You are cordially invited to my little pity party.
When just a few months ago, work made me cry on a regular basis, it no longer does. Being at my new school makes me happy, and I believe in what I’m doing again which goes a long way.
This morning, however, I had an overwhelming urge to cry, and few tears were shed.
The last two months have been busy. Good busy, but still busy. In addition to regular teaching “stuff” I’ve been out of the classroom for staff development both as a trainer and a trainee several times already this year. Each time I’m out, I have to write sub plans in addition to my regular plans. I’ve been out the last two days, which means two days of sub plans. When arriving at school this morning to review yesterday’s sub notes and prepare for today’s sub, I also had to set up my classroom so 30+ teachers would have a place to sit when they came in for a demo lesson. Furniture was moved around and folding chairs were set up. During this frantic moving, while dressed up in heels and a dress no less, my room phone rang. It was my principal calling to ask how the meeting room for my training needed to be set up as it hadn’t been set up correctly the night before. I finished what I could, grabbed my things, and headed to the other room where my principal was waiting to help.
The chairs and tables set up in a giant circle around the meeting room was the straw the broke the camel’s back. Our trainings are usually set up in tables to promote discussion. The incorrect set up was the last bit of air let out of an already deflated tire. “Ya know,” I said, “It’s fine the way it is.” My principal asked if I was sure since it wasn’t the way I’d been setting up the room. I nodded, trying not to fall apart (yes, over tables people). “I’m sure,” I said, feeling that please-don’t-cry pressure in head. “I’m just so tired, the thought of moving this furniture is going to push me right over the edge.” Then I found a box of tissues to stop the tears that were welling in my eyes.
This inappropriate emotion passed quickly (luckily my principal, who is also a friend, is as intense as I am, completely understood where I was coming from, and didn’t think I was a complete nut job), and we moved a few tables around to make it work.
Usually I strive on stress, but usually the stress comes in waves. So far this year, it hasn’t stopped. There has been NO catching up with not only my job in the classroom, but all the district commitments I have outside the classroom. I don’t like that word overwhelmed because it holds negative connotations of not being able to handle things. Well maybe I can’t. Maybe this was a sign that I need to stop putting so much on my plate. Or maybe I can, just a after wringing out a tear or two.