Sunday, March 18, 2007

Somewhere along the line I ended up with a Neil Diamond song

I woke up this morning to a terrible thing. The alarm clock on my phone.

I have gone exactly eight days without an alarm clock.

I am truly amazed at the effect that a little freedom can have on your ability to get back into a routine. There's a rhythm to my life that is guided by bells. I wake up to an alarm clock at 5:40 every morning. I get myself to school by 6:15 to make copies, do grades, tutor students and just be around for others who wander in to sit on my couch. By 7:55 my day is off on a mad dash until the final bell rings at 3:30. Then there's soccer practice, more planning, dinner, cleaning, planning, grading and off to bed. The bells start over far too soon the next morning.

When I left school last Friday I thought this would be like any other break. I would travel a bit, sleep a bit more and do a bunch of planning. But spring break has been an entirely different experience. Thanksgiving break was simply needed to keep me from losing my slim grip on sanity. I went to Kansas and slept. Christmas break was complicated for a myriad of reasons and involved far too much traveling. This is the first break I've been in Houston (or at least Texas) for the entirety. This is becoming a place that feels so much more like home and staying here for break certainly cemented that feeling. This break I just let go.

I suppose letting go is why it has been so much more difficult to reengage in the rhythm of life that is quickly catching up with me.

So back to the alarm clock.

Since I got very little work done yesterday (despite my best efforts starting with 8 a.m. coffee at Dietrich's) I set my phone alarm for 8 a.m. and planned to be out the door on my way to the Daily Grind by no later than 8:30 a.m. When the alarm went off and I realized it was Sunday, the day before life was going to begin again, something halted inside of me. I turned the alarm off and rolled back over. Maybe if I refused to acknowledge tomorrow it would not actually come.

When I finally got out of bed around 10 a.m. I had no interest in making a stop at The Daily Grind, but instead tinkered around my apartment looking for things to do. When I get like this I start baking. And cleaning. Since I'd had such a carefree week I had already baked cookies, muffins and bread and cleaned the carpets, kitchen and bathroom. This left me with nothing pressing to occupy my time and thus allow me to avoid planning for the rest of my week.

It is amazing what you can do to avoid. Not only did I bake more bread and muffins, I cleaned — and I mean cleaned — my closet and bedroom. I also attempted to put up curtains, but it really didn't work out. While I should have been planning my lessons, entering grades and creating powerpoints I found myself putting together a package for my college roommate and then found the need to decorate the entire box. Then I had to check facebook for the fifteenth time, at which point Jacky had added a new artist to her growing list of ipod playlist songs (good thing I checked) so of course I had to go download it. Once I was in limewire I was reminded that I wanted to download a Corrs song that had been in my head for a few days, the Corrs reminded me of another song and before I knew it I had a Neil Diamond song.

My steps to procrastination were quite shocking. It's hard to truly track how I ended up with Neil Diamond, but I know it started about eight days ago with a little relaxation, was exasperated by the return of bells to my life and finally found it's way into my playlist reminding me that, like it or not, the rhythm is coming back to my life.

No, you cannot simply roll over and ignore the bells, all you end up with is a bunch of muffins and Neil Diamond.

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