January: highs and lows

The best stuff

  • New Year’s Eve
  • Watching The Office pretty much every night
  • Time spent with family and friends (birthday dinners; brunch at our place; nights out and nights spent staying in)
  • My birthday celebration(s)
  • Finally trying gin, and never drinking anything else
  • Singing karaoke by myself for the second time
  • Doug’s birthday celebration(s)
  • Buying tickets for Cabaret in March (!!!! still over the moon about this)
  • Getting a Wii U
  • Seeing Birdman and The Imitation Game – two incredible films
  • Teaching Zumba to my kiddos
  • Getting the ball rolling for my student teaching internship
  • Three snow days in less than a week
  • New brewery opening up downtown
  • Helping one of our best friends buy a car
  • Getting a new TV stand and rearranging our living room
  • Putting together said TV stand by myself
  • Classes and professors I’m really enjoying
  • Playing in the snow with my kiddos
  • Seeing two of my best friends who live far away
  • Our “anti” Superbowl party (we ended up watching it)
  • Making BBQ apple cheddar pork pie
  • Super nice new lady managing our apartment building

The worst stuff

  • Getting sick, thinking I was better, getting sick again, etc.
  • Tax-related stresses (that have since been resolved)
  • Struggling with getting back into an exercise routine
  • All of the money we’ve spent on our cars (registration fees and repairs)
  • Annoyances related to our neighbors (what else is new?)

You know life is good when it’s much easier to think of happy things than sad things. 🙂

#grateful

Live blogging from winter storm Juno

This is the most snow I’ve ever seen, and I’ve lived in the northeast my entire life! I’m not entirely sure how many inches we got in my town, but if I had to guess I’d say somewhere between 22-25″. No school and no work today, and not going into work tomorrow until 11:00 (very grateful for that). I spent today doing homework, cooking (I made soup and no bake cookies), cleaning, watching Netflix, and just relaxing. I guess that’s pretty much all I have to say for right now. Also, my first semester of grad school is off to a great start. I love all of my professors so far, and the workload is…underwhelming, to be honest. Maybe it’s just because I’m not interning in a classroom right now.

Last week, I had to attend two orientation breakfasts at the schools I may be interning at in the fall. I’ve already scheduled several observation visits with teachers I am potentially interested in working with. It’s kind of a stressful process, but also a really exciting one. I observed a fourth grade teacher yesterday, and although I hope to end up in a kindergarten or first grade placement, I’m going to visit her classroom again. On Thursday, I’m observing a kindergarten teacher and then another fourth grade teacher.

So all in all life is pretty good right now. We helped one of our best friends buy a car over the weekend, which felt very satisfying (even though we weren’t the ones with a shiny new car). I’ve been much more committed to exercising and my body is very happy about that…although today, my exercise consisted of snow shoveling for an hour. If all goes according to plan, I’ll be attending my first Zumba class in a very long time this weekend. 🙂

If you are/were in the path of winter storm Juno, I hope you and yours are safe and warm!

S

Happy 2015

Hello readers (does anyone even read this blog anymore?)! I know I’ve taken a very, very long break from blogging. I’m hoping to slowly but surely begin blogging more in 2015.

So far, this year has been off to a great start for me. I turned 23 ten days ago, and I start grad school in less than a week! Instead of making New Year’s resolutions, I decided to try and complete a Happiness Project this year (a la Gretchen Rubin…here’s a link if you’re interested). This month’s theme is Simplicity, and so far so good. I’ll definitely post more about that at a later date.

Health-wise, I certainly feel better in the first month of 2015 than I did in the last five months of 2014. My headaches are very infrequent. My neck pain comes and goes (seems to be worse when I’m under the weather or not sleeping enough- no surprises there). I did have some digestive issues which required a colonoscopy (spoiler: it’s not as scary as it seems) but all of that checked out okay and is mostly resolved now. I’m finally starting to develop an exercise routine again. Nothing crazy, although I am trying yoga again.

Work is the same as always. I feel closer to my husband than ever, which is wonderful. Right before Christmas, we spent a weekend in New York City. His main Christmas gift to me was tickets to see The Marriage of Figaro at the Metropolitan Opera. It was amazing. We also ended up getting rush tickets to Chicago the next day. So I am starting 2015 completely obsessed with all things opera and musical theater again. And NYC. We’ll hopefully be spending most of our spring break there, too. In case I haven’t mentioned it on the blog before, when we’re done with school and ready to begin teaching, our plan is to move to NYC and teach there.

I guess that’s about it for now! I hope you all have been well and that your 2015 is off to a good start 🙂

Notes from the doctor’s office

I am so freaked out right now I have to keep reminding myself to breathe. I don’t like this doctor’s office so far. I don’t feel comfortable here. I don’t want to talk about what I’m here to discuss with the doctor. I don’t even want to write about it here. It’s kind of embarrassing and not the most pleasant of subjects to write/read about.

I’m frustrated because the reason I’m having these issues is probably my fault. And they’re not going away, which also seems like it might be my fault. I’ve been doing everything my primary care doctor told me to do, and it’s not working. No one is supposed to deal with this particular issue for as long as I’ve been- maybe a little over a month now?

I feel like I just got my headaches under control. They don’t really interfere with my life in any major way anymore. And now I’m hit with something else. I’m so sick of waiting rooms and doctor’s appointments and paperwork and logging symptoms and Googling things out of frustration and fear.

It seems impossible good news will come from this appointment. The likely outcome is that I’ll have to make more appointments and probably have a colonoscopy or some other unpleasant procedure. I’m trying not to only focus on the worst outcomes but it’s hard. The normal treatment methods haven’t worked for me, so.

I don’t want to think about this at Christmas. I don’t want to be sitting in this sterile and uninviting office by myself. Since September, I’ve definitely had more than a dozen medical appointments/tests. It’s exhausting. It’s frustrating. And somehow it feels like it’s my fault.

More than anything, I hope 2015 brings me improved health. I guess everyone always wishes for good health in the New Year and it’s somewhat of a cliche, but it’s all I want.

Justice doesn’t exist

I just finished (if that’s even possible?) a Facebook discussion (read: argument) with one of my husband’s friends. About Ferguson. And ultimately, instead of responding to any of the substance of what I said, she decided to end by trying to make me feel sorry for her because her boyfriend is a police officer and I could never understand what his (and her) life is like.

Obviously, I don’t understand what it’s like to have a significant other, friend, or family member who risks their lives probably on an almost-daily basis. I would never pretend to understand that. Obviously, if I were in her shoes, I might have a different perspective on what happened in Ferguson on August 17th.

But I’m not. And I am still allowed to have an opinion, even if I don’t know what it’s like to worry about a loved one getting injured or killed in the line of duty.

I do know what it’s like to worry about children, though.

About children who are disadvantaged from the start because of the color of their skin. About children who will inevitably be stereotyped and judged for absolutely no reason throughout their lives. About children who are statistically more likely to end up incarcerated than their white peers. About what will happen to children when they grow up and are viewed as dangerous, for no reason other than the color of their skin.

I’m so angry right now I’m getting a headache. My stomach is in knots. We’re never going to move forward in this country if we don’t acknowledge the pervasiveness of racism (yes, STILL) and start working to dismantle it. Clearly, too many people care more about protecting police officers’ right to use deadly force than they do about the absolutely mind-blowing number of INNOCENT PEOPLE who have been killed using that deadly force.

Wake the fuck up America.

I want to update, but I’m tired.

So bullets it is.

  • I went from last Monday (10/20) to today (10/27) WITHOUT ANY HEADACHES. I did get a headache this afternoon, and it got pretty bad at one point, but it’s mostly gone now. I’m pretty convinced it was due to rushing around and a stressful afternoon at work. Now I’m at home relaxed and feeling better.
  • I got an A on my first major assignment in my class with the really tough professor. She also asked if she could have a digital copy of my work to use as an example for next semester’s classes. This actually made my entire week.
  • I defrosted the cinnamon loaf that’d been in the freezer for a YEAR and it is still perfect and delicious and amazing. Next up, I will be defrosting (some) of our wedding cake. Eating dessert and cleaning out the freezer = major win.
  • Tomorrow I only have one class, and then I have to attend this symposium (taking the place of my second class). Third class is canceled all week!
  • THURSDAY I have an entire day off. I’m getting my hair cut (er, trimmed) and eyebrows done in the morning. I also need to register to vote.
  • It’s almost Halloween.
  • I regained some of the motivation re: school that I lost in the midst of dealing with almost daily headaches.
  • I have physical therapy twice this week, which makes me so happy. Part of my sessions usually involve a mini-massage of sorts, and it’s wonderful.

So yeah. I’m happy.

Thursday things

  • It’s amazing how much I can get done when I actually remove the distractions (TV, YouTube, my phone, etc.)
  • Currently in class watching a documentary about inclusion that was actually filmed a few towns over. [And people in my class are laughing hysterically and acting like the girl in the video is some kind of monster. It bugs me that, in a room full of aspiring teachers, the stigma surrounding mental illness is alive and well. A lot of the things the girl in the documentary struggles with, I struggled with in middle school. Self-harm, self-destructive thoughts, anger, depression, anxiety, low self-esteem…among others. If things had gone differently in my life, in high school, I could’ve easily been in the situation she was in. Why can we watch a documentary about a little boy with cerebral palsy with tears in our eyes, and five minutes later, watch a documentary about a teenage girl with ADHD, depression, and emotional problems while muffling our laughter and rolling our eyes in disgust? I wouldn’t want anyone who passes that kind of judgment on human beings teaching my children…or teaching alongside me. My professor is actually contributing to the ridiculous laughter in the class by making comments like, “Would you want to be on the bus with her?”]
  • I saw one of my best friends today. It was wonderful and perfect. I miss her a lot- she doesn’t live that far away (~4 hours), but it’s far enough so that we don’t see each other as much as I’d like.
  • I am really considering law school in the (distant) future. I want to just start off teaching in a classroom and see where I want to go from there. I am so passionate about school law, though, particularly in the area of bullying and cyber-bullying. I think it’s because I was bullied badly in middle school and no adults in my school ever helped me to stop the bullying or even acknowledged it was happening. I want to prevent other kids from going through what I went through.
  • I think I’ve had too much caffeine today and my eye is twitching. Eek.
  • It feels weird writing a post without mentioning headaches…BUT (crosses fingers) I have been headache-free since Tuesday morning. It’s pretty remarkable, especially considering all the stormy and rainy weather we’ve been having.
  • I no longer have to do this thing I’ve been dreading for months this weekend. Yes, I feel badly about backing out of it- it was shitty of me. However, the relief I feel over not having to do it is pretty amazing- although I do recognize I should never have committed to it in the first place. And the reason I gave for not doing it- chronic migraine- is certainly true and legitimate.
  • With that being said, I’m looking forward to spending time with my family this weekend, getting work done, and resting.