Can’t I just give up now?

I have so much work to do.  I do not like it.

Yesterday, my friend messaged me on Facebook, saying she was depressed and had a bunch of work to do.  So we talked and encouraged each other and we actually got some work done.  Well, I wrote two pages in an hour, which was good, but that’s pretty much where my productivity stopped.  I still have to write at least three pages for that paper, plus a bunch of others.  I also have to make a video.  I did recording for that last night, since I couldn’t get any writing done.  That was good, I guess, but there’s so much to do.  Today, in my six hours between classes, I will try to write some papers and work on the video.  I’m already feeling super anxious, so I doubt that’s going to go well.  More likely, I’ll just sit here and not get anything done.

Right now, I am going to get something done.  I’m going to write the voiceovers for my video.  Basically, my video has two parts:  a breathing exercise to kind of give viewers a sense of what anxiety can feel like, and the video of me doing nothing while Matchbox 20’s Unwell plays.  That part, I think, will also flash statistics of mental illness, especially anxiety in kids (it’s for my education class), and have some voiceovers of me saying things that kind of give a glimpse of what I think about sometimes.  It’s sort of a performance art/public service announcement, ideally.  I’m really nervous about it because I don’t know how my classmates will receive it, but I think it will be okay and I don’t have to deal with them after this semester if I don’t choose to, probably, so that makes it a little better.

Anyway, I’m thinking of doing snippets of voice during the song, layering the audio and visual components to sort of reflect how there’s always so much going on in my mind.  I guess I’m trying to give them the feeling of being overwhelmed while not detracting from the message.  What’s the message?  I guess I’m just trying to bring awareness to mental health issues so that they can be sympathetic to students who are suffering and not make it worse.

So I’m going to type snippets now…yeah…I was also looking back through some blog entries for quotes, but I didn’t like doing that too much and it takes a while, so I think I’ll stick to this process.

I don’t know.  I just don’t know anything.  Except I do.  I know a lot.  I just feel like I don’t.

I’m stuck.  I can’t do anything.  I want to, but I can’t.  I can’t decide what to do or how to do it.  There are just too many options, too many possibilities.  I’m stuck, even when I know what to do and how to do it.  I know exactly what I want to get done, I just can’t.

I sit here for hours, doing nothing.  This is not fun.  This is not relaxing.  This is horrible.  This is painful.  This is not productive or comfortable or desirable.  This is pathetic.  I am pathetic.

I am hopelessly depressed, inexplicably anxious, and painfully aware of the ridiculousness of it all.

When I see you, my first thought is not to say hi.  It’s to hide.  To get away so that I don’t have to interact, so that I’m not expected to talk to you or look at you or have you look at me.  It’s not that I don’t like you, ’cause I do.  It’s just that it hurts me to say hello.  It’s just that I feel like I don’t know what to do and I’m afraid of doing something not right.  I’m afraid of hurting you and of you hurting me, so I avoid you.  It’s just better that way.

Well, with what I already had, that’s a page of typing.  Should be enough for snippets in my less than four minute song.

I emailed one of my professors, the one who teaches the class the video’s for, about not presenting it tomorrow, but on Thursday instead.  She said we can push it back however much I need.  So at least that’s good and I don’t have to worry about it too much.  Now, I just get to worry about it because that’s what I do.  And I can worry about everything else, because it is due (or overdue)…yay.

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I already wrote this

but it wouldn’t let me post (“unauthorized”), so I copied and pasted into a new window, published, closed the tab…and then realized that it only posted the first paragraph.  Now, I get to rewrite everything.  Oh joy.

It’s okay though, because I realized my computer needs to charge and the spot next to the outlet was open, so I took advantage of that.  Now, I need to wait for it to charge so that I can go to advising and show them what classes I want to take.  I should have gone an hour ago (it’s walk-in, so I don’t have a specific appointment time), but I didn’t.  Hopefully, there isn’t too long of a line and I’m able to get through it quickly and get to my volunteering position on time.

Today, we’re going to print tulips with forks.  I found it on the internet and it’s springy and at the clients’ level, so that’s what I’m doing.  After I’m done there, I’m going home.  And then, the fun starts.  I’ll be Skyping with my cousin and some amount of her five kids for our first virtual art lesson (she homeschools, I help).  I’ve made a website and everything.  It’s going to be AWESOME!!!!!!!  I’m a little bit excited; can you tell?

It’s really sunny in this spot next to the outlet.  That makes it difficult to see the screen.  Oh well, that’s what I get for being an art major in an art building that doesn’t have a lot of outlets, I guess.  ‘Cause, you know, I totally choose my schools based on electricity accessibility.

I’ve already forgotten most of what I wrote about earlier.  Oh well.  I think I’ll record thoughts on my drive home (by talking to a recorder) and then type them up later.  I do that now.  It’s helpful for homework, I’ve discovered.  I’ve written two things that way, and it makes it way easier for me.  Who knew driving could be so productive?

I guess I’ll be done here for now.  Maybe I’ll write more later, about my application to the college of education and my interesting class discussions.  Or maybe I won’t.  I don’t know yet.

Another Post!

Well, it looks like I might be posting more frequently this semester.  I have this awkward 1/2 hour break between two classes, but they’re in the same room, so there’s really no point in leaving.  I guess that means I’ll blog.

If I’m going to be blogging a lot, I suppose I should try to come up with something more interesting to write about.  I mean, I know the details of my life are fascinating…but really.

Let’s see…what to write about…oh, I know.

Here’s an article that one of my education professors asked our class to read today.  Basically, the issue at hand, though it’s a bit clouded in this article, is student privacy.  Specifically, a teacher posted a class picture on her personal Facebook account.  Now, she might be fired, but the school board is unclear as of this moment.

So the question is, should she be fired and did she do something wrong…well, that’s complicated.  I don’t know of any laws that specifically state that teachers can’t put pictures of kids online like that (but there certainly could be).  However, in my experience, a lot (most?) organizations, schools, etc. that work with kids have policies against that sort of thing.  For instance, at camp, we are not allowed to post photos of campers.  The camp can, on official sites, but only with written permission from guardians.  From reading this article (which, let’s be honest, isn’t an example of very rigorous journalistic investigation), it seems that this school/district did not have such a policy in place.  If they did, and she violated it, of course she should be fired.  But if they didn’t…remove the picture, of course…but, more importantly, make a rule about it to prevent future problems.

I think she should have used some common sense and not done that, but if they don’t have a policy, there’s really no grounds to fire her.  Move on.

The larger issue this brings up, I think, is that times, they are a’changin’.  Schools, and everything, basically, need to keep up with technology, media, and society as a whole to prevent things like this from happening.  Posting pictures of kids who aren’t yours on the internet without permission is, frankly, stupid, and people need to realize that.  Maybe it’s the individual’s responsibility to learn that for themselves, or maybe the organizations need to take initiative and do some leading.  Either way, things like this, I think, will continue happening as long as people try to ignore or avoid change.

Well, time for class now.  Type to you later.

The Flu

Last weekend, as I mentioned in my previous post, I was at camp.  It was a lovely time.  I held the camp baby, made a cookie with her three year old brother, failed at melty beads, watched toboggans, ate yummy food, and made friends with campers.  Then, I went home and taught Sunday school Sunday morning, took a nap, and probably did some other stuff, before waking up Monday with a cough.  It wasn’t too bad.  Until the afternoon.  By 4:37ish, I had a fever, lots of pain, bad coughs, headache, dizziness, and general ickiness.  I went to the doctor, where they x-rayed my chest to make sure I didn’t have pneumonia and stuck a giant Q-tip up my nose to confirm the flu.  The latter was positive.  I had influenza b.

Now, it’s been almost a week, and I feel a lot better, but I still have a cough, some aches and pains, and my front bottom teeth hurt.  I don’t know if that’s related, but I thought you’d like to know.  This flu is mean.  Last Tuesday, I was supposed to work at Goodwill, go to a knitting meeting, hang out with a friend, and go to the dentist.  My attendance at all of those, of course, was cancelled.  I was also planning on going to my cousin’s house to do art with her five kids, but now it’s too late and I’ll have to wait.  Hopefully, I can make it work for spring break, but I don’t know.

Also, school is being stupid.  My adviser knows nothing about the education program, and I can’t find anyone who does who will talk to me.  Now, with about a week left before school starts, I’m considering switching schools or taking a semester off.  This is not what I want to do, but if they’re going to be stupid about it, I don’t really have a more logical choice.

On the plus side of this flu, I’ve done some stuff out of boredom.  I made a few cards and wrote some letters in them, made a few macrame bracelets, started my brother’s Christmas present (a macrame necklace), played a bit of Pokemon and a bit of the Sims Medieval, did some word and logic puzzles, and watched hours of Ancient Alien Astronaut Theories on the History Channel (I may have been at least partially asleep through most of those, though, because, let’s face it, those shows are stupid and the narrator’s voice is sleepy).  I also managed to put some new podcasts and things on my iPod and have been listening to those the last couple days.  I quite enjoyed Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me and This American Life.  There was also one that mentioned Little Free Library, which is a really awesome nonprofit you should probably check out by clicking the handy dandy little free link I provided.  That got me started, again, on thinking about the nonprofit I want to start and looking into things to do with that, like other organizations and how to start a business plan and all that jazz…but then I got bored and tired, so I rested and haven’t returned to that stuff yet this afternoon.

Well, I’m getting tired of this, so I think I’ll go find something else to do.

Early

I had to get up early today so that I could get to school early so that I could unwrap a clay cup and wait for it to dry.  My life is so exciting.

On my way to school, I missed my exit and had to drive at least 10 extra minutes to get back to where I needed to be.  Oh the horror.

An update on ceramics, because you really do care oh so much:  I carved four of the teacups I needed and they’re not too ugly.  I carved a hole into one, so I had to throw a new one (that’s the one that isn’t dry yet).  Once it’s ready, I have to trim it and carve the foot and then carve the body to match the others.  I spent hours trying to make satisfactorily hand built teacups, but they were all ugly or fell apart or both or something else, so I gave up on Saturday and went home.  I took clay home with me and yesterday, instead of driving to school, stayed home and managed to make five pinch pot teacup things with the help of custard bowls.  They aren’t too bad.  So that assignment’s almost done, which is good ’cause it’s due in half an hour.  I probably won’t have that last cup done because it’s still too wet to trim and there’s just not enough time to finish it before class starts, but at least I have most of it done and can probably finish that one cup today.  We will probably be having demos for teapot making today, too, so that’ll take some time, and we’re unloading our first glaze kiln probably, so that’ll take some more time.  Maybe I won’t actually finish that cup in class, but probably this afternoon.  Maybe.

The art department chairperson still hasn’t emailed me back telling me where her mailbox is, so I guess I’ll just have to go to her office this evening and hope she’s there at the time she told me she could possibly meet me.  I need to get those forms signed before they decide I’ve taken too long and try to make me keep the class and get an F.  That wouldn’t be the best way to start at this new school, and I have a legitimate reason to drop.

If anybody reading this (if anyone has read this far) is an expert paper pop-up maker or something like that, I could use your help.  For my drawing class, I’m making a pop up page of an ancient Greek statue hitchhiking on a modern countryside.  Yeah, it’s weird, but those were the words I ended up with.  So what I need help with is making the illusion of depth beyond the flat pieces popping out.  I just can’t seem to get it to be satisfactory in my mini models.  I have class tonight, work time tomorrow, and critique on Wednesday, so I need to get this figured out soon because I haven’t started drawing the pieces or background yet (because I don’t know how big they should be or what they should look like.

There’s nothing to report going on in my special ed. class.  I’m going to try to talk to the teacher today about the test questions I don’t understand.  I was going to do that last week, but she seemed busy and we only had class one day.  I was also going to print the email I sent her for reference, but I forgot, so I guess I’ll just have to use my computer to access it and get the specifics, ’cause I certainly don’t remember anymore.

I still have about 15 minutes before I need to head to class.  I would go now, but there’s already a class in there working, and I don’t have anything to do in the studio (I’m pretty sure the cup won’t be ready, and even if it is, there’s not enough time to finish it).  Oh well, guess I’ll stay here on the computer.

Also in the realm of helping me, if you have any ideas for crafts/art projects to do with adults with (mostly cognitive and some physical) disabilities, or know where I could find a good source or two with ideas, please let me know.  It’s not that I don’t have ideas of my own, but I’m always looking for more and better.

Surprisingly, for getting up around 6am, I’m not too tired.  I know, 6 isn’t really that early, but I still don’t like it. I’d rather get up at 8 or 9…or noon…

I have a few posts saved as drafts that I think will be actually interesting and informative, not just telling of my exciting waits for clay to dry, but they’re long…and I keep losing attention and/or getting overwhelmed by them.  I’m worried that they’ll lose their interest and meaning because the timeliness of them will be ruined by me taking so long to finish and post.  Oh well.  That worry’s not going to change anything; I just thought you’d like to know.

I suppose I can start packing up and heading to class now, so I guess I’ll publish this.  Since I did this post this morning, maybe I’ll work on one or more of those in progress posts this afternoon.  Or not.  I’ll see.  And you may, too, eventually.

Is it nap time yet?

Maybe it is, but there’s nowhere for me to sleep right now.  I am tired.  I slept all day yesterday, except for maybe six hours total, and four of those were only because I had decided to hang out with my friend weeks ago and this was the first time we were able to.  Now, I’m at school, and I want to be at home, sleeping.  But I can’t go home now; I have to stay and work on ceramics.  15 teacups are due on Monday, and I don’t have any done yet.  I will most likely need to come in this weekend to work, too, but I’d rather get the most done that I can today.  I also have a pop-up thing to make for my drawing class.  It’s due Wednesday, but I want to get a lot of it done this weekend, but I will be able to do it in class Monday and at home Tuesday.  Plus, I have my normal chapter notes to do for special ed. that are due tonight.  And I have to get signatures for dropping my art metals class.  I have the teacher’s, but I need to get one from the chair of the department before taking the sheet to the dean’s office, and nobody’s in the chair’s office when I check.  I would check now, but I’m tired and semi comfortable, so I don’t think I will.  Later.  Maybe.

Soooooooooooo tired.

There was something else I was going to write about.  What was it?

I really don’t remember.  I just want to sleep.  Why am I so tired?  Maybe I’m depressed.  Well, of course I am.  Maybe I’m low on iron.  Probably.  Maybe I’m just a sleepy person.  Maybe I got into bad sleeping habits.  Sleep is just so nice.

On…Wednesday, maybe, I transferred my Multiply blogs (including my transfer of 360 blogs) to Blogger.  I have to go through and add the photos and such, but that shouldn’t take too long…only 400 some posts…

Okay, I really don’t know what to write, so I’m going to stop trying.  Maybe I’ll go back to ceramics…or maybe I’ll do that later…or maybe I’ll just go home…that would be a poor choice…hmmmm

Finished Reading, now for Math

I mentioned here a while ago that I had started reading Suzanne Antonetta’s A Mind Apart:  Travels in a Neurodiverse World.  Well, I finished it just a few moments ago (depending on what a moment is), and now I kind of want to read it again and take notes and let my thoughts go and see where they take me from her words.  But it’s due back at the library tomorrow and I have school work to do and many other things and I’m a little afraid of being open to the ramblings of my mind while reading again, so I’m not going to do that.  However, there were some words near the end that I stuck my bookmark into to share with you because I had something to say about them.

Page 215:  “My mind ways give me an inability to see things simply, a common syndrome of the neurodiverse.”

This reminds me of trying to do homework in elementary school.  I would have math worksheets to fill out, and did them quickly, with no issues, until I got to the final problem or two (they were always at the end, these troublesome questions).  Then, I had trouble.  I don’t remember how severe my reactions were, but I do remember spending inordinate amounts of time on these last problems, needing my parents to talk me through them again and again, until finally I gave up and wrote the answer.  It wasn’t that I didn’t know the answer all along–I most certainly did.  The problem was that these worksheets always ended with prompts like “Explain your answer.”  I always thought that the answer was complicated, though I knew it wasn’t because it was the same every day and the lines provided weren’t long enough for such an answer, especially in first grade handwriting.  Why, I wondered, did I have to explain my answer…it was right, it was right because that’s just how it worked, because I did it right, and explaining it would be highly complex and philosophical (though I didn’t put it into those words at that time), and anyway, why did I need to explain it–the teacher already understood and knew I understood.  These were very, very simple questions, and I just…didn’t get it, in some part of me.  I did understand and knew what I needed to write and could have been done with it so much more quickly and easily, but I couldn’t.  I just couldn’t answer those questions without making sure someone knew I thought they were stupid.  Or maybe that wasn’t it; I don’t remember thinking that at the time, but it seems a reasonable enough explanation.  Having gone through much more school since then, I have come to realize that people, apparently, have low standards and don’t really expect me to do my best when answering such questions, no matter what they may claim philosophically.  They do not expect me to write an excellent essay to the best of my abilities; they expect average, to the best of a mediocre twelve year old’s abilities (at the college level; in first grade, of course, a lower level was expected).  They do not expect brilliantly explained theories of anything from me; they simply want me to answer the question, and do it simply.  My college textbooks, particularly one for teacher education, are written quite poorly…well, maybe not…maybe it’s average.  Even this blog…the proofreader suggests taking out “complex expressions” like “require” and replacing them with words like “need” to make it easier to read.  I’m sorry, but require is not a complex word.  And passive sentences…I’ll admit I use them a bit more than is necessary, especially online, where I don’t put forth my best effort (do I ever?), but really, I think most people reading this blog will be able to understand “The papers were given to me” or “The teacher gave me the papers” or “I received the papers” equally well.  They all say the same thing.  Or perhaps I am seeing this too simply or not thinking simply enough.  Going back to those math worksheets, what I needed, at least what helps in similar situations now, is rewording of the question to sort of unlock my answer that’s stuck in my head upon reading or hearing the original wording.  I understand that different wording works for different people, but a writer cannot possibly serve everyone in a single piece, no matter the word choice or complexity of phrase or anything, so why bother trying to have “easier” readings all the time?  These better wordings annoy me and make it harder for me to read, while I know they make it easier for some others.  Why must we try to limit the diversity of thought and understanding?  Another thing from school:  you can’t start a sentence with “because” because it will be incomplete.  THIS IS FALSE!  For instance, “Because of the recent decline in woodpecker sightings, it is believed that there will be a corresponding decrease of seemingly random holes in trees.”  That’s a perfectly complete sentence, and it’s structured so that some people understand it better than they would if it said, “It is believed that there will be a decrease of seemingly random holes in trees.  This decrease corresponds to the recent decline in woodpecker sightings.”  Why are we taught cause and effect and then told we can’t use it in our writing, in order?  Because the standards of the majority are low, we are not expected to fulfill our personal potentials.  Instead, we are expected to be mediocre; at the same time, those who excel are seen as special, people who achieve the unachievable, even though many more people could excel if given the proper nurturing.

Well, that’s not quite where I was expecting to go with this post.  I don’t really know where I was going, but this wasn’t it.  I know it’s a bit, well, rambly and mediocre, but I have been conditioned to not care, and that’s the path I’m choosing to take.  The path of least resistance is…easier…than caring, though, obviously, I do care, sometimes a bit too much, apparently.  But I digress, again.  Maybe.  I’m not really sure.  Perhaps I should reword it.