Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Morning Agitations

I arrived home at eleven from work and stayed up until one am eating dinner, showering, looking at mid-term results. So decided to set the alarm for 8 am.

With the alarm, I see a message from the mother who's son I'm tutoring. She keeps flipping back and forth between what time she wants the lesson to start; I'd thought we'd settled on 10 am but this morning she says she'd like for me to come at 10:15, because her son is still asleep (she's not even at home as she writes this, but is in constant correspondence with the nanny).  

On the way to the lesson the sends me three YouTube videos, 5-10 minutes each, that she's expecting me to watch and to incorporate into the lesson that I'll be having in less than thirty minutes. These videos have to do with phonics. This is a curve ball, as when she hired me she said that she wanted the lessons to be academic-lite, and to focus more on making her son comfortable speaking English.  Today she writes that he doesn't have a good foundation as he's 4 1/2 and doesn't know the sounds that letters make (and I agree with her; he also can't write most numbers).

All of this attention I'm spending tweaking the lesson is for a boy who won't listen to instruction; lays on the couch and plays with cars when it is time to write his numbers.

Another student has just moved; her helper yesterday sent me five videos showing me how to get to the new house. Which I dutifully watched and responded to.  Now the helper is telling me that the driver can pick me up, and is sending me more maps and videos and instructions on where the driver will pick me up.  

I'm trying to explain to her that the bus drops me off at a place WAY out of the way of the driver's pickup location.  I 'd like to get it resolved but the more we talk the more confusing it becomes and I feel that in order to show up on time for the lesson I'll need to shell out a hefty taxi fare, and I'll have already spent $200+ HK that day getting to other lessons.  

She keeps writing me and sending me voice messages, and as her English is broken and I can't understand what she is saying and I can't say how much I want to SHUT HER OFF.  And carve out some space for peace; which is what I had intended for the afternoon.  

But I realize that I have no choice but to resolve this issue right now, although I'm angry and agitated in the midst of it; simply figuring out how to get to the lesson is taking a huge chunk of the time that I'd carved out to swim, eat cookies, read, detach.

Today was supposed to be work-lite.  We'll see how it turns out.

A peaceful situation is hard to create.  It's hard to shut everything off, eliminate disctractions, agitations, anxieties and disappointments.  And it's ephemeral and fleeting.

One week several years ago I recall feeling “happier than I'd ever felt”.  A large portion of my afternoons, I recall, were spent marionating on the internet and discoverning blogs and writers while wandering down circuitous rabbit holes.  

Outside of that it was such an ordinary week it kind of puzzled me.  And it came admist a life-sitaution that generally had me wracked with dread and uncertainty and anxiety; I wasn't making enough money, I needed to change jobs, what I was doing wasn't working out.

That's the closest I can come to describing a time that I was a total peace.  I don't know where it came from, nor how I could re-create it.  Finding a good cup of coffee in a relaxing coffee shop comes close.  

But, as illustrated above, my efforts to create peace are often sabotaged. 


  1. I like how you stessed the opposite of your desired peace with emphasis of your current chaos. I hope you days become less stressful soon. Cheers for #NaBloPoMo18!

  2. Perhaps during stressful times you can call up the memory of that peaceful moment? Good to have "happier than I'd ever felt" moments in our arsenal. :-)


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