See Through

the life & times of a perpetual student

3am thoughts.

Sometimes when I can’t sleep, the most faraway thoughts come to the surface. Things I haven’t thought about in years. It might just be a quick flash of someone’s face in my mind, or a name of someone I knew or barely knew, or an occurrence, usually not a positive one.

This morning as I was laying there blinking at the ceiling, this crosses my mind:

I’m in 8th grade math class. My teacher was Mr. Welton, a boorish man who nobody liked much because he cruised the hallways with a wooden paddle in his back pocket, and he loved to use it. I say cruised the hallway; he actually strutted around with that paddle. You could tell it gave him the greatest pleasure to use it, too. He’d line up the misbehaving boys and have them grip the railing by the stairs while he busted their asses as hard as he could.

You could hear the crack of the paddle echo through the hallways.

Anyway, last night at 3am I heard the teacher’s voice in my head:

“Nobody gave a shit about him anyway. Now he’s dying and everyone claims to be his best friend.”

He was referring to a kid who had overdosed at a party the night before and was in the hospital, nearly dead. His classmates (they were seniors) were interrupting my math class one by one, asking to be signed out for the day so they could go see him for what would probably be the last time.

I don’t know what made me think of this or why I’m even sharing it with you now.

I just find it odd, those words that were hard to digest as an 8th grader come floating up to the surface at 3am, 23 years later.


Summer break.

It’s summer break so I’m a mix between loving it and bored to tears. But I know it won’t last long and soon I’ll be back to the daily stresses of school, so I’m trying to make it last.

I’ve come here several times to blow the cobwebs off the blog, but usually I’ll just sit staring at a blinking cursor or I’ll write something and discard it. Things have been noisy lately. I unfollowed 100+ noisy people on Twitter thinking that might help some and I’ve been semi-quiet on Facebook. I’ve almost trained myself to stop reading comments, especially on news sites and Reddit. I try to quit staring at screens in the evenings to relax more. Sometimes it works, sometimes not. Ah, the Internet. It’s stupid that it can be such a source of anxiety for me. Why does it have to be so full of beautiful and terrible things?

Oh! And news: So you already know I re-applied to the x-ray tech program, but I also applied at the last minute to the surgical tech program as a backup. While I won’t know the x-ray tech app outcome until mid-September-ish, I have already been accepted to the surgical tech program and can start next month. I spent several weeks thinking of nothing but this, day and night. After much careful consideration, I’ve decided to go ahead and start the surgical tech program. The pros to this outweigh the cons, the biggest one being I’ll be done with school NEXT SUMMER versus the 2+ years I was planning to spend studying x-ray. That in itself thrills me to no end. Also, I find surgery pretty thrilling too, so I’m excited to get this ball rolling.

Will I now hate my blog name? Probably. But I’ll get over it. Maybe x-ray can be my super power instead. “WHO CAN SEE STRAIGHT THROUGH PEOPLE & THEIR BULLSHIT? X-RAY STEF CAN!”


My mind has also been churning over staying in NC versus not staying in NC once I’m finished with school. After living here nearly 4 years, I’m getting that itch to move. The good part about that is, husband can work anywhere there is an internet connection, so we aren’t tied down at all. But this time, I’d like for it to go differently than when we moved to NC on a whim and I had a hell of a time finding work. Not quite sure on the location but have a few places in mind. Anyone know of any promising places for surgical techs to find entry level work?

I’m sad to report that my husband isn’t a lot better. He has rough days & not so rough days, but rarely any GOOD days.  But I’m happy to report that he was able to gain some weight, which is what the doctor ordered … and I’m well on my way to a 30 lbs loss! (I keep gaining & losing the same damn 3 lbs over & over again. Pounding down water & herbal tea daily, trying to get over the plateau).

Summer break has involved as much reading as possible. I’ll close this out with a list of what I’ve finished since June … what are you reading?

Gone Girl by Jillian Flynn

The Illumination by Kevin Brockmeier

Every Patient Tells a Story by Lisa Sanders

Brandwashed by Martin Lindstrom

You are Not So Smart by David McRainey

Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter by Tom Franklin

Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann

Pulphead by John Jeremiah Sullivan

Before I Go To Sleep by S.J. Watson

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

Stress Pandemic by Paul Huljich

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

Are we Goodreads friends yet? Add me

Life update.

What I’m doing:

I just finished my Nursing Assistant 1 course + clinicals and now I’m prepping for the state exam. You would think that 24 skills wouldn’t be so hard to remember, but whoa. I’ll admit I went into all this thinking it would be easy. Not the case. Clinicals especially kicked my ass. Most days I came home, threw my scrubs in the washer, jumped in the shower & then took a 3 hour nap (which could have easily been probably an 8 or 9 hour nap if I didn’t have other obligations). Hard stuff, but rewarding. At the end of the day, I felt I had done things that mattered. I’ve never had a job where I felt that way (and I’ve had a LOT of jobs).

I completed my clinicals at a long-term care facility. I thought about applying to work there once I pass my state exam, but first I will try area hospitals & assisted living facilities instead. There was a sadness at the place where I worked, and certain conditions and levels of care that I did not agree with. It wasn’t ALL bad, but still wouldn’t be my first choice when I start my job search. Ideally, I’d like to be working for a hospital that would reimburse me to keep going, or provide on the job training to keep advancing. I have a few places in mind, I just need to pass the state exam so I can start applying.

I must say I was proud of myself for handing some of the things I was worried about before clinicals started. The first day was a little rough, but eventually the sights & smells were not half as bad as I had imagined. I learned little tricks, like if something stinks, pop an Altoid or put a little Carmex just below your nostrils. Does the trick!

About my husband’s health:

After massive amounts of blood work which all came back normal, a CT scan was ordered. The scan showed enlarged lymph nodes in the mesentery of his small intestines. According to his gastroenterologist, 90% of the time this means nothing. But regardless, they are doing a colonoscopy this Wednesday to look further. (And EEK. He is NOT happy about it, but I can’t say I blame him). The doctor said she’s not too concerned about cancer, but will be looking for Crohn’s Disease (which I figured could be seen from the CT scan, but I don’t know). So, we’re just hanging in there, trying not to worry & wishing for a diagnosis so we can start treating whatever is wrong.

What I’m reading:

I haven’t had time lately to read like I usually do, but I’m slowly working my way through Sacre Bleu by Christopher Moore, and Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain by Oliver Sacks. Read anything good lately? I could use some recommendations, as soon I *should* have more time to spend with books. I miss it!

In other news:

You may recall a post from a while back where I mentioned starting a project but keeping it a secret. I think it’s okay now to come out with it because there have been results, I’ve stuck with it, and I plan to keep sticking with it. The project was Weight Watchers. I’m not going to meetings and I haven’t joined online or anything. At the end of February I bought the WW Food Companion book & the calculator on Amazon and got started on my own. Learning to count points was easy. There are plenty of sites and forums to help if I have questions, and honestly I don’t think I would have been happy trying to find time to go to the meetings.

So I’m starting my 11th week, and as of my weigh-in today I’ve lost 16 lbs! I have a long way to go, but I am feeling so much better already. It doesn’t feel like a diet at all. Normally I hate diets. After having tried and failed Atkins, South Beach, and others in the past, this one has so far been the best. I like that I’m gradually stepping down week by week. I don’t feel deprived. I’ve been more active in the past 11 weeks than I’ve been in the past 2 years, walking, lifting weights and even (gasp!) jogging short distances.

I DO think that keeping it secret in the beginning is what got me off to a good start. A lot of times you hear advice like, “Don’t diet alone, find a buddy!” but in my case, it has worked better to do it alone. Only my husband and a few of my classmates knew. I’ll be keeping at it, hopefully I’ll have even more progress to report next time.

That’s about it for me. What’s new with you?

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