Monday, August 29, 2011

Back and Forth

Sometimes I feel like I'm being pulled in two different directions.
On one side, I have my need for learning- the academic life. Degrees and honors and papers and books lined up like soldiers on my shelf, properly highlighted and notated and indexed. Late nights in a dark library, researching obscure subjects that only feed my hunger for knowledge more. My brain is like a sponge, soaking up all the information as it connects to more information. Then taking all that and translating it to students- THIS is why you should learn this! THIS is why this is important! The fire behind my desire to LEARN MORE is hotter than the jalapenos that you forgot to take out of my burrito last night. I put on thin heels and a blouse straight out of a Gilmore Girls episode to stand in front of a room and explain analysis. Keeping a supply of red pens on hand for correcting is important, lined up nicely next to a rainbow of post-its and color-coordinated folder system.
Then there's the other me.
Biking barefoot down to the lake because I can't miss the sunset in favor of shoes, then staying on the beach to talk to you and wait for the stars to come up. Days at the cliff turn into a week, then two, and I forget the passwords to my computer and replace them in my head with the names and ratings of the routes that I'm climbing. My sleeping bag is more comfortable than my bed, and it takes me a minute to remember how many days since my last shower. Carrying less than 30 pounds on my back feels odd, like I'm forgetting something. Dancing in the rain is my greatest form of happiness. We eat peanut butter straight out of the jar, and are confused by people in RVs watching their Direct TV instead of trying to spot colors in a campfire. I fall asleep at the close of a day more from sheer exhaustion than because it's dark out.
I hope that I can reconcile these two sides of me. Sometimes they don't get along. Brother and sister stuck in the car together for too long. That's the hardest- when I want to study, but the sun and rock beckon me outside. Or I'm training inside on a gross day and know I should be studying.
But they're both part of me, so for now they'll just have to compromise a little.

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