Sweet (However Brief) Relief

Academic Alleviation

I took another environmental science class this semester; and the increased assignment requirements (in terms of number, research standards, and rubric expectations) for an upper-level course were new and astounding. Instead of a final exam, the professor assigned us to teams and required that we work together on a group project; and I can honestly say that I have no desire to do that ever again.

My team voted me the “Group Leader” (despite the fact that I hadn’t thrown my hat in the ring), which came with a due date revision. Our professor stated that we had to complete the project by May 4th; but due to my examination schedule, in order for me to write the introduction and post the final documents on time, the team had to complete the work by May 3rd. This was something I clearly stated from the outset, and all members agreed that it was an achievable goal.

Anyone that has ever worked on a team project — whether in school or in their personal/professional lives — knows that there are going to be a few members who don’t carry their weight, and have little concern for how their apathy affects everyone else; and this was no different. The last of the team submitted their documents at 11:57 p.m. on May 3rd — after many reminders. (I hate those that play for the procrastinators team. Many of you know this from the posts about my husband, who is the de facto coach of said squad.)

Each individual student was expected to put in no more than two hours of their time to this project; but due to the slacking off of some, others put in well over four hours of work (myself included — which turned out to be a little more than six hours). Add to that the fact that we then had to do a “360° evaluation” of our project in comparison to two others, and I put in more like eight.

It was an incredibly frustrating endeavor; but it’s finally, mercifully over. I feel like the giant albatross that has hung around my neck for the past two weeks — flailing around, attempting to choke the shit out of me — has finally taken flight. Thank Holy Christ, because I had seriously exceeded my limits.

I still have a paper to write for my sociology course, and a few loose ends to tie up from a former course that I earned an incomplete mark in (due to health issues); but these are obstacles that I find far easier to face, since I won’t be herding cats in order to complete them.

Family Fix

Last night, we celebrated my mother-in-law’s seventy-second birthday. Mitch was inevitably late in running the errands he’d been assigned — picking up a pie, flowers, etcetera — and we didn’t arrive in Tubac (which is approximately one hour south of Tucson) until five o’clock in the evening.

Normally, this wouldn’t have been a problem; but Mitch knew well in advance that I had an online exam obligation — one that was only available for completion between 5 and 11 p.m.

Dinner wasn’t served until seven o’clock, because Mitchell’s aunt was running late; and the desert course was set out around eight. Unfortunately, we had to leave at that time… and because Mitch hadn’t explained to his family that I had an exam, everyone was disappointed when we left, including my husband. (And I felt set-up, which happens a lot in matter’s concerning my husband’s family.)

I felt incredibly guilty on the drive home; but eventually decided that what had transpired wasn’t as much my fault as it was my ever-tardy husband’s. So there was no fight, and I didn’t lose any sleep over it.

A Friendly Surprise

One of my closest friends, Veronica (whose true name also means “Truth/Advisor”), is a bit of a nut. (Something, I admit, that I love about her.) She worries constantly about the people she loves, including myself.

Ronnie is a devout animal-lover, and a huge advocate for adoption; so when I brought Tocho into my home a few months back, we had a lot of conversations about how he was adjusting to his new digs. At one point, she asked me what I was feeding him; and thinking nothing of it, I told her about his diet.

Apparently, she was taking notes; because yesterday I received a package from Chewy.com that included a veritable shit-ton of food for my pup, and a treat-dispensing toy. It was totally unexpected; and though my first instinct was to call her up and say, “What did I tell you, Girl? I’m doing fine and can take care of my own damn dog, ya’ loony!”, I instead opted to send her a text of gratitude this morning, and promised that I’d call later in the evening.

It was a lesson in accepting the grace and beauty of friendship, and I am grateful to her for that. (Though I will be telling her she doesn’t need to do that again, in the future. I can only change so much. LOL!)

In Conclusion

Yesterday was a surprisingly good day. There are things that I have yet to prioritize — namely, getting back to a work-out schedule and trying to overcome my issues with food — but today, I’m allowing myself to appreciate the comfort of my home and the joy of simple pleasures; because goddam it, I’m due for some down time, and will not feel shame for reveling in it.

2 thoughts on “Sweet (However Brief) Relief

    • It was hard to do; because I really do enjoy being around Mitch’s (and mine, by marriage) family, and wanted to be there for my mother-in-law. Unfortunately, Mitch’s tribe often doesn’t make plans until the last minute, and I fucking hate that. I have a (rather irrational) need to micro-manage my time, and it gets in the way of my serenity.

      Liked by 1 person

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