I got back from Georgia a few hours ago. On the whole, being at the conference (ASECS) was really good, and I definitely enjoyed hanging out a bit in Atlanta. My paper went really well on Thursday, which pretty much meant that anything else fun or good was icing on the cake. The panel I put together and chaired also seemed to go well. I’ll try to give my review of the conference sometime this week. I’ll also post about the museum I visited.

But what’s really on my mind is the fact that my sabbatical is completely over starting tomorrow at 1 pm, when I start teaching again! While in Atlanta, I have to admit, I really disliked the idea of going back into the classroom. Don’t get me wrong: I love teaching, and I love many of my students (I love my students, but I don’t love my students). But having the past several months to spend almost unlimited time reading and thinking and writing has been really enjoyable. It wasn’t quite like being on vacation — since I did work a lot.

But now that I’m back in Athens and doing a little prep work for tomorrow — I figure I’ll give my tutorial students a little background about the period, and we’re going to watch a 54-minute documentary about Stonewall and its aftermath in my Lesbian & Gay Lit class — I’m actually feeling a little excited about teaching again.

I’ve long felt that a great deal of my sense of self-worth comes from my teaching. I’m not the best teacher around or anything, but teaching is very invigorating. I love talking with my students about the writers, texts, and issues I love. I love introducing them to my favorite books and authors and hearing what they think about them. I enjoy teaching, and I’m fairly good at it. When my research has been slow or non-existent, I’ve always been able to fall back on my teaching for a sense of accomplishment. It’s going to be interesting to see how I feel about it now that it’s going to interrupt my on-going (and definitely not non-existent) research.

This quarter I’m teaching the eighteenth-century tutorial, which I hope will be a lot of fun. It’s my first time, so I’m anxiously excited to see how it goes. I’m also teaching my GLBT Lit class, which is probably my favorite course to teach each year. Not the least of my excitement comes from knowing that my current crop of favorite former students (most of which have had this class) are graduating — hopefully this quarter will bring me a new set of Brodie “girls.”

I’ve already been so busy in recent weeks that I’ve not had time to blog, so I’m a little worried about whether I’m really going to be able to keep it going, but I hope so. Starting tomorrow, I’m sure I’ll have lots to blog about. So, cheers to the start of a new quarter!

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