Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Smushy, Eustress, and WWND?

Awwww....summertime bliss.  Welp, my NW past-co-workers all went back to work today.  Meanwhile, I slept in until 9:30am.  Caught up on the Bachelorette and Jimmy Fallon.  Ate a leisurely lunch at 3pm at an all-time fave: Terrebone Po'boys cajun cafe, and then wandered over to the library where I'm currently parked.  I'll have a leisurely dinner later at home and then when Superman gets home from his day/evening of work with army AT, I'll tag along with him and army friends to see a late showing of Star Trek.  Of which I would've been like, NOPE, if I was back at work.  But now I'm, YEP, cuz: #summerlovin.  I've been carrying nightowl hours anyway, with the musical going on.

Despite feeling mischievously satisfied that I didn't go back to work today, my heart is feeling smushy.  My co-workers/friends, and my students...I will miss them.  But I also imagined how I would feel if I'd gone to work there today, and it was not good.  It solidified the rightness of my decision that this was the right thing to do.  No one should go to work feeling the way I would've felt today.  A completely different dimension than the normal IIIIII-Don't-Wanna-Work-I-Just-Wanna-Bang-On-The-Drums-All-Day.  It was definitely time to move on.

I saw this article the other day, and it definitely spoke to me:
Teachers: Move On Before You Burn Out

Especially this part:
I'm walking away knowing that new, fresh personalities will bring something else to the table, things I could never do, and that's good. After all, if more time had gone by, I predict that I would have burned out, and then the kids would have been happy to see me go.

I can tell that this is going to be my line of thoughts for awhile, as I reflect and ponder my changes.  Its going to be a touchy subject: abandoning my profession, and feeling like a quitter/failure.  But also all things education makes my entire system go BLECK!  The job of teaching keeps getting harder, and the political climate keeps getting weirder.  I mean, its no wonder I said PEACE OUT, and somehow managed to change my career path to 1. playing piano and 2. hanging out with other people's pets.  Score, on that one.  For realz.

(I started pet sitting for Lawrence Pet Friends.  I've almost finished training and do my first SOLO visits later this week!)

I've become interested in the topic of Distress vs. Eustress recently.  I've always strived to achieve this middle ground of busy but not too busy, and finally found the word for it:  Eustress.   My explanation for my current career choices have been followed up with "I need less stress in my life."  Which is true.  But, more accurately: I need different stress in my life.

I think our politicians and decision-makers could benefit from studying this concept of distress vs. eustress.  I'm willing to bet that most teachers live in the realm of far-right-distress 9 months out of the year, and the ones who don't are either super-humans, or they have discovered Work-Your-Proper-Duty-Day and are coping with the hard reality that you just won't be enough and you will never be 100% effective at your job.  Ugh.  Doesn't that suck?  That teachers have to cope with the reality that your success rate will be terrible, and then society will blame you for the failure.

Speaking of politics:
This is not something I do.  Ever.  Comment on politics.  I'm usually not aware enough.  Not smart enough.  But this is MY BLOG...Its my party, I'll do what I want to.  I mean, there was this one time in college I went on this coffee-date-thing with a guy I met at a friend's party.  The hour was going very pleasantly with mild-to-healthy interest on both parts until he brought up, oh I can't remember how...maybe a silly-date-get-to-know-you question like, "if you could have coffee with anybody in the world, who would it be?" and he said: Nelson Mandela.  And I said: who?
I was just THAT OBLIVIOUS.  I know who Nelson Mandela is now.  I made sure to find out, because that truly was an atrocity, and I don't blame the guy for being a jerk and expressing his distaste that this is what the world had come to:   music majors not knowing Nelson Mandela.
But anyway, a friend of mine posted this today, and I couldn't help going: YEP.  ALL OF THAT.

Imagine you're on a commercial flight and find out that the pilot and co-pilot have both died suddenly and simultaneously. The plane is on autopilot at present, but someone needs to assume control eventually to land it. It turns out that there's a retired airline pilot seated in first class. He just retired two years ago, but continues to fly a small personal plane as a hobby. He's flown commercial jets very similar to the one you're currently in; many times. He has thousands of successful flights on his record. The only rub is that he's had two drinks during the course of the flight. Given the reputation of drinking problems in pilots, several passengers begin to suggest that he must clearly be an alcoholic as well. He's not an alcoholic, mind you, that's just what several other passengers are suggesting. Hell, let's go so far as to say that someone recognizes this guy as a pilot who crash landed a plane 6 years ago in an accident that resulted in the deaths of four passengers. He was not charged with negligence or any other crime, and continued to have a successful flying career after this crash, but it was a big story for a while. He is, however, the only pilot on the plane.
Given these concerns, another passenger in first class offers up his willingness to fly the plane. He's a 21 year old college student with no flying experience whatsoever. What he does have, however, is a LOT of experience playing video games. Not flight simulators, mind you, just typical video games, like Call of Duty, but since these require "hand eye coordination" he's sure that his skills will translate perfectly to the successful flying and landing of a commercial airplane. Additionally, he is very, very confident in himself. He guarantees that not only can he land the plane, he will land it better than any plane has ever been landed. Ever. It's gonna be so great. Oh, by the way, prior to the announcement of the pilot/co-pilot's deaths, this dude had spent the first hour of the flight being a loud, obnoxious ass, and sexually harassing the flight attendants. And since the announcement of the current situation he's been loudly screaming into the PA that everyone is going to die a horrible, fiery death if they don't immediately let him into the cockpit to make this flight safe again. He's really scaring the children.
This is the choice in front of us. On the one hand we have an individual with an extensive political background that includes successes and failures. Most importantly, however, she is capable of doing the job. You may not like her, you may not trust her, and you may feel she represents more of the same, but at least she has a base of experience sufficient to translate into performing as President of this country. On the other, we have someone who is an insufferable, pathologically narcissistic possible sociopath, who, most critically, has no experience whatsoever doing what he's asking us to let him do. All signs indicate that there is no chance he can successfully carry through with his claims. Moreover, the consequences of his ineptitude are not insignificant. Rather, he will almost certainly make mistakes which will spell utter disaster for all of us.
Stop pretending this is even a choice at all. It's not.
Its clear who the people are in this analogy, and the one scaring children was also talking trash on teachers last week and reportedly, from his own mouth, punched his teacher in the face when he was in 2nd grade.  His music teacher, btw.

Sigh.  A successful person in my mind is a person who:  1. does their best.  2. is nice to people.
That man is not a nice person, and acts like a complete idiot, which makes me think he must BE an actual idiot.
So, NOPE.  Can't even.


Nelson wouldn't vote for him.

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