I had an advising appointment today, and the student I met with was one who took a programming class with me her first quarter two years ago. We had a great meeting, in no small part because she’s an amazing planner. She had had drawn prerequisite chains for the programming classes and mapped out all of her classes from now until she graduates. We had to shift things a bit since she’s in the information technology program, which is smaller and offers classes less frequently. But overall it was exactly how I would want advising sessions to go.

When the session was over she was making small talk and wished me a good night. She then hesitantly asked me if I was working late tonight. I told her no, that I had one more thing to do and then I was heading home. She commented that was good because she remembered me working really long days interspersed with many days of travel. I laughed and told her that I only had one trip this quarter. She congratulated me on that and remarked it must be nice to not be jet-lagged like she remembered I was frequently when she was my student. I laughed again and told her that jet lag wouldn’t be an issue until May when I head back to China.

Somehow that exchange makes me feel better about the sense of exhaustion I’ve been feeling this academic year. It’s been a crazy few years, with lots of travel and lots of long days, so much so that a former student remembers it _two years later_. Given what I’ve been doing for the past few years, it would be a surprise if I weren’t exhausted. I’m going to give myself permission to feel a little unmotivated right now. Once my schedule no longer has me flying tens of thousands of miles every year, I bet I’ll stop being so tired and start feeling more focused.