Friday, April 12, 2019

A Gift From The Baseball Gods

As loyal readers have probably noticed by the decreased pace of my posting, I've been in a state of exhaustion lately. At the my job I've been teaching an overloaded schedule since November, and it has finally caught up with me. Teaching four different preps this marking period has ended up being more than I can handle. This isn't the last time I have found myself in a position where no matter how much work I do I never feel like it's enough, but this is the first time I have felt that way since I was a professor. Every day this week I have not fallen asleep in bed, but passed out in my armchair on the couch. And by passed out I mean not drifting off to sleep, but losing consciousness with a quick, fearsome violence.

My spring break ended only two weeks ago but it feels like it never even happened. At times like this I am especially irritated at the people who act like teaching is a cushy gig for the numbers of days "off" it has compared to others. They don't realize that it requires being both "on" and hyper-patient with (in my case) rooms full of hormonal teenagers in thrall to spring's awakening. I'd like to make everyone who isn't a teacher do the job for a week or even a day. I get the feeling our pay and respect would shoot up.

In the middle of all this soul-crushing stress I've had a couple of moments of bliss that I must credit to the gods of baseball. I have been trying to expose my six year old daughters to baseball for years, and this season one of them really seems to have gotten the bug. We went to the Mets game last Sunday, and she did not complain about wanting to leave early. In fact, she kept wanting to know more about the game and the players. Every night this week she has begged to stay up and watch the Mets on TV. Tonight being a Friday she got her wish, and she fell asleep in my arms as the Mets took on the Braves. I didn't notice she had even fallen asleep, I was kind of in that wonderfully empty state of being one can fall into when exhausted with a baseball game on. Before conking out she borrowed my phone and read off the entire team's roster, especially interested in their uniform numbers.

In times of stress and fatigue I appreciate baseball because it is like a daily friend, always there when I need it. Right now, when I barely have the energy to do anything apart from work, that friend has been a real helper. My mind gets freed, and when the Mets screw up my simmering frustrations have a relatively harmless outlet. To know that my daughter will perhaps have that friend in her life too is just sublime.

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