I'm sitting at my desk staring out at the unrelenting rain. I don't really mind the rain, I actually find it soothing. I had to take a couple detours to work this morning, my main route which included Rte. 60 was closed because of flooded areas, I decided to take Rte. 21 all the way to Half Day Rd. Since we're located within in a shopping center, the faculty parks in the private lot in the back of studio. To get to this back lot I have to take an off road. Approaching my usual turn off of Half Day Rd, I notice a sheriff with flashing lights, thinking maybe he's just patrolling traffic--making sure the cars are cognizant of the inclement weather and not speeding. Nope, he was definitely trying to let us know that the road was a little flooded. Stupidly, I turn my car onto the side road and feel the resistance in my tires, I drive a stick-shift so everything is more pronounced (to me at least). I actually argue that you have more control of a manual car, especially in the winter--which I love driving in. But ahh, I'm beginning to ramble. Before I know it, a wall of muddy water blankets my windshield and I grip the steering wheel more closely, my right hand down shifting from third to second gear. It's over in seconds but my little tC handled it well. I'd much rather drive in bad weather than in bad traffic, I'm incredibly impatient when it comes to sitting in traffic, perhaps a downfall of having bought a manual car. But with bad weather comes bad traffic, funny though how most people seem to forget how to drive in rain...or any kind of precipitation there is.
I'm at the dance studio, staring blankly at my iMac and for the first time today I'm by myself--no parents, no students, no one waiting. It seems the rain today has caused a lot of problems with students and parents trying to get here for Saturday morning classes. One of our instructors who lives downtown has been sitting in traffic for three hours now. I say now because she just called me with an update: having been forced to exit the Edens (it's flooded) onto Caldwell, she's now been notified that Waukegan Rd. is being closed as well. She shouts at me (not at me, but to me) in frustration on the phone, laughs and then apologizes. I've encountered my own aggravations with the Edens because of ongoing construction this summer, but nothing like this so I can only imagine...
So Saturdays are my long days here at the studio, but I enjoy them for several reasons. First of all, we have the Pre-Ballet and Tap classes this morning. The girls are just adorable. I had to fit ballet slippers on a student today who was complaining about an uncomfortable fit in her previous slippers. I had her stand as I adjusted her slippers and saw the relief in her face as I fumbled with the noodles and straps. She walked around and did some movements to test out the fit and I'm happy to announce that she was much, much more comfortable. Her mom thanked me over and over again for my help, I smiled in appreciation.
In the middle of typing my paper for my Italian Cinema class, (due in 2 weeks, but I like to stay on top of things) one of the girls headed to Jazz stopped by my desk. I greeted her and said hello and she stood there smiling. I asked her if she needed anything, thinking she needed a bottle of water or a band aid--and she shook her head. "Did you just come up here to visit me?" I asked jokingly. And she said, "Yes, I hadn't seen you in a while so I just wanted to say hi." Oh, how sweet.
All throughout the day these random instances happen and I love them. I met with my advisor this week to discuss my plans post-graduation. I told her that I was already job hunting--a task that I'm finding to be exciting and discouraging at the same time. Unfortunately the job market is not looking incredibly promising, but I have hope. My field of editing/proofreading/writing still provides great opportunities but not necessarily in the locations I had in mind. "I know you, Tasha," she began, "and I just want to throw this out there...but your field really is in New York City." She went on to explain that it's just an option and the more and more we discussed it the more and more anxious I grew. I thought to myself how amazing it would be to just pick up and start over somewhere new. Although it's not my first choice, it's currently in position #3. Back to my story, I was talking to my advisor about my resume and my job and told her everything I do at the studio. We got on the subject of non-monetary rewards, not my sole criterion in a position, but an important one nonetheless. I explained to her that I experience a high amount non-monetary rewards at my job now, it really is fulfilling. I can't help but feel accomplished, needed, and looked up to when I leave. With plans to leave here by December, I'm certainly growing nostalgic.
This past month has been rather overwhelming, stimulating and insightful. I'm realizing the value of an education, not just in the academic sense but also just in life's lessons. Recently I've been cutting people out of my life, doing away with the excess baggage, if you will. The relationships I have with the people in my life now are significant and I value that.
What else? Oh, I had difficulty sleeping last night and made a list of things. And I pause before I tell you what it was a list of, fully realizing now that it's going to sound incredibly vain. I made a list of things I just learned about myself, as well as things people have noticed about me. I think it's entertaining when people notice something about you that you didn't realize before and then you catch yourself doing it. I'm always thrown when someone says I've changed or I look different. I think it's because we don't really notice changes in ourselves, or maybe because we don't see the changes in ourselves the way others see them in us.
Anyway, I present to you the list:
- I don't sleep at the top of the bed. My head doesn't rest where the pillows are, which is at the top of the bed. I tend to sleep lower than that, my head rests just below the bottom of where the pillow ends.
- I fall asleep on my stomach and wake up on my side almost 95% of the time. I can't fall asleep in any other position other than on my stomach. I wake up in the fetal position almost every morning.
- I moan in my sleep. (I'm not sure about this one, but I'm pretty sure I don't.)
- I play with my hair when I'm reading. Like, non-stop. (I caught myself doing this after someone had mentioned this to me and I was shocked by how much I do play with my hair when I read.) I think it's also because my hair is getting long, I'm a little excited.
- I've taken practically every English class UIC has to offer that I can't remember the last time I read a novel assigned for class. I'm going to say sophomore year. Okay, okay, I read, I'm not a total slacker, but I mean I haven't read an entire novel from open to close for a class in years.
- Even without having read the assigned readings I still partake in thoughtful discussions and write meaningful papers. Ah, the tricks of the trade. I'm certainly grateful for my education, but sometimes after reading a novel three times you just lose interest altogether.
- I don't workout any where near what I used to a year ago today. Last September I started my hardcore diet and exercise routine in preparation for my sisters' upcoming nuptials. As of today, I've lost 39.3 lbs. Crazy, I know. I'm at the point where I've stopped gaining weight no matter what I eat. I'm serious. This could be bad. Instead of working out 6 days a week for three hours, I now work out three days a week for an hour each day. Eh, I guess it could be worse.
- I blog about every damn thing. But hey! I'm still writing, and that's always a good.