It has been weeks and weeks since I last did any knitting or crochet, but last night the drought was broken!
I finished off the body of my Purple Oatmeal at long last, and am now up to knitting the arms.
If I had kept working on this at the pace at which most of the body was done, this would have been finished by the end of March, but multiple assignments due in one week kind of distracted me...
I'm sort of putting off starting the sleeves and their miles of stockingstitch. However, as I should be planning for teaching this week I think that's more than acceptable!
I've also done some more work on a neck wrap I'm crocheting, but have no good pictures at the moment - hopefully I'll be able to share it with you soon - as well as some fingerless mittens I'm knitting for a friend.
And I need to make a swift out of lego so I can finish off a lacey scarf I'm crocheting from Mmmalabrigo Lace. Hopefully I'll have lots more to share soon! (ie. in a month or five... oh dear... time just goes by too fast!)
I had so many reponses to my last post, many via facebook and ravelry: it turns out people appreciate honesty... who knew? (That was tongue in cheek, just so you know!)
Blogs which are always happy and full of success can actually negatively affect readers' feelings of adequacy - even though they can be inspiring (and I'm not saying there shouldn't be blogs like this). Everyone hates feeling like a failure.
On the other hand, there's something really encouraging about someone being honest with what they're finding hard, and everyone needs encouragement.
Even monsters with saggy butts need encouragement.
There's a student in my class at the moment who thinks that he is stupid - that he "can't". So I have to push and push him to try, even resorting to the "it's now or at lunch time outside the principal's office" line because he is so so so so so so so stubborn. But eventually he gives in, and with even more pushing, he eventually does some work. And when he does, I make a MASSIVE deal over it. "You did it! Well done! I am SO proud of you!" And you see him start to glow a little. He does some more work, writing another sentence. More encouragement and praise is given. Now he's engaged and eager to write another sentence that uses a contraction. He's standing straighter and looking happier, because he did it.
Yeah, he wasn't doing the work the other students were doing, and yeah, he did three sentences instead of the six done by others, but he went from thinking he "couldn't" to knowing that he "could" because he did! And I was (and am) so pleased with him and for him.
And that's one success story from today. Yay! =D
(On a related note, the teaching prac is going well, I'm enjoying it, I'm exhausted, I'm happy, I'm a little braindead at the end of each day, and I'm glad this is my chosen profession.)
My thinking spot is in the shower. This morning I was thinking about the types of things I'd write about on here if I wasn't afraid to let it all hang loose... the things I'd write if this were more of a journal where the only audience I thought about was myself.
I'd write about how tired I am at the moment, how being in a classroom teaching and dealing with student behaviour is so challenging and mentally exhausting. I'd write down how much more valuable my time at home is at the moment, and how wonderful weekends are. I'd make a note of how hard it is to change from a uni lifestyle to that of a primary school teacher (sooooo difficult).
If I wanted to let it all hang out, I'd write about how I still miss my cat. About how nearly four months on I still sometimes think I hear him, and still have that bitter sweep of disappointment when I remember that he's gone. I'd write about how I can still see him perfectly clearly in my mind's eye, and can still recall how it felt to have him snuggled up to my side or curled up on my lap. I'd write about how sometimes remembering him makes tears come to my eyes, and how I wonder if it's okay to still miss him.
I'd write about how I don't understand teen girls. I'd write about how much I struggle to keep calm when I'm getting so frustrated by other people's behaviour. I'd write about how I often take big, big breathes before responding.
I'd write about how messy my house is at the moment and how I don't feel like I have the energy to get it back into shape after being in a classroom all day. I'd write about how I struggle with this so much, and that I struggle with knowing that I can change things if only I was determined enough.
I'd write about how I realised when it was that I put on weight (after failing my prac in 2009), and how I am beginning to really start desiring to lose it and fit back into my gorgeous (expensive) trousers. I'd write about how I feel like I'm not allowed to want to lose the weight I've put on because of the amount of people who have said to me, "Oh, you don't need to loose weight, you're tiny!" I'd write about how I actually do need to lose weight, for my mental wellbeing as much as my physical health.
I'd write about a lot of things. But instead, I present an version of myself that's capable, creative and happy. And I am all these things, but sometimes I am tired. Sometimes I am worn out or frustrated or both. Sometimes I feel a wave of grief, and sometimes I feel like I'm never going to succeed. I know I will succeed in the end, and I know that these harder times will eventually pass, but despite the knowing, the feelings can sometimes be overwhelming.
If I wrote about the real, the struggles, and not just about the good and the accomplishments, what would that mean for this blog - would I lose some of you as readers? Should this even matter to me? I know it would, because I love knowing that what I write is read by others, and to think that it might encourage someone, or make one of you smile - perhaps even laugh.
Well, I just wanted to pop in and tell you what's happening at the moment in Kathy's world.
University assignments are over for the semester, and now I am on a 4-week teaching prac in a grade 3/4 classroom. I've done one week, so three more to go. By the third week I'll be teaching every lesson except the ones they go out for (like Art and Indonesian).
It's exciting and scary, tiring but rewarding, and completely different to being a uni student.
Uni students: sleep in, minimal contact hours, little responsibility, late nights, and bad time management (half an hour is too short and amount of time to bother doing anything...), terrible eating habits. The following graphic perfectly represents what I go through every uni semester:
Teachers: get up early, non-stop busy for 7-8 hours a day (plus marking and planning later on), duty of care for students and a moral responsiblity to teach them to the best of your ability, time is precious (10 minutes in which to do some marking, organising or notetaking is fully taken advantage of), eating is regular and necessary to get through the day.
Needless to say, my lifestyle at the moment is completely different to what it is usually!
I'll be back soon with some more stuff about books - I'm determined to finish the 30 Day Challenge list!