It's important for all of us to take a breather now and again. I gave my last final May 14 and finished grading those exams the very next day. Posting grades is about the most pleasurable moment of my semester -- not because I enjoy inflicting pain, but because I know the next few days will be somewhat peaceful.
And then, I realized I was wrong once again.
The next few days were not peaceful. First off, e-mails slowly began trickling in because students were wondering why their grades were so low. Where had they been all semester?! I had to explain that those assignments they didn't turn in actually still factor in the figuring of the final grade. Some students actually asked for mercy because they had the best sob story of the semester (job, rent, dog ate their homework). Just a note -- the grading scales and all my expectations were in the syllabus, and I told them at the beginning of the semester to read it, know it, and love it.
Secondly, the next few days were not peaceful because I realized my home was in utter chaos. When I began cleaning on May 15 after posting those grades, I found dirt in places I don't even want to mention. The clutter was cluttered. I reached new heights of filthy this semester, and had eight days to hide my filth before my grandfather, aunt, uncle and cousin arrived from England on the 23rd.
Fortunately, the e-mails have now stopped, my family is here from England, and my house is thanking me for giving it an old-fashioned spring cleaning. Taking a breather isn't what it used to be. Last wek, I actually invited my friend, who also was my lunch date, to join me for after-lunch conversation on a shopping trip to Lowe's. Thanks, Milena, for helping me pick out a garden hose, some ant poison, and a shelf for my garage. I hope we're still friends and that you'll join me at lunch again.
I'm planning on getting better at taking breaks ... one day. I certainly can say that I haven't checked my e-mail as much over the past week, but then again, my computer is in the shop, and my husband brings his laptop to work every day.
The world is your wide web. Enjoy!