Monthly Archives: September 2015

So whatcha gonna do when the bottom falls out?

(Worth it–Francesca Battistelli)

Umm…apparently call my mommy and my daddy over and over until they pick up their phones at like 5:40 in the morning…

…another flat tire…another pop, oh no…this one flat so quickly that by the time I finished turning the corner it was completely flat…and apparently both the front and back tires are so damaged that the tire, rim, and hub cap all likely need replacing…not a happy camper…

Thank God I hadn’t let my phone battery completely die overnight…

…Yay for roadside assistance, but BOO for the message that it will probably be about an hour…maybe that shouldn’t be the very first thing someone hears when they call for help?…Okay, yeah, expectation management because if you told me it was gonna be 10 minutes and I waited an hour and a half I would be even more upset than if I waited an hour and a half after being told it would be an hour, but at the same time, maybe you could actually let me get all the way to a REAL person before telling me that it will be an hour. Kthxbai??

Also, thank God I put money in my account recently so I can pay for a new tire once I get somewhere to do so…which I plan on not doing today because I’ve already dealt with more than my little brain can handle for the day. There ain’t no practice runs for life, but there is always tomorrow perpetually a day away.

…can I just whine that this is not how I planned to spend my morning…and also that this is one reason against having oatmeal for breakfast…and seriously…not happy…

…and of course I finally get going to school and some idiot crossing guard literally runs out in front of my car (while there is nobody in the sidewalk and nobody waiting to cross) and yells at me to get off my phone. It is perfectly legal for me to make phone calls while driving, and you can’t make me do anything and yelling at me just makes me wanna pretend I am making a call if I ever see you again. (Immature, yes, but that was not a good time to be a jerkface at me)…I have half a mind to go back to that intersection and give him a piece of my mind, but that is probably one of those things that I would regret once I calmed down…and plus if you’re a crossing guard you probably aren’t the brightest bulb in the drawer, and like my pharmacist carpool buddy has said many times, you can’t fix stupid.

…and I parked over the line in the parking garage and I don’t even care…I just wanna go back home and pretend I’m not a student…I think my teachers might have something to say about that though if I didn’t show up for my quizzes and in class assignments and stuff today though, so I guess I have to stay here…and learn all the stuff I should have been learning this morning when I was playing with a flashlight in my car…I tried to study but the hazard lights were really messing with my brain (click click flash flash SHUT UP) and I was really struggling to even read and comprehend simple words so I gave up and played with the flashlight…

I don’t want to be an adult anymore. I am tired of trying to adult. Can I get a do-over?

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Truth is harder than a lie.

(If we’re honest—Francesca Battistelli)

Sorry if this is all over the place…I am all over the place…

So Thursday I forgot I was making oatmeal for breakfast (even though I do it almost every day now)…and pressed start on the microwave again and ignored it. Which led to looking over and giving the microwave the look of “are you even serious right now?” because it was boiling over…again…this is what lack of sleep does to me: make me forgetful and stupider than usual…my brother has always said I am the dumbest smart kid he knows…I don’t really think I am that smart, but I do have to admit that for my level intelligence, I sure do occasionally do some really dumb things and am sometimes found to be lacking in certain areas that might be deemed common sense…

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This is an easily remediable situation with napkins or paper towel and throwing way the cup when I am done eating, except that enter another problem: OCD. Yeah, what a perfect time for that old “friend” to make an appearance…see, brown napkins (and really any food service napkins) are icky to OCD…and paper towel especially from the new paper towel dispensers are also icky to OCD…and my lunchbox has been without napkins for the last month because I forgot to put new ones in since I almost never need them anyway…I cleaned it up because that’s what big girls and/or responsible people do, but it was very unfun…and my left shoe is kinda sticky from oatmeal drips…

So yeah, Thursday morning OCD made an appearance. It was really scary, because it has been gone for a really long time, and there wasn’t really a very specific trigger or anything. In the time since the OCD has been gone, I have only felt any OCD-like anxiety in the presence of a reasonable trigger such as hearing about someone throwing up from someone who was completely freaking out about it, or actually seeing someone throw up. Each time the anxiety quickly went away once the trigger was gone. Even those normal-ish things came only like 3 times over the past year. This time the anxiety lasted from Thursday morning until Friday afternoon. I think that a high-stress week (life?) combined with not enough sleep probably set me up for it, but I know there have been other times I was stressed out and under-slept and didn’t react with anxiety, so it is super hard not really knowing what just happened. It is frustrating, because we are learning inhalation devices right now in APP, and I was having a hard time even touching my inhaler, much less getting it anywhere near my mouth (what if inside the factory where they make them someone was sick so even inside the plastic wrapped ones it is not safe…plus as soon as I open it the whole school will contaminate it)…That was a problem—not to my instructors or anyone around me, but to me. I hate feeling limited like that…and then I looked at the clock later and realized that in the past two hours I had done absolutely no studying—all I’d done was wash my hands, take a break, force food in the mouth without touching it, and use hand sanitizer…not good…luckily later in the afternoon the anxiety went away as abruptly as it appeared and I was totally fine again, but that was kinda scary.

Should I get help for that? IDK, but I kinda think no, because I mean it’s less than 36 hours…and I can just envision that conversation: So what brings you here today? Well, I had OCD symptoms for a little over a day and I didn’t like it. Okay, so how do you want to change this? IDK I just don’t want it to happen again. Okay, fair enough, how will you know when you have reached the goal? I don’t know. Well, have you had any problems since that day? No. Well, perfect! I guess we are done here, because you reached that goal!…okay, so I hope someone in real life would put forth a bit more effort…and maybe not let me get away with IDK for like every single answer ever, but either way, that is kind of a nebulous goal, because like I tried to illustrate in that conversation, how exactly do you know if you have reached “never happening again.” How long is never? First year I defined never as 3 years for the sake of crossing goals off my list…but realistically, the fact that three years had passed was a pretty arbitrary line in the sand to reach…

It did finally make the concept of OCD with an on-off switch click though, so it wasn’t a complete waste…I have heard people talk about how for them OCD was like an on-off switch, one day totally fine, the next for absolutely no reason terrified. I didn’t quite grasp exactly what that was like, and thought perhaps it was a bit of an exaggeration or something. For me, either there was a distinct and definable trigger that caused a drastic problem in the case of the random attacks over the past year, or in the case of when I actually was struggling, falling into OCD was very much a gradual process with a dimmer switch that I just didn’t really realize was being pushed up until it was pretty late into the disease process and I was doing pretty poorly handling it…but this time there really was a distinct on and off, no exaggeration, with the onset and offset of symptoms. Now I get it…and I know how terrifying it is for things to be going fine and then suddenly for no recognizable reason, not. I went to bed one night just fine—licking food off the floor, and woke up terrified of the world, and just as quickly went back to wiping off a dropped pea on my shirt and popping it in my mouth.

Actually, now that I think about it, it is more like a pendulum. At first it swung very slowly from normal-ish to deeply entrenched and then back past normal all the way to licking the wall one day because I could (oops…that wasn’t a wise decision…but it did what is was supposed to and gave me a little on top of the world feeling which helped ward off the person soon after not listening to a single word coming out of my mouth) and then eventually settled closer to the middle. Occasionally a trigger would bump it and it would swing wildly towards afraid but then be gently placed back in the middle. Being tired and stressed out though loosened the pivot point and oiled the joint so that the normal oscillations went a little crazy and it swung a little too freely for a little while before calming back down, but it was swinging so quickly that it seemed more like an on and off because the dimmer moved so quickly.

This week we have had a disability awareness thing set up. I think it should stay forever, because it gave me a chance to be just a student like anyone else. Although I didn’t necessarily have anyone to talk to, it let me just go get a piece of candy without going to a vending machine or someone else getting it for me or just having to watch while everyone else got it and I pretended I didn’t really want anything anyway. You don’t know how good that felt. Inclusion is powerful. I also really liked the toy puppy with a button to make it make noise, and now I totally want a keyboard that pivots, and also I found that the idea I had a long time ago of something that would help me communicate when I had trouble is actually something that exists but in a way more functional form than the one inside my head!…but really the best part of the exhibit was the bowl of candy, because it gave me a chance to be like everyone else. It isn’t about the candy; it’s about inclusion…I don’t even necessarily agree with everything that they talked about in the exhibit/presentation, but I am allowed to have my own opinions and I don’t have to agree with someone to respect their right to their own opinion. Sometimes being just like everyone else feels just as incredible as I always thought it would…being just like everyone else has been a goal of mine for so many years, although in what aspect I wanted to be the same has changed over time…

I have the greatest friends ever. I posted something on facebook that perhaps I shouldn’t have, and one of my friends responded so encouragingly…I didn’t expect any kind of response, and definitely not a positive response…I wish I could hang out with all my friends all the time. That would be my version of paradise. I feel like I had something else I was going to say about my friends, but I can’t remember it anymore…

Isn’t it awesome when quizzes are only a few questions long and not exactly over the mainpoints of the course so that even one question wrong really destroys your grade? …yeah…I am kind of frustrated, because I know what I am talking about and yet can’t manage to make it show through my grades…I work so hard and all I get is frustrated.

On Friday I learned why I always go the same way home from the grocery store…because I am directionally challenged, and that short cut kinda got me a little bit lost and was a longer than the way I usually go…

Also, money can buy a lot of things that I think I want…but some of them aren’t quite as awesome as they seem…like a functional guess gauge…It is really awesome to look down and be like YAY! I must be driving efficiently because I still have a decent amount of gas left in my car…however it is a little less awesome to look down and realize that knowing pretty well what I have left makes it a lot easier to wait until the last minute which means that I am now trying to figure out how I am going to get to the gas station without running out…oops…overall it is a useful investment, but pretty much every good thing has a down side…

There are also some other things I kinda want to write about…but occasionally even I can figure out there are some things that don’t belong on the World Wide Web…

Styfaleare torga orpha torga filla Tordalaciastornafeare Stop talking gibberish or just stop talking

(Gibberish–Relient K)

I wish I could just keep learning more about pharmacology since that stuff actually seemed pretty useful to real life…but alas that class is only for fourth year so I have to continue the therapeutics sequence which is basically in my opinion gibberish and not overly useful…here is my solely-therapeutics weekend in pictures (and words)…(this is the first time I have ever neglected so much for one test…IDK if it was worth it…

It is like there is a magical aura that causes me to remember all the answers to the things I know immediately after hitting finish and submit on the exam…BJ2FL told me second year that the name for that aura is test anxiety…but whatever it is, I don’t like it…I felt like the exam, while it did test over the material, didn’t really test the most important things or even the things that were most relevant…but the biggest problem is that I kept getting yelled at for the first 30 minutes that I should be working on my exam (the intent was probably and not doodling a picture in the margin of my paper)…which would have been great if their stupid exam would even load on my computer, but every time I tried to open it either the whole thing would crash or it would just not open…and then I finally had a test to work on except that it was missing every other page…which I realized as I copied my answers onto the answer form and realized that some of those answers made no sense and had to try again…

Overall, not so hot…especially how I hit submit on each section and immediately went “oh no” because as soon as I hit submit the little neurons in my brain start going oh yeah!! I totally actually know this stuff! I wish they would do that BEFORE I hit submit though…

I definitely eat my stress…I can’t even count how many breakfasts I had and then how many pre-lunch snacks I needed on Sunday…and apparently on Saturday I packed my candy twice…and it was still all gone long before the end of the day…this girl who can definitely put away the food to rival any teenage boy craves even more than that when especially stressed…

…and if you couldn’t tell by the volume of food I’d eaten that I was kinda stressed out…I also took my headphones apart beyond the point that they could be put back together…they still work though so I guess there are a lot of unnecessary parts of the headphones…and the side that is taken apart is more comfortable so umm destructive stress win?

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“Here’s the key to my front door, got a pillow if you lost yours you got a seat at my table you’ve got a home” (Christa Wells). Yeah, this might not be the greatest home ever, but it is still my home for a while and I am learning to live with it…

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From a distance it looks like I got myself together…until you see the haphazardly scribbled notes mixed with to do lists strewn across the table and my lap…yeah…the girl at the table looks like she knows what she’s doing (except when she’s chewing on a freezee wrapper) but she is so not in control…she’s the one who wore flip flops in the snow last year because they were closest to the door and it hadn’t been snowing earlier…

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This made me smile…Mutants attacking the city…I might not have been able to look up where I was even supposed to be going, but I am so very thankful for ppl who are very understanding. Not a lot of people would be happy to have me going back and forth between fully listening and half-listening while half-studying…most people would kinda be annoyed by that and even call me out on it…but not everyone, and that makes a huge difference.

Y’all, smiles are so important. Taking a semi-break to go to a meeting seemed like a big huge obstacle, but while it did take study time away, it was SO energizing to take a break to have fun and talk a little with friends…I was so dead mentally, but it was still so good…and I was smart enough to realize that while I added an item to my to do list, that to do list is so messy at the moment that I was never going to be able to find it again if I didn’t send the email right then and there…so I did…thank God for JO who helped me last spring when the password to the wifi changed and I couldn’t figure out to type it correctly because I don’t actually always know the names of all the symbols on the keyboard…

Reminders of the old church at home still make me feel sad on the inside and reminiscent about what could have been, but they are no longer painful. The are no longer as lemon juice spilled into an open wound. I can be reminded of the “ushering to the glory of God” information sheet on the back of my spring break to do list from years ago (IDK which year it was, but I do know it was the year that I started more consistently getting extreme nausea before and during my periods because I really thought I had mild stomach flu all of spring break which was rather unfortunate because it meant that I kept turning down hanging out with my best friend, and especially since I only get to see her a couple times a year, I really relish any time I can spend together…even though back then as much as I loved hanging with her it was as exhausting as it was exhilarating, because she was one of the few people who could get me to talk on occasion (although even with her it was at most one or two word answers given after a lot of prompting and patience most of the time)…but anyway, I kind of missed my year of ushering before I got pulled away (cry face), but it didn’t completely pull me away from what was in front of me…and in fact, it was a sweet memory, and then I moved on. I know I’ve probably talked about this a lot, but it is still so good to me that I have been able to reach this point. For so many years I was walking on eggshells around that point knowing that any minor trigger could easily take me down hard. It was so hard and had been hard for so long that I wasn’t so sure I would ever be able to move on, but now I have. Now I can have a reminder and smile instead of cry.

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What is missing: this dummy forgot dinner or even candy…’cause it made total sense when I checked my email to just pack up what was with me and leave instead of going ALL the way back to my apartment to pack like a normal person…luckily I have a very kind friend who bought me some pasta which held me over until I got home and rewarded myself with a fruit cup…I LOVE fruit, but fruit is usually one of the more expensive food groups so I try to limit how much I eat…and I’d already had past the usual limits…but desperate times call for desperate means and I wanted the fruit cup so I ate the fruit cup…see paragraph about how I eat stress…it is very effective…I measured my heart rate at 142 around 12ish on Sunday (normal is 60-100), so yeah, there was just a little stress going on…also, I wasn’t going to share this picture because it shows that there is a new color on the inside of my car (hello soft black and gray seats and goodbye to the all gray seats…) but then my cover was blown just a little bit because I am the kind of person who overrides the volume limit on my phone because I just can’t hear it, so especially if I am listening to music LOUD and screaming in excitement about a puppy, it draws a small bit of attention to the inside of my car (or at least to the girl inside the car…but yeah…) I decided I don’t care. A while back my brother had a new year’s resolution for people to be less bored when he was talking about robotics. Note that it wasn’t that he would be less boring, because he thought robotics was super interesting, rather it was that other people would be less bored. Similarly, I decided this week that I wasn’t going to be bothered by other people. It is not that other people won’t bother me, just that I won’t care what they do to me. Want to call me names? Do it! Want to cut off my right foot? I dare you! Want to fail me for no reason whatsoever? Go for it! I probably will feel differently about this in about 5 minutes, but for now I am totally like hey I won’t let your hurtful actions hurt me, because someday I am going to be in heaven and it won’t even matter, and you’ll be the one having to watch all your actions replayed.

I am very lucky that I know what “secret place” translates to and have the wherewithal to intervene gently before I either say something dumb or cry…yep, I am the one who messes up good plans and makes things complicated because of issues…

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Look…the simple joy of a brand new cup and a ridiculous amount of chocolate in my oatmeal…(yeah…I do re-use the same cup for upwards of a week…it saves having to wash bowls all the time after the oatmeal has hardened all day and can just be thrown out when it gets disgustingly sticky or falls apart)…

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This is my “how can I possibly have studied so many hours and still know almost nothing” face…it looks very similar to my “I decided to read one page of the HSM book so I could say I had started the project that was coming due soon but the thrill that the book was written close to my comprehension level made me decide to get through the entire first chapter and thus I was up late” face…because they are kinda the same today…

This carpet tastes like coffee grounds ground into my face now and every angle’s covered with just another bandaid

(Falling Out–Relient K)

Saturday sillies

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Doesn’t everyone’s gmail sign in page look like this?…why yes, I do have this many gmail accounts…which is why if you aren’t emailing one of my school email accounts I am slow to answer…especially since I also have two yahoo accounts that I still remember the password for and so many other places to check where people communicate with me…someday (specifically when I am no longer in school) a lot of these accounts won’t be on my page anymore though…which will be kinda nice…

Also, someone was signing at me last week…it can’t really count as much of a conversation when most of the time I was like yeah, I got the “e” and that’s about it…I suppose to actually communicate I might need more than just “eat” “ball” “play” “sleep” “more” “mommy” “water”…so I learned fruits and tried to learn colors via songs on youtube…can you tell from what I knew that the sign language I knew came from the alphabet in 6th grade world languages and someone I worked with in the nursery a few years ago who was studying sing language and practicing at church…

Tuesday night I prob waited a little too long to head home and as a result I was convinced I needed to get into the very first parking spot I found…which wouldn’t have been such a problem except that it wasn’t a lot bigger than my car (not that my visuospatial skills had the capacity at this point to recognize this until I was halfway into the spot though) but anyway, so I parked in ONLY 4 MINUTES (I know that might be a lot for most people, but for me that is pretty good) and started screaming and trying to high five myself YAY!! And then I told myself I was obnoxious…and then I told myself to shut up and just ’cause it’s true doesn’t mean you should say it…and this is why I need to sleep…

Sometimes people don’t respect my personal bubble…and I started considering creating a sign that said “Hi! I am a real girl. If you would like to talk please say hello to activate otherwise please turn around and stop staring.” Except then I realized that there are some people with whom I’d prefer not to have a conversation while studying…I also considered making the font really big and typing “like OMG there is like totally someone standing like INSIDE my personal bubble and it’s not just me.” But I realized that would be kinda rude and inappropriate so I didn’t…

I had a lot of things labeled at my apartment already, but I saw this thing on pinterest about how this person’s life felt so much more complete with a cereal bin and labels in the kitchen…so now most of my cereal is in a bin (which was dumb because it was a lot more useful when the bin was for frequently used items)…and the cheerios are now labeled “Original cheerios, AKA the bestest ever) and the oatmeal is labeled (almost) instant oatmeal. I’m not sure that my life feels any more complete than it did before…but hindsight is 20/20 so I can now see that a post it note would have been better than sharpie for the labels…

You know you’ve been working on a lot of computer and phone stuff when you try to use your finger on your paper to scroll down on the text…umm yeah, you’re going to have to pick up the paper and move it…

You know it is time to dump your pretend prescription from pharmaceutics when the formerly white like paper liquid has turned brown like steak…but it still smelled like grape which is better than I can say about the “prescription” second year that went bad.

Okay, and one last thing that is actually really serious rather than silly. Oh my…I am so over all the mommies and daddies who don’t want their special snoflach to be different than anyone else and/or don’t want to have to teach their child how to behave to stay safe. No, it is completely ridiculous to try to force an entire school or other group of people to be completely nut free because little Johnny can’t have peanuts so you don’t wanna teach him to keep his hand on his OWN lunch. So is your child’s health more important than the health of the rest of the group? There are some kids who are ultra picky eaters and they will go hungry without a peanut butter sandwich. I was one of those ultra picky kids, and for years at a time there would be only one thing I was willing to eat for lunch…maybe a few more foods I would eat at home for dinner, but take away that one food that was safe for me because it wasn’t safe for your kid and I would have gone hungry every day…also, in particular when the ban is on peanut butter, peanut butter is one of the cheapest sources of protein. Even if a kid isn’t picky, some families can’t always afford and/or don’t want to afford more expensive protein options. As a parent of an allergic kid you probably have noticed that allergen free food might be more expensive…well guess what, it isn’t just more expensive for you, it is more expensive even for the non-allergic people you are trying to force to buy it as well…Next argument: guess what, if we take away a certain food because little Johnny can’t have it then it isn’t very fair to have foods that little Susie and little Anna can’t have so I guess in addition to nuts we can’t have dairy, gluten, corn, soy, eggs, or fish either (you know, just a few of the other top allergens), oh and little Ellie’s parents subscribe to the whole food dyes and sugar cause behavior problems dealio so no food dye and no sugar either, and little Marcus has heart problems so no sodium…so umm, I guess sure, we can get rid of the foods some kids can’t have. I guess lunch has now been reduced to a bottle of water…have fun with that, kids! Oh wait, some people are allergic to water, I guess we can’t have sinks and toilets in schools either—those things have the dangerous water in them! Also, what happens to these kids grow up and are no longer in your little protective bubble and haven’t ever had to learn that there are some foods they can’t have?…okay…just had to get that out there, because I’ve seen so much lately about how dumb everyone is for not eliminating peanuts from the planet, because think about the kids! Well, I am thinking about the kids…I’m thinking about the vast majority of the kids and their families that you seem to think you child is more important than…guess what?! Your kid is special…just like everyone else!

Okay, one more semi-serious thing: You know you are an extravert when a good morning leads you to jumping up and down with excitement…so backstory: there is a certain person whom I decided I was going to try really hard to give a chance even though I kind of wanted to decide before I even met the person that I wasn’t going to like the person. So as soon as I encountered the person I tried to be friendly but not intrusive. On Friday, after a month of trying to be friendly I got a good morning! Day: made. Person finally made it out of limbo and onto my okay person list. (No, it’s not a physical list. That would be creepy).

I am Loved

(Who I am: Blanca)

I have had an overwhelming sense over the past few days that I am really blessed because I have the bestest friends ever. I have friends that take the time to hang out with me and make space for me to sit with them and interrupt their conversation with someone else to talk to me even though I have nothing to say and are just really awesome…

I love my friends so much. I feel like I don’t deserve to have such awesome friends…but I really appreciate how awesome my friends are.

You know what’s not so awesome though: school.

I have a lot of pet peeves about school.

For example, in high school I don’t even know how many times I got sent to the attendance office because the teacher couldn’t mark me present for class…in other words, how many conversations I had with the attendance office that I was in fact present. Hi, my teacher sent me down here because the attendance book says I’m absent and it won’t let him fix it to say I am here. Well, the teacher is not going to mark you present if you showed up really late. Yeah, but I wasn’t late. The computer just wouldn’t let him put that I was present. Well the computer says you are absent all day. Well I am here right now and I was in my classes all morning…(yes, I really did have this conversation over and over…).

More recently, the issue of checks at college. I think it is a really dumb game to play I give you $300 today you give me $100 next week, etc…especially the day last semester I literally got a check one day for the exact amount that they sent me a bill for the next day…how hard would it really be, especially at such a small school, for the accounts receivable person to lean over to the accounts payable person and compare notes so that we didn’t just exchange checks all the time…maybe there is something I am missing, but it doesn’t seem like that would be so hard…and then you wouldn’t have times like today where I got a check from you three days ago and my payment to you is going to be only hours away from late because I checked go to business office off my list without actually turning in the check last time I was there…it would save both of us the time and effort of tracking each other down and writing so many checks if we could synchronize this and only the person who owes more has to write a check…or you could just take a credit card and paying wouldn’t requiring remembering where I left my checkbook and /or where I left the check that I wrote…

Also that the current online gradebook system we are using has gotten a lot harder to understand…I feel like I shouldn’t need to spend so much effort trying to figure out what my grades are…and I discovered yesterday that I actually had interpreted the grade book incorrectly and I actually am failing two classes, not just one…oh, don’t worry, I’m sure the rest of my classes will catch up so I can fail ’em all and try again next year (#sarcasm…although at the rate I am going right now I might be more right than I’d like to believe…which is bad since I worked so hard already on setting up rotations). I’m working really hard but it seems like all the reward I get for my effort is frustration.

SRSLY?!

This makes me mad. I changed my password to try to avoid issues, and I have no idea how someone could possibly have gotten the new one…

SRSLY

…but at 11:09 I was either sitting in the res hall responding to texts or going to my car to throw all my clothes in there before I forgot about them somewhere, and I don’t think I even was on facebook at all, much less from a new location or device…

…I could believe that perhaps facebook was getting confused and that it was registering log ins from my laptop as new even though it was still just my laptop if they corresponded to times that I realistically could have been logged into facebook, but it is a lot harder to believe that facebook is getting confused if I WASN”T EVEN ON FACEBOOK…

K…rant over…

What’s the Point in Hope; There’s Nothing Hope Can Do.

(I believe in You—The amazingly talented and beautiful singer and songwriter Stephanie Pauline)

I know…I am taking this totally out of context…especially since the very next line of the song is “I have to believe in miracles…” but those two lines in the title are what are speaking to me right now. It seems kind of negativistic, but it actually isn’t as negative as it sounds.

See, on Wednesday I found a mirror reflecting the bright shining beam of hope (metaphorically speaking). I finally could see a light at the end of the tunnel that I had been traveling down for the past year again. I was cautiously not quite on the clouds, but definitely not on the ground…but then the mirror was flipped over and the chair was yanked out from under me and it hurt. And it was a little embarrassing and hard to deal with because I was sitting in the back of class with only a laptop and calculator and just barely not crying…I couldn’t explain to the people around me so I blamed it on the fact that I hadn’t eaten lunch and OMG it is like 1pm already, but that was pretty much just an excuse…it is dumb, because I hadn’t been thrilled with life that morning, but I hadn’t been devastated, yet nothing was truly different from that morning to that afternoon.

That’s the problem with hope. It leads to expectations of positive in a situation that is decidedly negative, and when the reality shines through it leads to disappointment and that little bubble of excitement to pop. With that frame of reference, it seems better to simply not hope and learn to deal with the possibility that things are not awesome now and may not be awesome later either. It doesn’t mean I don’t want good things to happen. It doesn’t mean I want to fail my classes. It doesn’t mean I want school to be a miserable place…what it does mean is that to the best of my ability I am going to live in the moment and celebrate the positives and try to brush the negatives off without looking for some sign that things are going to be better tomorrow. I don’t know how well I can keep myself from creating little bubbles of hope, but I guess we’ll find out…

Totally unrelated thought:

When I had to pick a language in middle school, I picked French, and I stuck with it through a couple years of college level French. Which led to the unique circumstance of that I was missing social skills in English and couldn’t express myself very well in my native language, but in French the way we learned was through conversational patterns, and the classroom is where I have always been most comfortable with communication. Every topic we approached we learned this is what you say to express this thought to a friend. This is what you say to express this thought to a best friend. This is what you say to express this thought to a parent. This is what you say to express this thought to a teacher…etc…which meant I was very comfortable communicating in French…

In turn, that means that although I now have learned the skills to be comfortable in English as well and am no longer fluent in French, if I am stressed out, I still revert into French on occasion…which leads to conversations with myself like this:

Quel est votre nom. Mon nom est Isabelle. Quel est votre nom. Mon nom est Isabelle (repeat…)

 

Wait…You mean not everyone repeats French phrases to themselves as they walk? No, girly, they do not, but it’s okay. If that’s what it takes to get you from point A to point B then just keep going. Ooooh!! Kids!!!!!…GIRLY! Go. To. Class. Do NOT pass go. Do NOT collect 1 million dollars.

Yeah…I was practicing making friends…which is totally useless in an English-speaking country…plus most people would use “Comment t’appele tu” “Je m’apelle Isabelle,” but that is less formative based on the direct rather than the interpretive translation, and I discovered along the way that fluency in French (which I have now lost) isn’t really helpful without an English equivalent.

I guess you now know my French name in middle school was Isabelle…that is not my English name…

(I made it to the school my class was at with only getting lost twice…except the first time I decided I didn’t like the road I was supposed to turn on, which was kind of a problem since it was the road the parking garage I was supposed to use was on…and the next time I discovered that knowing how to read a map was a skill I really need to learn, but eventually I got where I was going and that is why I gave myself an hour to get like 5 miles…so I was a bit stressed out but with God’s help little guys can do big things too!)

You know you know you know

(Impossible–Building 429)

This is totally going to be the next new viral trend…(no it’s not)…

You know you’re lazy when: you “make” chicken noodle soup (from a can) because it is easier than ramen…and then you remember how ramen tastes better though…

You know you’re tired when: you dry your sheets and pajamas to “less dry” and put them on the bed and yourself damp because you were gonna sleep on the floor but then remembered when you did that at home last and your mom made you get up and get the bed sleepable instead…and then realize that heat rises and you wish you had a better excuse to not sleep on the bed…

You know you’re not smart when: two years ago you discovered that two of your shampoo bottles leaked when not right side up, and your solution was to wipe down the slimy congealed shampoo off of everything in the drawer…and then shove everything back in…leading to a finding of an empty bottle and a big mess…this time I got smarter and put the leaky bottles right side up…and praised God that it was not a 32 oz bottle, because that would be even more messy.

 You know you are trusting when: you have no qualms about wandering the alley in the dark to take out the trash…until later when you realize that might have been dangerous, but are still pretty sure that it’s safe, because yeah, you live in an urban area and everyone keeps telling you all the places not to go, but it is a nice neighborhood.

You know you are fun-loving when: you play basketball with your trash bags and the dumpster instead of placing them inside like a normal person…If you were wondering, I scored a 50%; One bag made it to the trash and the other had to be picked up off the ground (rebound!) to be slam-dunked into the dumpster…which by the way smells kind of gross when it has been over 90 degrees outside…

You know you’re distractible when: you do not have diabetes, nor is diabetes something you are learning about in any class at school, yet you have spent more hours than you would like to admit reading about insulin pumps…although choice does kind of come down to what insurance wants to pay for, from what I’ve read, I think the omnipod is pretty cool, but the animas pumps are probably my favorite…not such a fan of minimed based on what I read…I suppose I can count this towards enhancing my ability to provide patient care since I could now successfully discuss with a patient the pros and cons of various insulin pump?…although researching via BlogSpot is probably not the best way to find health information…

You know you’re never going to be a domestic diva when: your towel has been washed three times in the past three days because the first time it was washed with shoes which was not the greatest idea for the towels you use every day…then it sat soaked for a little over 20 hours was washed again, then was hung on a hook damp overnight…leading to it smelling like damp towel in the morning and requiring a third wash…but until I took out the trash, my apartment smelled like “Grime Boss Basics: fresh scent wet cloths” and that is an awesome smell now that it has been long enough that I don’t associate that smell with the anxiety that ran alongside compulsive cleaning…also, I love being able to have fun with excessive amounts of soap bubbles again…not for the sake of cleaning anything, just because I can…

I am tired, I am drained, but the fight in me remains

(Love Feels Like–Tobymac)

So this post inside my head was a lot different than it came out on the screen…and now I don’t like the title anymore…but I decided I don’t care anymore and should just finish posting it and go back to studying…

I am kind of frustrated. I thought my facebook was secure, because ever since the last incident, I have been trying to check at least once a day for signs of someone spying on my facebook. In the meantime, I changed my probably easily guessable password and added settings that send me an email every time a log in occurs from a device besides my laptop…and I started getting an email like every week…it said the view was coming from a particular city and since that is where school is and therefore where my laptop is probably registered I just figured it was a fluke and didn’t worry too much about it…until I got two notifications in the same week and that seemed a little suspicious…so I changed my password again…and realized the password changing notification came from a totally different city than the one the alerts were coming from…seriously people? Just when I was thinking I was probably in the clear, now I feel again that my data isn’t so safe…I mean, there isn’t that much to see…I am no longer a stream of consciousness facebooker, and I don’t give out a lot of personal information via facebook anymore but especially if someone is getting all the way into my account that isn’t fair to the people I am friends with, because it also compromises their privacy. Not that I want people to mess with me, but it is SO not okay to mess with my friends. I am fiercely protective even of people I do not care for, and even more so protective of my friends. You don’t mess with my friends…and I definitely have a LOT of personal information from high school stored on my facebook…some of it is in notes visible only to myself (or someone logged in as me)…and some of it was written to friends…or occasionally random people I met once and decided were going to be my awesome friends and therefore shared my life story with…so yeah…either way, someone getting on there could potentially be getting some pretty embarrassing information about me…mixed in with all the ten posts like every day that I totally needed to share…and anything my friends shared with me is what they felt comfortable sharing with ME, not with some random person spying on my page from the inside…okay…stepping off my soapbox…especially since I do not actually know for certain that the notifications weren’t a fluke and maybe the location feature and the other logins feature just aren’t that accurate…

And…Sometimes I know I am probably being paranoid…for example…twice this week what appears to be the same car has honked at me when I stopped for a particular stop sign near my home, and I turn and the car behind me goes straight and then makes a U-turn and heads the opposite direction…and when it happened the second time it made me feel as if I was being followed…of course, being me, my response was to turn up the radio to make sure the person didn’t hear me and then scream butt-face at them (with my windows completely rolled up). Yep, butt-face is one of the worst insults this almost 23 year old can think of, and she felt it at least moderately appropriate momentarily to use it for a driver who had honked at her twice possibly while lost…which means I also felt really bad about myself after doing that, because I don’t know what is going on for that driver. I don’t know if perhaps that driver was trying to get my attention because that driver needed help. I don’t know anything, and yet I assume the worst…I am a bad person, and even though in the moment I mouthed off to the person, as soon as it was over I really wanted to find that person and apologize, because I could recognize that really wasn’t appropriate. Now if I could work on getting the feeling protective of everyone feeling to come before I opened my mouth that would be golden…but I’m only almost 23 so my prefrontal cortex is still developing…

Sometimes after a long day I have to remember that not all screaming is a sign that someone is hurt…I was walking in my apartment building to my apartment and heard someone screaming, and I really wanted to scream that it was going to be okay…and then I remembered that sometimes people scream because they are excited…so then my intrusion would be awkward…so I minded my own business and continued on to my apartment. I don’t know why that person was screaming, and people are allowed to scream without consulting me first to let me know the reasoning…although I suppose with that criteria that it would include negative screams too, because I am pretty sure a rapist wouldn’t put up a sign saying “hello, don’t mind the screaming in apartment #111; I’m just rapin’ someone who hasn’t learned to keep her mouth shut yet; nbd; have a great weekend everyone.” …but I suppose if someone was getting raped it would probably still be a good plan for me to not get involved…especially seeing as how I am also a naïve young female…so note to self…ignore all screams…

This is Laundry Week: time to take the bags of clothes out of my car to sniff test (and spill check) them to determine which need to be washed (definitely all 4 socks regardless of the results of testing), which can stay, and which need to be switched out for the simple reason that required professional attire becomes significantly less professional throughout the semester when you show up every single time all semester in the same shirt and pants…also time to consider if tennis shoes are machine washable, because I was ripping the tags out of my school shoes absentmindedly on Wednesday and discovered that they are kinda salty…but I don’t want to wreck them before the end of the year or shrink them smaller than my feet…

If you were wondering about the shoes: I read on the internet that you can wash them but should wash a towel at the same time to prevent damage to your washer and that they are extremely likely to damage the dryer so I washed them and planned to not dry them…unfortunately, my washer got stuck at 7 minutes left for like 20 minutes and I wanted to go to bed…and the washer door was still locked…so after trying everything else I could think of I switched to a one-minute drain cycle…which also didn’t help because then it was just stuck at 1 minute instead of 7 and was still doing nothing…finally I had the idea that I would leave it turned off for a while and hopefully it would eventually forget it was trying to wash stuff and unlock the door…so I took a short nap curled up on the bathroom floor and that worked…except for the fact that I now had a drippy wet towel and tennis shoes…but I started another load of laundry on a delay cycle in the morning, and the timer seems to now be decreasing in time correctly so I don’t think I destroyed the washer in the process…although something is telling me that the soggy towel probably shouldn’t be sitting in the washer all day anymore than it should have been doing that all night with my shoes…also, even shoes that smelled fine  before seem to take on a not so good smell after sitting soaked on the floor all night…good thing they only need to cover my feet for a few more months…and the internet has lots of ideas for stinky shoes that are even realistic for a normal person and/or a college student…

I recently read something (I can’t remember where) that I thought was really insightful. It was how health care professionals see the negative side of things and therefore see these things as bad, and may create a bit of a stigma to them…alternatively they may see them as really awful to live with and not understand why someone would be resistant or not fully compliant with treatment…the example the article gave was that someone with attention problems is not going to come in complaining that oh my, I really need help because I can’t stay focused on this really negative event in my life and I have compartmentalized it it doesn’t even bother me most of the time…and they don’t come in saying hey look, I really need help, because I was hyperfocused on this project and I might have neglected some things to finish it but look at how awesome it turned out…no, if they come in, they come in complaining of the good things in life they’d like to be able to focus on and can’t or how hyperfocusing on their hobby is taking time away from other things like spending time with people that are important to them. With those complaints, it is hard to see how anyone could function in the long-term that way, much less why anyone would want to do so, but upon looking deeper it becomes clear that there are some benefits beneath the surface on the other side of those complaints…the side that isn’t going to be brought up in a standard patient visit, because they seem pretty positive to the patient, at least in the short term…which is where most people live…I really connected with that viewpoint, and I think it really gives credence to the importance of really getting to know someone before judging their behavior. From what you see as an outsider it might not make a lot of sense, but once you take a step closer and get to know the deeper parts of their conceptualizations of the world, that nonsensical behavior starts to seem downright logical…

Y’all, I am so excited…one of the reasons is something that involves something that is not my news to share…but the other is that as of two days ago, *finally* I have texted and/or called enough on my phone that EES no longer shows up in my favorites tab…that it so exciting for two reasons…one is that although I am sure there is a way to delete people from the list, I don’t know what that way is, and when I am trying to figure stuff out like that there is a high probability of me calling someone inadvertently rather than deleting them so I have just been leaving it alone, but hated seeing that name on my list because while the “favorites” seem to be generated based more on whom I have contacted more than a twice most recently and clearly doesn’t take into account my actual feelings about the person or group, the listing of “favorite” really bugs me…and the other reason is that one of my little buddies in particular back home is really fascinated with phones, and while he just likes watching the screen change and definitely doesn’t mean any harm, he is able to press buttons with impressive dexterity and has almost gotten into my bank account through my phone before, so with the name being on the favorites list it just seemed that much easier that I would turn around for a second and he’s be making a call…which would be adorable for all of five seconds until I panicked when I realized who was being called…

Also, totally unrelated, but I was thinking today that of all the social media sites that I use, the one that seems by far the most impersonal, pinterest, seems to be the one that any casual observer could take a look at and have a really good idea of who I am as a person and what makes me tick…kinda weird how random captioned pictures from the internet can tell my story better than my own pictures and words about life…

Lights Shine Bright Everywhere We Go Music For the People to Illuminate the Soul

(Lights Shine Bright—Tobymac)

(I have not re-read through this post, because school is tackling me and trying to suffocate me and I already spent more time than I should have typing it…so if it sounds dumb or has lots of errors I apologize in advance…)

So yeah, sometimes just a little bit of light can make a huge difference…if you read my previous post you know Monday wasn’t such a great day. Well, Tuesday was better, but had me a little deeper into memory world than I’d like to spend most of my time. I definitely think it is super beneficial to talk things out, but doing so via text isn’t the most conducive way to do that and without the visual and aural cues to figure out what someone is actually thinking it is really hard to know exactly what is going on…sure, a solution might be TALKING on the phone instead of texting, but I like the privacy of texting…and even though I am no longer afraid of talking on the phone and do have the phone skills to request people slow down or talk louder or whatever to try to enhance my understanding, I still struggle with figuring out all the words over the phone so I feel like what I gain in the vocal inflection from talking on the phone I lose in the pieces of the words and phrases that I don’t catch…and I am not going to have someone repeat things over and over until I get the whole thing, because eventually they are going to get annoyed, and even if they don’t get annoyed, the constant repetition gets in the way of the fluency of the conversation which means that by the end of a couple sentences I doubt either of us will remember what we were trying to get across…and in all honesty, most of the time getting 90% of the word is enough to get the basic idea of what the other person wants…but all that to say, I had an in person conversation that led down internal memory lane which both because I am a processor and because sometimes there are environmental considerations that influence the direction of the conversation, in turn led to another conversation via text that externalized the memory but without enough processing to really put the memories back in their little boxes at the end of the conversation, so the light that shone on Wednesday was especially beautiful. I think of myself as a realist with a bit of optimism thrown in sometimes (and okay, I’ll admit a bit of pessimism on occasion as well), and the optimism side combined with my silliness means that a little sparkle of joy really does follow me even into the deepest darkest places my mind has visited.

Umm yeah…I just re-read what I’d already written so far, and it seems like I wrote a whole lot without really writing anything…so yeah…and this is why I have trouble staying under the character limits on twitter…

On Wednesday my text conversation was continued enough that I could tell where the person’s thoughts probably really did land, AND y’all who know how much I LOVE people will understand how exciting it was that I get to have one-on-one time with that person again next Tuesday to continue the conversation in person! …and I suppose it also speaks to how much I crave friendship that I will give my commodity of time so quickly to someone I met just a few weeks ago…Friends are my favoritest thing ever…and as a bonus, this person is within a year of me so she basically counts as a peer…that is an age group that it not where my specialty lies in friend-making, so that makes it that much more exciting.

Also, my other friend with the same name which makes things a little confusing sometimes gave me the gift of choice right about the same time that it got worked out that I was going to have more friend time. You have no idea how dignifying the ability to choose is when for so long you have had to rely on other people making all your decisions for you. It might seem like such a small things, but sometimes those small things really are the big things…and it’d been so long since I really had a choice that the excitement was almost paralyzing.

I have really awesome friends in my life and that is really important. I used to think I really could do live completely alone, but I know for sure that is not true anymore. Some people hurt me, but without the incredible people I would not make it…and besides, the extravert that has finally been successfully uncovered is so thrilled to be around people.

Wednesday is also one of my TA days and I love TA’ing so much. I entered the tutor/TA world unofficially within a couple weeks of school starting my first year, helping a few second years with anatomy, and officially entered it my second semester. It is something that I really enjoy. I love that I can point out structures at this point without even really looking at the model I am describing…that is pretty cool…but what I really love is explaining and re-explaining things in different ways until the lightbulb goes on. It is really awesome to see that moment of transformation.

It was also extremely good that I took my assignment list out of my backpack last night…because I saw that oops, my assignment was due at 6 in the morning. That wouldn’t be such a big deal—I get up at 5 in the morning so in theory I should be able to get to school by 6, but putting it off until then is a bad idea…for one thing, the humidity in my apartment can keep me awake making it hard to get up in the morning despite my wakefulness. Then there is the alarm issue, or rather the lack of alarm issue; my alarm doesn’t always go off so I use my old phone as a back-up, but if that is turned off as well then it is up to happening to look at the clock at the right time to get up, and I have myself trained pretty well to not stare at the clock constantly…and then there is the caffeine experiment. I really like coffee and other caffeinated drinks, but my body doesn’t do so well with caffeine. Last year I tried to overcome that by starting with like 1mL of pop every morning and then work up to a little more and a little more…but by the time I got up to 15mL I missed a day and the next few days the caffeine made me feel sick in the morning which wasn’t such a great way to do things so I gave up…but this year I got smarter and realized that as long as I do it only occasionally in the evening I can sleep it off and be fine so I hypothesized that I could start by doing it more frequently then either increase the dose or move the timing to earlier in the day to learn to tolerate the caffeine…so far that is working a lot better…but on the off chance that I go too fast and the caffeine does make me sick, or that it does what it does to normal people and keeps me awake, I don’t want to put things off until the morning counting on being able to get up…and beyond that, even if I do get up on time, getting myself out the door can very easily be another story…having bags in the car of the clothes that I might need at school has solved some of the running around in the morning stuff, but there are still plenty of things to remember…like water…not that I’ve ever forgotten that before…oh wait…(BTW, who’s bright idea was it to take my back up kitchen space and re-make it into a lab…girl gets thirsty and hungry and is disappointed when her field trip is not rewarded with water with which to make oatmeal…)…so anyway, barefoot I went next door and used the phone wi fi because the computer wi fi was down for some reason and got my assignment turned in…and this is why you both check your to do list and the day of the week before heading home for the night…

Also, one of my friends got a job! Yay friend! I can only imagine how scary it is to graduate and not have anywhere to go…I haven’t graduated yet so I haven’t experienced it yet, but it seems like it would be terrifying…

Also, on Tuesday I tried to write “you’re awesome” on a whiteboard in the lobby…except I can’t write to save my life and ended up with “you’er awesome” It made me so happy to watch people react…and even more so when someone fixed my spelling on Wednesday…

Also, I have this friend, and I have written about her before because I thought she thought I didn’t want to be friends anymore, and on Wednesday I got to see her SO MANY TIMES. It was so exciting and she is such an awesome person! I mean, she would probably have preferred to see me a little less since the reason I saw her so much was that she kept forgetting stuff, but ti was super-D-duper (#barneyreference) to get to see her over and over and yeah.

Also I got to see both of my Thanksgiving friends on Wednesday and also set up another meeting with someone I haven’t seen in forever on Friday.

And also, today I had the most exciting elevator ride of my entire life. I am so glad that I am now able to choose the elevator if I feel like it…especially because otherwise I wouldn’t have had this experience. It was so much fun…This kid gets on and starts apologizing to everyone for no apparent reason and gets done and says “okay, now everyone’s got an apology, but where’s mine?” and one of his friends said something super rude to him (and the person it was said to was fine with that) and it was so hilarious and there was so much chatter and excitement on that elevator and I wished I could bottle it all up and carry it with me as a reminder of the good in the world.

Unfortunately the world is a broken place and studying isn’t so hot and my grades so far have been less than stellar and that is really hard for me, but I am learning to accept that there is a lot of the semester left and as long as I eventually end up with passing grades, I will become a pharmacist at the end…and like one of my friends told me third year when I was struggling with a lot of things, grades are not important, people are. At the time I was frustrated because I felt like I was failing in both those areas…I was trying SO hard to fix people who didn’t want to be fixed and failing there and in the midst of all the trials I was enduring my grades were lousy…but as time as gone on, I have seen the wisdom in that statement. Eventually, my grades will no longer matter once I have been out of school for a while, but I can definitely testify that even situations with people that have been out of my life for a long time have made a significant impact on my life that lasts much longer than the grades ever will. This is not to say that I will gain friendships at the expense of my grades, but it does put into perspective that my happiness and the happiness of the people willing to be influenced by me is worth more than the number and letter on a piece of paper (or a computer screen). I might not like the letters further into the alphabet, and those percents starting with a 4 are hard for this middle and high school straight-A student to swallow, but I have a three months of the semester left to make my grades into passing ones, and God can work miracles and maybe, just maybe, he will turn that 4 into a 9 by the end of the semester which would put me into at least the A- range…yeah, it’s not an A, and it’s not seeming likely right now, but it isn’t an impossibility.