I’ve had a really bad cold for the last two weeks and it has made me extremely lazy (and the U.K.’s largest producer of snot). I have fallen behind with PhD work, with writing, and with anything remotely related to not being a zombie. One of the joys of working with little kids three days a week is that they are mini perti dishes of new and wonderful germs.
My body does not like germs.
So while I am playing catch-up this week, all the writing that I actually want to be doing has fallen by the wayside. The gratitude challenge for last week was focused on my greatest accomplishment. This one is really hard for me. I’m not sure I have a specific moment that would qualify as my greatest accomplishment. The one thing that I can think of is surviving my first encounter with a PhD program and not letting it completely destroy me. A mere two months after that all fell apart I had an interview for my current position. While there were a lot of tears, a lot of hiding in bed, and a lot of therapy, I did not completely sink into the dark and twisty, and was able to find a program that I am better suited to, and I got to return to Scotland. Now, I am two months into my new life here and I feel like I never left. Even though my days are not always sunshine and rainbows (Because really, the sun doesn’t shine here), I am happier than I have been in a really really long time. I’ve been reunited with some of my favorite people, made some pretty kick ass new friends, and am well on my way to settling into a great life here.
The gratitude challenge for this week is hobbies. I have a lot of hobbies that I enjoy, but there are a couple that I am extra grateful for. I often get mocked for my love of yoga pants and brightly colored yoga mats, but this is one hobby that I am seriously grateful for. I took up yoga about 15 years ago to help stay flexible for swimming, but it has become something that I really enjoy doing when I am stressed, having a bad day, or when I want to show off for cute boys. I have been lucky enough to meet some great people who do yoga, and even got to help one of my friends as she went through certification to become a yoga teacher. It is a hobby that has a lot of benefits for my health, and keeps me from punching stupid people on a regular basis. I’ve been majorly slacking on my practice lately, but I am going to make a conscious effort to do at least 20 minutes a day. Scorpion pose is in my future.
The other hobby that I am grateful for is my love of reading. That hobby has not only allowed me access to some wonderful books, but has kept me gainfully employed since I was 14 years old. I’ve worked in every type of library you can imagine, and have been a student of words since I was 18. Most recently my love of reading helped me get a job at a learning center. The extra cash is nice, and the kids are a fun break from higher education. I love it when they tease me about the way I say tomato, or when they get excited about being assigned to my zone. The kids have even started drawing me pictures to put on my desk at work. My favorite is the purple dinosaur with a blue tail and face.
The best part of the job so far is a little man named Angus. I’m not 100% sure what Angus has, but I am guessing undiagnosed ADD, and some emotional issues. Angus and I met last week, and it was a struggle to get him to do anything. When he came into the center yesterday, he asked to be put in my section, gave me a big hug, and I got him to sit through one and a half of his tasks (no small feat, trust me). He even made me a picture before he left for the day. I know that it really isn’t a big deal, and I am not going to solve his attention issues, but it is nice to think that he is not hating the hour that he spends in the center. He hates reading, so I am going to try and find some really funny books that he can read so that maybe he will hate it a little less. If I can share that hobby with him, maybe, just maybe, I can get him to sit through a whole session.