See Through

the life & times of a perpetual student

Archive for the month “May, 2012”

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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Sixteen Saltines.

This song. Good god, y’all.

Off and on, I’ve sat with a blinking cursor today wanting to write something about it. Truth is, I’m just not sure I can put it into words. The video reminds me a lot of my post-apocalyptic dreams: full of fight, struggle, destruction, and trying to escape harm. The setting reminds me somewhat of my hometown. The sound and lyrics are so White Stripe-ish it really fills that void of missing the music of Jack & Meg. And all the while, it’s chasing me, knocking me down, pulling my hair and kicking sand in my eyes. But only to make me feel 60 feet tall and bulletproof in the end. Ahhhh, I’ll stop there. Just listen for yourself.

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