Slice of Life Tuesday: Nottabout

Thanks to Two Writing Teachers, as always, for providing a great place to share and read writing from fellow teachers!

Today’s blog post…

It’s not about the seventeen to-do lists that circle my brain but haven’t made it to paper and, therefore, remain undone until that happens.

It’s not about the increasingly bizarre and haunting dreams I’ve had as of late.

It’s not about the insight I’ve recently had about why I did next to nothing for schoolwork between eighth and tenth grades.

It’s not about the multiple mess-ups I’ve had today regarding meetings and scheduling and class visits.

It’s not about the guilt and obligation I feel, having stepped away from my own writing lately.

It’s not about the myriad baking projects I would love to take on, if only I felt like I had the time and could guarantee said baking projects would leave my home post-haste.

It’s not about the excitement I’m feeling over an initiative I’m leading, one that has aligned my purpose and practice, one that has allowed me to return to this school year energized rather than deflated.

It’s not about that one library book I still need to pick up, if only I could find my library card.

It’s not about the joy-sadness-relief-emptiness I feel upon having the nest once again empty.

It’s not about the various joints and muscles that give me grief and make me wonder if they bother me because I’m working them through exercise, or just plain getting old.

And it certainly isn’t about the frustration and anxiety of getting to the end of a blog post, of finishing what I’ve said, and having no wise, pithy, nod-your-head-in-agreement way of wrapping it up with a bow.

Certainly not.

Published by Lainie Levin

Mom of two, full-time teacher, wife, daughter, sister, friend, and holder of a very full plate

11 thoughts on “Slice of Life Tuesday: Nottabout

  1. You are right. It is not about any of the things you mentioned, yet it is about all of them. There are days when we have so much on our plate that we can’t see a satisfactory end to anything. Still, that end comes and we move on.

    1. Yes! There are definitely times when the last lines of my writing take just about as much time or energy as the entire rest of the piece. I think that happens most often when I want my writing to *DO* something. Which, for me, is kind of a kiss of death…

  2. The moment I read the title I shook my head knowingly. I just knew I was going to relate to at least 2 or 3 of these and yeah, more than 3. Sometimes not being pithy – is pithy. But hey, you got your slice done! How about that? .

    1. Exactly! Whatever gets it done. I haven’t been writing as much lately, and I figured this was a way to just get moving and stop beating myself up about it. And, for what it’s worth, every single one of my nottabouts has been a blog post or piece of writing that I thought to do and just…didn’t.

  3. Your last line is so satisfying. It’s the perfect ending. The whole piece was full of gems. “It’s not about…” is a great refrain. Now I want to write my own version. I can relate: “It’s not about the myriad baking projects I would love to take on, if only I felt like I had the time and could guarantee said baking projects would leave my home post-haste.”

    1. Thank you! I might steal this idea from myself to use with students or some of the adult writers around me, and see what they do with the prompt. And…it’s always nice to be in the company of fellow bakers!

  4. Love love love! August is guilt management. What more can be done. What am I missing. What is needed to have enjoyed the summer. Thanks for sharing! The dreams . . . of that class you didn’t know you were taking or teaching . . . uncut terror! Then we wake up, driven by the relief that we escaped and what it takes to do so. 🤪

    1. “August is guilt management.” Well, Jaclyn, I suppose I ought to congratulate you, because for me, *every* month is guild management month! =))

      Oh, and those dreams about the unknown classes? It’s right up there with standing before a group of students with no plan or idea what I’m doing. Or running a professional development class from the same situation. And ahh yes. That sweet relief of knowing it was only a dream. But for me, I have this weird thing where I wake up, and I want to get back in the dream because I know how to solve or fix it, and I want to make it better – even if it WAS only a dream, I don’t like things to be messy!

  5. Everything I thought about as I read your story has already been mentioned in a comment. 😉
    This is certainly how I feel some days, “It’s not about…yet, it certainly is!”

    1. Thank you! And I also think it fits what I go through as a writer. Countless times during the day, I tell myself that something would be a good thing to write or blog about. And then I don’t do it. Ah, well…

  6. You captured the jumble of feelings and pressures we all experience at times. That’s when a deep breath is in order. Love this slice!

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