Monthly Archives: October 2015
So, I’m sitting here with my latte grading papers (okay taking a break from it now) and stressing over work-related things while missing home terribly. Homesickness, for me, hits harder the second year around. I guess it makes sense since the newness of here has worn off. Don’t feel sorry for me because it’s not all that tough. Yesterday, I had the day off and ate breakfast at Shannan’s, hung out at the pool and ate a Caribbean dinner feast. Today, it’s paper grading, some pool and gym time, more grading/planning and then something yummy for dinner.
I don’t mind spending the weekend home working. I’ve been blessed with many a fun weekends away. Last weekend I got to go to the Dave Mathews concert and then a wine tasting the next day. In between was some pool and chat time with friends. I had a fantastic time. Something tells me next weekend will also be a fun time.
Work has been overwhelming because I had so many classes. I just did not have time during the day to do all that I needed to do. I’d run from one pod to another, losing stuff along the way while papers piled up on my desk. Notice I’m writing this in past tense. Humdullah! A new teacher arrived last week. She’s taking one of my classes, so starting next week I’ll be down to two sections to teach, which means I’ll have only 4 (versus 6) classes a day, minus 31 students to assess. This is the first time since I’ve been here that I’ll have a more manageable load. So, while I’m working hard this weekend catching up on grading and creating better lessons, I’m also excited because I’ll finally have time during the week to focus on what I need to be focusing on. Don’t get me wrong the pressure is still very much on, but now I feel like I can do it without losing my sanity in the process.
That said it is hard not having my family here. I have a lovely group of friends who I love spending time with, and I’m so grateful to have them in my life. But, I’m greedy. I want Joe and the kids here too. Luckily, I get to see them again soon.
Living in two countries is a wonderful experience, and one I wouldn’t change for anything, but it does come at a cost. Time away from family is very, very hard — despite all the amazing, fun things you get to do without them. Luckily, the benefits seem to outweigh that for now — when they no longer do that is when it’ll be time for me to go home. Because of this I can also offer them more than I could before, and the kids are getting their time to grow with mom far away. Mom does her growing here while they do their’s there. It’s a good deal.
I have no idea what the future holds, but I do know that when I move back home I’m going to spend the first few months just inhaling all of it and savoring every moment. You all need to remind me of this when I complain about whatever it is I’ll end up complaining about. Of course as I’ve mentioned in other posts, I’ll also really miss here.
Okay time for me to go back to work, so I can relax at the pool. Hope you folks back home are having a lovely fall. It’s still quite warm over here, but that’s okay because I’ll freeze my bottom off in Germany this Christmas.
It’s early Monday morning, and I’m up so that I can print out my daily lesson plan just in case an administrator comes into my room and asks for it again. Unfortunately, I didn’t get a chance to print out this week’s plans yesterday, and of course I had a pop in. I had a good lesson and resources prepared and the girls and I were doing what we needed to be doing, but that one little mistake made me nervous and I stressed over it throughout the rest of the day (even though I really didn’t need to). So, despite my lovely life I still stress over paperwork and whatnot. Later, on the same day, a parent came to ask about her daughter and emphasize how important the child’s grades were. She was a kind and lovely woman, and I’m glad she stopped by, but I’m also even more stressed because what if I don’t have enough time with her daughter before the big exam in December? I care as much about her marks as she does.
Last week I wrote an advice piece for TeachUAE (I’ll share when it’s published), and I wrote something along the lines of delete “it’s unfair” from your way of thinking. And, ever since I typed those words I find myself reminding inner me to stop whining. I’m stressed because I want to do a good job, I want to help my kids get to where they need to go, but sometimes I feel like I’m getting pulled in a million different directions. There’s not enough time in the day; there’s too much paperwork; there’s too much to teach in too short of a time, etc., etc. I want to throw my lil temper tantrum and yell It’s Not Fair! I’m only human.
Sounds like I’m back at home, doesn’t it? Thing is the hard stuff doesn’t go away just because I’m on another continent, living the life. The job is still difficult because it matters, and darn it all I — like everyone else involved — still care about those kids.
Then when I come home there’s no Joe to rub my tired feet, no Kaylene to discuss the innards of life with, no Aaron or Kyle to tease about whatever odd thing they’ve done that day, no Meiko or Badger to drool on my lap. Of course I do still chat with all of them, but it’s not the same. I miss my family.
I miss autumn in the states as well. Even in Phoenix it’s getting cooler (although not by much). I’d be making stews and planning for birthdays, halloween and the upcoming holidays. Fire pit season begins soon as well — oh how I miss sitting under the stars laughing through the craziness that is our lives.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m still LOVING my life here, and I have a wonderful network of friends I laugh with here (sometimes at a shisha place, which has become my new version of the fire pit). I cannot believe how lucky I am to have had the chance to do this, and it’s paying back in ways I didn’t expect. I am not complaining about my life here at all. I just wanted to share that it’s not all beach time and parties. I stress, I worry, I miss, I wish for more just like I did when I lived on my own soil. Apparently, those things never go away.
That said I have a fun weekend coming up. I’m going to the Dave Mathews Band concert — woo hoo! Cannot wait! And then I have a 5-course tasting event at the St. Regis on Saadiyat. Plus, we have an extra day off next week, so I’ll have time to catch up on rest and grading.
And when I do go back home, I will miss all that I have here. So, basically, I think I’ve set myself up for a life of missing ‘home.’