Though my week has been stressful at times, none of it feels like wasted time, and I have no regrets -- I love teaching, I love speech, and I love my seniors, and though I don't love headaches and averaging three hours a night of sleep, I know that the work that I do matters, and that is what pushes me on into the wee hours of the chilly December nights and dark December mornings.
A week like this also makes me acutely aware that I am indeed part of an incredible community, and that it takes a village to prevent a mental breakdown. Never am I alone. So many of my colleagues have stepped forward, not out of a sense of obligation, but out of a genuine desire to help, and they are the reason that I survived this week without going completely batty. So many of my students, as much as they wanted to know their final grades immediately, were patient with me. One day, a few of them came in and offered me a drink and a snack as I graded essays. In that moment, I realized not only that I had not eaten all day, but that there are indeed angels among us, and they come bearing Coke and Chex Mix.
This week I also had the pleasure of attending my daughter's choir concert, which was incredible. I included a few photos on this layout that I put together using December kit items from JBS Mercantile:
Last night the mid-month gallery at JBS went live. It's full of amazing ideas. I love seeing how one team, using the same items, can come up with so many different visions.
This layout felt so good to complete. I came home yesterday from the speech event (which went wonderfully -- our school took first place!) feeling strangely disoriented. I had been anticipating a rush of euphoria as I completed the week's marathon -- no more papers to grade, no more speech to prep -- but instead, I felt enervated. When I sat down to create this page, I found myself feeling centered again. Scrap therapy: there's nothing like it.
There was another scrappy bright spot in my week. For this week's Thursday sketch post on the October Afternoon blog, I worked with Stacey Kingman, and both of us -- without being aware that the other was doing this -- scrapped brother-and-sister photos from Christmases past. Here is the sketch that I came up with and my take on it:
I used an X-acto knife to cut out the numbers, and I added a little dimension using pop dots. More details can be found on the original post.
Well, I'm off to spend the day in a most anti-climactic way: cleaning. Wish me luck!