It’s been absolutely ages since I had a place for more personal blogging, so some of this may happen occasionally. Most of you readers don’t know me or much about what I’m up to outside of this little space, so here’s a bit of why my posting has been a bit haphazard. Currently I am:
- Writing here
- Writing very occasionally for Friendly Atheist and Teen Skepchick (a few times per month)
- The Volunteer Military Campus Organizer for the Secular Student Alliance
- The Communications & Marketing Intern for Foundation Beyond Belief
- President of our university’s Secular Student Alliance
- The teaching assistant for a weekend astronomy class for gifted children.
- A third year double major in Human Development & Psych Services and Psychology
I’m really not sure how or if I’m managing to make this work. To some extent, I survive by knowing that my internship and TA position expire at the end of this quarter of school. There’s simply no way I could keep this level of constant productivity going. I also got really good at packing meals. (I’m actually writing this post over Indian food I packed for dinner, eaten quickly and while still too hot in the grad student lounge between class.)
I like to pretend I still know how to wake up early, but I usually stop snoring around 9:00. Over coffee and fruit, I plow through the stuffed inboxes of four email accounts. I read every comment on my posts, respond to student group issues, co-coordinate planning of Carl Sagan Day Chicago, figure out what articles and chapters I have to read for the day, submit a proposal for a required three-month internship, deal with payments and rent for the house I live in with 11 other students, and talk to everyone on the Teen Skepchick back channel (best people. Ever.)
Two hours later, my coffee is cold and I’ve done most of the fiddly little things on my to-do list. I’m impatient and have too much energy, so I walk into town to grocery shop and find a different location to set my computer.
Laptop open, and back to work. I usually write two or three pages of essay assignments and read a few book chapters and research papers for various classes. Northwestern runs on quarters–three ten week sessions in the time most schools have two semesters. While it’s wonderful to be able to double major without taking on extra courses, in practical terms, quarters mean that every three weeks I have two weeks of finals or midterms. Stresstastic.
My classes are in the evenings, so by the time I finish, its getting dark and I want nothing more than to curl up in bed. I do, quite happily, but spend the first hour of communing with my pillows in intern work, transcribing or writing.
I love all of my [volunteer] jobs. There’s not one I would give up for more free time. This movement is a glorious one–one that doesn’t demand years of experience or anything but a will to make something change. So it takes a little less sleep, a little more coffee to make this work? It’s worth it.