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The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

Monday I had one of those days where just every little thing went wrong. The Hungry Caterpillar’s Terrible Horrible No Good Very Bad Day. Just to mix up our children’s books a little. ๐Ÿ˜›


Breakfast: Sourdough toast with mayonnaise and farmers’ market tomatoes, fried eggs

To start the day, I got an email telling me that I had been scheduled to do a thesis reading for the very first slot–which is to say, November 9. November 9?! I can’t have a thesis together by November 9! The deadline is in March, for crying out loud. For not the first time this week, I started bawling.

I am all waterworks this week, friends. Something’s up.

November 9 might be a realistic deadline for the fiction and poetry students at our school, who have a three-year program and get the last year just to take thesis credits without workshop, but the CNF students only have two years and take workshop all four semesters.

Anyway, complain, complain. The point is, I was upset. And it wasn’t until I talked to my professor Tuesday evening that I received any kind of reassurance that I wouldn’t be forced to read on that date.

After that, I rode to school/work (it’s the same thing now), and discovered that…ack! I’d forgotten my lunch. I’d taken probably 30 minutes in the morning to prepare a lunch and save me a little bit of money, and then left it sitting on the couch.

I also had to lesson plan, respond to my students’ homework, and read a 50-page novella for my literary translation course on top of the additional burden of now having to find myself food.


AM Snack: Smartfood white cheddar popcorn purchased from the vending machine in my office building

Lunch: Farmers' market chicken salad from the student center with iced tea and a slice of gluten-free bread

Lunch: Farmers’ market chicken salad from the student center with iced tea and a slice of gluten-free bread

Teaching, as it turns out, went okay, and I made it through enough of the novella to understand and participate in discussion. When I got out of discussion, though, I was exceedingly hungry–and discovered that I didn’t have my keys. I looked and looked around for them, went back to my classroom, went the library to check my email and see if my instructor had perhaps emailed me that they had been left behind or put in lost and found…nothin’.

I did grab yet another snack from the vending machine, though, since I wasn’t able to ride my bike right home.dscn1960Just like Alexander, I kinda felt like I was falling apart.

But I did finally find my keys–they were in an inner pocket within my front backpack pocket and had slipped down where I didn’t see them. So it could have been worse.

I ended up eating my packed lunch for supper


Eggplant soba noodles with sesame seed

I suppose it shouldn’t have been surprising, given my crabby mood, that I was also really struggling with less-than-healthy thoughts about my body. I was feeling a bit bloated after my recent attempt at eating a peach, my pants were tight (I think maybe I tossed them in the drier), and I felt…well, you know. A word beginning with ‘f.’

I ended up spending the evening mostly just reading blogs and vegging out.


Evening snack: Chocolate chia pudding from A Little Bit Yummy

Fortunately, Tuesday was better. Besides discovering that my car needed a $500 new part. :0 I talked to my professor about my unreasonably early scheduled reading, and my memoir was also up for workshop, receiving some very positive responses and helpful feedback. I definitely feel back on track again now.

I got through. I ate enough, I prioritized what I most needed to do, and I let the rest go. And sometimes that’s just what you’ve gotta do to get through the day.

So here’s what I’m wondering now. Do you remember how Alexander’s day ends? Because it’s been a long time since I read that book, but I suspect it ends on a positive note.

I love it when children’s books are honest about the stuff in life that kinda sucks.

Thanks as always to Jenn, Laura, and Arman for the ever-popular What I Ate Wednesday linkup.

Do you have a a favorite children’s book?

When was the last time you had a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day?




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  1. Oh no! I’m so sorry ๐Ÿ™ I hate having days like that…in fact, yesterday I had a bad day like that too. Cue the waterworks–haha! Today has been a little better ๐Ÿ˜€ I bought myself a chocolate chip gluten free cookie sandwich with coconut cream…the day cant get too bad when that cookie is on the agenda! Am i right ๐Ÿ˜€
    Hope today’s better! <3

    1. Joyce says:

      A gluten-free coconut cream cookie sandwich? That does sound amazing! I hope that helped your crummy day go a little bit better. The last couple of days have fortunately been going much better for me. ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Cora says:

    How badly do I wish I could have been at your home when you arrived back, ordered you your favorite gluten free low FODMAP pizza, and just vegged with you on your couch letting you vent to your hearts content. ‘Cause this kind of day deserves such an end (I don’t know how Alexander’s day ended, either, but probably something like that…).
    Bad days suck, and this was sure one of them. I’m glad you’ve now been put back together a bit and feel back on track. That would have been absolutely crazy if you had to present in November. Someone must have been greatly confused!?
    And way to stick to good eating even in the face of forgetting your lunch and having (as you said – not surprisingly) a bad “f” day. You continue to remind me that I have to do the same when I have these days. Thank you for that.

    1. Joyce says:

      Thanks for the kind words, Cora. I would have loved to have you around to veg out with!

  3. Ellie says:

    Oh man that sounds so stressful! It stinks when you think you have more time for something and then the deadline gets moved up. I’ll pray for you girl!
    My last bad day was this past Friday. I cried and it was overwhelming…but I got through ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Joyce says:

      I’m sorry to hear your Friday was rough. Hope this week’s going better for you!

  4. Kate says:

    Ugh, those days! When it rains it pours. At least you didn’t have to cook dinner, right? I find that things eventually fall into place, but not before it all falls in your lap.
    The Hungry Caterpillar (plus all Eric Carle books) were read to me a lot as a child. I loved them all! My very favorite children/s book was probably this book called The Christmas Witch by Steven Kellog.

    1. Joyce says:

      I remember we read The Very Hungry Caterpillar a lot at school, plus Brown Bear Brown Bear quite a bit, but at home we read the Robert Munch books a lot. I’ll have to look up The Christmas Witch. That sounds cute!

  5. Kat says:

    UGH! I hate days like that. I am with you – I would’ve bawled all day long, but I also would’ve screamed and cursed. I tend to get angry when I’m sad, which tends to just make the entire ordeal even worse!

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