Tap Dancing

Well, I’ve officially been a part-time student and a full-time employee for three weeks now, and I’m starting to fray.

Mondays and Wednesdays I’m up and out of the house by 8:30 a.m. I head to classes until 1:40 p.m., and then head directly to work afterwards. After my shift at the hospital, I’m out the door and if I’m lucky, home by 11:30 p.m. Fridays I only have one class, so it’s a bit of a break, but those first two days are killer. In addition, I work every other Saturday morning (I have the previous Friday off work but still have class). Out of class, I’m studying most of the time, or trying to keep up with chores, and create art somewhere in there. I am exhausted much of the time. This week, with the addition of getting up at 5 a.m. Saturday morning for work, I pushed the boundaries of what I could manage. Last night I finally got the first full night’s sleep I’d had in a week. Only fourteen more weeks to go!

I’m not only burning the candle at both ends, but I’m warming up the middle while I’m at it.

I can’t help but wonder what time I would have had for Dustin in the midst of this craziness. I can’t help but wonder how he would have coped, how I would have. It could very well have turned out to be more than even I could handle. On the other hand, his encouragement would have been a huge boost and having his arms to fall into at night when I am cold and exhausted would have been a huge comfort. I know he’s proud of me, I know he’s rooting for me, but sometimes what a girl really needs is a hug.

I’m starting to get a little overwhelmed, but I’m doing a decent job of keeping a lid on it and trying to focus on what I have to get done right now instead of trying to encompass the whole. I’m on track so far, my grades are high, and I have high hopes for my first exams beginning Feb. 18. I decided to request a day off that day–not because I need it for the exam, but because I could use the mental health break. We’ll see if my request is granted or not.

Otherwise, there’s a small spring break coming up in March, if I can hang in that long. Considering how much money I’d owe the hospital if I burn out, I think I’ll grit my teeth and bear it whether I think I can or not.

I know many people handle this workload, and many handle more, and I have nothing but respect for that. I knew it would be hard as an older student, but I didn’t expect exhaustion would be my biggest issue. I’m hoping as we roll on and I start to adjust and the weather warms, I’ll cope better. I don’t really have any other choice. And on that note, I have a chapter to finish, and laundry to fold. And so it goes.

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