This blog is a result of Christmas break. I can actually stop to think. Thinking is hard on the go. The classroom I work in is a sensory overload nightmare. The only thing that keeps me going during the day is my break times. Often in special education classrooms, there is no time for breaks, and often the staff never really gets breaks or their contractual 'duty-free' lunch. I've always insisted on getting mine, even when my NT co-workers shrug it off and say they don't mind giving it up. Up until very recently, I've felt very selfish taking my regular break times when others can't or won't. Now, I realize, I'm doing as much for the students and my co-workers as I'm doing it for me. If I can't disengage from the constant interactions, if I can't get away from that radio they INSIST on playing over the top of all the other noise, if I can't sit by myself for awhile, I won't be nearly as good at my job as I could be. I've come to realize most people thrive on constant interaction, music always playing, and lots of company. I'm trying to educate them on my needs, and I've gotten some understanding (at least they don't insist on both sets of classroom lights being on at all times). And if they don't, at least I don't feel as if I'm selfish anymore. I'm surviving.