And Then There Were Files: ED I and Front Yard Football
It was a moment a couple Sundays ago. On the couch, my 2.5 year old playing quietly on the floor in front of me, the Titans game on in front of him. Nothing too remarkable about the exact moment really when I realized this would be last weekend without file reading. The clicking of Matchbox cars, the low drone of the play-by-play, maybe the heat starting to kick on as Nashville weather had just started to chill, mostly blissful silence.
Now, it’s the low and persistent whisper from the dining room, a tugging reminder each time past the room with stacks of my “manila friends” as a former VU Dean of Admissions used to put it – “psst . . . hey, hey . . . want to hear about my mission trip? How about an essay debating the moderating effect of Ultimate Frisbee playing on global interdependence?” Don’t misread me, I truly enjoy the new cycle of files – we’re knee deep into ED I right now – it’s this very cycle that has made this job my home professionally. As soon as you get tired on being on the road visiting high schools and recruiting, you get to be home, reading the applications of the students you recruited.
However, sitting on my couch two weekends ago, my mind flashing forward to Sundays filled with reading applications (like it was yesterday) rendered the choice to kill the tube, pick up a sweater and a football and head outside to try (in vain) to teach my boy to catch, an effortless one. This work is important to me, it encompasses so much of what I believe in – education as a key to self-improvement, access and equity as a right in a democratic society, lifelong learning and discovery- however this work is not all-encompassing. There is yet time for some front yard football.
I hope that as Thanksgiving nears, the important work you are doing in wrapping up your applications still allows you time for family, some late afternoon sun, and perhaps a football too.