady (counselor, advocate, and case manager) who offices next to me.

For now, this is the new normal. Lots of work with periods of rest and periods of insomnia from stress.  Lately it's been sleepless and I won't lie; I'm tired.  But it will get better.  Five more weeks.

In the meantime, Happy Valentine's Day. I brought chocolate and candy and gifts for students and a few sweet people I know on campus.  This weekend, we're getting away for a little romantic trip.  Not really for Valentine's day, but because we have a 3 day weekend.

Peace out.


  1. Glad you two are going to have a long weekend. It sounds like just what you need - a Breather. Enjoy!

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