“i hate this week, and i just want it to be over.”
that’s what i said this morning to the bff, who in his magnificent, non-fixer way just hugged me. he didn’t tell me “hey. idiot. it’s thursday. it IS almost over.” he didn’t say “my good grief, woman, what is it about thursdays with you?”
he just hugged me. then he made me laugh. by that time, i had decided to make today a good day.
so as i am biting the head off of animals (in cracker form, of course…the last was a camel), i thought i’d blog about what’s been going on with me.
in really vague terms.
first, to update you on the student situation, things are better. i have begun to realize that a) not all of the populations that i teach are the same. i need to adapt, and realizing that has eliminated a lot of my frustration. i’ll still be expecting a lot…but i think if i begin to think of student population a as more like student population c than student population b (a, b, and c all being institutions where i currently teach), i am suddenly much more able to deal.
also, i laid the compassionate smackdown on the class that was bothering me most and called out the sleeping students in the other class. of course, big giant turdhead sleeping student then gave me major attitude after class, wrapped in fake respect, so that frosted my cookies but i believe in karma and so i believe that his freshman butt will have some kind of major comeuppance soon. and that warms the cold cockles of my shriveled, cynical heart.
i have been feeling pretty lame, physically and in many ways. the megalameness stemmed from something that i can’t/won’t talk about here. nothing bad. nothing that involved anyone else. i just felt like an idiot. i should have known better. i should have listened to my head instead of my girl emotions. i should have been able to push past my preoccupation and gotten things done.
couldawouldashoulda never got anyone anywhere, but there you go. i really felt stupid.
but at this point i sort of just shrug and call it experience. i don’t really know what else to do. i suppose i might be vindicated–maybe i’m not as stupid as i think–but maybe not. and if not? experience.
experienceexperienceexperience. all things are for our profit and learning.
but this feeling stupid and lame has really put a megaseriouscrimp in my multitasking, work-the-to-do-list mentality. i am behind, and…well, i don’t like being behind.
(it contributes to the feeling megalame.)
in what is a serious pile of crap that might be tinged with a silver lining, the student ticket office essentially called me a liarface when i tried to go pick up the tickets that we purchased from another season ticket holder. even though they have let me not only pick up tickets with those same IDs (obviously not mine, or else what would be the reason for purchasing them from someone else?) for TWO WEEKS STRAIGHT but i’ve also upgraded one of those tickets using the same id.
ohhailackofconsistentenforcement aka it’s the first SEC game and blah.
apparently i have to get someone who actually has season tickets in their name to pick up my tickets with theirs. guess what? it’s the first sec game so everyone already did oh hello grrr.
so instead of spending 4 hours in the swamp on saturday afternoon, i will be spending 4 hours in front of my tv. i’ll be wearing blue, like urban asked, and i may even create a gameday meal that is all blue and orange related foods. this may be beneficial because i may be able to get some work done. this may be beneficial because i will not have to deal with thundering hordes of drunk people. this may be beneficial because i will not get sunburned/dehydrated/nauseous at said game.
this is not beneficial because the bff was really excited. he’s never been to an sec game and, let’s be real–this the best one on our home schedule. i’m hoping that being able to take him to the fsu game will make up for it. prince that he is, he says that it doesn’t matter. i know that it does, but there’s really nothing that i can do about it.
except possibly make him hot wings. he might love me lots for that and be grateful to be home rather than paying $4 for some small gatorades.
me and my lion snack can’t wait for this week to be over. not that i want a new one to come–oh no, i’d like to hit pause on sunday–but because the next one is going to be much better than this one.
i just don’t know how it couldn’t be.
at moments, the degree to which i am grateful for my life overwhelms me, in wave upon wave of memory and realization of how many dreams have come true.
some nights, when i have a bad dream usually relating to something bad happening to the bff, i roll over and squeeze him, over and over, as if to try to convince myself that nothing will ever happen. the depth of how much i love and depend on him is most clear to me then.
in some ways, marriage has really surprised me. i have been surprised by how comfortable i am being my whole self in my marriage, being unafraid of who i am in every way. it don’t feel flawless, perfect, or like i’ve achieved all that i want to be. some days, as i face them, frighten me with their intensity and the responsibility that comes with them. the future still remains murky and unclear to me. we live lease term to lease term, week to week, while planning for eternity. it’s a strange place to be.
but the things that i thought that i would be worried about or uncomfortable about are not even a concern. what i thought would make me feel exposed makes me feel secure. what i thought would frighten me makes me strong.
the only walls in our home are the ones that surround our love.
that realization, i think, fills me with the greatest joy.
…i will let you know that when you have accomplished about as much as i guess you can on a particular level in guitar hero as a solo guitarist, you play a gig with sting, ozzy, and travis barker from blink 182. when you only somewhat survive the final metallica song, apparently you all jump off of the skyscraper in times square that you were playing on (literally…we were on the roof).
then you fly through the sky in a wooden viking boat being pulled by griffins, still with sting, ozzy, and travis, playing some song that you’ve never heard as the credits roll. but then they give you ANOTHER gig…so i really have no idea if my guitar alter ego isabella is dead, playing gigs in some mythological heaven, or if successfully playing a gig with the prince of darkness is so transcendent that the whole griffin thing was a whacked out vision/trip.
discovering and pondering this at 11pm as the bff told me i beat the game = a friday well-spent.
well, that combined with getting all the laundry done and not having to make dinner because it was leftover night and grading all of the papers for my UPX class.
in other news, i’m not at the gator game because the bff is working until 2. it’s currently raining in the swamp.
never been so happy to be home, in my gator shirt and cutoffs with my orange and blue apron (i was cleaning!), trying to get work done.
not a good morning for me. one of those mornings where i found myself nearly to tears because i couldn’t find something to wear, putting something on that seemed like it would work only to realize that it didn’t AT. ALL., being snappier than usual even in jest and then quick to feel bad, failing to make lunches and feeling really silly as my adorable bff, who was later than me, made me lunch because otherwise i wouldn’t eat (no real time today to buy something and also…i just don’t want to). color me sheepish and feeling ridiculously small, which led to a little bit of crying and him hugging me tight and telling me that he believes in me and that i can do it all.
i’m a lucky girl, but it’s not been a great morning.
so when i read this at lovely brookem‘s place, i decided it was just what i needed to do to get my mind off of my not-large-at-all-in-the-grand-scheme-of-things concerns. feel free to take it on yourself. i think it’s a good, thought-provoking one.
- It’s not fall in Boston (or your city of origin) until the Gators begin to play.
- Kelly Preston’s character in the movie For Love of the Game expresses her need to escape NYC because “Summer’s almost over, and I feel like I missed it.” What do you need to do in the waning days of summer for it to feel complete? Smell sunscreen on me again. Spend time in the sun. Do something frivolous and childlike, whether it’s riding a carousel at a theme park or constructing a sandcastle at the beach. I need to feel utterly weightless from the cares of the world…and when I do, I feel like summer.
- The person I know is wrong for me but about whom I frequently think after a break-up is …..I’m kind of with brookem, who has been deliriously happy for so long with her ManFriend that angsty thoughts of past loves don’t interrupt her much at all. I will say that I still think of the VYVIO (very young, very immature one) sometimes, though, wondering where he’s at and how he’s doing. Lately, it’s been thinking about how very clearly that relationship led me to the eternal one I’ve got, and how grateful I am for it. And how I will never be friends with VYVIO again. And how that’s good.
- The US Tennis Open, one of four Grand Slam events in that sport, is currently in the quarterfinal round. If you could only attend one major sporting event what would it be? No question. The college football bowl game in which the Gators are playing. It’ll be a big one, so…it’d be a great experience.
- Assuming that you write an anonymous or partially anonymous blog, by what non-physically identifying characteristics might you be identified in a bar? Well, I don’t…which I’ve been regretting and contemplating of late. I think probably my particular phrases might give me away. I use a few of them here and in life, and so that might do it. I’ve been thinking lately of creating a more anonymous online world for myself and the bff and whatever little bffs we end up having. i don’t want to have a mommy blog, though…ugh. i just don’t know.
- Most blogs cover some sort of niche – personal, political, dating, culinary, etc. What topic, if any, would you like to address on your blog but doesn’t fit into your niche? probably weight loss and recipes and cooking and politics. except i would have to have time to pay attention to politics which…i don’t.
- If you could manipulate the time space continuum and give as many as three pieces of advice to a younger version of yourself, what advice would you give and to what age of you? Me in high school–Less TV. More activity. I know you think that Ben hung the moon, but really? Don’t turn yourself into a pretzel to make him happy so much. Find out what makes YOU happy. Go places. Do things. Have adventures. And study, for the love of pete. You will regret your whole life that you didn’t give it all you had. To mini-me at 21— You graduated. You have no freakin’ idea what to do with your life. Take a deep breath. Every panic attack, every worry, every seemingly strange directional change is shaping you into who you are. DO IT. Follow your heart. It won’t steer you wrong. In fact, it will steer you absolutely right. To mini-me at 28— Listen. It seems like it’s going to end in heartbreak. It seems like it’s not worth the trouble. It seems like this guy is like every other guy you’ve ever met, who is attracted by shiny things and not by substance. Don’t give up. Just trust me. Don’t give up on him. Be brave enough to befriend him with your whole heart. It will be much easier than you think once you decide to do it. Have faith in him. He’s really going to surprise you. No, actually…you’re really going to surprise yourself. He helps you be brave. He helps you find those little fragments of yourself that you’ve been missing and put them together again. He will be the best friend you have ever had. Don’t give up on him. You’ll never regret anything related to this. Ever.
- Who among your friends do you really wish had a blog because their stories, or perspective on something ought to be shared? A few of my friends actually do have blogs, and I know them better because of it. I didn’t realize how much that was true until recently. I think I would really like it if my cousins would write. I miss them, I don’t get to talk to them much, and I’d really love a daily (or so) glimpse into their worlds. Their perspectives and hearts are amazing.
- If you were to take an e-cation (vacation from the trappings of our electronic world,) and assuming that employment obligations would allow it, how long of a break could you take? What would you miss the most, the least? A month, at least. I wonder, actually, if I would even come back to it the same way if I did. Having taken the break that we did before and after the wedding, I think I feel differently about some things (the blog, for example). I believe I would miss Facebook, at least initially, the most. I like to know what everybody’s doing. I would miss student emails the least. I really, really, really, really, really hate dumb questions. Boyhowdy have I gotten a few in the last month.
- On September 11th of this year, I will be attending a couple of parties and am somewhat conflicted by the fact that this ignoble anniversary shall pass with it being just another day in the eyes of many (and in some ways my own eyes as well.) Thoughts? We are that we might have joy. I don’t think the people who lost their lives would begrudge you your time of fun and frivolity, but I also don’t think we should be quick to forget where we came from. A lot of really tremendous good came from September 11th for Americans in general–not from the event itself, of course, but from the compassion and generosity that resulted. Remember that, perhaps, and make a conscious effort to embrace those qualities not just on an anniversary, but every day.
- How high are your walls? Who was the last person to scale them? What tools should would-be climbers have on their belt? This really, really depends. I am pretty easy to be friendly with. I don’t consider myself difficult to be around, but I don’t let a lot of people in very far. I have to trust you, and that doesn’t necessarily come easily. I’m also fiercely independent, so some people interpret that as me not liking/needing/wanting them in my life. It’s not that. I just suck at asking for help and I’m worse at letting people help when they volunteer. Every day, the bff takes down my walls, but he’s pretty unique. I think the ones who want to get to know me and get beyond the initial walls need to have a good heart, a good sense of humor, and a willingness to invest time.
- The sexiest thing a wo/man can say to you (or has said to you) is “you’re beautiful.” i’m pretty easy to please, though. i think most anything the bff says about his feelings for me is sexy.
i mentioned in passing a few posts ago that i hadn’t worked out since before the wedding. by this i mean that i haven’t been to the gym, put on a jillian michaels sadistic dvd, or otherwise done a formal exercise activity. this, however, doesn’t mean i haven’t spent time doing things that require exertion, like moving things around and walking around theme parks and digging in my small but disgustingly in need of tlc garden plot and walking across campus and you get the idea.
my problem is really time. i just didn’t have the time, or so it seemed, to truck to the gym (which is now much farther away than it once was, across gville downtown/campus traffic), work out for an hour, come home, shower, and move on with my day. i just don’t have those kinds of windows.
so i think i thought that i was just going to have to stop working out, though in the back of my mind, some part of me was screaming both in warning and in horror.
it sounded, faint though clear, a little something like this: WE HAVE NOT WORKED THIS HARD FOR YOU TO GIVE UP RIGHT NOW! THERE’S ALWAYS TIME FOR WORKING OUT! MAKE IT WORK, WOMAN! MAKE IT WORK!
you see how that might be a bit difficult to ignore, even in its faintness.
as the weeks progressed and the stress continued to build and the realities of life hit me, as they hit everyone, i realized that i wasn’t sleeping well, i wasn’t eating well, and i wasn’t feeling as regularly sassy as i normally do.
the sassy was sort of…sporadic.
i knew, in my heart of hearts, that it was because i wasn’t moving.
moving is an incredible stress reliever. it’s amazing to me what 20 minutes of giving my all to something does not only for my sleep patterns and the way my body works but for my feeling about myself. somehow, when i see that i can in fact run for blocks at a time or i can stay at the jillian michaels workout o’ pain for the full 20 minutes, i feel like i can conquer anything.
(that’s nice to remember when i wonder, every day, if i can manage the daily mountain that faces me. which is probably a grain of sand, to quote carrie underwood, but nevertheless seems like everest sometimes.)
today, despite the fact that i really have oodles to grade and heaps to do, i decided that it was a beautiful sunny day. it’s hot but not death hot. it’s the kind of hot you want to go hang out in. it’s an inviting kind of sunshiny florida day that makes you want to strap on an ipod and some slightly worn out sneakers and take on your neighborhood for a good game of “how long can i run before i die?”
that’s what i did today.
i tried out a pretty short loop in my neighborhood, one with well-traveled roads and as little ghetto as possible. it was fantastic. i mapped it. it was 1.5 miles–decent, i suppose. it took me about 20 minutes, which isn’t great but isn’t horrible either. i gave myself permission to walk as fast as i wanted and run as slow as i needed.
i came away knowing the following:
- no matter what happens, i have to exercise. if it means that i need to wake up earlier, i need to do it. i need to do it for me. i need to do it for my job. i need to do it for my family. a better me is a better wife, a better teacher, a better scholar, a better friend.
- i need to remember that taking care of me is not selfish. it’s essential.
- i need a longer route. because i’m better than i thought i was at this whole running/walking combo.
- i liked it. a lot.
- running slow is not a bad thing. in fact, i am beginning to think that it’s the only way i’ll be able to build up my endurance.
- my neighborhood is actually fairly conducive to running. i wasn’t the least bit nervous, scared, or inclined to trip.
- i need a new ipod holder. the bra isn’t really working well.
this was a very productive day, and i’m proud of myself. even if it’s only 20 minutes a few days a week (but let’s get real: exercise is like a drug. i’ll want more soon enough.), i will find time to take care of me.
it’s going to pay off. i know it. here’s hoping i can stick with it.