And This Is Contentment

I’m sitting in my office, my chair tipped back and my feet tucked in the bottom-right drawer of my desk.  Mumford and Sons is playing on my iPod and everything is rather peaceful.  I have just finished grading a class-set of summer reading assignments–only four more class sets…only 105 sets to go.  And I feel perfectly content.

I have generally loved my job, but my new position is incredibly fulfilling.  During my planning periods, I am actually able to grade because the people with whom I work understand that the hours we spend at home are beautiful and wonderful and respect the need for peace and quiet.  So, I actually get grading done.  I’m still grading at home.  I will never stop grading at home because…well…because I can’t get everything done at school no matter my best intent.

I meant to work out today.  Didn’t.  Don’t care.  Tomorrow is a hard-run day.  My goal is four and a half miles. And if I hit it, awesome.  And if I don’t.  I’m not going to punish myself.  Because emotional self-flagellation isn’t going to make my legs move any longer or for any greater distance.  I might skip the three Twizzlers I’ll have set aside for myself because my favorite Halloween Twizzlers candy set has been released and I can find them at Target (I’m mad for the cheery pull-and-peel, the rainbow, and the strawberry original combination package).  I will not make myself feel guilty anymore.

It is closing in on the end of September and a rainy weekend is in the forecast.  This means a weekend of pajamas and silly television and maybe even some glorious junk food because I aspire to run nine miles this weekend.  My Hiking Partner has trained for half-marathons/marathons and either she or a runner-colleauge of mine told me that when training for marathons that over the weekend to do a long run (up to twenty miles when training for a marathon) and in the middle of the week to run half of the intended weekend distance.  So, a couple weeks ago, I ran seven miles while working with the Girl to prepare her for the 5K we are running in November.  And since I learned about how to train for a half-marathon…I thought…well…let’s see if I can do it.

Because…well…why not.  Because I might not be able to get out on the trails like I want to, but I can still make changes in my life and make goals in my life and aspire to meet those goals.  And, I guess, in a way.  I’m doing it.  I looked into doing an actual half-marathon, but the entrance cost was a hundred dollars.  I am paying someone else for the pleasure of running 13 miles?  Really?  No thanks.  I have the gym where I can go to the bathroom if I need to and I can drink cold water and be in a climate controlled environment.  Now, I will admit, I spent about a hundred dollars on the 5K with my daughter.  But if this 5K gives her confidence while philanthropically helping a local non-profit, then I’m all for it.

But I have my running-confidence.  And if I make my half-marathon goal…then I might try to do more.  I’m not certain.  Because I don’t have to prove it to anyone other than myself.  I post about it here.  I post about it on Facebook.  And that’s good for me.  I have so much awe for my colleagues who run half-marathons and 5K’s and 10K’s.  And maybe, once I have done my little 5K in November I’ll find yet another great joy that will keep me bloggy-obsessed and I’ll write about it non-stop.  Maybe.  And that’s fine.

Because, right now, I am content.  And given that it’s September and Homecoming is next week and the senior class officers are having anxiety fits because the rest of the senior class isn’t showing up to help with decorating the hall….well, I’m pretty happy that I’m content.

And this contentment is in the face of incomplete grading which won’t be completed before nine o’clock this evening.  And this contentment is in the face of the fact that I haven’t finished ironing out my presentation next month.  And this contentment is in the fact that my house isn’t really all that clean.

It’s not apathy.  It’s that, right now, all is right in my world.  The Boy is going through something that I will not discuss so please don’t ask but please keep him in prayers or good thoughts or happy vibes or whatever you do.  But even he is rather content right now as I think he is diving headfirst into a massive bowl of ice cream that I’m not going to fuss at him about because….well….because it’s ice cream and since school started he’s dropped six pounds and he’s not heavy.  Yes, he’s eating.  Just not as much as he was used to so his body is compensating.  He’s going to be fine.  Trust me.  I’ve got my eye on him.

The Boy is also adjusting to the fact that the Girl is now part of our daily drives.  And I miss the quiet thirty minutes I used to have with the Boy in the morning and afternoon when we would chat and talk about life.  I love having the Girl with me now.  She and I will chat about girl-things and school and life.  But I really do mourn the times when the Boy would talk to me about his life and his world.  So, I guess, in a way, I am not perfectly content.

That’s okay.  I think I’ll take the Boy out for ice cream this week and just catch up on his world.  Because I truly do love my son.  And, while I eat all this fattening ice cream that I probably shouldn’t eat because I want to drop weight since my husband and I are competing and I’m training for the AT next summer (oh…and the non-existent Gracelesscurran half-marathon that may or may not happen in about five weeks depending on my training schedule).  But, at this point, making sure that I am maintaining a good relationship is more important than calorie loss or calorie deficit in comparison to calorie consumption and running and blah blah blah.

Because calorie contentment doesn’t really exist in comparison to emotional contentment.  And I am content.

Which is what I care about when it’s the third week of school and I’m still in the first month of a new job.

Which is truly wonderful, by the way.  Everyone told me that I was going to love it.  And they were right.  But I wasn’t prepared for how much I was going to love it.

And my love for my new students and my new job adds to this wonderful contentment on a Tuesday night in September.

Life could be better.  But why worry about that when, right now, I am truly content.

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