Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Nesting Near the Dendrite Tree

I am nesting.

No, I have no news of impending parenthood to reveal. This is a different kind of nesting. Propped up on the sofa under blankets and in my sweats, I am nursing a cold. My laptop is on my lap, and to my left are the daily essentials -- reading material, writing implements, cell phone, beverage and soft tissues.  I suspect I've been here too long because as I look out the window, I'm struck by the fact that the branches on the trees outside bear a remarkable resemblance to the axon terminals and dendrites on the quiz I just wrote for my students. I'm either having an epiphany about the synchronicity of nature or it's time for more Tylenol.

I actually feel much better than I did last night, and I'm complaining much less, too. Of course, today the house is empty, and so I'd only be complaining to myself. That wouldn't necessarily stop me, but it's definitely less satisfying than having a captive audience.

As I lay here last night (yes, I slept here because lying flat was simply not an option), I ran through the rather lengthy list of things I had to do, fighting the urge to get up and do them because I lacked both the energy and the capacity to do them with any degree of competence. Besides, it was 2 AM.

Why is it that our lists run through our heads most clearly in the middle of the night? Is it because we can't sleep? Or are we unable to sleep because our lists are running through our heads? Some nights, I try to capture the most urgent items and corral them by writing them down on a notepad beside my bed. Other nights I roll over and try to ignore them. Last night was one of the latter.

But today, I am feeling better. Nesting helps. Comfy clothes and blankets and iced tea help. Lacking the energy or the motivation to power through my list, I am meandering through it instead, tackling what I can tackle and leaving the rest for another day. Besides, if it's not within reach of my nest, how important can it be?

I guess I'll find out tomorrow, but today, I'm sticking close to the nest for as long as I can. By tonight, the nest will begin to constrict, becoming annoying and restrictive, but right now, in my quiet house with my view of the dendrite trees outside my window, I have no complaints.
P. S. I am not losing it. According to the blog where I found the photo below (of a dendrite, by the way, not a tree), dendrite means "tree-like." Apparently I can learn something even from my nest.

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