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Sometimes my job asks me for energy I don’t have.
Sometimes I am so spent from responding to students all day
that I cannot hold a conversation with my family:
I can do the listening bit but can’t manage the replying bit.
Sometimes I’m bereft of ideas when I need them.
Sometimes my teaching is plain and boring,
even though I want to make it exciting and interesting,
and I feel beaten by the system.
Sometimes my correction and reporting demands so much time
I live on nervous energy,
just to get through.
Sometimes I need to
and cuddle my dog,
or watch some escapist TV,
or listen to music that soothes my soul.
Sometimes I reflect on the many things I have
and nevertheless feel a little empty,
because I have had to sell my soul to my income-generating work
to such an extent, and
for so many years, that
I am frustrated with
lack of progress in what I feel drawn to do …
And that feels as it sounds:
mean-spirited and selfish,
ungrateful and ungracious,
because I was born into a position of privilege
and have had the advantage of that for my entire life,
and I know I am so very lucky
compared to so many.
So I will take the time,
to heal from this temporary malaise,
to regather my internal strength
so that I can meet the exhausting demands of my work,
so that I can have the stamina
to counter the sometimes overwhelming energy depletion
which is an inevitable and unhealthy
companion to my work
as a change merchant,
transforming the lives of hundreds, if not thousands, of students.
please don’t ask me for more:
I can’t give it right now.
I’ll see you on the other side of my energy restoration.