My class starts in about half an hour. I should be nervous. Or at least keyed up or something.
But I'm just sitting here, my stress level at about a two (on a ten-point scale)... nothing to do until class begins...
Why? Several reasons:
1. Preparation. That's all it is. I'd finished my syllabi two weeks ago, sent them off to be copied, and found the neat piles this morning, ready to hand out. All the assignments, readings, due dates, and other elements are organized. Nothing to figure out. Everything is just ready to run, like a well-oiled machine, and I'm looking forward to the adventure, the new students, and pretty much everything (except the grading).
2. Saying no. I turned down a total of four more classes this term, so while I'm surrounded by teachers running around trying to teach 5 or 6 courses, I'm just floating with two (three is full time, and I don't want to teach full time unless I get paid full time). Last fall at this time I was halfway through two courses by now, and I took on four more, finishing them all before December. No, I didn't end up strangling myself before it was over, but I nearly ended up in an asylum.
3. Doing things I love. Yes, instead of thinking about school starting yesterday, I painted. And when I get home this afternoon, I'll be working more on my novel. And playing piano. And reading. Anything I can do to make sure I enjoy the day as well as work through it.
I hope you are as relaxed as I. I hope that knot right below your shoulder blade eases itself out, and you can just chill with a lemonade this afternoon. That's what I intend to do.