Freshman papers are not fun to read. It is tedious and sometimes frustrating -- but also at times rewarding. No matter how bad it may be, it will ALWAYS be better than grilling food, making burritos, flipping burgers, working in a factory, working in warehouses... It's important to keep it in perspective.
At least I can sit here, in my home office, in the air conditioning, with any music that I want, surrounded by my favorite things, books, guitars, and CDs, challenging myself to be better and to try and help these students become better writers. If they don't take it seriously, it's not my problem, but I feel pretty lucky in that most of my class seems to take it seriously. They genuinely seem like a good group of people, and I think this is going to be a great semester.
We are all still getting to know one another, and I am still assessing their individual strengths and weaknesses, but I don't think I am going to have many problems -- if the first two weeks are any indication. I know I need to work on explaining concepts better, and getting them to force me to explain them better. I can already tell a difference from the first common writing assignment papers to the first drafts -- for the most part -- and that might just be because it is a more interesting topic, but I can tell they are at least thinking more about what they are writing.
The more that I think about it, the more that it dawns on me, that I am truly lucky to be doing what I enjoy doing for a living -- even if I am at the beginning stages of it. I think back to even just a month ago how miserable I was, and how much I hated my life, and my life now couldn't be more different. Sure, it's challenging and sometimes frustrating, and it takes up a lot of my time, but there is not much else I would rather be doing right now.
I am still working on getting better at time management, and sometimes I have a hard time forcing myself to do schoolwork, but, I am getting better, and, more often than not, doing what I need to be doing, and I have faith in myself that I will continue working on this and getting better at it -- I mean, I am still able to get plenty of sleep each night, so I must not be doing too badly.
I do wish I had more time spend with my wife, my friends, and my family, but they are all very supportive, so I am pretty lucky in that regard. While I work, I just have to keep in mind, that the more I work I put in now, the more time I will be able to spend with them later. It's hard, and frustrating, but I know it will be worth it, and that I will be able to find a good-paying job -- I just have to keep working hard and being smart about the decision that I make. It's amazing how much work it takes to get to the simple life.