october freewrite (hey there, it’s been a while)

At some point, you just have to start writing again. And it’s helpful to stop worrying about what you can’t do and ask what in fact you can do. And that applies to everything. Everything.

So hello there, little corner of the interwebs where I have written in the past. Yes, it has been a while. It’s hard to explain, but I think the new job is mainly to blame for the long hiatus. Yep, new job. And not just any job, but a job I felt barely qualified for and yet was hired for anyway. A job with the learning-curve-of-a-lifetime, another job where I’ll always work too many hours and make too little, but hey! I actually like it. It feels like a tremendously perfect fit for my self – skills, talents, all that jazz. And that is amazing.

I’ve been teaching 6th grade since August 19th. Twenty-one adorable infuriating 6th graders are my life companions for 30 hours a week. It’s delightful. Invigorating. Maddening.

And so on a night when I could be using this extra-long weekend to fit some extra planning in, I’m surfing the web and deciding to head back this way after quite a while.

I’m supposed to teach them how to write. But that’s difficult to do, isn’t it? And what do I really know about writing? We’re using this lovely curriculum by Lucy Calkins and in her teaching script, she insists on calling the students writers. She tells them, When writers like you do this-and-such, they often use this technique. In other words, I am channeling this epic writing instructor and speaking these confident words over children and myself – hey, y’all are writers! So do what writers do!

***

So we’re living in this weird slice of in-between life. We were both looking for jobs, then I got one out of the blue. He started school and is learning Latin names for plants and basic genetics. I’m relearning basic pre-algebra and the science of light and sometimes getting a little ahead, but mostly scraping together lesson plans as I go. We’re looking at houses, ready to buy if we find the right one. This is both scary and exciting. And we’re getting ready to move out of this house…but it’s unclear to where at the moment. There are a couple options. I’m commuting an hour and a half round-trip each day and listening to Spanish-language podcasts to practice my language skills.

We’re living together again in the same country, same house even, and it feels totally normal, except for sometimes when I realize I actually still don’t really know how to do this marriage thing well. Go figure. One friend is moving to Finland and invited me to come visit, another family member is moving to SLC, maybe to live with us. The holidays are coming right around the corner again and, yet again, I am caught unprepared, scrambling to weigh and decide on travel plans and gift ideas at the very last minute. My circle of friends and acquaintances is producing precious new humans at an unprecedented rate (at least in my experience), which is thrilling and heart-flooding and distracting. There are so many choices to be made each day and I hardly pause to wonder if I’ve made the right ones. There just is so little time.

***

And that’s where I am tonight. Maybe this will start a new season of a bit more writing here…

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