Hold on, isn't it Monday that's supposed to be manic? Tell that to the butterflies in my stomach, which are beginning to flutter away now that my main stress event is past.
But not all stress is bad. This was actually good stress—it was my turn to teach today at church. I work with a small group of girls ranging in age from 12-18. I've had assignments in many different capacities with this organization for most of the last fourteen years. I've been president three times in two different congregations, and I've worked as counselor to another president, and I've had umpteen jobs as camp staff. Right now I'm the low woman on the totem pole, so to speak, the expendable assistant camp director, but I join the girls for their class on Sunday and their mid-week activities. Last Friday we went to a university production of James and the Giant Peach, performed by a traveling troupe that specializes in American Sign Language theatre. (Sad to say, they reworked Roahl Dahl's plot almost more than I could bear. Rrrrr!) Today I got to present the lesson, a free-style one, not from our usual curriculum. I seem to keep getting handed free-style weeks. Maybe the other leaders know how [ahem] great I am at following directions and so let me do my own thing. Suits me fine.
I had a really interesting week leading up to this class. I felt a queasy undercurrent of panic every time I thought of it. What am I going to teach them? What do they need to know? Honestly, I am at my ease when I write, but I am out of my element when it's time to open my mouth and make something comprehensible come out. I often get trapped by fear of failure, of dropping the ball. We don't get that many moments to work with these kids before they're grown and flown.
At any rate, I was given a very general topic to focus on: Individual Worth. I began to notice last Sunday that I was getting little bits and pieces of . . . something. I could feel my lesson floating around out there. Sometimes I could see it with my peripheral vision, but as soon as I'd turn to look at it straight on—poof! Gone. But every day I'd get a whisper, a hint, a puzzle piece. Drinking a cup of Yogi Tea on Wednesday, I read a dangling fortune that said: "Your infinity in you is the reality in you." I'd be in a conversation and something would grab my attention and I'd go frantic to find a piece of paper to write an idea on. My lesson was more like a scrap heap of thoughts till yesterday morning, when a Big Idea hit me while I was in the shower. Everything finally made sense, and I was excited. I spent most of yesterday and part of this morning working it out.
I've still got a whole lot to learn about teaching, but I think it went well enough. We had some good discussion and a sweet feeling attended us. I think some valuable concepts were spoken about with enough clarity to hit home. We taught each other.
My girls are such fine people. I know it goes against the grain a bit, but I love young people, hormonal misfortunes and mood swings and mystery notwithstanding. I wasn't wildly successful at being a teenager myself, so I guess it's something of an irony that I love them now that I could be their mother. I'm a survivor of adolescence at least; maybe that means something.
So, that's the way March rolled in for me. All in my head instead of out in the sun. Now it's time to roll up my sleeves and get to work—on renovating my house, on visiting with out-of-towner company, on beefing up the Morning Stories Blog, on enough work and reckless whims to overwhelm me if it wasn't suddenly spring, and everything a-popping with new life, and fresh air, and renewed energy for come-what-may. My husband is now down very sick like I was with the flu (don't know what took him so long). I will sand and paint the living room floor this week, then our new windows will arrive, and then it will be time to paint. I'm glad I'm busy. It feels like the right time to go a little too fast. But that means today I'll have to get organized if I intend to keep myself on track.
But before I break out my pencil and my at-a-glance calendar, I need a Sunday nap.