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MMXVI

Happy new year! I hope your new year is better than the last.

I had YarnKettle over for New Years and was reminded that I haven’t updated in a while. It was nice to have people over for New Years. I’ve been a bit of a hermit during the semester. Every second of free time was spent either with the Husband and OP or doing homework. I did see my college besties a couple times, which was awesome, but I missed my non-school friends more than I realized. I need all my friends to stay sane. Or sane-ish.

At least I’m finished with my first semester of the internship. Wait, let me rephrase. I survived my first semester of the internship. Yay! It was tough, but so amazing. It confirmed that I am following the right path for me. I loved each rotation. I may not have enjoyed every location or every task, but I absolutely loved what I did each day. Next semester is 10 weeks at a hospital. I’m a bit scared, but it will be good.

Wow, I sound way too sappy, but I’ll take it. I’d rather be sappy than crying my eyes out.

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I am so tired…maybe

I’m three weeks into my internship. Where the heck did time go? I am tired and frustrated by this experience, but I’m not as tired as I like to think and am really enjoying it. How’s that for contradictions?

I’m tired because I get up at 5am so I can get in a short 20 minute workout, eat, get myself together, get the child together, and sometimes drop her off at day care before I leave. (No, I don’t leave her at home on the other days. The Husband drops her off). All that to get to my rotation at 7:30. I spend most of the day on my feet, running around like a mad woman and not eating. Yeah, I lost 3 pounds in the first 2 weeks because I couldn’t figure out when to eat during the day. That’s getting better, thankfully. I come home, make and eat dinner, get the child to bed, do homework for about 30 minutes, watch 5 minutes of TV with the Husband, and then go to bed between 8:30-9:00.

It sucks.

I have to go to bed early so I can get up early, but then I don’t seem to get homework done. Thankfully, I had the brilliant idea to keep getting up at 5am on the weekends. This means I don’t have a screwy schedule and I get used to these hours AND I have 2-3 hours on the weekends guaranteed to get work done. That and my in-laws have taken the child a bit. Although, right now I feel overwhelmed. As soon as I get something done and feel accomplished, I turn around and have 5 more things due. *sigh*

Oh my goodness, my life is dull. BUT I just have to get through 10 months and all the schedules will be different. In theory. Oh please, don’t have a rotation where I have to get up at 3am.

In the meantime, I haven’t gotten much non-school things done, but this is okay. I did knit a few items over the summer and I used up 4 skeins! I went from 70 to 66 and have more stash-busting ideas! Is it bad that all my projects right now are chosen for their stash-busting properties? I don’t think so, because I do like the projects I have selected on top of stash busting. Of course, there may be a yarn festival coming up soon which could potentially mean more yarn. No, I will be strong.

What else? I’m currently making oatmeal bars, muffins, and egg things to act as quick, on-the-go breakfast items to streamline my mornings. That, or I’m procrastinating by baking. Still, I do need to do it, which is what I’m telling the Husband. Don’t tell him it’s really procrastinating.

The Great Unknown

My orientation is complete and my first internship day is Monday. First and foremost, I’m scared. It’s a new experience and I am often worried about what I don’t know. It was worse before the orientation. I now have a list of my tasks and I now know what I can expect going in. So, I’m scared, but I’m more excited now.

I also question if I’m making a terrible mistake. I admit, I felt this way after quitting my job and going back to school. And I continued to feel that way until I made a few friends and got the rhythm of the program (so, about a week into the first semester). Once I got the hang of school again, I fell in love with nutrition and knew this was for me. I can only hope that after the first week of internship, I feel the same way. Of course, it’s food management, and the DPD classes for food management make me less inclined to work in that area. But, I’m keeping an open mind. I may find that actually doing the work is what I love, not learning about it. Maybe I’ll want to run a kitchen. Or maybe not.

I worry that I will fail miserably and let down the people who accepted me into this program. I’ve worked at a few jobs in my time and I know, logically, that I can do it, but I’m still worried that I will fail. I also fear that I will ask too many questions and annoy the preceptors. I do ask a lot of questions because I want to make sure I understand the issue. I suspect this is from programming since I needed to make sure I understood my client’s needs before I spent 20 hours on the wrong thought process.

I have a tendency to focus on one thing at a time–work or family or self. I can’t, during the semester, focus on more than one. Work always wins, followed by family, and I ignore self. Which may be why I gained 10 pounds during the last year of classes–I only had time for food, not exercise or meditation. I really want to use my time better to maintain balance rather than go for the A. I mean, I need to get that A, but an A- is okay. Of course, I do tell myself this at the beginning of every semester and fail miserably. This time I will get it figured out.

Right now, I’m ready to get started and just want to get the waiting over. That’s really the hard part.

Back to Sanity, of a sort…

When I was a kid, my dad would jokingly tell me eating something or trying something new/hard was “good for you! It would put hair on your chest!” Which is what every young girl wants. This semester? It put tons of metaphorical hair on my chest. Four hard, project-filled graduate classes coupled with working for the department grading papers (another class in its own right with the number of essays I had to read) equaled me curled up in a ball crying for the first five weeks. I complained so much to the Husband that he took a pair of knives and gouged his ears so he would never hear me speak of it again. So, of course I mimed my suffering until he did the same to his eyes.

He didn’t really do that. He just ignored me. A lot.

So, the semester was intense. It’s my fault because god forbid I do less than perfect work and pay attention in class and get an A and make sure to talk to professors so they know me and can write a reference and do well even if I have no clue what I just learned. For example I gave up on a paper, declared it was crap but a B was good enough for me! I got an A. What I consider B-level is apparently A-level work and trying to do A-level work is putting in too much time. Next semester, I’m aiming for B’s, which is what I said this semester and the semester before….

Of course, I slacked in most areas of life in my quest for an A, especially exercise. And I comfort ate like you would not believe. I’m not happy, but I’m determined to get back into a healthier habit over break. Which means it’s the perfect time for my knee to go out! The Husband took my to New York City to see Pippin (one of my favorite musicals and an amazing performance) after the semester ended, and I torqued my knee trying to let someone through the aisle at the performance. Fortunately, the knee only took me out a couple days and I could exercise again. Until, that is I got knocked flat on my back with a nasty cold…illness…thingy. Yeah, two weeks of break and I was a pathetic mess.

But the pity party is over. I’m healthy again (mostly) and my knee is fabulous. I got a work out today and I even vacuumed part of the house! I am determined to turn things around and stop wallowing in negativity. I’m getting my butt out and putting my health first. I exercised today instead of cleaning the house and I’m doing it again tomorrow! Heck, I may even read for fun instead of clean a toilet. Or not. The toilets are getting gross.

I’m sneezing

Happy New Year, um, 22 days ago! I spent the last 10 seconds of 2013 yelling that I had a knot in my yarn and I can’t start the new year with a knot! We’ll see if tangled yarn is an omen to how the year will go. I’ve only knit once since the new year. Hopefully, if it is an omen, it’s not knitting related. Really, I just need to get a simple project on the needles. Maybe tomorrow.

Classes started on Tuesday. The 8am class was cancelled due to the professor’s sickness (yay for me!). The second class and related lab were not (boo!). The second class was food science and it looks…daunting, but don’t they all?

We are all sick right now. I think it’s a cold, but there are a lot of sniffles and coughing over this way. Don’t come near us or you risk contamination. The down-side of being sick is that I couldn’t do my volunteer work today. For my degree, I need to volunteer 24 hours in some sort of nutrition/food area. I’ve been volunteering with a woman who teaches various nutrition classes, and it has been really fun. The last few classes were how to eat with diabetes. I was cooking for the classes, but couldn’t today because I am sick. I don’t want give someone norovirus, not that I have norovirus, but still.

I’ve been finding the class interesting for two reasons. First, I learned was that I love cooking for people and showing them how to eat healthy food that also tastes good. When I’m looking for experience and jobs, I need to keep that in mind.

The second thing I found interesting is how applicable one of the concepts was to life. Hold on, it’s going to get cheesy and preachy for a bit. One of the questions asked by the nutritionist is, “Can you drink OJ?” The attendees said, no. However, the reality is yes, you can drink OJ, but you need to keep it within limits and adjust other parts of your meal. Wait, let me stop a second. I am not yet a dietitian or even a nutritionist. I am a student. I am talking about what they said in a research-based class. I’m not going to argue what your doctor, mother, crunchy friend, etc. has told you. If you want more information about this topic, see a REGISTERED DIETITIAN or diabetes-certified dietition. I discovered in class that if you have diabetes, your insurance usually will cover a visit or two to a dietitian.

Anyway, so, per the research-based class, you can have OJ. How? Well, at meals a diabetic should get roughly 45-60 grams of carbs per meal (AGAIN, SEE A REGISTERED DIETITIAN FOR SOMETHING SPECIFIC TO YOU OR MORE SPECIFIC IN GENERAL). So a 1/2 cup of OJ is 15 g of carbs, if I remember correctly. That means, you can have a 1/2 cup OJ and still be within your limit. If you like a large glass of OJ and a big bowl of cereal and milk (milk has carbs), then, you need to figure out a compromise and adjust accordingly. Maybe cut down the size of your cereal so you are within limits, keep the OJ small, or replace the cereal with eggs or something less carb-laden. Simple, right? However, listening to the teacher talk about compromising on food, hit home for every day things. In life, you need to make compromises. If I want to exercise daily, I need to let go of getting a perfect grade on a project or stop worrying about cleaning everything. If I want to spend time with my family, then I need to pull back on work or extra-curricular activities. If you don’t want to kill yourself, you need to figure out what you can live with. It’s something I always knew, but when the teacher said it, I finally understood. Now, we’ll see if I can remember it.

End of a week

I’m taking a break from homework and cleaning to watch the last episode for season 2 of Super Hero Squad–my daughter’s current addiction. I hope there’s a third season. Right now, she’s watching in her hero cape and mask. Seriously cute.

Anyway, my full-time classes started this week, and it’s…interesting. If I’m going to be honest, the first day was pretty awful. I went home almost in tears thinking I had just made the biggest mistake in my life. I just had no idea where I was going, couldn’t find parking (it took 30 minutes), kept having a hard time getting things in and out of my backpack, never really met any other classmates, and just felt completely out of my element and not at all part of the school.* Plus all the rooms are hot. As in no AC and I’m…what did they say on Coffee Talk? Schfitzing out of my ganecktagazoink?

Tuesday was different. Tuesday was better. I had an 8am lab which was early enough to find parking. Then, in the bathroom I saw a girl I recognized in class. So I put on my big girl panties (So to speak.) and said, “You’re in my chem class, right?” That started a chain reaction and by the end of lab, I had met 3 people. I repeated that sentence a couple times and am now friendly with others. It felt infinitely better than Monday.

The rest of the week bounced between overwhelmed and lost to doing well. On the plus side, I’m not always the oldest lady in the class. There are also a few other women with kids so others can relate to the unique issues that entails. Also, the workload right now isn’t bad and looking through the semester if I start some things now and stick to a schedule, I may be okay. I hope. Otherwise, there will be a very, very cranky post in a few weeks.

* Footnote! I felt like an outsider, mostly because there was no orientation for post-bac people, at least as far as I know. I didn’t get any notice of it to my recollection and just was very confused.

Ow. Ow. Ow. Ow.

Who’s bright idea was it to take an anatomy 1 class in 6 weeks? Oh right, me.

It’s actually not too bad, just a lot of information and memorization in a REALLY short amount of time. Plus I now know what it feels like to sprain one’s brain, because I’m pretty sure I did it. Literally. On the upside, I’m crushing it. 3 tests and each a 94 (oddly enough) AND I got a 110 out of 110 on a lab practical. Only 1 practical, 1 test, and the final to go. Now, before you start thinking that I know every bone, muscle, or nerve in the body (I don’t) or that I’m an anatomy super-genius (ha!), we’re really only focusing on the basics and a bit more in class. I just hope I don’t need much more than the basics for my nutrition classes.

So, yes. These past few weeks have been mostly studying, but also a lot of cleaning. It’s weird. I feel like a “housewife” and I don’t like it. Warning: If me using the word housewife and being annoyed by the label offends you, there’s a close button on all browsers. Click it. Or better yet, go here and think happy thoughts.

See, before I became a student I was an earner. I made a decent salary and contributed financially to our household. If something happened I could support myself and family for an extended period of time. Now, I can’t. I make almost no money and it bothers me, and I never expected it to actually bother me. I’m dependent on my husband and feel obligated to run every little thing past him because I don’t see it as my money when before it was ours. I suddenly feel not quite as equal as I once was.

Of course he thinks I’m crazy and I think I’m crazy, but I guess I don’t see people who voluntarily stay at home as equal to someone who works. It’s a starling discovery. When I had a job, I thought men and women could work or stay at home and  contribute to the family equally. Or at least, that’s what I thought I thought. Now that I’m not working? I feel lesser.

Yes, I’m a student, but that’s really just semantics to me.  I wouldn’t change what I’m doing–I would still quit my job and go back to school. I am in LOVE with what I am learning and really enjoying it. I wish I had taken a bio class in college, but then again, I probably would have hated it then. Will I love anatomy 2? I hope so. Will I love my nutrition courses? Again, I hope so, but if I don’t I now know that biology is something I actually enjoy. Will the crazies become so overwhelming that I find it necessary to burn a bra to prove my equality? Very possibly, but knowing me, I’d burn the house down with it. In any case, I’m enjoying myself and studying with OP who thinks pictures of actual brains and muscles are really cool and will sometimes call her fingers phalanges. I think that’s a win if nothing else.