“It's the beginning of the school year,” I tell myself. That's all. Nothing to panic over. Yet, there's a trace of panic in my stomach. There is a worry that I'm letting myself fall apart. In the past I have had this feeling push me to a couple extremes.
One, the "pick yourself up by your bootstraps" reaction. I have to fix this immediately! Get on the right path before the world comes crashing down! Implicit in this is my need for approved. If I don't fix the problem, and right away, I'll disappointment someone.
The second extreme is the it's too much, make coffee line Phoebe used on Friends. I surrender. It's all too much to change right now so forget it.
This is when I hope you're nodding, thinking, "been there, done that."
It's the beginning of the school year which means that I, as a teacher, have to figure out how to teach all new kids. It means keeping up with new demands from the state. It means questioning the efficacy of how I have taught and trying to find a better way.
It's the beginning of my wife's school year, teaching pre-K in both the morning and afternoon. She has double her workload from last year, two new assistants to train and become accustomed to. All that and she’s responsible for the dozens of things necessary to get our own kids to school each day.
It's the beginning of my daughters' school year, new seasons of dance classes, chorus rehearsals, Hebrew school, soccer, and as many play dates and sleepovers as they can fit in.
It’s the beginning.
I'm stressed and want to drop onto the couch. I’m hungry most of the time. Sleepy too. I don't have energy to do laundry but there's nothing much to wear. I don't want to empty the dishwasher but we’re out of clean forks. I don't want to do much of anything.
Not even writing?
Well, now there's the rub. I want to write. It consistently intrigues and energizes me. But it's tough to get off the couch and do it. The television is on, there's a new season of the NFL, and so on. And I want potato chips and a nap.
I want to give up, but no I have to create a plan to fix everything right now!
Or...I could just do one thing.
At this moment I'm writing. That’s good.
I might write again tomorrow. Hell, I might even write again today. That would be good too. And if I don’t write again, I’ll have still written just now. Tomorrow isn’t my concern. This moment is. In this moment I’m composing 750 words which I will revise down to six hundred or so and then post.
That’s as far ahead as I need to think right now. Just so far as the end of my pen as I write on.