Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Returning to normal life

Well, the semester has started, and things are crazy but yet feeling more normal at work. I told J the other night that I think this has been the best summer of my adult working life. Ireland and London probably would have put it on top anyway, but it wasn't just that. J and I got to do a ton of fun things that I didn't even know existed around here and I wouldn't have done alone. I spent the better part of a week at home with my family, which was long overdue. And the change in the rhythm at work made it more relaxing. Yes, I was really busy when I was at work, but when I left, I was able to walk away. There was no grading or planning for class, and the level of drama with students seemed less.

So on Sunday I was pretty bummed about getting back into a new semester. But what I found is that I was actually ready to be back in the rhythm of teaching and interacting with lots of students instead of the same dozen I worked with all summer. There are a ton of students in the newsroom this semester (more than 100 reporters), and I love how loud the newsroom is all of the time. In fact, I feel like I work better under those conditions. I spent last week hiding in my office, prepping for class stuff, and by Thursday afternoon, I was dying to be out in the newsroom instead of in my quiet office.

I realized that the semester is what is normal to me, and the summer was a nice break that was just the right amount of time. I'm glad all of my co-workers are back in the office, and we have a regular schedule so there is less complaining about how much everyone is working.

Of course the change in my schedule has been pretty dramatic, and I'm still getting used to not only getting up at 6 a.m. but also going to bed earlier. I realized that I've never had a job where I worked only days. I have always had to work at least one later shift a week. And the last time I consistently got up before 7 a.m. was high school. It's a big adjustment for me, but I am loving walking out the door at 3 p.m. It feels like the day flies by.

And I just have to add in an unrelated small world story. I posted a picture on Facebook of J and I at the state fair on Saturday night. A friend that I was in journalism school with commented that she knew J. It turns out she not only grew up going to J's church, but her grandfather was the pastor there for several years and her mom still attends. I tell myself constantly that Columbia is J's Signal Mountain because everywhere we go we see someone he knows, but what I didn't consider is that his Signal Mountain is also my collegetown and there is obviously some overlap I didn't realize.

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