hit me

26 Sep

I have to do my grading online.  I have to read the essays, correct and give feedback, all online, on this lovely little laptop that I am happily typing on right now.  I often do this task at home, and I am learning so much about myself and addiction through the difficulty that I often have in this task.

The inbuilt tools with grading online, with its shortcuts and wonderful ready loaded lessons, would appear to earlier versions of myself as miraculous.  However, (and I know you know where I am going next) I find the self-discipline needed to complete the task  (of say, grading forty essays) can be hard to find and my work is prolonged by many factors, all of which relate to addiction.

The task is challenging, grading.  Even with full attention on the task, I don’t seem to get much faster at it. After years of it, I have hardly ever found it top of my list for activities I wish to do.   What is so instructive now is watching myself (some part of myself) cry out for distraction, below the level of surface awareness.  This dreaded task is gifting me the view of the characters in me who cry out to the dealer – HIT ME.  HIT ME.  HIT ME again.  There are fractured selves that come up for observation.  One of them uses food for entertainment. One of them could nap her life away. One looks for hits in communication. One looks for beauty and art and inspiration in the endless pools of sights and sounds this world offers, now more than ever, through the searching on the web.  One likes to be surprised by strangeness. One likes to uncover lies. One plans. One ponders her image, and tries to fix perceived smudges in the mirror of the world. One likes to clean when it isn’t time to clean. One could walk for miles when there are some pressing deadlines. One dives into moments past and rearranges years. Endless.  I’ve just named those milling about my living room this very moment.

I’m writing this blogpost while my last 19 essays remain to be graded. How perfect the task, how perfect the distraction, how perfect the one who watches it all without any judgement. The flow of this life somehow always works out, the tasks get done, the life gets lived, well or not well– irrelevant through some views. Improvement does not come from disgust. I am simply learning who is asking for the reigns, so I can choose who drives.  Sometimes the car goes in the ditch in the process, but that is all part of the fun.

Reporting from the side of the road, waving to you, reader, as you fly by.  Who chooses to do what you do when you do it? Who is crying for a hit? Who chooses to allow the hit or to get to work?  Who is calling the mental health hotline and giving them my address right now?   The United States of M.  🙂


9 Responses to “hit me”

  1. M.C. September 27, 2017 at 3:27 am #

    I almost could have written this because as I read it, I have peer reviews and essays accessible on this very laptop of mine that I could (should?) be grading instead of reading this very soothing blog entry of yours. Nearly all of the people you mentioned also live in my house, in addition to one who can while hours of productive time away working on jigsaw puzzles (I have a 1500-piece one half finished), one who can quote episodes of Law & Order: Criminal Intent, and one who fantasizes about whether to sign up for a drawing, ballet, or photography class. I do *not* have the one who watches it all w/out judging, but I do have his twin/nemesis who judges everything. I’m going to make him read this blog post.

    • marga t. October 1, 2017 at 12:48 pm #

      Oh the judger. She was out this weekend some. She’s such a dear, trying to get the world in order, sweeping up a dirt path through some metaphoric woods. Hope your puzzle is headed toward a perceivable image! 🙂

      • M.C. October 1, 2017 at 4:52 pm #

        “Hope your puzzle is headed toward a perceivable image.” I just wanted to point out that you’ve composed a lovely benediction, suitable for just about any occasion I can think of. Also, I’m down to the last couple hundred pieces or so of the jigsaw puzzle. Of course, they’are all nearly indistinguishable fragments of the sky. Appropriate, no?

  2. Michael September 29, 2017 at 7:29 pm #

    You have a human tribe living in you, M. This is a fact. I’m sure everyone can relate to this in one way or another. For me it comes primarily when the work that must be done feels like busywork, and the recipients of said work will not rightly value the effort. Then we know we are merely laboring, spending our time as if it was valueless, and we pine for a distraction. I can be quite content in the most menial of tasks if it is of value to another person, and I’m sure you don’t mind grading the essays of those students who are engaged and grateful for the feedback that you give. (Wishing in hindsight, I’d have thought to be more grateful of my teachers…) It’s when we’re chained to a task and the recipient is disinterested, or is in attendance because they have to be, that leads me to this state most swiftly. It’s hard to give a second best effort, too, isn’t it!? I’m always reminded in these times of Walter Russell’s mantra: what I must do, I will desire to do, and I will make an art of it. It can help once in a while, too. Ha!

    May your students be grateful!

    • marga t. October 1, 2017 at 12:58 pm #

      You’ve hit a nail with a soft mallet, M. I am feeling that there are clues in the resistance that point to some dynamic that is underlying the actual struggle, which is not actually about procrastination or laziness or a lack of will power. There is a clue that is pointing to meaningful interaction as you so rightly observe. I have discovered some ways to get to the heart of the matter in ways that are productive rather than frustrating. I am also wondering about the signals of change that come about that can be embraced or ignored. What is it I wish to do? How do I wish to conduct my days in its moments? How do I step into life that allows for expression and creativity and freedom that still keeps the blender of smoothies flowing and the lights on in an abode of some sort. Perhaps, at times, we can not stay married to the present discomfort indefinitely, but can instead marry the possibilities of our choices in life that we are not seeing that resistance and snacking behaviors may be pointing to. So lovely to dance a bit with your words this morning, M! meaningful interaction – a wonderful creative endeavor. I’m working to align the desires the do’s and the art. Russell’s words are such boiled down deliciousness of lived wisdom. grateful! m

  3. Ka Malana - Fiestaestrellas.com October 2, 2017 at 2:44 pm #

    Really, I loved this!

    • marga t. October 5, 2017 at 11:07 pm #

      so fun to visit with you again!

  4. mcaimbeul October 5, 2017 at 2:12 am #

    I wave back from the ditch across the street,

    • marga t. October 5, 2017 at 11:08 pm #

      Couldn’t ask for better company 🙂

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