Friday, May 14, 2010

Just Another Manic End of the Semester

I am giving my last final exam on Tuesday, May 18th at 7pm and I'm going to be happier than a pig in shit when it's all over.  This was probably the absolute craziest and crappiest (sp?) semester on record to date.  Between my neck injury, bronchitis, death of my grandfather, mental breakdown of my uncle, bringing my mom to come live with us, reduced salary due to furloughs, a side teaching gig and one of the work office fights on record, I had to meet an article deadline (thank goodness I made it), teach and grade papers for 4 classes, serve on committees and a host of other crap.  Basically, I was over-burdened with bullshit and lots of it.  Now I think about it, I'm surprised I haven't been sent to an insane asylum by now. 

Usually the end of the academic year is the time when I get manic because there is so much going on.  Writing and grading exams, writing letters of recommendations for graduating seniors, etc.  But this year, I had the added stress of being responsible for organizing our department's Annual Student/Alumni Awards Banquet and plan all of the details for graduation.  I've been counting down to the end of the semester for at least 2 months.  Everyone thought I was being funny but I've felt like I've been on the verge of a breakdown for weeks now.  The thought of just staying home working on my research and teaching my online classes sounds heavenly to me.  At least there will be no 35-mile commute (each way) nor will I have to deal with students and their whining and begging for a passing grade.  Working from home never sounded better...And to think, when I was in my teens and '20s, a vacation wasn't a real vacation unless you left your home.  Nowadays, vacation is simply an escape from the daily grind of work colleagues you really can't stand, avoiding the commute from hell and surrounding myself with the sights, sounds and smells of a comfortable home.  Damn, I'm getting old.

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