Thursday, July 30, 2009

They say the JumboTron adds twenty pounds

Tonight were the closing ceremonies for Teach for America's Philadelphia Summer Institute. Some of my colleagues shared stories, there was a speech, and then the most amazing video montage (a la Lifetime movies) ever. Teachers and students hard at work, learning and instructing - and I was in it. Only for about two seconds, but I was up there. On the GIANT SCREEN.

And to be perfectly honest, I did not notice what I looked like. I did not notice if my recent additional poundage made me look chunky. All I saw was how happy I looked and how happy my kids were.

So I will be okay. I will take care of my body and get to a place where I am maximally functional and comfortable with myself, and dare I say a bit sexy. I am going to be a good teacher - not tomorrow, not the first day of school, but I will be.

Sunday, July 26, 2009


Trying to live up to what I said in my earlier post. EPIC FAIL. I cannot stand myself.


Yesterday Jim told me that every time I come home to visit I look better. I hear this and know he's sincere (he's never insincere), but it doesn't change that I am very uncomfortable in my body right now.

I have not done any kind of regular exercise in four weeks. I have been eating dining hall food for four weeks. My eating choices have been influenced by stress, too - cue the bowls of dry Cap'n Crunch and Life. And there's still one more week to go.

I am trying hard to think about this in a positive way. Yes, I am uncomfortable now. But it will not be forever. I will not continue to gain weight uncontrollably. These circumstances are not forever - there's another week, yes, but it's just one more week. Then I can get back ... in control.

If there was ever a red-flag phrase, that's it, isn't it? But how I say it now is not how I said it in the past. I have tools now, strategies to help me think about and navigate the tricky world of food and my body. I have Jim with me now, who loves both exercise and food. And me, too. He loves me.

Prepare yourselves for major cheesiness - I am a work in progress. There will never be a point where I am stuck in a body that's unhealthy - too thin or otherwise. I can do this.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Why I am Engaged

Jim's Whiskey Security System, utilizing the groundhog our friend made out of an empty Heiniken mini-keg:

I mean, really. How could I turn this down?

Monday, July 20, 2009


Am having a slight panic attack. About my lesson plans? No. About closing the achievement gap? No.

No. I am sitting here panicking over my goddamn love handles. In under five weeks of little exercise and dining-hall salads (which are not your typical salads) and cereal I have become enormous.

And yeah, I know this is stupid, and compared to everyone else I'm probably not eating all that much. But fuck comparisons, I'm me and I'm eating way more than I normally do. And without exercise (and with an impending period) I have become the fucking Hindenburg.

I hate, hate hate how I can seemingly make so much "progress" and still think that because I'm fat I'm worthless. No one else's worth is contingent on their mass. Just mine. And believe me, I would give anything to stop being this "special."

I have a job, I have a fiance I love more than anything, I have the best friends a girl could hope for. Why can't I let this one thing go?

Sunday, July 19, 2009


This past winter I took a class called The Anthropology of Infectious Disease. It was about how diseases and our socieities and cultures are so intertwined, and it was hands-down one of my favorite classes ever.

Now, though? Now I am living the anthropology of infectious disease. Teaching a roomful of four-year-olds who have not yet grasped how to wipe their noses or cover their mouths results in one sicky, sicky Lisa.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Things about me

1. I feel enormous.
2. All I want to do is color.

Sorry to whine. I mean, this is just for two more weeks. Then I can get my life (and my body my body my blobby blobby body) back in order.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Oh my goodness

Today was not terrible. No one kicked me or bit me and everyone peed where they are supposed to. And I think about seven or eight kids really, really understand patterns. Which I taught them. I successfully taught something. Holy moly.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Mr. Feeney

For all of you Boy Meets World fans, one of my best friends here at TFA Institute has the last name of Feeney. I am mad jealous.

Whew. I think I'm ready for tomorrow - well, almost. I have to make some mama and baby animal cards - I'm using them to teach capital and lowercase letters. Oh, and I should probably review my lesson and make sure I know what I'm actually saying.

I know there are at least a couple of teachers who meander through this blog now and again. I can't say much due to TFA's policies on bloggery/facebookery, but have you ever been ... ah ... bitten by a student? Punched/kicked/slapped in the face? Because I have. On Friday. By the same girl.

I hope tomorrow is a fresh start for my students and my teaching group. I hope we can establish more order. It's not fair to the kids at all - if we can't give them the support they need to behave, they can't learn. And if any kids need that extra boost at the beginning, it's these adorable, frustrating, smart-as-hell four-year-olds.

And I hope I don't get peed on.

Thursday, July 9, 2009


1. Today I took a little girl's lipgloss because she wouldn't put it away when I asked her to. I forgot it was in my pocket when we left for the day. I am a terrible person.

2. Today is a victory because I didn't get peed on. No. Really. That happened to one of my colleagues.

3. Today I was videotaped. I have to watch it tomorrow. There is little I despise more than seeing myself on camera, except seeing myself on camera as I UTTERLY FAIL to get any educational message whatsoever across to my students.

4. Today I was always. Sticky. Always.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

First day

Thirteen four-year-olds. That phrase didn't terrify me before today. And my class is supposed to have a full twenty-two students.

Granted, there are two student teachers in the room at all times. This does not, however, guarantee that any of your students will learn a darn thing.

No one bled. No one hit. No one had an accident and only three people cried. I'll take that for the first day.

Eating like a hoss. Stress eating is never a good thing.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Doing better

Friday was much better than Thursday. I don't really see how it could have been worse. However, I was so wrapped up in myself and how sucky I was that I completely forgot my brother's birthday! He turned 221 so he probably wouldn't have remembered my call, anyway. Still. Bad Sister.

Tomorrow I start teaching For Real. There will be 20 four-year-olds that I have to corral, control, and somehow convince them to "work hard, get smart."

Friday, July 3, 2009

I am That Girl

Yep. I am That Girl. You know. That one. The one who stayed up really late last night (and is up late again) and got up at five. That girl who drank two enormous energy drinks that tasted like your tightwad neighbor's stale Halloween candy. That girl who just got so goddamn frustrated when she couldn't get a straight answer about what had to be done. The girl who just got more and more stressed out until something had to give. The girl whose body decided to deal with the stress by crying. In front of nineteen other people and two of her supervisors.

Not a good day. Not at all. I'm eating too much and I can't keep my tear ducts in check.

But tomorrow will be better. It has to be. Right?