Tuesday, December 14, 2010

A brief (or probably long) intermission from hot dog day stories

I have just officially finished the first semester of grad school. Jim Beam and I are going to be very happy together for the next couple of hours. I decided today that it was time for us to move past our rough times...I mean that was what, 10 years ago? I think that we are both adults here and can get along just fine after getting to know a little bit more about ourselves over the years.

That being said, it's time to PARTY!!! I still have work in the morning, so the party won't really start until tomorrow night, but the mental party has already started. And by mental party, of course I mean insanity.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go have some private time with Mr. Beam.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Hot Dog Day Part Deux

I've decided that my hot dog day follies are going to become a series. Enjoy part deux. It is my favorite of the series, and I hope it becomes yours too.

You may enjoy part one here

The second hot dog incident was worse than the first one. I was in first grade. Same love for hot dog day, same dumb jumper and knee socks. My class had just finished a rousing game of kickball, when I realized that I really needed to pee. "I better go RIGHT NOW", I thought "Or I won't get a good spot in the hot dog line!" Well, right then, the bell rang. The bell signifying that it was time. Hot dog time, mothafuckers. I happened to be very close to the Almighty Hot Dog Room, and I could see the other kids running at full speed towards me with reckless abandon. I couldn't go pee now. I had made a choice. I was going to be, like, the 3rd person in the hot dog line! That had never happened to me! Oh happy day! I got in line, and noticed that my urge to urinate was becoming a border-line emergency. The hot dog gals were taking FOREVER setting up the stations. I waited for like 5 minutes in line, and then it happened. I peed. In my jumper. In the Hot Dog Room. In line. I immediately ran out before anyone had noticed what had happened and straight to the office.

I didn't want to admit to the office lady that I had peed my pants, but I didn't really have a choice. Time was ticking and the hot dogs were getting cold. I whimpered and looked pathetic and asked to call my mom for a new jumper (it was pretty obvious what had gone down). Now, here's the weird part. Instead of just calling my mom and getting me a fresh pair of undies from home (no, no...that would be TOOOO easy!) the office lady suggested that I try on one of the pairs of underwear that she had "just lying around the office"

ok...

There are multiple things that concerned me here. Namely; 1) why the hell were pairs of underwear just LYING around in the school office and B) why were there MULTIPLE pairs?

What the hell?

Even as a 6 year old girl, I knew this was not good. So, being the decent child that I am, I took the 3 pairs of "underwear" into the bathroom and stood there for about 5 minutes to give the illusion that I was trying them on (I wasn't). After enough time had passed I walked back into the office and stated that they simply did not fit and I needed my own underwear and jumper from home. My mom finally came and gave me some new clothes, and I got cleaned up and ready for a fucking hot dog.

And guess what?

Foiled again. No delicious hot dog for Pee-Pants Mcgee. I took it in stride though, I had been through enough that day. I thought this would be the end of my hot dog day problems, but it wasn't.

--------------------------
Sometimes, people just deserve it.
And for those of you who are sick of hearing about hot dog day (I know I am!) go check me out at Mushroom Printing, where I give a tip of the hat to my rodent friends.

Hot Dog Day Part One

When I was a child, we had Hot Dog Day at school. I believe it was a Tuesday (probably one of the reasons I like Tuesdays so much as an adult). Hot dog day was fantastic. You could get hot dogs (duh), chips, chili, and probably some other stuff that didn't matter like drinks and fruit and stuff. But, obviously, the hot dogs and chili were the best. Some bold (read: awesome) kids even got a chili dog, which was like 25 cents extra. I preferred my chili separate.

I would get one hot dog with ketchup and mayo (because I'm a mayonnaise-loving fatty), and a small cup of chili with a dollop of sour cream, chopped onions, and shredded cheddar cheese on top. Oh yeah, those were the days.

But hot dog day wasn't always a good day, my friends. No. It came with it's price.

The first hot dog day incident happened when I was in kindergarten. Since I love food so much, and obviously cannot contain myself to wait in any sort of "line", I ran to the glorious hot dogs as fast as my little legs could go. This resulted in my falling down an entire flight of stairs within the school building. Nobody was around, and surprisingly, I didn't feel that hurt. I got up, dusted off my ugly-ass Catholic school jumper, and ran to the Hot Dog Room (also known as the gym to big kids).

I got in line, my eyes wide at the sight of the delicious hot dogs, only to be startled by the screaming that ensued all around me. Apparently, the fall that I had sustained had been worse than I thought, and not only was I bleeding profusely from both knees, but I tracked puddles of blood into the immaculate Hot Dog Room. The other kindergartners were making a huge fuss so the teacher came over. She took one look at me, blood all over my white button up shirt, jumper, white knee socks, and Keds, took my hand and dragged me straight to the office, where I was promptly cleaned and bandaged up. By the time it was all over, I missed out on hot dog day all together, and had to eat some crappy peanut butter sandwich that one of the hot dog ladies made for me.

I went back to the Hot Dog Room afterward to see if there was possibly one stale or mushy hot dog that didn't get eaten that I could have. No such luck. They were, however, impressed at the amount of blood that they had to clean off of the floor. I was denied any hot dogs until the following Tuesday, and had to stave off my cravings all week. This was my first hot dog day injury, but it certainly wouldn't be my last, oh no sir. The next one would find me in the emergency room. I bet you can't wait to find out why.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Regression

Since I've moved back in with my parents, I totally feel like a teenager again. Its kinda crazy. I'm really not sure if it's a coincidence of if I'm actually regressing back to my ridiculous teenage self. I happen to be coming down with a cold, but that aside, I spent the entire day in my pajamas, eating tacos and doing homework. I ate Cinnamon Toast Crunch for breakfast (yes.) and last night for a snack. All I want to do is go out and drink and take drugs and be irresponsible. Also, I have these crazy giddy school-girl crush feelings for my boyfriend (even when I think of him as my boyfriend I get all butterfly-y).

Maybe I should throw a toga party. Teenagers do that right? Whatever.

Let's see...there are a few things that I missed out on as an awkward and emo teen that I would like to make happen. A keg stand. I'd like to do a keg stand. A beer bong. That would be cool. I have this sinking feeling that I just can't chug beer that fast, but I guess that is to be determined. Also, drinking games are really appealing to me right now. This all seems to be alcohol-related. Hmmm...

Oh my god, I just Googled "Things to do as a teenager" for the hell of it and got the stupidest shit ever. "Dance like nobody is watching!". How romantic. Fucking shoot me in the head. No, that's not what I'm looking for. I'm looking for "Take shrooms and wander around at the state park" or "See how many times you can masturbate in 24 hours" or "Get unbelievably high and listen to Dark Side of the Moon synced up with the Wizard of OZ". Because teenagers totally do that. Am I getting old? That seemed like an old person thing to say.

Ok, I just came across something that looks promising, but sadly, is also legal. It's called the "Banana and Sprite Challenge". Apparently, it is physically impossible to eat two bananas and drink two sprites without puking. I'm pretty sure that there is not any real science between this, and that it's purely psychosomatic...but there I am being a grown up again!

Well, back to homework, but believe you me, there will be shenanigans this winter break.

Monday, November 29, 2010

I Am Serious, and Don't Call Me Shirley

It's done. I'm moved into my parent's house. Now the fun part will be trying to cram all of my belongings into this very small bedroom. Also, I died a little during this process.

I feel pretty good today, I guess, thanks to a very handsome gentleman who hasn't figured out that I am totally insane yet. Aka: my boyfriend (tee hee). Well, maybe he does know that I'm insane and that's why he likes me...right? RIGHT? Boys love me.

I'm actually totally exhausted, so I'll write more later...like after a nap and homework. I've registered for next semester-I just can't get enough!

I know all of you will be sitting in suspense waiting to hear about my ridiculous life. Calm yourselves, I will return.

Monday, November 8, 2010

I Ate Grad School

Or, rather, I wish I could eat grad school. This would accomplish many things...namely a)grad school would be gone and b) maybe my ridiculous hunger would be satisfied.

I literally don't know what's wrong with me, but I have just had INSATIABLE hunger allllll day long. Like, no joke. The amount of food I've consumed today is not only embarrassing, but probably also unhealthy. I blame hormones.

In addition to being a fat lazy slob for most of the day, my motivation, as always, is hanging by a thread. I need to go get hypnotized into just doing work and not caring...kind of like Office Space but backwards. Can't wait til winter break...maybe this time I'll finally get my shit together...

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Long and Hard...My upcoming week that is, not my penis

Unfortunately.

But, yeah, there you have it folks. The upcoming week is going to be long and hard. Not to mention that the time-traveling mind-fuck that is called "moving back to standard time" has added substantially to my descent into madness. The fact that it started to get dark today at 5pm just made me a)tired and b)angry. Maybe I have Seasonal Affective Disorder or whatever (the fact that it can be called SAD cheers me up slightly), but I'm just not a fan of the long dark winter nights...unless there is holiday festivities/family and friends/delicious food/chestnuts roasting on a mothafucking open fire. Maybe it's just extra-depressing spending time alone...in the dark.
Don't get me wrong, I like winter...mostly because of the aforementioned awesome festivities, but I do prefer the long, sunny, carefree days of summer.
Well I think this would be an appropriate place to just freak out and complain about how I have to get up early everyday, study all day, see patients at clinicals for 10 hours, then work afterwards...oh yeah, and pack up all my shit so that I can move BACK INTO MY PARENT'S HOUSEEEEE!!!!! AAAAGGGHGHGHGHHHHHHHH FUCK!


the end.....or is it?

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

After Slacking Off...

For, like, ever...I'm back (at least for tonight).
Dark times loom over us, my friends, dark times. Objectively, it would seems great. The Giants are the World Series Champions, which is AWESOME! It's been one party after the other basically since Halloween. I should be happy. I should be doing a lot of things...but I'm not.

Today is a complaining kind of day. And I'm not going to hold it in.

I am thankful for a lot of things, I really am. I don't want to take for granted what I have, because I know that it can get worse. I am so thankful for my family, and my wonderful friends, and our health. Because without that, we have a big problem.

That being said, let the complaining begin.

Here it is; I had a disappointment today. A deep, hurtful, stabbing disappointment. The kind of disappointment that, alone, is not something that will stop someone from living their life, or being happy. However, for me, today, this disappointment is kind of the the straw that broke the camel's back. And I know it's going to hurt for awhile.

It hurts because of the other stuff. The living alone for so many years, the running out of money, the having to move back in with my parents thing, the grad school...oh god the grad school. So, the disappointment leaves me here in my apartment, alone, unable to study, unable to pack up my belongings, unable to try to sell my furniture...unable to do anything except sit and think and give myself a headache. I can't even cry. Not really at least.

I can't sleep. When I do sleep, it's a terrible, restless, thrashing, twilight-sleep. My terrifying dreams seem real and bizarre, I am too hot or too cold, the covers strangle me. Racing thoughts wake me up if I start to relax. If I do get sleep lately, it's because I've taken something to help me sleep. Then in the morning I'm groggy and disoriented.

My eating habits haven't been too good either. I'll be anxious and nervous and will forget to eat for a day or two, then I will be starving and eat totally gross food for the next few days.

I don't want to pack up my shit and move it. When I think about it, it literally makes me nauseous. Motivation is SO hard to find...Its hard enough to do the bare minimum for school-which, ironically, takes up almost all of my time.

The worst part, really, is just being here alone with my thoughts. I know that I have my friends and my family, but really, you can only complain about problems to them so much. I don't want to drive away the people that I do have with my downer attitude. I talk to people, sure, but I try not to do it all the time. I love my family and my friends. If they stop talking to me...everything would be so much worse...

Adjusting to being single is weird. Don't get me wrong, I really don't even want to get into a serious relationship with anyone right now. I have a lot of work to do on myself first. The thing is though, dating is awkward. Also, just having someone around is comforting. When I don't have that...it's disorienting. It's lonely. I want to fall in love again, but want someone who will fall in love with me too.

I'm worried that love won't happen for me. I know that it exists, I'm just worried that it doesn't exist for me. I know how the male mind works. Here it is: "Sex". The end. I know that men are capable of love, and I thought I could find someone to love me, but now I'm not so sure. When guys see me, they think either "What a rad girl, let's be friends" or "I want to have sex with her" or some combination of the two. But I don't think anyone is thinking "wow, I could love this person".

Someday things will be ok. Heck, they could even be great! I'm sure of it...I have hope. I always have a secret optimism in the deepest darkest parts of my heart. My passion lives on...but it's quieted right now. Right now, things are bad. Things are dark and ugly. There's a constant bad taste in my mouth. Right now...this is hard, I am worried, and anxious, and disappointed, and depressed, and lonely. This is really hard.

I miss the way things used to be, and I long for the things that could be. I'm stuck here in the middle, and I don't like it one bit. Not at all.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

A Traumatic Day

It really wasn't so bad, but then I went to my parent's house to pick up some stuff I left there, and they were doing it. That's right. Doing it. Ew. I mean, I'm glad they have a healthy sex life, but seriously...I still don't want to think about it. The silver lining is that I didn't see much at all, and they didn't see me. So I did what any normal person would do...I ran out into the backyard and hopped over the fence falling and scraping my hands then sped away in my car. Why I didn't go out the front door the way I came in, I don't know. It was a fight or flight moment (I obviously chose flight).

Besides that unfortunate little "incident", the day was nice. I went to my god daughter's 2nd birthday party. It. Was. ADORABLE. She is probably the most well-behaved 2 year old I've ever seen, which really didn't do my baby-making hormones any favors. I had fun playing with her and eating cake etc, but it made me feel kind of sad. Kind of a "what if I never have a happy family like this' sort of feeling. But I brushed that aside and firmly told myself that it will happen in due time, and I am still just a young twenty-something (see? I am being positive AND responsible about my life! Hooray for me!).

For now, it's back to the books. My mind is on other things though...things that are male and handsome and confusing. I know that it would behoove me to just let it go and not think about "where it could lead" or anything of that nature...I just find myself intoxicated by the thoughts that I am having. I want more. I always want more...

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Humans RULE

Well, you will all be happy to know that I HAVE CAPTURED THE MOUSE! Alfredo, that is. So it looks like the scoreboard is now Alfredo: 1 Angela:1. So, I guess it ended up a tie. But really, I won because obviously I displayed my superior brain power and kicked that fool into submission.

Actually, I was very kind to him, so yeah...he kinda owes me one. I mean, I didn't kill him. I paid 13 bucks for a "live trap" instead of like a dollar for the stereotypical mouse trap that supposedly snaps their little necks (poor mousy!). When I first saw him in the trap, I thought he was dead. It would have been terribly ironic. He was stuck in the little entrance to the trap and wasn't moving, no matter how much I shook the trap around. I figured that maybe he choked on the peanut butter or something. I couldn't see his face, but I was like 99% sure he was dead.

So, next was the unpleasant job of removing a dead mouse from the trap. I reopened the trap to assess the situation before I pulled him out, and there was Alfredo, alive and well and starting right at me. This of course merited a scream of surprise from me (I am NOT afraid of mice people, I am just kind of a jumpy person. I wasn't expecting him to be alive!). So, I closed the trap and brought it outside.

I opened the trap and turned it upside down and gently tried to shake him out into the bushes. Well apparently he found the trap to be a comfortable little home so he didn't want to budge. He dug his little claws into the holes in the entrance of the trap and would not be removed. I shook a little harder. Nothing. The guy was tenacious. This went on for about 5 minutes, and then I decided I was just going to slap on some of those yellow rubber dish washing gloves and grab him out. I was shaking the trap pretty hard at this point and I didn't want the guy to stroke out. I mean, I bought the live trap for a reason. We already had a couple of close calls.

After donning the ridiculous gloves, I ran back outside with the trap, Alfredo hanging on for dear life. Some neighbors who were walking their dog stopped to watch the show (thanks guys). I decided to give the trap one more little shake before reaching in to get him. I shook once, hard, the way you shake a ketchup bottle to get all the ketchup to the bottom.

That did the trick. Alfredo lost his footing and spatted out onto the ground. He looked up at me, stunned, and sprinted onto my shoe. I, of course, screamed loudly at being startled by Alfredo once again, kicking him off of my shoe and tossing him into a soft nearby bush while simultaneously throwing the metal mousetrap into the air where it landed next to me with a loud clang. My neighbors laughed, their dog barking and howling with the commotion.

But hey, I caught him right?
So, clearly, I am the superior species.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

A Good Idea

HEY! I have a good idea. How about every Tuesday (or Friday) I have a couple of beers and just write about completely random things?! Disclaimer: Don't worry, this probably won't actually happen, I've just had a few beers and thought I'd write about completely random things tonight.

So here it goes:


I sometimes wish that I was a guy just so I could wear really comfortable clothing and still be considered sexy. Like, for example, right now I would be donning a colorful pair of converse, some skinny jeans in black, an awesome hipster shirt and vest, a hoodie, and a beanie. And I'd douse myself in Aqua Di Gio because it turns me on. (It really does. I mean, seriously, I can smell it from across the room and get obviously flushed).

Ok, what else is random. Maybe my ridiculous fear or tornadoes? My recurring tidal wave dreams? My extreme love of annoying Christmas music?

I know, I can talk about my very bizarre turn-ons. Ok, first of all, you will score points if you are wearing a top hat or fedora. I don't know why, I am a very weird girl, but I gotta say a guy in a top hat is just plain sexy. Take Slash for example...just look at him! I don't care about anything except that ridiculous top hat!

Also, a guy with a guitar just makes me weak in the knees. Even better: a guy with an accordion. Not kidding. Bonus points if he is wearing hipster suspenders or a hat.

Next, Aqua Di Gio. Period.

Ok I'm getting far too excited here...and frankly, I'm sick of writing. Now I shall enjoy my blue moon and watch the office.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Why Can't We Be Friends?

Dear First Week of Grad School,

Listen, I understand that you are for "smart" people who are "critical thinkers" and all that crap, but let's just take this one step at a time. I am invested in this relationship, and I'm totally willing to meet you halfway on issues that are important to you, but I've gotta be honest here; you are making me crazy. You need to communicate, grad school, or I will have no idea what you are trying to get across to me. EVER.

It's not that I don't find you sexy, I do. It's simply the fact that you are kind of an asshole. I don't really have much more to say to you at this point other than the fact that you need to shape up, because I don't have any anti-anxiety medication and frankly, I'm already teetering on the brink of madness.

I know we both kind of rushed into this, but I know we can make each other happy in the long run.

Thank you for your time, and for my student loan check,
Angela



Sometimes, people just deserve it.

P.S. Check me out over at Mushroom Printing, where I've posted and oldie but a goody...well sort of.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Meltdown

Ok I'm having a meltdown. I don't know how I'm going to get through grad school. Financially, emotionally, mentally, physically. What have I done??? Why on earth did I decide to apply to this program this year. I should have waited another year or couple years. Then I could have gotten my shit together. I could have saved up some money and been stable. I could have not had all the emotional shit that this year brought upon me.

I'm going to need a fricken bottle of horse tranquilizers to get through this, I swear. It's become almost a nightly thing, this crazy panicky feeling. Its not quite a panic attack, but it will be. Maybe tomorrow, maybe the next day. Every time I sit down to just organize my study schedule or try to figure out due dates for these ridiculous assignments, it takes hours and my brain ends up going into overload. I haven't even done any REAL homework or studying. I'm still just desperately trying to get my shit together.

In other news, I'm being completely and totally outwitted by the mouse that is loose in my apartment. The damn thing is still here somewhere. I've named him Alfredo. I bought a real mousetrap at the hardware store today so I'm crossing my fingers (it won't kill him, just trap him).

Alfredo: 1
Grad Student Who Desperately Needs Some Xanax: 0


This is the worst.

You Will Haunt Me In My Dreams

Today I woke up from a nap with the unmistakable feeling of heartache. I don't know exactly why, but I'm guessing it's a dream I had. It's rare that I don't remember my dreams, since i dream so incredibly vividly. I'm not sure why this is or what caused it, but I have always had these lucid, intricate dreams that are sometimes so realistic that when I wake up, there is a period of a few minutes where I wonder if it was real. I've found myself feeling for the stab wounds that I sustained, or the new piercing that I got.

I've woken up screaming before, I've woken up crying, tears running down my face. I've woken up laughing, smiling, singing. It's all very bizarre and also embarrassing if there happens to be someone sleeping near me. It seems to happen more often than not when I'm alone though. When the dreams are good, they are fantastic. When they are bad, they are really bad.

On a totally unrelated note, there is a mouse that is in my bedroom somewhere that I have been trying to capture for about 4 hours. So far, no dice. At first, I vowed not to sleep in there until I caught him, but I've got to get to bed soon...this is getting ridiculous. Apparently this particular mouse doesn't like peanut butter as much as other mice. I've tried to make it very clear to him that I don't want to hurt him, I just want to catch him so I can put him back outside, but I guess it's difficult for him to understand that while I am wielding a giant spatula in his direction.

Wish me luck.

Also, I started running again yesterday...I am very sore. But! It felt fantastic. More on that later. I'm going to go again tomorrow. Probably. If not tomorrow then Monday.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

GRAWWWWWUUUGGHH

This is the exact noise I made as soon as I reached maximum capacity for information at the orientation today. It was a kind of guttural and savage cry for help that I'm sure my cave-women ancestors made every time they got beat in the head with a large club or attacked by some sort of saber-toothed cat. This, my friends, is apparently the sound of complete and utter submission to the fact that you are totally fucked.

After the initial meet and greet with the instructors, the orientation to the Nurse Practitioner Master's Program started with a calm explanation about what to do when you begin to have a panic attack. It started off as a light-hearted joke, and then quickly became "no, seriously...when you start hyperventilating and throwing up, just sit down and breathe. We need to take this one day at a time. Don't look at all your text books when they are stacked up all in one place" etc. (I looked at my text books all stacked up in one place and had a panic attack last week).

So, then we got an 8 hour lecture describing what we were expected to do. As all of us were reviewing the syllabus (for the ONE class...out of FIVE) and furiously scribbling notes and highlighting important dates, I glanced around the room. I could tell that people were starting to lose it. I'm glad I wasn't the only one, but at the same time, it was a terrible sight. People were chugging their coffee, grimacing, tearing up, breathing too fast. I even saw people at some points just drop their pens on the desk, slack-jawed and blank, and put their heads down on the table. I'm also 95% sure that one person ran out of the room to puke. I was somewhere in between feeling like laughing with insanity while shredding my notes into confetti, and sobbing uncontrollably while I scream "I-JUST-DON'T-THINK-I'M-GOING-TO-G-GET-ENOUGH-CLINICAL-HOURS! I DON'T KNOW HOW TO DO ANYTHING!"

During the lunch break, we all huddled in the cafe at the library shivering like we were going through delirium tremens, even thought it was about 100 degrees outside. Nobody said too much. We all just bought some coffee or tea (for me a giant-ass iced tea, which always seems to cheer me up. Today it just barely got me through).

After lunch, we reviewed the assignments, in addition to the clinical hours we were to do. The weekly write ups, the on-site evaluation by clinical faculty, the complete history and physical paper, the episodic papers, the patient logs, the text books that we need to consult nightly and whatever else there is that I'm forgetting. At the end of the day, Dr. Professor says "OK well, that's the clinical portion, I will see you all day Tuesday to have the orientation for the didactic classes. Those will be challenging compared to this".

And that's when I, along with most of the class, made the noise.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Day One: Success

Well, today marks the first official day of grad school. I haven't started the didactic portion yet (Wednesday is coming awfully fast...) but I went to my clinical rotation at the Women's Health Clinic. I'm just observing to begin and by observing I mean staring down at a whole lot of cervixes. I got to look at BV under a microscope and was able to diagnose it, so I find that to be a plus. Basically by the end of the day I was just making bets with myself about whether the carpet would match the drapes on particular patients. Mature, I know. You can take the girl out of the scene, but you can't...you get the point.

In all seriousness though, I can tell I'm going to love women's health. I mean, it's not all sweet pregnant women...trust me, things get pretty gross. However, as an ICU nurse, I'm pretty sure it won't be THAT gross. I have a really high tolerance for gross, by the way. Like, I literally cheered when I saw BV under the microscope, and I vocalized that I wished it was trichomoniasis. I'm one sick fuck. Which is why I feel like I can really excel at this job.

So tomorrow it's off to the hospital for inservices all day (yay). Wednesday I'm on campus all day, Thursday it's back to clinicals, and Friday...either clinicals or I have off. So, yeah. As long as I get my shit together (ha) I know that I can balance a social life (HA) and school and work from time to time. I just have to get on top of things and grind it out (that's what she said). Ok-give me a break, I had to wear professional clothing and a lab coat all day and pretend to know what I was doing. I'd really like a Guinness right now, but I can't have one until Thursday or Friday...boo.

Time to do the dishes, read a few chapters of my book, and go to sleep. Ah, living the dream.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

We're All Mad Here

Well, I've spent all weekend acting like a teenage boy as per normal since I have been single. Here's the the rub though: 12 hours from now, I have to suit up in my business-casual with my pressed white lab coat and name tag, wearing makeup, hair neat and shiny, and pretend to be a professional person. Technically, I AM a professional, but I feel like a total fraud. I mean, come on.

So, panic attacks about finances, school info, crazy patients, lack of social life, and just plain not knowing anything all over again, are sure to ensue again. Actually they've already started. I hate feeling like I don't know anything. I am completely terrified to do this. And this time I feel like I'm going it alone.

Also, I'm not going to be living with my parents. I just can't do it, for a number of reasons that I can't even discuss right now. I man, I love them to death but I just can't live there. So, this means that money is going to be tight. Really tight. REALLY TIGHT. So, I gotta find a new place to live ASAP. A cheap place.

Also, I figure that maybe once I finally lose my mind, maybe I'll feel better. Like, I just wont care anymore. Maybe once I finally crack, it will be almost like a state of enlightenment. I'll just sit there with a goofy grin on my face and go through the motions and I won't feel a thing.

Monday, August 16, 2010

It Only Hurts When I Laugh

So I've been skimping on the blog, for sure. But that's not all, ladies and gentlemen. I've been the epitome of lazy and hedonistic lately. A little heavy-handed with the liquor here and there, staying up all night then sleeping all day, having lusty thoughts all day about a certain handsome man, eating all sorts of delicious takeout... the list goes on.

But the hard truth, my friends, is that next week I need to be responsible again. Pretty much cold turkey. And not only that, but project getting-out-of-my-own-head hasn't been going as well as I planned (we all know what happens to "plans" in my life). So...instead I'm doing something new.

These days (especially next week when I'm forced into being responsible) I plan on doing the things that make me truly happy (in addition to school and work, which, well I made my bed and now I have to lie in it). I'm finished trying to control anything other than what I know that I can control. It's no longer settling or conformity for me, I've learned that it will actually serve me better in life.

So, the things that make me truly happy are really simple. They are:

Be around people that make me feel good (friends and family)
Having some alone time occasionally where I am not doing anything stressful
Cooking often and eating mostly healthy fresh food
Working out daily or close to daily...i.e. running/swimming/yoga
Listening to/playing more music

So, I'm sure that these are just totally obvious things, but it's back to basics, people. The things I'm going to have trouble with are balancing all this with the stress of work and school. Especially the working out. Eating healthy and cooking gets kind of hard when I'm so busy, but it's going to be even harder to drag my lazy ass out of bed. I lack motivation these days.

But honestly, the working out part is maybe the most important. Health-wise, I know the benefits. I know the benefits for my mental health and my racing thoughts and anxiety-especially in grad school. I know how good I feel after I work out. I feel happy, I feel like my problems are not unsolvable. When I run, everything else seems to slow down. I can outrun anything if I keep going long enough. When I swim, I can't hear anybody speaking. I can hardly hear my thoughts. Just the music in my head and the rhythmic sounds of my stroke and breath. When I am doing yoga, I feel strong. I feel powerful and feminine. I can lift myself, and I can breathe through any pain that may be inflicted upon my body. Everything is only temporary.

This is why it's so important for me to begin doing these things regularly again.


That and of course the fact that next year is the 100th anniversary of Bay to Breakers and I will be GOD DAMNED if I'm not running that entire race in costume and then partying it up afterward. Anyone up to join me in the centipede category?

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Reality Prevails...Until 20 Minutes From Now When I Will Be Pouring Myself a Martini

That's right invisible blog followers; I am officially back from vacation. It still makes me giggle to myself and feel a little like a fraud when I admit to having a blog, but I do that anyway...so no biggie I guess.

So, the trip was good. Relaxing for the most part. Except the "hike" I went on. Apparently the term hike encompasses full on rock climbs now...because that's kind of what this was. 8 miles. Since this is my blog (heh.) and I'm in charge (HA!) I will say that I mastered the climb in full makeup and shook my hair out when I reached the top all sexy slow-motion style, a bead of sweat glistening on my perfectly exposed cleavage as I left everyone else in the dust below me.

Clearly, this is not what happened.

Here's what it was really like: I kicked myself all the way to the top for not working out regularly, wheezing and panting like a motherfucking morbidly obese rhinocerous kicking up more dust than anybody. It was a borderline dangerous thing that I didn't bring water, even though the superhero men in my family finished the hike without complaint of any kind (my mom opted out, which is definately for the best, although it would have made me feel MUCH better about myself). I did finally reach the destination, which was some pools of water and waterfalls which are actually incredibly slippery and dangerous, but magnificently beautiful and fun to swim in. That's another thing...I didn't think I would be swimming in them, because unfortunately I didn't dress accordingly, but when I was wading in the water trying to cool off from the hell hike, I slipped on the dangerously slippery rocks and fell all the way in cartoon-syle (with much eggagerated waving of the arms and trying to regain my balance for like 5 seconds before actually going down). A couple other hikers had a pretty good laugh, and I didn't really get hurt, just a couple bruises.

By the time I got back to the lake, and I DID get back dammit, I was pretty much hallucinating from dehydration...not fun or recommended. After downing about a gallon of iced tea and water, the endorphins kicked in. It took me a few hours to recover, and I was loopy and sore, and I was covered in mosquito bites, and sunburnt...and I had a reaction to some sunscreen that left me with a mild rash...but despite all this, I have decided to do the "hike" again next year.

Now, you all must be thinking how stupid and masochistic that is, but hear me out. This year I will try to get in a little better shape (not making too many promises..), and I am going to invest in a camel back so that I may have the luxury of cold, delicious water while I am climbing. Now that I know what to expect, I can plan...so I probably won't get the shit beat out of me as much (maybe).

I am going to go ahead and pour that martini now...I have been recently reintroducing my good friends coffee and alcohol back into my life. This past week off of work has been fan-FUCKING-tastic. So fantastic in fact that I am currently toying with the notion of jetting off to Vegas tomorrow since I don't have anything else scheduled until next week. Sort of depends on if I can convince a certain AWESOME PERSON to join me. We'll see how that goes. I may not be the coolest person in the world, and I may not have had the best luck lately...but things are turning around! This is the beginning of a new and improved more awesome me...at least until late August.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Hiatus

Taking a short break from THE ALMIGHTY INTERNET. Going on vacation, soaking up some sun, getting my swim on, and getting some good reading done. See you, dear internet, in 10 days!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

And Now For Something Completely Different:

I realized today that hey, maybe I should do an actual post about nursing. Like, my job. Because I am the Punk Rock Nurse. However, the mere thought of tirelessly writing about nursing sounds about as appealing to me as getting punched in the kidney by a hobo (which has happened at work...and no, it's not fun. But I can laugh about it now...heh.)

Now, the real issue with writing about nursing everyday is that often times the stories don't have happy endings. The anecdotes are boring and cliche. People die. People are sick. People try to hurt me, and often they are able to succeed. I hurt people, even by accident, and its a terrible feeling. I don't want to rehash all that on a daily basis. I don't want to think about breaking people's ribs during compressions. I don't want to re-see a lot of things I see.

That being said, there is a lot of The Hilarious to cherish at this job. I've cried, sure, but I have laughed harder than ever. I can't make this shit up...the material is too good. On these occassions, I would be itching to write down exactly what happened. And so I shall. But let's not be coy, nursing is disgusting. This job is sick. So, I'll have to leave out the gross parts, but I'm sure you can use your imagination...to an extent. Some things are, really, just unimaginable (seriously).

Stay tuned, my fine feathered friends. Just sit right back and you'll hear the tale, the tale of a fateful trip....that started from this tropic port aboard....wait. Ok, time for a cup of coffee. I am smart.

Monday, July 26, 2010

You Know You Work Nights When...

First and foremost, you know you work nights when...

-You NEED to go by military time, or else you will not know if it is 3am or pm when you read a digital clock (this briefly just happened to me)

-You are so tired you momentarily wonder if "Vajazzling" would be worth it just for a laugh

-You realize that the only person who would be laughing is you, which makes you laugh

-You've slept only in nap-increments for about four days

-You find yourself singing Bon Jovi's "Living on a Prayer" a little
too loudly at 4am while your neighbor bangs on the wall

(Before Bon Jovi, I just happened to be singing "Somebody to Love" by Queen, which apparently the neighbors didn't mind because of it's sheer AWESOMENESS...or maybe I just drowned out the banging)

I'm going to go get some sleep before its back to the grind tonight.






Sometimes, people just deserve it.

And since I have become SO IMPORTANT(heh.) come check out my post over at Mushroom Printing, where I'm talking about the worst thing that could possibly happen to a delicious burrito.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Fin.

If you ask me (which, again, nobody ever does), the movie Fight Club has arguably the best ending any movie could ever have. If you haven't seen the movie, go out and get it right away. If you haven't read the book, go out and read it right away. Chuck Palahniuk (the book's author) and I have always had kind of a love/hate relationship. I love his writing, and I hate the way it makes me feel, which I love.

Now, back to Fight Club. It's really difficult, in my opinion, to get any movie to even resemble the scenes in your head that you get from reading words. And, often times, it really wouldnt work anyway. With Fight Club, the end is wonderful because while its obviously not exactly what you take away from the book, I think that the mood it sets does the book a great honor. And there's always the splicing-in of the penis that really just ties the whole thing together (you're going to have to watch).

Not to mention the song. The song! Could they have picked a more perfect song?! When the drum beat starts up and the buildings come down, it's so fucking beautiful. I could watch that scene for hours. The feeling during that scene is something that any of us would be lucky to feel even one time in our short lives. The feeling of really being alive. Of letting go. Of submitting to the reality and being OK with losing control. The sexual energy of total anarchy. The unknown.

Sometimes all you can do is stand there with your one person, and watch as everything comes crashing down around you. And knowing that it's all going to be ok.

Sometimes all you can do it watch. You might as well enjoy it.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Vacation

I am officially leaving for vacation in one week, and I cannot wait. It's not a glamorous vacation to, say, the Cayman Islands, but I'm excited nonetheless. Every year, since as long as I can remember (and even before that), my family has rented a cabin in a little place called Strawberry, California. And by little I mean population, like, 150. My mom's family has been going to Strawberry since she was little. In fact, my parents took their pregnancy test right there in the cabin that produced yours truly.

So, in Strawberry, it's my extended family taking up about 2 cabins, and some close family friends (all three generations each) taking up 2 more cabins, and then another family that we met at Strawberry many years ago in 1 cabin. We pretty much take over. There is a river, horseshoes, campfire area, and trails, and a pool that I love to hang out at and read/swim laps. Then, about a mile down the mountain is Pinecrest Lake, where we go almost everyday for hiking, kayaking, and swimming.

The smell of the pine trees is already luring me in. I went to the library today and picked up my giant nerd-sized pile of books to read by the pool/ on the porch as I laze about and soak up some rays....ohhh yeahhh.

So now the only thing is that I need to do like a million things before I leave so that when I come back, I won't be as overwhelmed (haha yeah right). I do always like to come home to a clean apartment though, and I got lots of errands to do/buisiness to take care of for school.

Not on vacation yet! I gotta get back to work...

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Killing Me Softly

It's never a good thing when you actually start to understand where your psych patients are "coming from". I feel pretty good about anticipating their next move, preparing myself for outbursts/physical violence etc., but seriously. When I start to actually "get it", things get a little weird.

Which is why I am going to treat myself to a Martini this evening. When I wake up. Because I haven't gone to sleep yet...

I am no stranger to the crazy ramblings of anyone, really, let alone patients. I'm sure that I, myself, have even been viewed as a total raging lunatic from time to time. Like the ol' Mr. Roboto night at karaoke where I not only drank my weight in vodka cranberries, but then proceeded to dance the robot onstage, while singing, only to fall over on the stage, while singing, and proceed to do what I like to call "the floor robot" for a good three minutes or so (it didn't seem that long at the time). Styx would have been proud, I like to think.

I'm no Jim Morrison.

I do enjoy a good karaoke party though. Which is why I will be returning to that fateful place on Saturday to reclaim what is mine (my dignity). This time, like other times before, I will not succumb to the power of The Drink (well maybe a little, but nothing like Styx night). I will sing a catchy tune, a great karaoke song. Something that a normal person might sing. I will not embarrass myself by screaming "MY BLOOD IS BOILING-MY BRAIN IBM!!!" into the microphone while doing the "floor robot". My date will not peer at me anxiously while simultaneously checking his watch because I will be classy as fuck. I mean, as hell. fuck.

Get it? Bottom line: I have been awake for almost 24 hours, and am becomming delusional, having flashbacks to other times of great delusion. And by great delusion, I mean sexy, sexy robotic dance moves.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Job Titles Are Mostly Relative

While most people would call what I do "nursing" I really don't think that fully em compasses the ridiculous bullshit that I "do" on a day to day basis at the hospital. For example, tonight I would be "Bodily Fluid Dodger", or perhaps "Good Nurse" (of course pertaining to the ol' Good Nurse/Bad Nurse game). I prefer "Bad Nurse" sometimes because it gets out more aggression, but people always want me to be the sweet charming little "good nurse".

So, I guess along the same lines of thinking, tonight I could also be known as "Seizure-Stopper", "Floor Disinfecter", "Hand-Holder", and "Punching Bag". Fun. I wish, I really do, that there was a 1 unit course in nursing school about all of these other titles that we are expected to be, or that we unfortunately fall into. I really think nursing is one of those careers that you can only prepare so much for...and then the patients and the rest of the staff take it from there. You will see shit that you wish you had never seen.

There are many times Ive seen things that I wish I could unsee. But sometimes, there are those rare moments when I see things that I wish I could see a hundred more times that I may never see again.

Friday, July 16, 2010

When Keeping it Real Goes Wrong

I have a sensitivity to red wine. I think it's the tannins. I didn't have this problem until about three years ago, and I have no idea why it started. I wouldn't call it an allergy, but if I have as little as one glass of red wine, I become overheated, slightly congested, and, above all, totally loopy. Drunk even.

When you belong to an Italian family, red wine is unavoidable. When I am out to dinner with normal people, I don't have a problem. However, when my family is around, I must prepare to have red wine poured down my gullet faster than I can protest. They know how it affects me, but it happens nonetheless.

For example, last night at dinner, I agreed to "just a little" and had to literally put my hand over my wine glass to stop the pouring (it didn't work-I got wine poured on my hand). No amount of begging or pleading, or "Basta!" will get you "just a little" red wine. Apparently, "just a little" means an entire goblet full. And then it keeps getting refilled when you aren't looking.

So, yeah. Suffice it to say, I was a little ...blasted. We were looking at slides from my parent's recent trip to Italy, and there was a point in time where I accidentally tried to eat my napkin. I don't think anyone noticed my because they were preoccupied with the slides, but my inappropriate laughter may have given me away. Using a piece of penne as a vuvuzela probably didn't do me any favors either.

It's really more of a hallucinogenic fever of sorts than drunkenness, I think, because I really only had the equivalent of two glasses. It leaves a pretty wicked headache about 3 hours later though. And it makes me worry that my brother's pet chinchilla, Giuseppe, is plotting to blackmail me. He has shifty eyes.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

From the Archives

An old post (5 or so years ago?) But one I'd like to keep around

"Rock N' Roll, Come and Save Me"

One thing that has stayed constant in my life is my love, nay, obsession for music. Music has driven my dreams, my emotions, everything for as long as I can remember. I had cassette tapes and records when I was little. I had the Coasters and the Drifters, the Cars, the Beatles. Growing up, I had one of the largest CD collections I know of for a 12 year old girl. I could sit in my room for four hours and listen to an album over and over and over and over and over again. And you know what? it would never get boring. I never "finished" with my music. I still have all my CDs, or most of them, and now I have an Ipod with thousands of songs on it.

If you know me really well, you've might have heard me singing along to almost any song that comes on the radio. I've been asked how many songs I know the lyrics to, and the answer is thousands. I know the lyrics to thousands of songs.

It's not all about the lyrics to me. I remember every drum beat, every rhythm, every timing, every note, every bass line that makes me close my eyes and clench my fists for a minute. I remember ever concert, every facial expression on the faces of the musician, every solo. I see the sweat pour down the drummer's face and I see the callused fingers on the frets of the guitars. And sometimes, when things fall apart all around me, I still have the music. If nothing else, i will always have the music.

Through music we can live forever. Music has made me laugh, it's made me cry, it's made me scream, it's made me throw bottles against a wall in a true state of rage. It give me a feeling that can only be described by the music itself. There are no words to explain it, except the combination of notes lyrics.

Music brings up so many memories of people, places, smells, sounds, feelings... If someone asked me what reminded me of someone in my life I could give them a list of 50 songs that make me remember something about them or that bring up a memory. My memory is splayed out on staves. If I never have anything else, I will always have the music, and I will always be listening.









"Rock and roll is so great, people should start dying for it. You don't understand. The music gave you back your beat so you could dream. A whole generation running with a Fender bass...

The people just have to die for the music. People are dying for everything else, so why not the music? Die for it. Isn't it pretty? Wouldn't you die for something pretty?

Perhaps I should die. After all, all the great Blues singers did die. But life is getting better now.

I dont want to die. Do I?"

-Lou Reed

Thanks A Lot, Kid

While babysitting I had a great conversations with a friend's 4 year old niece that went a little something like this...



Alyssa: You should come get ice cream with me soon!

Me: That sounds like a lot of fun! We should do that soon if I'm not working too much

Alyssa: You work??!!!

Me: Yup

Alyssa: What do you do?

Me: I'm a nurse, I take care of sick people in the hospital

Alyssa: How can you be a nurse if you are still a kid?

Me: I'm not a kid anymore, I'm a grownup like your mommy and daddy and uncle Brian

Alyssa: And uncle Patrick?

Me: Yeah, well actually uncle Patrick is a few years younger than me

Alyssa: No he I'snt! If you are a grown up why aren't you married?

Me: (shit.) Well, I just haven't gotten married yet. I had to focus on graduating high school and college and nursing school, which is very important to do before you get married.

Alyssa: Has anyone asked you?

Me: er...no. But I'm sure someday somebody will ask me!

Alyssa: Is something wrong with you? Why doesn't anyone want to marry you?

Me: (fuck.) I just haven't gotten married yet. Uncle Brian is a grown up and he isn't married yet.

Alyssa: But uncle Brian is a boy so it's ok.

Me: I see...

Alyssa: That's ok! you can come to my wedding when I get married and I'll let you wear a really pretty dress so you don't feel sad.

Me: *sigh* Thanks, Alyssa, that's really sweet of you.


At least she didn't ask me about sex.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Oh Happy Day!

You can only imagine my excitement when my favorite blogger, Aunt Becky of Mommy Wants Vodka, became a follower of MY BLOG! So, as of now, it's just you and me Becky. And, let's not be coy here, I have never been one of the cool kids so this just makes my day. (Nerd alert). So here's to my new Internet friend; Becky-may you marry Doctor House and Dexter in a three-way wedding extravaganza chock full of The Awesome, while on the family reunion cruise with vodka flowing from the rafters and may I be there to video tape the whole thing.

****

So, today on my way to work I decided to run by Whole Foods to pick up a salad because...well, I totally pigged out this morning after work. To write and publish exactly what I consumed (aka crammed into my already-stuffed-full-of-food mouth) would be quite an embarrassment and I would probably get an anonymous email about the dangers of binge-eating and how, as a nurse, I should know better (yeah right).

Also, let's get one things straight right off the bat; I am a nervous eater. When I am stressed out, I find comfort in food. Probably not healthy, but hey. When things are very bad, I lose all appetite, but when I'm moderately stressed out, I go straight for the good stuff. Thank the lord that I have a somewhat capable metabolism, or I would be a giant heifer by now, waddling the streets looking for my next victim (probably a delicious burrito who would be comically cowering in the corner of a deserted alley). But, I digress.

So, rewind back to Whole Foods. I pick out my salad, get some other healthy stuff to eat at work, and make my way to the bakery section (of course). See, I have an excuse because it is my coworkers birthday in a few days and, hello, I have to get him something. I spotted some delicious looking petit fours and waited for the guy behind the counter to come over and help me. Bakery guy comes over and I ask him to for a couple petit fours (which, P.S., if you have never tried petit fours, get off your ass and go find some, they are like a foodgasm in the mouth).

The guy kinda stares and me and then starts packing them up. While he's doing this, I finally get a good look at him; it's my ex-boyfriend. My high school sweetheart, my puppy-loving, virginity-losing, good-memories-and-tears-all-dumped-into-one guy. "Oh my god, it's you!" I said to him. Smooth, I know.

Then came the awkward "How've you been, what's up, how's your family" small talk. The obligatory "we should hang out sometime" was thrown into the mix. I feel like I should add that I haven't seen this dude in years and he inexplicably stopped talking to me altogether a few years ago, after we had been friends for awhile and on good terms...so yeah, a little extra awkward.

The small talk ended, and I turned to leave. I imagined him watching me as I walked away, so I had to be cool about it. Even though I wasn't wearing any makeup, I had my hair in a ponytail, and I was in OR scrubs, I thought I looked sufficient enough. Kind of. I put my sunglasses on and walked straight out the door without looking back. When I was a few steps out of the door, I realized that I took my entire basket of groceries with me, and the petit fours, without paying for any of it. I whirled around and ran back in to pay, but I'm pretty sure he saw me because the bakery counter is right next to the exit.

Ex-boyfriend: 1
Me: 0

Getting Out of My Own Head...

Ok, new project. I need to stop thinking so much. Project "Getting Out of My Own Head" has officially begun. How am I going to execute this? I have no clue.

Ok, you must know some things about me before I begin:

A) I am a worrier. I am convinced that this is genetic (Thanks a lot Kathy Beebe). I worry about anything and everything. Things that aren't a big deal will metastisze out of control in my mind. I've gotten better, trust me, but it's still somewhat of an issue.

B) I carry around too much guilt. I blame my Catholic upbringing. I'm sure that this stems from that combined with point A.

C) I am a bad liar. I am not a fan of lying, by any means. However, I feel like desperate times call for desperate measures, and sometimes lying is better than telling the truth (DISCLAIMER: it's rare, and I dont condone lying...I am a BIG fan of honest and open communication. There are just certain circumstances where it may be better to not give as many details or tell the entire truth).

D) I spend too much time alone. Dont get me wrong, I have many friends, and am out with them having fun quite often (well, not lately, but usually). I just seem to have too much time where I am thinking about things. Just thinking, thinking, thinking. Take, for example, right now. It't almost two in the morning. I am at work and I have one patient who has been asleep all night. The other nurse I work with likes to go sleep in the break room...I am alone with my thoughts. Not to mention the fact that I live alone.



Ok, so, knowing what I know about myself, it is clear that I need a distraction from my own thoughs. I need to stop myself when my worrying begins to spiral out of control, which has been happening somewhat frequently. My main worries as of late are the following:

1) School/work
2) Finances
3) What people think of me (stupid, I know. Its not everyone, just important people)
4) My To-Do list (it is completely out of control)

So it starts with A), the worrying, then comes B), where I feel guilty when I don't accomplish these things, or when I start to worry that maybe someone doesnt like me...someone that I like very much, or someone that was just in a bad mood on that particular day and snapped at me or something. I feel guilty because, often times, I have no real basis for these thoughs...just too much time to think. Then C) often times leads to B), and D) leads to both A) and B).

(Can you tell yet that I need to get out of my head?)

So now the real work begins. I want to face life without constantly worrying about the unknown, because thats really what the problem is. Fear of the unknown. I will do my best to distract myself, talk myself out if irrational thoughts, and attempt to be more optimistic. Things arent always black or white, and its time to stop thinking that way.

(I am taking a deep breath as we speak)

Now I am going to stop this and move on to reading my book, which I highly reccomend (The Book Theif).

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Why I Will Never Become a Cat Lady

Cats have recently begun fucking with me in my dreams. I wish I wasn't seriously having nightmares about cats, but apparently that is where my life has gone. So in my most recent feline nightmare, a pack of orange house cats were roaming the alleys that I was running through (cliche, I know) hissing and yowling. When they finally caught me (lead feet/cornered in the alley, of course) they proceeded to literally rip my skin off. So, yeah, something is wrong with me here.

Now, I don't dislike cats. I feel like I need to add this little disclaimer every time I talk about cats. Its THEM that dislike ME. I swear. I think that they can smell my unease the moment I walk in the room. I have had cats just run up to me and bite me for no good reason. "They are just playing!" the owners will say casually, with a big dumb grin on their face. But I know the truth...I see that look in those crazy yellow eyes.

Cats make me totally paranoid. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that they catch me totally off guard. Like the time I spent the night at Maggie's parent's house in Los Osos. Her cat literally jumped on my face at 5am and started "playing" with Eric the poodle, who was sleeping soundly next to me. Or another time I was at a friends house when her cat inexplicably ran up to me and leaped onto my shoulder, ripping my tee shirt and clawing its way up to my ear, which it then proceeded to bite and draw blood. I dont even do anything to deserve these attacks! Half of the time, I dont even realize that they have a cat until something like this happens. I need to be a lot more vigilant.

Are you starting to get it now? It's not me, it's them.
I could go on for hours; these aren't the only cat stories I have...but they all seem to end the same way.

I think this all comes from one particularly traumatic cat experience I had when I was about eight. My neighbors were on vacation and elected me to feed their cat daily while they were away. This was a HUGE deal for my little eight year old self, who wanted so desperately to be about fifteen. It meant that I got to walk to my neighbors house, go into their house by myself using the key, and feed their cat, Benny. I was in charge of another life...what responsibility! And I got paid!

So, I didnt even have to interact with the cat, but he always seemed to show up when I was putting the food in his bowl (go figure) and I liked him. I had been warned that he became "feisty" from time to time, but I had no idea what that meant so I didnt think much of it. Big mistake. So, one day when I was feeding him, I put the food down in front of him, and made the grave mistake of patting him on the head like I would a dog. I guess I just lost myself in the happy moment, but he immediately looked up and shot daggers at me. It was terrifying, like his eyes had changed colors to an angrier shade of orange.

I began to back away, with him still looking up at me from his food, and he began to follow. At that point, it was obvious that he was preparing to attack, or at least bite me, so I turned and ran. The fucker chased me. He chased me down. I ran as fast as I could and jumped onto the old swing set that the neighbors had in their backyard, scrambling up to the top of the monkey bars where I sat scared but satisfied that Benny couldnt get me.

Obviously I underestimated his strength and determination to remind me that I was on his turf and I had greatly offended him by petting his head the wrong way. He flew through the air with some sort of crazy battlecry and landed on my outstreched leg, immediately digging his claws into my calf and sinking his teeth into my knee. Thankfully, this was enough of a "warning" for him, so he jumped down gingerly from the monkey bars (which I fell off of, further scraping my knees) and proceeded to eat his food that was still waiting for him on the porch.

I ran home crying (forgetting anything about being a big girl or having responsibility) and told my mom that Benny bit me...which is all I could get out between sobs. I dont think she knew the full story, and If she did, she probably wouldnt believe me. It does sound pretty ridiculous, but that cat was crazy. He and I were on different terms after that. I would see him around the neighborhood, but I wouldnt pet him. He always gave me a warning stare. My mom had to go feed him for the remainder of the vacation days, and I didnt care. She did me a huge favor.

Cats still mess with me all the time, sneaking up on me, biting me, and scratching me. Nothing has ever compared to Benny though. That guy was nuts. He belongs in a cat asylum. Or a horror movie. Or a nightmare...

Friday, July 9, 2010

Rock n' Roll Walk of Shame

Sometimes I consider the possibility that my life is the stuff of Hollywood dramadies, but then I realize that I am, in fact, mostly delusional. I keep waiting for these unfortunate and somewhat ridiculous situations to turn into a real-life romantic comedy, but recently I have come to find that not only am I single, broke, stressed out, overworked, and confused about everything going on, but also I seem to just not understand the men in my life. Any of them really.

I mean, I get it, you have a penis. Big deal. (The clitoris has three times the amount of nerve endings than the entire penis has all together so put in your blunt and smoke it). I understand that guys have this sexual urge that needs to be fulfilled, but so do women! Sure, physiologically the estrogen/testosterone ratios are different in men and women causing some different desires/reactions than the opposite sex. However, it seems to me that it is mostly the societal roles that men feel that they have to uphold that are really the root of the problem here.

This isn't really where I meant for this post to go, so let me just sum this up right now while its on my mind: It is not fair that men are "allowed" or even expected and praised for being sexual, and women are deemed sluts or "loose". The fact that society portrays men as terrified of marriage, or any romantic commitment while women are shown as desperate for marriage and babies by the dozen is grossly unfair to both parties.

OK that rant is over...I'm not trying to get all "I am woman hear me roar!", trust me. I'm just saddened by the fact that if I were to want a relationship or children I would be viewed as the desperate woman trying to catch a man. The old ball and chain. Whatever happened to partnerships? Do those exist anymore? Just a real man and a real women, with sexual desires, with romance, with common goals and dreams? Who knows...

******

So I found myself driving my Honda Accord through the streets of San Francisco this morning just before dawn and I realized what a beautiful time of day that is, and how beautiful the city was. I love that time of day when nobody is awake and it is so quiet. It's not cold, because the fog is insulating, but the air is wet and gray. It smells like rain but it isn't raining. You can see everything, but it isn't quite light out; the sun hasn't risen. I think that this must be my favorite time of day. This time, right before the breaking of dawn. I also love dusk, right as the sun dips down past the mountains and there is an hour or so before darkness, but something about the time right before dawn is really magical.

Despite everything that I have been dealing with, at this time, I felt truly calm. The seagulls flying by the bay in lazy circles were the perfect accompaniment to the perfect song that had come on my car radio at the perfect time. I sung along with the Pixies... "Where is my mind?"

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Darkness

The thing about working nights is that you are either always tired or never tired. Lately, it's been both. A sick little combination of being exhausted and having insomnia. If you've been there, you know what I'm talking about.

There's been a lot going on. Starting grad school full time in the fall is going to be difficult, I know, but it will also be a nice experience again to be expected to learn, rather than be expected to have all the answers all the time (and I wish that I did, but I never do).

The class I took this summer couldn't have started at a worse time, only weeks after the demise of a relationship that I thought would result in a marriage. It sounds even stupider when I write it out like this, even more naive, but that's where I thought it was going...that's where I was told it was going. I guess I was blinded by our beautiful apartment (the one that was never really ours anyway), the good times, and the promises that I always believed. I don't talk about it much anymore because there is just nothing more to say, but I finally feel like I can write something about it. We were both to blame, in different ways, and I should have seen it coming. I lost myself somewhere along the way...and now I'm just starting to come back. It kind of brings me back to a post that I wrote a few months ago about whether or not two people could really be together forever, if they could really love each other for the rest of their lives. Really be there. In the post I was undecided, and I guess that is still where I stand.

So, when it came time to do this class, I was at the point where I could hardly even motivate myself to get out of the house. But being here was torture. I forced myself to go. I threw on my old jeans and a tank top and showed up looking entirely unprofessional. But I went. I went to work, too. I felt like my world was ending, but I forced myself to focus. I ignored everything else, and immersed myself in my studies and my patients. I felt so weak. I felt so alone. When I started feeling really terrible again, I would leave with my text books and just read them at Starbucks for hours. Memorizing the most minuscule of details, I was not only able to distract myself from the pain, but I also aced my class. I found out today that I'm starting my program in the fall with an A in my prerequisite class. A class that some students even ended up failing.

Today I no longer feel weak, I feel strong. Ive been strong the entire time, I just couldn't see it. I felt like i lost myself, but Ive actually been gaining more than i ever knew. Ive had fun lately. Ive actually enjoyed myself. Ive realized that the relationship that I thought was perfect, wasn't so perfect after all. Not for a long time. Its a long story, but I feel like in the past few months I have grown exponentially. Today, I feel like I can do things that I never thought I could do six months ago.

As for my ability to love; its not gone. It never will be. I cant help it, and that's probably a good thing in the long run. For now, I plan to not plan. I will get through this program, I will do things that I want to do. There will be sacrifices, sure. Like possibly (probably) moving back in with my parents temporarily while I'm in school (that will be the beginning of some VERY interesting posts, I'm sure). Its better than working full time nights and trying to go to school. That's just not doable for me. With clinicals and lectures, I would be busy 7 days a week...not to mention studying. And forget about a social life...and sleep....I cant afford my beautiful apartment, but I know that if I work hard enough that someday I will have a beautiful place again...and maybe I'll even own it instead of renting!

So, maybe I'm not exactly where I thought I would be at this point in my life, and I'm taking a couple of hard hits this year, but I'm feeling better about it than I was. I am not as alone as i thought. its difficult to not have someone to sleep next to every night, and its hard to know that there isn't that connection that there used to be. I look at my married friends, and I still feel envious of that bond...its so strong. But, at the same time, I am beginning to feel empowered as a single woman, and I know that if I ever do get married, that is how I should feel; empowered and part of a partnership. An equal. I haven't felt this way in a long time.

Things are going to be different...

Apnea All Around

So, apparently my blog has been hacked and deleted. Thanks a lot. That's ok, this seems like a good day for new beginnings. I don't know if there is something in the air, or if it is just a bad luck year, but I have experienced and heard about so many deaths this year. It's like 2008 all over again...
Some are tragic deaths too, not only old age. Of my family, friends, and friends of friends, There have been 6 old age/chronic illness deaths, 2 tragic overdoses, and 1 accidental drowning. People are dying too young, and leaving us here heartbroken and left to pick up the pieces. I am no stranger to death, but this is one of those years that makes me realize just how mortal we all are. We are so fragile, and sometimes there is nothing that one can do, not any number of compressions, or begging or bargining, that will change the outcome of the situation. We are left with our memories and our guilt. Guilt that we didnt try just a little bit harder, that we didnt call that day, that we havent talked in years, that we couldnt revive a corpse. Its not rightful guilt, but guilt is guilt.
Death often times forces us out of our comfort zone. It forces us to move on and to pick up and keep moving the best we can. Some days, maybe, it will be hard to get out of bed. Some days it will be hard to do anything. But, like any big chance, death can also be a new beginning. It can push us into the difficult and often overlooked task of taking life one day at a time. Figuring out what we really want. It puts things into perspective, and changes the rest of our lives. We are shaped by the deaths of our loved ones. Although they are gone, they are never really gone. The memories that we keep shape that person into a new part of our lives. Nobody is really dead until they are forgotten, and nobody is forgotten as long as we hold them in our hearts.

I wish things weren't so difficult sometimes.

Rest in Peace.