Monday morning at Starbucks.  I tossed and turned a bit last night after a lovely weekend, a lovely evening, and I’m up at 8:00 at the Emory Road Starbucks opening myself fully (I hope) for the first time to The Next Thing in Life.  Which, right now, is school and teaching.  Or, learning and teaching.

I think I had a hard time sleeping because of this huge door opening like a mouth.  I’m not ready either to learn or to teach, and I kept finding myself searching for some loophole, or reason I could put it all off for another year or ten.  And then … I remembered that I have hated myself for my fears, all the tremors and dread that have kept me at home instead of discovering the world.  I may suck at seminars and colloquia and teaching first-year English, but I’ll be damned if I don’t try something.  Something that seems right, something that was mailed to me with my new name on it.  New name: This Anna Laura.  Post cancer.  Post Grainger Avenue.  Post dating.  Post no-risk-taking.  I hope all kinds of newness for this piece of life.

Orientation for new Master’s students and new Graduate Teaching Associates starts tomorrow morning and fills the whole week, nine to five every day, including sessions next Monday and Tuesday.  Classes start next Wednesday, and I’ll go to my first class on the following Thursday.  I think, as I’ve been opening myself up past the dread and letting in actual excitement in the past twenty-four hours, I’m starting to feel slightly competent as a student.  Good.  I have read tons of books in the past three years.  Including, like, important novels and memoirs.

Still sensing no competence as a TA or Writing Center tutor, however, as have no systematic understanding of grammar.  As a semi-intelligent and lazy student, I’ve grasped grammar rules quickly and intuitively, which means I never bothered to learn how precisely to use commas or what exactly predicate nominative means, and you should know I just now exercised some restraint by not googling it.  And I won’t google it, on principle, though I don’t know what principle.  I guess I should read the whole Harbrace Handbook and make flashcards and stuff.  Maybe I am unprincipled?

I also am going to ride the bus.  This is a serious commitment, and I think it deserves a place on this list of New Things, with marriage, learning, teaching, cooking, and maybe using the word “shag” on my blog once in a while.  I mean why not.

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