Sometimes, I forget what part of the year it is. Before you start to worry about my cognitive function, consider I've been teaching at a college in the semester system for twenty-three years. At some point, whether it is spring or fall doesn't really matter, as the same things happen in both: the beginning, middle, and end of my classes. I arc up toward mid-terms and then crash into finals. There are breaks in between--one longer of course--but then it starts up again. Aside from extreme weather at the beginning of one and the start of the other, it's all really the same journey, over and over again.
Strangely, too, classes are always composed of the same students. Not the "same" students, but the same type of student. The noise maker, the clown, the know-it-all, the good student, the slacker, the escape artist. They are all there in every class, in the class that is the same as the last class in a semester that will turn into the next semester without my even being able to recognize the shift.
This isn't a complaint, even if it sounds a little repetitive. The good news is that in this bubbles of sameness, I love what I'm doing. I'm talking about writing and I'm talking about reading. We read, they write, I read what they write.
Trust me, it could be worse.
But today a friend and I were talking about the concept of hibernation. What would it be like, we wondered, to just stop what we were doing for a long while. I don't really want to slather on bear fat and curl up in a cave for two months, but more and more lately, I think about what it would be like to not work. The idea of that happening before I have enough saved for retirement is no longer possible. A few aspects of my life have changed recently, so I've got another ten years before I might actually not work. And I've been working since I was 12, when I began baby and pet sitting and teaching swim lessons. I worked through high school and college and then as soon as I could after grad school. I've taught extra classes and taught workshops and classes for other universities. I've been busy.
But what about to not be so busy? What about not forgetting what season it is? What about noticing that the air smells like spring because it is spring and not October?
Not working is a luxury, and it's possible, I'll be miserable with no semester to call my own. But around the crash and burn of finals--right now--I realize I'd like to give it a try.
Causes Jessica Inclán Supports
Women for Women International Goodwill Industries Lindsey Wildlife Museum Freecycle.org