I'm beginning to feel a little like House.
The year started out too warm. Even with windows and my door open and the fan switched on, my room was stuffy and hot. Even my students complained.
Some days, my entire existence feels stuffy.
It's not the students' fault. I feel fine when I'm in class. I even feel fine when I am writing curriculum or scoring papers.
[Cam Sorter deserves a shout-out for ordering me a fan on Amazon. I ask you, how can you not love a young man who would do that? He believed he owed me for giving him something I was no longer using, and got me a really wonderful fan—just what I needed.
But it hasn't cured the disease.]
My husband suggests I have the same disease as colleagues of mine who show similar symptoms: constant complaining to spouses after in-service days; review of PERS accounts; indifference to the results of such reviews; inappropriate language when children are believed not to be around; desperation and self-questioning. Have I outlived my usefulness as a teacher?
Did it begin recently when a male administrator told a room of women to "quit bitching and solve your own problems"? Or does it go back further all the way to NCLB? Is this a temporary condition? I hope so.
I'm not ready to go, but there are days—and this is one of them—when I am home sick and dealing with Oaks stats that are incomplete, but Oaks is down so I can't verify what I have. Only I know the stats I've been given are wrong. And there is no one to talk to about any of this.
By 3:30 today, there were only five of us in the building. Five. Those five are all suffering from the disease.
That's another thing we five wonder: How do these others do that? How is it that some people spend time chatting and drinking coffee, and are able to leave immediately at the end of the day, while a few of us seem to be constantly working without end? What are we doing wrong?
And those lucky few who are still at work after 4 or 6 or even later, there always seems to be more to do.
It's a sickness. Exhale. Breathe in and exhale.