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    PMRUNNER   46,842
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Discouraging, but not discouraged

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Last week was a long week.

I have had some travel this month, 4 days in NC and a day trip up to MA, which has put me at a deficit at work and at home. I have been working on getting caught up at work and still make it home in time to help DW with dinner time and the kids.

At work, we gave our 2nd midterm early in the week. We split out grading between the instructors and I graded the design problems, which ended up being about 15-20 hours of grading.

Additionally, our kids are getting seasonal sickness, resulting in poor sleeping for them (and us too). One night our littlest was up from 3-4AM and our oldest wet the bed. Then the next night, our third had a persistant cough from 2-3AM (bad enough that we almost brought her in, but we ended up controlling it with water and a spoon of honey) and our littlest was wide away at 4AM. It was so nice when he and everyone else slept in until 5 AM this morning.

My DW has been exhausted from the kids being up and the kids being grumpy during the daytime (because they are tired too). To top if off, her temporary crown fell out over the weekend and she had to get in yesterday for the repair.

Also, I applied to two openings for long term military professor positions in the math department and the systems engineering department. I am currently here at West Point for three years, getting a long term position would allow me to stay 6 or more years and I would be able to retire from here. I figured that I was a long shot for either position, but thought that I would make it through the initial screening and be selected to interview. I found out at the end of the week that I did not make it past screening for either position. I got the standard rejection letter and followed up. The search committee chair said that they deliberated on including me, but in the end they thought that my research and experience was too far outside what they were looking for.

While some of those were discouraging, there were some positives last week too. My oldest (7) has been doing gymnastics and had a practice meet on Saturday. I got to go to the meet and watch. She is doing really well at her current gymnastics and is showing some real growth. Out of her group (only 4 of them), she took 1st place on beam and vault, 2nd place on floor and 3rd place on bars. Her favorites are beam and bars (she just had a bad event on the bar, she missed her back hip circle that she has been working on). She did great on the beam, nailing her routine including the handstand.

Another positive thing last week is that our department IM team won our ultimate frisbee playoff games (including the semifinal match against math). We play against the phys ed instructors tomorrow for the whole enchilada. We beat them in the regular season, but they are super-athletic and the game will come down to whether or not our skill and teamwork is enough to overcome their speed and stamina (Most of the phys ed instructors here run a sub 11 min 2 mile run, they are very fit but are not always athletic).

Also, we sponsor 4 freshmen cadets (plebes) and had them over Sunday afternoon. We made a big batch of chili, pasta and cornbread and after lunch they helped the kids carve pumpkins, though the cadets did a lot more carving than the kids did. We had enough pumpkins that they all went back to their barracks with one. We had fun and I think that they did too.

With all else on the plate this week, I probably didn't do a very good job of watching what I put on my plate. A bit too much snacking and some take out pizza. Although my eating was a bit off, I was still about even in terms of weight. Maybe the extra stressed burned off a few of the extra calories? I did manage to get in just over 20 miles running over the week. I am now at 850 miles (as of 29 Oct), so I am on track to meet/exceed my 1,000 mile goal.

While the week was stressful and somewhat discouraging, I am finding that I am not discouraged (just tired!). I don't know where I will end up after this assignment, but I have to believe it will be where I need to be.

Spark on everyone!
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LIGHTNINGRUNNER 10/31/2013 11:47AM

    Doing great. Positives out weigh the negatives.

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BIGPAWSUP 10/30/2013 8:27PM

    Just keep pushing. Every thing will work out. You can do it!!!

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ROXYZMOM 10/30/2013 8:12PM

    Children are the best at keeping things in perspective! It helps us remember what is truly important and keeps us grounded. You are going to settle into the job that ends up being totally right for you at the right time. I can't imagine moving as much as you do, but I do have a close friend whose husband is retired military and they moved all over the US constantly with their five kids. She had one of the closest families I know.
Your family sounds the same way.

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MWWENSIN 10/30/2013 3:01PM

    Sounds like your week was productive. I was going through the Spark Inspirational Sayings and there was one that applied - Things turn out the best for those who make the best out of the way things turn out. John Wooden. At first it sounds like a Yogi Berra quote. Keep working at trying to stay at West Point if it's what you want - but if things don't turn out remember that opportunities that don't seem so good at first might turn out better in the end.

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PMRUNNER 10/30/2013 2:13PM

    Update - we beat the gym teachers 9-8 in the final! Yay, engineers!

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LINDAKAY228 10/30/2013 11:15AM

    Love how you can look at the positives and come out feeling positive overall. Times when all those day to day things come at one time are hard, but they don't last forever. You'll make it!

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MOMMACASSEY 10/30/2013 9:48AM

    You can do it--keep up the hard work, keep down the stress. Hopefully the early start on seasonal sickness will mean quick recovery and fewer problems with it as the winter comes on.

emoticon

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SMITTY4RL 10/30/2013 7:45AM

    Oof, a lot going on in the household and out, that's for sure. I wish you could have gotten that job. When my husband was in the Army, there were many times I would have liked to stay in one spot until he retired, but we kept moving, too. (Finally retired at Ft Hood, then moved again! lol) Hope the kids get better soon and you all get some sleep--those two things are bad enough stressors! But I like the tone of your blog, discouraged maybe, but you've really got a good mental outset here, very balanced. You're doing good despite what life throws at ya.

Comment edited on: 10/30/2013 2:39:55 PM

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CINDYTW 10/29/2013 11:40PM

  Glad you are trying to remain positive! Life sometimes takes us in directions we hadn't planned, and it ends up being the right one.

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DOGLADY13 10/29/2013 10:27PM

    Wow. No doubt, perspective is all about where you are positioned. I read this blog and thought, "wow. He is in the prime of his life. It doesn't get much better than this." But I can see how getting a "thanks but no thanks" note from HR in the same week that all the kids are sick and not sleeping is discouraging. But I also see a man surrounded by a beautiful, loving family, meaningful work, and in the prime of his life. I don't want to do the guilt trip thing. It really is just an observation. If I had gotten two rejection letters from HR in the same week, I'd be sad, to say the least... but gosh dang... you've got the phys ed dept by the [insert preferred vulnerable anatomy here]. That has to count for something.

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DOGLADY13 10/29/2013 10:27PM

    Wow. No doubt, perspective is all about where you are positioned. I read this blog and thought, "wow. He is in the prime of his life. It doesn't get much better than this." But I can see how getting a "thanks but no thanks" note from HR in the same week that all the kids are sick and not sleeping is discouraging. But I also see a man surrounded by a beautiful, loving family, meaningful work, and in the prime of his life. I don't want to do the guilt trip thing. It really is just an observation. If I had gotten two rejection letters from HR in the same week, I'd be sad, to say the least... but gosh dang... you've got the phys ed dept by the [insert preferred vulnerable anatomy here]. That has to count for something.

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RHYMESWITHBABY 10/29/2013 9:27PM

    Good luck to your IM team. I hope you take the prize! emoticon

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CFMOSS 10/29/2013 4:14PM

    I like your "title" discouraging but not discouraged. I think perhaps sometimes we put an equal sign between the two and get stuck instead of noting the difference. Hopefully the kids will settle into the changing seasons soon and allow you and your DW to have a few extra moments of sleep along with some less grumpy munchkins. Here's to sparking on.

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NATPLUMMER 10/29/2013 4:13PM

    emoticon

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VISUALLYRICS 10/29/2013 4:12PM

    Sounds like a full plate, but a balanced one( positives & negatives ) . . .so glad you are stress-free! These are the years most precious with all that family growth.
I can relate to sleepless nights and concern for little ones....looking back - those trials made us strong. Hang in there You're doing a emoticon job!

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