Monday, July 11, 2005


Somehow it fits that I wouldn’t have morning sickness since I am not, and have never been, a morning person. Instead, I have afternoon sickness, which segues really gracefully into time-for-bed sickness.

Saltines do a boffo job of muting the queasiness. Now if only I knew what to feed my head. Tonight, my brain is the rollerdome, circa 1954. All my worries clatter round it on horrid metal wheels.

Things I Must Accomplish in the Dwindling Remaining Weeks of Summer
• research and write conference paper on new topic
• write popular (non-scholarly) article by mid-July
• finish revising book manuscript
• prepare for autumn job search

It’s item #3 that’s really freaking me out. I signed the contract a month ago, and I haven’t been working nearly as diligently (or as often) as I should. Technically, I’ve been “unpacking my office,” which indeed has taken over a month. But, really, this procrastination is getting ridiculous, even for me.

Things I Am Worried About
• obligation to go visit former town (too many people to see in too few days)
• in-laws’ impending visit (love them, but five days is way, way too much)
• missing books for new project (I’ve unpacked the last box. Where are they?)
• body feels so strange
• my lack of tunnel vision (the useful kind)

What if I can’t get a job next year? What if I am too much of a putterer to ever make it as an academic? Do I even want to make it as an academic? What’s with A’s oft-voiced desire that we split a tenured position some day? Why does this sound so unappealing to me? And why do I cynically assume that I’ll get the proverbial short end of the stick?

Oh, wait. I can answer this one. I need my own job at my own institution. Or, at very least, in my own department.

But life in academia often feels so airless and unrewarding. (I think that’s true. I don’t think that’s my fear or laziness talking.) That said, it’s still better than any other job I’ve known.

This would have been my tenth year of teaching. I am really grateful for the respite.

Getting sleepy now, but I know I won’t be able to sleep. I can sometimes cure my nausea by breathing the comforting scent of Adam’s skin. Isn’t that sweet? Yeah, and then the next minute I want to kill him because he’s raked me with his stupid toenails AND rolled over with all the covers. Oh, and no, I don’t think it’s cute when his 15-pound cat wakes me up by walking on my chest. Or when I wake up with said cat’s ass on my pillow. On this point, Adam and I will continue to disagree.

Boy, am I cranky, or what?

We have a lot of art supplies. Really, quite a lot. Some of these are the Christmas gifts I gave Adam. He’s a wonderful artist, and occasionally used to sketch when he felt stressed. I gave him some top-notch supplies in honor of his new job and (selfishly) in hopes that he might whip up some art for our very bare walls. The gift failed, because I underestimated Adam’s tunnel vision. The only person to use the lovely pastels so far is I… and the results are underwhelming.

Our newly organized supply closet also brims with stamps, crayons, markers, glitter paint, and all manner of other supplies that I’ve purchased over the years for my freshmen orientations or for me. (Mostly for making greeting cards. I am so not an artist.)

Maybe I should open a kindergarten.

Tomorrow. Tomorrow I might not be such a narcoleptic. Tomorrow I—and my concentration—will be so much better.

It had better be. It will be. I will it to be.


At 10:45 PM, Blogger What Now? said...

Things I want to know more about:

* The popular (non-academic) article. This sounds very cool--something that more than a few people might actually read! Tell us more.

* This contract you signed. Does this mean that you have a book contract? Did we know about this? Is this exciting?

At 2:01 AM, Blogger Mel said...

I've been unpacking our house for a month. And now I'm also unpacking my new office at the U. Which seems important, b/c I can't concentrate if everything is crazy around me. But at some point I do have to wonder, also...

re nausea, there is a spot on your arm you can press for some relief: link

At 10:12 PM, Anonymous YelloCello said...

Mel, thanks VERY much for the accupressure tip. It does seem to work. Or, at very least, it has worked two out of two times that I tried it this afternoon. You are a wealth of good information, you know that? (Haven't forgotten how you helped with the ovarian cyst info.)

What Now, I'm afraid I made that non-academic sound more interesting than it is. It's just a recurring thing that I've been asked to write. Meanwhile, yes, I did sign a book contract, but have been too ashamed to write about it here because I have accomplished so blessed little on revisions. Am trying very hard now to change that... As the saying goes, if it weren't for the last minute, a lot of things would never get done. Sadly, I'm still very often on CelloTime, where everything takes me far longer than I expect and where I procrastinate like mad before beginning a project. Something about this project, in particular, I found especially terrifying.

At 4:09 PM, Blogger Madame Lisa Who Knows All said...

I had truly awful 24/7 sickness (nausea alone would have been a blessing) with my daughter - crackers were some small help. Better yet was Ovaltine in milk (when I could get it down), it could keep things under control at least for me to get to work without having Great Issues in the car.

And you can get Sea Bands at the pharmacy - they push those acupressure spots and are great for long trips/etc that require the use of your hands. I discovered them late in my pregnancy, sadly, but they were a great help for the last trimester (as the tummy troubles were still clipping right along).


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