Friday, August 10, 2012

On the Perils of Stress and the Joys of Organization

Oh  Gaaaaaaawd. 
 Schoooooooool is starting again. 
Oh nooooooeeeeees. 

Yeah, that's right.  It is a week before I have to go back to the world of being an adult.
Growing up, I simply assumed that adults had their stuff together.  I was especially certain that people as high up as teachers had to have it together (whatever "it" was.... honestly, I figured that "it" was opened up for us once we reached a certain age, like, through some Divine intervention or something).

Gandalf saves the day!

Perhaps this flawed belief was all part of my inability to question the world around me.  Personally, I have had many moments in the last few years that prompted me to stop in my tracks and wonder how the heck I got here.  How did I become an adult?  How did I get a grown-up job?  How am I in charge of the the education of these children?

I assumed there would be some grand moment when it would become very clear... that I would become, know, feel, understand, and be at home in adulthood.  Many cultures do have such crossing-over rituals, but I wonder, when the children are done hunting the bear, getting the proper piercings, participating in the proper ceremonies, do they then KNOW they are adults?  Do they feel it in their souls and deep within the marrow of their bones?  I ask this because I know I don't feel it.  I understand it, but I don't have an internalized sense of it inside of me.

 So every year I begin stressing out about the school year to come.

Summer spoils me.  I am naturally introverted (like, seriously, devoutly, introverted), so while I occasionally enjoy summer in much the same way as normal people would, the parts I seem to relish most include sleeping in until eleven, staying up late, listening to music, drawing, reading, and so on.  Mostly my activities involve being with me.

And really... what I really enjoy most... is not having responsibility.  I loooooooooove not having responsibilities.  I am in love with not having responsibility.  If I saw not having responsibility at a party, I would totally make out with it.

As a side note, It frequently slips my mind that most people, in fact, do not actually have summers off.   This fact usually pops in my head mid-way through bumming out on people about having to go back to work, and I see the look in their eyes that reminds me about how they have been working full time for the last two months. bad.

Along with being introverted, I am also very neurotic.
I take responsibility and I run at it so hard that I become completely exhausted by the time I complete any given responsibility.  Then I handle the other responsibilities on the list just as dramatically.  Though I have been working on being happy with myself for doing an ok or a good job instead of the BEST JOB THEY HAVE EVER SEEEEEEEEEEEEEENNN each and every time I do any given job!

So yeah, summer is at an end, which means waking up five days a week at 6:00 a.m. (poor me), being on time, lesson planning out the wazoo, planning for any possible event that could happen, staying late, feeling behind, being frustrated with myself, having a large to-do list, having to complete each item of said to-do list on time... and often (I am learning) *before* on time.

Can not unsee!
This last year has been a lesson in what "on time" means.  Apparently, the concept of due dates means something very different to me than what it means to others.  I've found that waiting to turn paperwork in on time simply leads to multiple "reminder" emails in the days before the due date reminding me that the due date is getting ever closer until said e-mails get panicky,

then depressing,

then passive-aggressive,

and then...


Yes, I have been learning this past year that in the grown-up world due dates are actually seen as the last-possible minute by those who would like for me to be turning things in.  Applying this knowledge in the coming year, however, will still be quite the task.  You tell me that you need something Tuesday, my natural inclination is to turn it in Tuesday.
BAD inclination!

So I got a super-sweet calendar.  It is made just for teachers.

My plan is to mark a good time to turn in various tasks (days before the due date) as well as the last possible minute (i.e. in my world... the due date).  Perhaps this attempt at keeping myself on task will actually stick.

It even has a plethora of fabulous stickers.

And these wonderful lines, so I can make lists.  I fully intend to color-coordinate these lists. 

I am going to be so organized.  For about a month, at least, but hopefully for longer.

*Sigh*  We shall see.  But when/if the calendar fails, I also have a desk calendar, a planner, color-coordinated paper clips, and an unspeakable amount of Post-It Notes and filing tabs.  Maybe one day I will reveal my extreme office-supply obsession.

Hehe, "Your office-supply obsession sounds fascinating." said no one ever.
Here is hoping for a well-organized year!

Cat Photo-
Hate Drawing-
All the rest of the photos and drawing are mine.  I get that they are not particularlly fascinating or well done, or artistic, but please don't steal them without sharing where you got them.

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