Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Am I Proud of This, or Ashamed?

There's often a fine line between those two emotions, pride and shame. At the extremes of each, they're clearly distinct, but somewhere in the middle, I think there's an overlap. How many times have you heard people say something like, "I am the clumsiest person you will ever meet. I could trip just standing still!" Or remember those college party days, where some frat guy would loudly exclaim, "Dood, I was so drunk last night, I puked in my bed and didn't even notice until I woke up this morning!" Great accomplishment there, dood.

That's sort of how it's been for me with my work schedule these past few weeks. People ask how I'm doing and I'm quick to announce exactly how many hours I've been working and how late I've been at school on the weekends. I talked before about being a "one-upper" when it comes to complaining, but I'm not actually sure that's what this is. I think I'm just genuinely confused about whether to feel proud or embarrassed about how much I've been working. I embrace it boldly because I don't know what else to do.

I worked 14 hours last Tuesday!

I was on campus until midnight on Saturday AND Sunday!

I'm in my room by 7am every single morning!

And underneath the excited bragging of each of these announcements is the nervous, high-pitched, hysterical laughter of someone who knows that this is the fast track to a nervous breakdown.

Fortunately, if they do end up carting me off to the funny farm, I know I'll be well-dressed.


By the by, for those who may have missed my Twitter announcement, Seeser has finally started a blog of her own! Head on over to stumble survive smile and give her some welcoming comment love. (After you give me some comforting comment love about my impending nervous breakdown, that is.)


flutter said...

you don't have time for a breakdown with all of your fabulous shoes.

William said...

:: Comment Love ::

Please don't have a nervous breakdown, only one of us gets to have a nervous breakdown, and if it's you, then it can't be me. =P

Teacher Anonymous said...

In a month or so you will settle down into a more sane schedule. You know - only 10 hours a day at school, with the occasional weekend visit. The only downside will be the decreased impressiveness of you ~50 hour work week, though you will still be able to lord it over those fools who only work 40 hours per week.

Issa said...

That is an insane amount of hours. I hope it gets better soon. I'm sure it will get easier over time.

Snickering at the well dressed funny farm thing. But doood you will be. :)

brooke said...

Dood, take a break! I think that when you work so many hours, you kind of have to proclaim it loudly and proudly, or you'll just cry about it. :)

Please don't get yourself carted off. Or if you do, make sure your cell has wi-fi.

Anonymous said...

You do *not* look like a woman on the verge of a nervous breakdown. In fact, you look uber-calm and collected. Me, OTOH, am spinning out of control at work and look every bit of it. (Trust me on this one; the pix would be scary!) Okay, commenty love done.

BetteJo said...

You're probably trying to do everything perfectly, and I understand why. Your job is important. But I suspect after you've been at it for a while you will find ways of doing things that will help you cut back on the hours. I don't mean short cuts that sacrifice quality, it's just that the longer you do something the better you get at it and it won't take as long.
Cuz girl - you need to rest sometime, no matter how fabulous you look!! :)

Anonymous said...

I love your energy and thrill in your happiness. I worry about your hours. I trust that you will take care of yourself when you start running low. And I am grateful for your friends and support at the school (especiall t).

Lisa said...

I totally love all the outfits, and the shoes, although I can't quite see the shoes so I'm thinking you should take a separate picture just of the shoes.
As for the long hours---your first year teaching--or rather, your first year teaching something new-- is sort of meant to be a total time drain I am convinced. I remember my first years being the exact same way. I also remember hiding in the custodian's office so that I could have that mental breakdown in the forms of deep sobbing. Hang in there! :)

Mrs. Chili said...

Crazy is crazy - well dressed or not.

You'll learn the secret soon - the trick is to make the KIDS do more work than YOU do. Once you figure that out - and how to make it consistently happen - you're golden.

Teacha said...

Amen, Mrs. Chili. My sentiments exactly.

However, you do look good, girl! You'll be a hottie at the zoo!

Anonymous said...

The first year is crazy. You start with nothing. Create everything by scratch. However, know that what makes a great teacher is using his/her resources. You will get a schedule down. However (and I know, because I was and am one of the people to try to perfect everything.... spending hour upon hour working), know that time does not always = quality. Just because you work numerous hours does not always mean you are doing your best (not to say that you are not). Sometimes it causes exhaustion which can leave you less than spectacular on your feet when it counts. You need to work smarter, not longer. Use resources. Use others. It isn't taking a short cut. It is producing quality while still being able to perform and think on your feet.

Mandy said...

I was a high school English teacher for 12 years before seeing the light. (Kidding.)

However, the first year is unbelievable in terms of hours put in. The second is better. The third gets closer to normal and by five years, it's a song.

What I will say, is find a teacher (in your subject area) who is willing to share resources, tips and ideas. This can be more difficult than you imagine as many teachers jealously guard their material like they are protecting it from the second coming. However, there are some generous souls out there who do not feel that way. Befriend them. Exchange materials and you'll find your stockpile of tricks doubles in no time.

Brenda said...

I had never though about the pride/shame aspect before, but you're right: I take a certain pride in all of my faults. In fact I brag that they are what make me so gosh darn loveable! At least I've finally gotten away from that workaholic one-upmanship. Burn-out is no way to live! Thanks for the good topic for pondering!