nineteen days

lenaThree weeks to go until winter break.  It doesn’t feel like very much.  Lots to do in all four classes, plus various other things to wrap up before break, like the remaining (seven?  I think) teacher observations, submitting students’ work for the Scholastic Writing Awards, keeping the literary magazine moving along, and attending various events, including a big Open House for prospective applicants, the holiday concert (as a parent), and the winter book fair (also as a parent, actually–or we might give it a miss if the Snork Maiden isn’t into it).  I don’t like the tightly scheduled feeling I get contemplating this piece of time–in AP Lang in particular, any departure from the schedule would be problematic–but once we get rolling on Monday, I’ll probably feel better.

I am meeting with all my AP Lit students this week as they work on a paper, which is well timed after the intense Ferguson discussion we had right before the Thanksgiving break; I’ll be able to check in with them brainiacpbsmallindividually and hear what they have been thinking about since.  Thanks to those of you who read and commented on that post; it didn’t contain anything really shocking or revealing, but because I wrote about a personal conflict between two students, I decided to password it after it had been up for about 12 hours. You can email me at literatureshouldmeansomething at gmail if you would like the password.

I had a nice break, overall, with some work and some play and some lying around reading for fun, including the two titles you see on the right, both of which I’d recommend. I did some grading and some planning, wrote, exercised, dealt with some household stuff, played trivia (at a different place on Tuesday since our regular Thursday game was on holiday break–just Stubb, the Snork Maiden, a friend of hers, and me, and we won!), saw family. But I also had some episodes of poisonous worry, about money and the future and writing and school and and and and. I think I’m past them now, but it’s disconcerting when you suspect your mind is telling you that things are worse than they really are.  I talked about it with Stubb and I’m thinking that it’s that I’m still processing the really quite exposing and difficult experiences of the Committee Thing conclusion followed immediately by the Big Ferguson Discussions in school the very next day.  I am feeling more balanced at the moment, but also a bit tentative and perhaps in need of extra self-care the next few weeks.  It’s reminiscent of that period back in April when I had the sense that Morning Pages and exercise were the two things keeping me from crumbling from stress.   So I’m taking myself off to bed and setting the alarm early enough for both of those things tomorrow.

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