[preamble – i’ve gotta put this navel-gazing, to-quit-or-not-to-quit arc aside for a good while, if not for my sanity, for the sake of the good folks who pay me some mind. a lot of good comments & questions have gone unanswered but not unappreciated.]
That header is an accurate – if blunt – summary of this whole mess. I texted it to my girl from my usual spot last night after a friend came in and told me I looked tired. If I looked like I felt, he was right, if also a jerk for sayin’ so.
The incredible paradox of this job, summarized quickly, in one anecdote:
I spent an hour on a slide set last night, scaffolding several examples into maybe ten slides, all building to a worksheet. An hour.
Then I set into the worksheet and realized halfway through I was going about the scaffolding all wrong. I had a much better idea so I scrapped an hour’s work and re-built the slides.
I don’t know if I’m glad that idea struck or if I would’ve preferred ignorance. Once that idea struck, though, I know my options shrunk to one, even though it cost me some rest.
I admit that it’s easy for me to ledger up those lost hours and write some whiny post about it, maybe pretending at earnest career contemplation, but that position, I realized this morning, is extremely complicated.
‘Cause, see, as exhausted as I am here at the end of one of my twice-weekly plan-and-teach-a-thons, today I witnessed a painful concept explained clearly. I was personally privileged with that explanation, one which soaked up half as many slides as originally planned, one which tied itself cutely into a metaphor outside the classroom, one which, as it rarely does, met each of my kids at her ability.
I am so smitten and so humbled by that experience, it’s got me a little giggly. These times come wrapped in paper, tied in ribbon, and as long as I can un-remember what they cost my body, my relationships, and my ballooning to-do list last night, I know my career will survive at least a couple more.