School, Sleep, and Salud

School starts tomorrow! I’ve been back at work for 3 weeks now, getting my new classroom ready, attending meeting after meeting, and doing some excellent professional development. I’m starting my 6th year of teaching at a new school in a new district and it has been both exciting and nerve-wracking. Mostly I’m super pumped to meet my students tomorrow. They are the reason I didn’t cut and run after my first year and why I keep coming back despite all of the frustrations that come with the profession. A lot of people decide to go into teaching because they love their content– I’ve had teachers tell me that it’s their love of math that inspired them to start teaching or make a career change into education. After 5 years  of doing this job, I don’t think a love of math is enough to keep someone in this job year in and year out. You have to love the kids first. You can love math in a lot of different professions, but if you don’t love working with kids then you’re not going to love this job. 

I’m excited to teach in the community that I live in, too! I grew up in a community comparable in size to where I’m at now. Everyone knew each other and, as a student, it made me feel a deeper connection to my teachers and classmates. There were 250 students in my graduating class and I knew them all. I’ve also worked in a Mega High School of 4,000 students. I didn’t even know all of the staff members, let alone any of the 3,625 students who hadn’t been in my classes over the years. There is some comfort in living outside the community you teach in– you can buy a bottle of wine at the grocery store without worrying that your cashier will be someone in your 3rd period. The fact that I can walk to school every morning makes it worth it, though. Front porch to classroom in 6 minutes, baby. I’m already tallying up the extra minutes of sleep this will earn me over the course of the year. After 5 years of having a 30-40 minute commute in the morning, this is a total game changer. I can get up at 6 and go to the gym and still get to school on time by 7:45! RIP 5 AM alarm, and good riddance. 

Speaking of sleep…a full, uninterrupted 8 hours of sleep has eluded me for the last couple of weeks and it is ruining everything– my gym schedule, my skin, my overall attitude. Pepper the PeePee Hound is still having issues. She went from sleeping 10-5:30 to now whining to go out every 1.5-3 hours. I suspect another UTI, but we won’t know for sure until she sees the vet tomorrow. Guys, getting up at 12, 2, 4, and 5:30 every night does NOT allow a person to feel well-rested, let me be the first to tell you. Last night, she only needed out twice– at 1 and 4– before their normal 5:30 breakfast time (these dogs are very accurate timekeepers). After I let them out and fed them, I went back to sleep until 9!! For someone whose sleep-in threshold is typically around 7:30, this was a big deal. I’ve got her on some urinary support supplements in the meantime, but reeeeally hoping the vet can help us get this peepee problem under control ASAP. Lucky for her, she’s cute.

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On top of that, B is dealing with some sort of inner ear situation that is causing him intense vertigo– dizziness and nausea. It started on Friday morning around 3 AM and has persisted since. The PA at Urgent Care didn’t think it was an infection and gave him some steroids for inner ear swelling and some prescription motion sickness medicine, neither of which have really had any effect on his symptoms. We made an appointment with an ENT for Monday, so hopefully he can start feeling better soon. Poor guy can barely get out of bed, let alone drive or work. Needless to say, it’s been a stressful few days over here and it’s taking its toll on everyone.

Latest victim: my skin. I’m fortunate to have fairly good skin most of the time– I don’t typically get a lot of blemishes and my biggest concerns are typically shininess and uneven skin tone. I think my skin problem started after we returned from Costa Rica. I’ve noticed before that going from super hard water to the softened water at home sometimes causes breakouts on my face, neck, and chest. Add in stress over a new job, lack of sleep, and resuming regular exercise (and thus increased sweating) and BAM. Here I am, the day before school starts with several angry red bumps on my face that seem impervious to exfoliation and moisturization.

Honestly, I feel like all of my systems are out of whack.  I’m really looking forward to settling back into the school year routine, even though I’m already counting down the days until Winter Break (117 days).  So, step number 1– work on getting enough quality sleep. I feel like fixing this will make dealing with everything else a little easier.

What are some things that you do to reset?

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