Comparing Days: Slice of Life 25/31 #sol20

Usually, I wake up early and drive sixty miles across the dark prairie for an hour of writing time at the coffee shop. My weekday morning slices are always written there during March. Music I don’t always like blares through the speakers. Sometimes I have to ask them to turn it down because I’m one of those people who can’t write with music playing. Toddy, the coffee shop cat, comes to visit, hopping amiably into my lap, pushing his rather homely face into my breakfast, leaning this way and that for the best head scratching angles.

Coffee Shop Toddy

Today, I wake up early and walk twenty feet to my office. I make my own coffee and settle down in the chaise to write. Cats wander in and curl up in their usual spots. It’s an uninspiring space to write–the room itself in shambles in the middle of a clean-out project, half-filled bins blocking most of the floor, stacks of books and unsorted papers covering every surface. It’s the coldest room in the house, and the windows have to be covered in plastic to keep it warm enough to use in winter. Thick plastic. Because cats. Not that there is much of a view anyway.

Usually, I use Twitter for learning about reading, writing, teaching, equity, antiracist pedagogy.

Today, I use Twitter for learning about the news, and there is so much of it and it is so appallingly bad that I cannot stop scrolling.

Usually, I learn by reading. I have always believed that I need to see it in writing in order to learn. I need to read and reread the words in order to make them part of myself.

Today, I learn by video. And surprise myself by discovering that I actually learn really well in this format if I treat it more like a conference, showing up ready to listen rather than multitask, notebook open, pen ready to take notes.

Usually, I get dressed in semi-professional clothes and put makeup on before doing anything else.

Today, I spent the day in yoga pants and the shirt I slept in and never got around to makeup.

Usually, I struggle to find twenty minutes for yoga. I do it daily, haven’t broken the chain since late December, but sometimes it’s five minutes before bed and I call it good.

Today, I find a full hour for yoga, as I have done every day since #stayathome began. I feel stronger and more flexible than I have in years.

Usually, I teach students in person and sit with them face to face during my office hours.

Today, I collect resources to share with students online and schedule Zoom conferences.

Usually, I feel calm and hopeful.

Today, I feel anxious and worried.

Thanks to wahooliteracyteacher for the idea to compare days using a usually vs today format.

12 responses to “Comparing Days: Slice of Life 25/31 #sol20”

  1. My friend and I were discussing how this very topic could be a great comparison for kids to write, and here you’ve done it nicely! I’m impressed you drove an hour every morning to write for this challenge. 🙂

  2. Anxious and worried are the emotions of the day. I try to find ways to occupy my mind and push the thoughts out of my head, but they are always there in the background. I miss being able to sit at the coffee shop and read or do work. Hopefully, we can get back to some of our “normal” ways of living soon!

  3. I love the form of this post. Juxtaposing the usual and the now makes the content so powerful. I’m wondering if you discovered positives or ah has of the now surprised you.

  4. I love how you compare the old normal to the new normal – everything gets done and has its time, but circumstances are drastically changed. I wonder when this is all over if there will be a new hybrid normal.

  5. Oooh, another compare and contrast post. This format works well to capture the essence of this moment in time. Well done on keeping up with your yoga, which hopefully helps with the anxiousness of today. Take care.

  6. There’s something about the detail “music I don’t always like” that catches me. I know that feeling and appreciate the acknowledgement. This is a really nice post for getting to know you.

  7. Your post hits on something that has been rolling around in my mind for the past few days: What about our lives won’t go back to the way it used to be? Which of those things will we miss, and which are better left behind. Thanks for sharing this with us.

  8. Oh, such interesting comparisons – so revealing of current times. I have been thinking in a very similar way to what the previous commenter said, what about our lives will remain the same and what will change?

  9. Things have certainly changed for us all. I might use this idea with my students to compare their usual school day with remote learning. Thanks for sharing.

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