From the Past: 4 September 2014
In fall 2014 I began adjuncting after teaching high school for 17 years. I desperately needed a break. This series will examine my ramblings while I had my students write for a particular amount of time during the first year I taught composition. These will be curated.
Each class spent the first five minutes freewriting. I joined in the topic, putting mine on the projector as an example for the students and as an opportunity for me to participate in some daily writing. The idea comes from 750words.com.
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I came in with this whole big idea that I was going to pray before class, and it was going to be like this most awesome prayer and everyone would be inspired, but it didn’t happen that way. I just forgot, and then when I remembered I simply didn’t want to. Why do I have that fear? I mean, I fear being judged. Why do I care so much? I don’t think my students will judge me. I mean, we’re here at a Christian school, and all have been really nice and kind, and my students really seem to want the leadership that my praying would give them. But my mouth just freezes. I guess that’s how people who fear public speaking feel. Their brains just freeze.
I think that I will try to pray before we go back to our writing activity. They have to continue with their descriptive essays, so they might like the prayer. What does God want me to do, though. And jeepers! I’m not being all that descriptive right now, am I?
For a second I thought that I had super quickly managed to get 750 words typed, but I realized that the math didn’t seem quite right. See, I’d hardly written two full paragraphs. Imagine my disappointment when I realized that I had fewer than 200 words. Shame on the professor!
Pray, openness, willingness, inspiration, fire, fear, cursing, red, anger, frustration.
Writing is my field, and I don’t do it enough. That’s why I’m having trouble. I also had a really enjoyable hour before class, eating Chick-a-fil (as R-’s family calls it) and talking with three girls. That was relaxing. Of course, I feel immense guilt, like the kind of guilt only a mother can put on her child, because I have not completed Week 2’s grading when we’re almost done with week 3. Lord have mercy. Actually, I should probably ask my students to have mercy on me for my slowness.
I just have to stop being depressed. Mom is right. I have to get back off soda, which is bad because diabetes now runs in her side of the family. I know I’m self medicating with the sugar and the caffeine. ARGH!
I should have emailed my shrink Monday, but I keep putting it off. If I have to go to jury duty next week, I’ll also have to delay seeing J- [my psychologist]. That meeting scares me. I have no idea what crap we’ll pull up with this new therapy technique [eMDR]. I am sick of my crap.
Sweet Lord, only 428. I’m calling time.
[Between two classes I was able to get to 750 words; usually the second class would see what I had written earlier.]
“Thursday mourning Wednesday’s loss” by K-. I love how that sounds. L- thinks he’s got this [writing 750 words] down. Yet I wonder if he’s really doing his work. I am the writing woman. He thinks he’s the bomb diggity, but when I grade his descriptive essay we’ll see if he really brings it. He promises me he will bring it, but he hasn’t actually started it. He says it’ll be fine, though. We’ll see. This is college, and I am not some newbie college teacher. I lived it in the trenches of —- County high schools for seventeen years. I’ve been doing this almost as long as the dude’s been alive. L- just might mourn his own ability at writing once I get through with him. He might surprise me. He was trying to teach K- a thing or two about double entendres and puns, but I think it was a front. Come at me, man! Prove me wrong.
The L- topic gave me another couple hundred words, so that means that between the two classes I am so much closer to my goal of 750. It’s only 619. I think I’ll go walk around.
It’s neat how different people approach writing. Some spread out all over the desk while others crunch up into themselves. Some keep their papers or screens as far away from themselves as possible while others appear to be quite near sighted. Different strokes for different folks.
sleepy, tired, miss my husband, too much soda, bad for me, icky aspartame, too many calories, dump, dump, dump
[Another name for 750 words is a brain dump; it's also stream of consciousness writing.]