Life has not been fun lately.
I’m having a hard time adjusting to this new semester–I like all of my classes individually, but together…I don’t know. I think part of the problem is that I am going to school six days a week, and so I don’t feel like I’ve got much time to relax.
I did start on an anti-depressant, but I had the bad luck of getting hit by a head-cold/ear infection pretty much the same time I started taking the pills, and so I’ve been headachey and dizzy, and I don’t know what’s side effects from the medicine, and what’s because I’m sick.
Emotionally, though, I’m feeling more stable, so that’s a plus. I’m not losing my temper the way that I have been, and while I’m not happy, I don’t feel hopeless.
Even with the beginnings of stability, I feel like I’m being kicked in the teeth. And it’s nothing big, it’s just the little things that keep piling up until they get overwhelming. It’s the anxiety, the frustration of trying to understand the reading, the not being able to sleep, making stupid mistakes then paying the price…. You know, life.
So, I love my Nook. I love the touch screen navigation, and the convenience of having a library at my side at all times. I love to browse the Barnes and Noble website, looking for new books. I would and have recommended the Nook vigorously to anyone who’s asked about it.
But something tells me that I may have backed the wrong horse in the eReader race…
And all of a sudden, Barnes and Noble’s financial woes become crystal clear.
It’s currently a quarter to three. I have successfully avoided going to bed by cleaning house, doing homework and now writing a blog post. It’s not that I don’t want to bed, it’s more that in the past few weeks I seem to have lost the ability to sleep. But, as it’s not affecting my daily activities, I’m more annoyed than concerned.
I survived last semester, despite what the frequency of my posting may have implied. In fact, I thrived. I got a 3.90 GPA for the semester. My GPA is now high enough that I can get a job on campus–you know, if there were a job opening on campus that I was qualified to do–and I have started summer semester. I have two blocks of classes–Fit For Life (a health/exercise class) and 2D design first block, and then at the end of June, I’ll start stress management (stressed? who me?) and creative writing in the second block, with an online math class all semester long.
I’m beginning to think that the start-of-semester drama might just become a regular thing. I don’t know how what happened this week compares to what happened last semester–I suppose it’s worse, but I’m not as emotionally torn up about it.
Okay, so Monday, first day of class. Minor freak out because I’m the largest and most out of shape person in my Fit for Life class–even though that wasn’t really a surprise. Fat folk would tend to avoid that class, and get the required credit from a health class that would allow them to be sedentary. My 2D design class turned out to be nothing at all like I was expecting–and will require much more work. Slightly bigger freak out about that. After spending a lot of money on books, I came home, and began working on my online math class (I am NOT going to let myself fall behind) and then…blue screen of death. A couple of hours trying to get the computer to restart, followed by a couple of phone calls to my computer engineer of a brother-in-law, and my hard drive died. Completely.
Granted, it was much better to have this happen on the first day of the new semester rather than, say, three weeks ago when I was finishing up my final English paper and studying for finals, but it still left me in tears. Fortunately, the Brother-in-law has a several unused computers lying around his house and he (or, more properly, Sis) offered me use of one of them until I can get a new hard-drive.
So, Tuesday, no school, I went up to Sis’s house to trade computers (eventually, I was having car trouble on that day as well) and because she wasn’t feeling good, to keep her from killing her kids (it wasn’t QUITE that bad, but I did see some spectacular tantrums). This included several very educational games of “I Spy” to wit:
me: Is it a stoplight?
me: is a go light?
It’s a little scary that I’m learning to think like a four-year old.
Then home, and more time and trips to Best Buy to set up the loaner computer than should have been strictly necessary. But, it works, I’m on line, and once again stressing over random story problems with no real-world application. But, once again, I hope that this constitutes all of the drama alotment for summer semester–or even just first block–so I can concentrate on my studying and getting through school as quickly as possible.
Last week was one of the worst of my life. Since then, I’ve been thinking about what makes a bad day, or a bad week for that matter. Is it that the events of said day are truly horrible, or is it that we focus on the horrible, but ignore the good?
I’m inclined to believe that it’s the former. Something happens to put us in a bad mood, and consciously or subconsciously, we focus on the things that will reinforce our bad mood–we notice the jerk who cuts us off in traffic, but not the person who lets us in. We gripe about forgetting our umbrella, but don’t notice how wonderful the rain is.
Sunday, things turned around for me. I made it to church–I’m claiming all three meetings, but that might be stretching it–I had what amounted to a therapy session during Sunday School.
I’ve been trying to focus more on the positive in my life, and let the stress go–something that’s nigh-on impossible for me. I know that it’s foolish to worry about things that I can’t control.
For now, all I can do is focus on my schooling, and know that whatever happens, happens. I’m trying not to stress, but that can always lead to stressing because I’m stressed out, which just turns into this whole big mess…
I have an assignment in my English class that’s driving me nuts. When it was first handed out, I thought that it would be simple–that the paper would be fun to write and pretty much write itself.
Yeah, not so much.
The paper is a personal narrative. It’s supposed to encompass a single point in time, and have a point beyond “one time, I got bit by a shark.” type of deal. My professor warned against doing anything too emotional, because people tend to get upset when they’re graded on the quality of their writing rather than the emotion that the story encompasses.
So the story I want to tell is basically this: When I was seven, we were at a family reunion on Cedar Mountain. My extended family is huge, to the point where amongst the first cousins alone, there are about 13 girls all born within about 5 years of each other, with my sister and I smack-dab in the middle of it
I’m on the right with the pink shirt, big glasses and even bigger hair. Sis is on the left with the pink pants and white tee-shirt. Ahhh, that awkward age. Which has somehow followed me to the brink of my 30s.
Anyway, when I was seven, Something happened with this big group of girls, and I got irritated and offended, and decided I had had enough. I wanted to be alone, and needed to find a place to hide. I was smart/well-trained enough to know better than to go wandering off in the woods by myself. I could go to our camp trailer, but Mom would be in and out, and that would probably be the first place anybody would look for me. While I loved (and still do) my extended family, I didn’t feel comfortable hiding in someone else’s tent or vehicle. And so, the only logical place was the back of Dad’s pick-up truck.
The truck had a camper-shell on the back, so it wasn’t obvious to the casual observer that there was a little girl hiding in there. I had a book, and a few toys, and the truck had a mattress in the bed, along with lots of blankets, where my sister and I could sleep. I contented myself with reading and playing.
I don’t know how long I was there before I realized that people were starting to call me. I ignored them, because my feelings were hurt because of what my cousins had done, or hadn’t done, and I thought they wanted to tease me some more.
Eventually, I fell asleep. I woke up slightly when the truck started moving, but I was still smarting from whatever slight may or may not have happened, so I didn’t let the driver, my dad know I was there, and fell back asleep.
The next thing I knew, Dad was waking me up, and pulling me out of the back of the truck. Night had fallen–and it was mid-afternoon when I went to hide. All the aunts and uncles and cousins were standing around, and I was informed that everybody had thought I was lost (I was incensed by that. I didn’t get lost, I knew exactly where I was the whole time.) that’s why they were calling me. Dad had taken the truck out to look for me, and they were on their way to the ranger station to report a missing child when my cousin Seth (just older than the gaggle of girls) noticed my hair in the back of the truck.
Simple enough, right? Except I can’t stretch it to make it the length of the paper required, and I’m having a hard time tying in the “moral” of the story.
I know a lot of this has to do with the fact that I didn’t do as well as I expected on my last paper, I’m stupidly upset because I only got a B+, not to mention the fact that I had a panic attack before class last week, and ended up having to run out of the classroom in tears. And a big part of the problem is that I feel like I shouldn’t be having a problem writing this paper.
I’ve been so stressed out by this, that I’ve been losing sleep. This morning at 3am, after tossing and turning for a couple of hours, I decided to start cleaning my bathroom. After de-cluttering and washing the counter-top and sink, I went back to bed and fell asleep. Today, when the stress got to be too much, I cleaned the bathroom floor. At that point, I figured I might as well do everything else–so I scrubbed the toilet and tub as best I could (I need a pumice stone to really get things clean, but I don’t want to go shopping just for that) got the bath mats washed, and even washed the walls (gasp!).
I’m still stressing about my paper, but I feel really good about getting the bathroom cleaned–if not spotlessly, then at least to the point where I wouldn’t be embarrassed to have my grandmother see it. Instead of the mystery smells that tend to come with dogs, neighbors and two roommates who both like to cook, my house smells like Mr. Clean. It’s really rather soothing.
Now, if only I can get this stupid paper written…
What? It’s been more than a week since my last post? How’d that happen?
Somehow, now that I have class and studying and junk, and my mind is filled with things other than the randomosity that makes blogs worth updating.
It hasn’t helped that this last week has been difficult, what with the car trouble and the panic attacks and the freaking out because I “only” got a B+ on my English paper (who’d’ve thought that I’d ever be one of those people)… oh, wait, that was all on Friday and Saturday. What’s my excuse for the rest of the week?
So, yes, I’m still alive. I’ve just been trying to avoid spreading the crazy around too much. ‘Cause it’s been the bad kind of crazy, the kind that makes my mom call therapists and set up appointments for me without my knowledge or consent (Kidding! Mom, it was a joke!) not the good kind that makes me (hopefully) worth reading.
Speaking of spreading the crazy around…for some reason, WordPress wants me to add the tag “War on Terrorism” to this post.
I wonder what side it thinks I’m on?
I made a decision yesterday. I was wondering if my massive panic attack earlier in the week was aggravated by caffeine, so I decided to cut out caffeinated beverages for a while and see if it helps me calm down.
In retrospect, it might not have been wise to make that decision the night before my 8 o’clock Saturday morning class.
I realized this at about 2 o’clock last night, when my neighbor’s apartment kept blowing up.
Now, I realize that I have dogs, and they tend to bark when I’m not around to shush them, so I feel like I have to be tolerant of noisy neighbors, but really–if you’re going to turn on a loud, action-packed movie at midnight, please be aware that just because it’s Friday night doesn’t mean that you don’t have neighbors that need to get up early the next morning. The worst part was I’m not even sure which neighbor it was–there didn’t seem to be any difference if I had the windows closed or open.
Long story short, er, shorter, I missed my class this morning. My alarm went off, and, in a state of half-wakefulness, I turned it completely off.
Now, not all was lost, here. I would have forced myself out of bed, but my Art History Professor teaches the same class I have from 8 am to 10:30 am again from 10:35 to 1:15ish, so I made it to the second class–she did tell us we could do that, as long as we let her know we are enrolled in the 8am class.
I have to say, much to my surprise, I think I prefer the 8 am class. I like the students more, at any rate–if you’re going to drag yourself out of bed to go and sit in a darkened room to listen to a lecture about the difference between ionic and doric columns at 8am on a Saturday, it’s because you really want to be there. If you make it at 10:35 on that same Saturday, well–I noticed more people falling asleep and goofing off in the later class then I generally see in the earlier class.
Plus I missed the cute (but unfortunately married) redhead that sits in one row over and two seats up from where I usually sit.
As I was making my way to class this morning, I was laughing at myself. I’m an art major. I was going to an art class. I kept seeing signs pointing the way to the “Friberg Event”. Now, don’t get me wrong, I knew this was probably an exhibit of the works of Arnold Friberg, who taught us that the prophets in the Book of Mormon were all 350 pounds of pure muscle. (I’m not seeing anything on the UVU website to either confirm or deny this suspicion) but I was also reflecting that “Friberg Event” sounds like an astronomical anomaly first observed or described by someone named Friberg.
Yeah. I know.
I passed an important milestone today–I had my first bona fide panic attack since starting school. Yay?
I’ve talked about how nervous I’ve been about going back, but it’s been more of a “I feel so out-of-place” nervousness, not a “if you come any closer I’m going to hurt you” nervousness.
The really strange thing is said panic attack didn’t happen while I was getting ready to go to school, commuting to school, at school, commuting back from school, driving to Salt Lake to see my family, while I was with my family, or driving home from seeing the family. No, this particular panic attack chose to strike just as I was going to bed. So now I’m too freaked out to go to sleep, thus the updated blog.
The really crappy thing is I can usually pin-point the trigger of my anxiety, not so much today. I don’t think it’s school–I’m not going so far as to say I’m over being nervous about school, but I don’t have anything overly stressful happening right now. It could be family issues–Mom and Dad were in Salt Lake to consult with a doctor, who told them to come back on Monday, then again on Thursday (I like to drive, but I’m glad I’m not doing all that chasing.)
The most likely culprit I can find is money. And not even real money, I’m talking hypothetical money–the money I’m saving to make a big-ish purchase hopefully before the end of the semester. You know, the kitty that only has $25 in it? The one that I’d like to see grow to at least $200 before I make a firm decision on which of the three technology-based items I’m considering would be the wisest purchase?
On an unrelated note, I’ve discovered something quite encouraging to me. I’ve discovered on the days that I’m not updating the blog, I’m writing, or attempting to write, actual stories. So, I feel less guilty about not updating every day, because (and please don’t go through the archives and find where I’ve stated anything differently) the whole point of “The Storyteller Chronicles” isn’t to post every day, it’s to get me to write every day. Somewhere in the past few months, the distinction between the two got lost on me.
- Panic Indications and How to Adapt the Anxiety in Your (after50health.com)
- Recognizing Panic Attack Symptoms (badcreditdebtmanagement.com)
The problem with knowing that you are a hypochondriac is that it’s often difficult to know where there’s an actual medical emergency, or if your worst case scenario drive is kicking in.
This morning, for instance. I ran down to my car to get the crock pot that has been sitting in the trunk since Easter (the trunk of my car is a little like a black hole. Once something goes in, there’s a good chance it’ll never come out again). The dogs were acting like they needed to come out too, so I brought them along to attend to their own needs.
Whatever happened to Lulu happened while I had my back to her, so I don’t know what it was. All I know is that I turned around, and she wasn’t using one of her front paws. I tried to examine it to see if there was a piece of glass or a splinter of a bee sting in it, but she whimpering and crying and wouldn’t let me look at it.
After picking her up the first time, she didn’t want to walk (not that I can blame her, poor girl,) so I ended up carrying both her and the crock pot upstairs. Upon reaching the safety of our house, she relaxed a bit, but was still not using her paw, and trying to follow me around while I got ready for class, with a “mommy make it better” look on her face.
After watching her for a bit, I decided that I needed someone a little less hysterical than myself, so I called both Mom and Sis to ask for advice–I didn’t want to call a veterinarian because I knew they’d say to bring her in. Sis said take her to the vet just to be sure, but maybe wait until after class. Mom reminded me of my limited funds, and counseled waiting for a few days. While I was on the phone, Lulu started putting more weight on her foot, and moving around a little better–even if she was still whimpering and limping.
So, off to class, then back home again. And guess who greeted me at the front door happy and bouncy and ready to play?
Her paw looks fine, it’s not swollen at all, and she’s letting me handle it.
So, I have no idea what happened, except that I had my own little mini freak-out. All in all, Lulu handled the whole situation better than I did.
And Max just sat back and laughed at the both of us.
When I was at the aquarium yesterday, I picked up an application to be a volunteer there. Glancing at the front page, I could tell that it wouldn’t work; the schedules they had all conflict with my school–plus, the aquarium is a good half-hour or more away, depending on traffic.
Still, I’ve been amused by the application–I’ve filled out less-intense applications for jobs. You know, where they’d actually pay me. I was also amused by the variety of tasks they trust to volunteers–like husbandry and throwing birthday parties. Which I guess explains the intense application, you’d be working with small children and delicate, expensive animals.
Even with the whole weirdness of the situation, I was kind of tempted to apply anyway for an education position. I’m an insufferable know-it-all, I might as well be an official insufferable-know-it-all, right?
And, in a segway that is both seamless and unnoticeable, I somehow got talked into heading to my parent’s house tomorrow. I’m still not 100% sure how that happened.
This is the situation–there is a guy I went to high school with–he was in the grade just above mine, who suddenly died of a massive heart-attack last Saturday. His funeral is this Saturday. Both Mom and Sis want to go to the funeral–and Mom chastened me when I told her I wasn’t planning on going, until I explained that I don’t think I’ve ever said two words to this guy, and I know I haven’t talked to his wife in the past 11 years.
And I’m still going.
Actually, it’s because G’s been a handful lately (Sis, you should appreciate the careful editing I did of the first word I used) and Mom wants me to help Dad watch he and E while she and Sis are at the funeral.
I don’t know what’s going to happen. I don’t want to go, but, as I’ve already established, I can’t say ‘no’ to my family. Which means I’ll end up going and resenting every minute I’m there. Unless Mom reads this in the mean time, and calls and makes me feel guilty for agreeing to go when I don’t really want to…