Busy, busy, busy

by tamarjacobson

Early morning. Sun isn't up yet. I stretch and look around my study. A pile of books waiting to be read sits upright on a table next to my desk. Splayed out next to the computer is a chapter of a manuscript that I have offered to respond to, with a small piece of my own. Down on the floor lies a pile of papers to be graded as the semester draws to a close. There is much to be done. Sighing now I start to feel overwhelmed. That old familiar buzz of anxiety as I wonder how everything will get done. Students will receive their grades in time, deadline for my written work is coming up soon. Once again I realize I will have to push back reading the books that beckon me from their ever growing pile. A full day of meetings and teachings lies ahead, and I am not sure where to begin.

I stop thinking about it and take another sip of coffee, which has now become cold from the passing of time as I mull over my fate. 

Scratching the back of my head, I continue to type these thoughts as they pop into my head this early Monday morning. "After all," I think to myself, "This was supposed to be a post about being grateful … for my Countdown series!" I start to smile slowly. I almost say out loud, "Well, I suppose I could be thankful for being busy." And then that starts to feel good. My smile is broadening now. After all, I have much to live for – interactions with students and grading their work so as to help them think about what they are saying and doing about young children. That's worthwhile! Writing a piece for a book on social-emotional development – that's always worthwhile – I mean, getting my point of view out there could give someone a different option about how to think about things. That's one of the things I most enjoy about education – offering another option. And those books? Well, I will get to read them – winter break is coming up and there is much to look forward to.

Ah – this is becoming energizing now. I find myself tapping my toes as I write this post. Eyes are wider now and breathing is deeper. I remember a line from Out of Africa. Meryl Streep's character strides energetically and with purpose out to the large barn. She has become tired of sitting around waiting for her "man" to return from his adventures. She says forcefully, "Give me work."

This morning I am grateful for being busy, and having meaningful work!