Notes from upstairs, with Melanie

Melanie Loggins, Academic Advisor

I forgot to do something last week. Well, two things. I forgot to write a column. But I don’t exactly have followers hanging on my every word, so I won’t pretend that it was that big of a deal. But the other thing? That was worse.
Someone asked me to do something, and I told them I would, and then I promptly forgot the task existed. I’ll be honest, I’m not sure how big of a task it really was.
Like, honestly, how big of a deal was it that I forgot? No worries? Um, that kind of sucks but we’ll get over it? A really big deal and I screwed up someone’s whole project because I forgot?
I don’t know. It doesn’t matter though because I’m going to agonize over it anyway because: a. the person who asked me doesn’t know me and so this is their first impression and b.
I promised I would do something, and I FORGOT. I feel awful. It’s not who I am or who I want to be. This is not on brand. It’s worth figuring out why I forgot.
The first problem was that I didn’t write it down. Remember that magic trick? Maybe you thought I just said that because I needed something to write about but NO! It’s true! Making a note of something makes all the difference.
I mean, I didn’t even make an appointment for myself in Outlook to remind me to do it. I just said, “Oh yes, I would be delighted to do you this small service” and then did not, in fact, do that small service.
That would have been normal if I was a dismissive maître d’ at an overpriced restaurant talking to Midwest tourists in jorts. For me, though, this is not normal. And there is (would have been?) a simple solution: write your shizz down, girl! You know better than to think you’re “going to remember.”
The second problem, and this is much harder to dismiss or solve, is that I was exhausted when he called and asked, and it only got worse between the time he called and I was to execute the request. So tired that I forgot to write that shizz down. Days after I was supposed to have completed the request, someone else mentioned the project that it was part of and it even took me a minute to realize that it was THAT!
Oh no, I promised someone I would do a thing DAYS AGO and I didn’t do it! It was nearing the end of the third and final marathon week and, for a moment, I couldn’t even feel guilty. It was just another added layer of exhaustion, like, yep, there’s one more ball I dropped last week.
I was tired because I was in the middle of helping people register. Did you see an advisor? Are you registered? I know most of you are. That’s awesome! That is what makes our work here mean anything, you know, helping you find your way through college. If you didn’t, it’s cool. You still have time.
Sometimes I wonder if the big push to get everyone registered in four days is like defining a movie’s success by its opening weekend. Some things take time! And right now, listen, if you’re a little overwhelmed and not sure what to do next, that’s ok, because so am I.
Knowing I forgot to do something that the more I think about it, was probably bigger than a tiny deal. It was at least a medium-sized deal.
I forgot to do something that is arguably part of my job as an employee and part of my commitment to helping everyone on campus do their best work and forgetting that is a sign that I need to pay a little more attention to how I’m doing.
I mean, to how I’m, like, doing. Am I doing ok? I mean, I have constant headaches and I’m having dreams about students, and my shoulder is doing a thing, but I think I’m basically ok? But if I’m forgetting basic things, I’m obviously not on my A game.
I need to address that. But it is also a reminder to me that if I am struggling, so are other people. Heck, maybe so are a lot of people? I’m going to work on patching myself up, and I’m going to work on being extra patient with people around me who don’t have any patches to spare.