Monday, April 27, 2009

Not the Break I Wanted

I came home from work this morning and went to sleep for 2 hours before I was awakened by this God-awful pain in my jaw. Being a bad girl has caught up with me, apparently. When I was 19, I went to get my wisdom teeth dealt with. Being the enigma that I am, instead of having 4 like a normal person,I had only 3. All 3 were in my mouth and looked great, but my dentist was concerned that the bottom 2 would get cavities or cause problems with my neighboring molars, so they were pulled in the office.. Years later, the elusive 4th tooth shows up. It has been in there for years, but it is either broken or jagged. I cannot tell which it is as it is too far back to see. I just know I will have periods where it will hurt for a while, then it goes away. Now it is killing me. So figuring that I have excellent insurance, I stay home from school today to deal with this. But somehow this has evolved from my trusty dentist to an maxillofacial surgeon, a major procedure, and being NPO after midnight. John will have to miss school tomorrow as well. I am now perched on my sofa with a laptop and the phone, trying to get ahold of all of my professors. This completely sucks. But this time tomorrow, I will look like the picture you see for this post.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Me Blogging about A Pic of Me Blogging

I had the night from Hades last night at work. 13 vents in just one unit, and I had multiple units. Here in a half an hour, I have to get ready to go back. So yep, I look like ass. No makeup, pillow creases on my face. I am dog-tired. I get my butt kicked just about every night at work. But tonight, I know I will. There is just something about the possibility of having an easy night that makes it much easier to go in in the first place. But for some reason, when you know the mountain of work will be insurmountable and there will be just some patients you cannot physically get to because you are so busy, followed by the realization that instead of being off in the morning, it is the start of your school day....Well it is enough to make you want to stay home.
But alas the time has come for my shower to get ready. I have to do my job.

I think I am running out of steam.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

WTF Was That? Only Me!

Seriously. This is not a joke. I am up, studying for my chemistry exam, when late night hunger sets in. I send John to get some food. The restauraunt shall remain nameless. He comes back and we start to scarf. I go to unwrap my taco, and notice the outside of the taco shell is moist. I figure it is just steam from the hot taco being in the wrapper. I take a bite, and my mouth fills with the taste of something soapy or perfumey. I start to investigate further, thinking that surely my mind is playing tricks on me. But the wrappy smells like someone sprayed it with cologne. So John gets on the phone to call the restauraunt, and speaks to the manager. We just want to know what sort of chemical I just ingested. The manager gets rude with John, then offers to replace the food. He told her again that we just wanted to know what it could have been. Was someone cleaning before they made my food? Had someone just put on cologne or washed their hands and had soap residue on them? WTF did I eat???? She continued to be rude to John, so we had no choice but to call another store with which they were affiliated. I end up with the cell number of the general manager, who was very sweet. But we still do not know what it is that was on the damned taco. I just no that I can still taste it in my mouth, and it is making me queasy. And I don't know if it was something benign or something poisonous. If there is never another post on this blog, you know I was poisoned by the perfumey taco!

Loves It

I have joined the wireless revolution. I finally bought a laptop. So.... Evan is sitting in there playing on the desktop and I am in here(the living room), on the sofa, blogging away. I bought this damned thing to aid in the whole "school" thing. I am never home, which is obviously where my desktop is. Any task that needed to be done on a computer had to be done here. It was getting to be a terrible burden. So ta-da!!!!! I fixed it. Of course then I needed to buy a new modem. Lovely.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


After a long overdue meeting with my advisor, it appears that this will be the year that I enter medical school, if all goes as planned. I am a little bummed that it is not going to be 2010. I have to keep reminding myself that, while I am a senior, I have only been in college for 2 years, then transferred. I am actually right on track with the pre-med issue. It is just that I completed a senior-level's worth of courses in two years. And (phew!) I can postpone my MCAT until next spring.
Next fall is going to be brutal. I start my Biochemistry sequence ( 1, 2, 3), my Organic Chemistry series (1, 2, 3), and my final math for all time, Calculus series ( Calc 1, 2, and 3). Somewhere along the way, I need another lit course, and another phiolsophy course (planning for "Ethics and Medicine", even though I have had a Bioethics course). In spring of 2010, it is all about my MCAT and applying to med schools. Somewhere in this journey, I need to move across the river so I am more likely to get an in-state seat at UC COM. (And a $60K discount on medical school.)

Everything I have planned, worked for, dreamed of is laid out right before my eyes. For the first time, I am starting to believe I am really going to do this. My dream is coming true.

On a separate note, Evan is dying to see the new Hannah Montana movie. He's got the soundtrack, and forces us to listen to it in the car. Instead of being irritated, I heard this song and cried.

Monday, April 20, 2009

School Days, Schoooooool Days.....

oh screw it! I don't know the rest of the words!

I am procrastinating. I have to do the following:

Chem Lab Report
Study for Bio Exam
Study for Chem Exam
Study for History Exam
Study for Bio Lab Practical
Prepare for this week's Chem Lab (We have an exam over required reading before each lab.)
Prepare for Bio Lab (Same as above)

I have not slept since 2 PM on Sunday. Somewhere in this mess, I must close my eyes. I need to motivate myself.

This is my reminder of why I am insistent on putting myself through this torture:

Why Is It.....

...That over the weekends, when I am working all night and sleeping all day, it is absolutely gorgeous? Then during the week, when I am traipsing all over campus, and could actually navigate mountains of school work while my child plays outside, it is cold and rainy????? Hmmmmmf!

Sunday, April 12, 2009


The intrigue started from a lecture in women's history: The Triangle Waist Company fire in NYC in 1911. I can only describe this fascination by giving the analogy of driving by a bad accident on the interstate: you simply have to look. But this tragedy seems so appalling to me. 146 you people died, most of them young women and girls, who worked in a sweatshop making the shirtwaists that were so popular in the day. Basically, they were locked into the 8th and 9th floor of a huge building in NYC when a fire broke out. There are accounts of the sidewalk actually breaking from the weight of the bodies as women decided to jump to their death instead of being consumed by the flames. This was before the time of fire regulations, and the fire hoses did not reach to the floors of the tall building. It sparked reform in our country: for wages, for safety, for health and safety regulations for workers.

What is so strange to me is that this occured right after a massive strike of the young women in the garment industry, fed up with the conditions of the sweatshops in which they were employed. And the Triangle Company was the only one to not reach a compromise with the strikers. Arson was not suspected. It is speculated that a match or spark ignited oil and cloth trimmings that littered the floor in the cramped working space. To me, it all seems like such a huge coincidence.

This is odd for me. It is the first time a topic in a class has intrigued me enough that I found myself at the local library and a Barnes and Noble trying to comb for more information about it.

I didn't find anything at my local lbrary, but I did find this at B & N:

I cannot wait to start on it. My nonacademic academic reading. I wish I had more time....

Do Not Touch the Feet

Ask any of us in health care and we will tell you that we have had some strange encounters with patients or their family members. I have a favorite...

I was called to the bedside of a very unfortunate patient in his early thirties with a head bleed. The man needed surgical intervention beyond the scope of the tiny rural facility in which I was employed at the time. Air transport had arrived to take him to the nearest trauma center, and I was standing at his head, bagging. I couldn't step away, as I was literally breathing for the guy. We call the wife in to say whatever she needed to say to him as we were pushing the stretcher out to the helo pad. I hate this part. Usually, it makes me tear up. Not this time. It was all I could do to remain professional and not crack. This woman actually walked up to her husband and said the following. "Nothing better happen to you, because you know what will happen, don't you? I'll have you stuffed and sit you in the corner. Taxidermy is cheaper than a funeral!" She proceeded to smack him on the forehead and tell him she would see him when she gets there.

Well, the other night, I had another strange encounter. There was a very young child who had assessments and treatments ordered every 3 hours. When this is the case, I try to be quiet as I walk in the room, hoping I can observe the child and possibly give a treatment without ever having to wake the family or the kid. This little boy's oximeter probe had fallen off of his finger, and was sort of stretched out. i figured I would put the probe on his big toe, and started to do so...

All hell unleashed. The dad started screaming at me, "Dud, what the F### are you doing??? Don't touch his F###ing feet, man. Who the F### do you think you are??? Why the F### would you do that???" Those are actual words, without the censorship. Seriously. This is a sample of what I endure at work. Really. For 12 hours a night.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

What a Day!

Today was B-E-A-U-T-I-F-U-L outside. I actually sat outside with my pile of textbooks, wearing a tee and some hot pink flip-flops and got a large volume of reading done for class. Time came for Evan to be picked up from school, so John went to get him, and he immediately changed into shorts a tee himself upon his arrival home. I'm sure the two of us made quite the picture: mother and son on the porch together in the sunshine, both working on homework. Chemistry for me and math for him.
I still have huge volumes to get accomplished before next week, which is really going to be a pain considering tomorrow marks the beginning of my work week. Plus I have bio and chem lectures tomorrow afternoon. I swear this quarter is going to kill me.

On a completely separate, unrelated note, I watched the ER farewell episode tonight and cried. I was excited to see that they brought back the original music for the opening credits. I loved that. They switched it at some point and it was never the same after. Of course John teased me for crying, but I started watching that show from the very first episode. In a cheesy way, it confirmed to the young me that yes, I did truly want to be a doctor. It seems almost surreal that all of these later, I am working on becoming one and the show ends. Hmmm.

Okay, back to work. Or to sleep. It started raining tonight and the sound of it hitting the roof is just what I need to doze off in the middle of a chem problem.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Learning About Oneself

I learned something new about myself this week. I think I may be a feminist. Now before you go thinking I am some tree-hugging, hairy-legged, militant lesbian, let me inform you of a few things: Pink is my favorite color. I love having sex with my husband, who is very male. I do not think I own anything that is camoflaged, and I drank my coffee out of a styrofoam cup this morning on my way to my biology lab. So why do I say I am a feminist? Simply because I am sitting in my Women's History lecture room on Tuesday, and my professor is showing these images of women in history, and when she got to this one, I litterally gasped. As in disgust. As in "Hells-to-the-nah!"

Then she got to this one, and I smiled a great deal. I like this one. This one speaks to me of who I am exactly.

Then we started doing this exercise where we divided a sheet of paper with "Masculine" on one side and "Feminine" on the other. The intent was for us to write a few adjectives to describe each. We were prohibited from using terms of biology. For example: penis, testosterone, androgens, testes were all prohibited words. I struggled. I started to describe women first, and the first thing I put on the list was "strong". As I started to think of more, I realized that I was using words society would typically use to describe a man. Did she want the way society would describe each, or did she want my description, or did she want the truth??? As I sat there puzzling over this, she announced that time was up. I looked down at my paper and saw the word strong, in my handwriting, scribbled out. Women aren't supposed ot be seen as strong. The entire thing became a metaphor for me. I know I am strong. It has nothing to do with gender, but more to do with me as a person. But I also know that because I am a woman, I am not supposed to be. Which direction do I go???
But then I became angry. She asked some of the members of the class to call out some of the things on their list. For men? Capable, provider, breadwinner, strong, tough, intelligence...
For women? Pretty, dainty, emotional, submissive, passive...

Seriously? I am a wife and a mother who is several years older than the young women in this class. I grew up in the day where it was still mainstream for mothers to stay home and care for their children. In fact, that is what I came from. These younger women should be even more progressive than I am. They didn't see the trap? They didn't see that they were falling directly into the stereotype society has placed on women? Even the word "feminist" brings on its own stereotype. I am not immune to it. I am reluctant to openly admit this view. If you ask me about the capabilities of women, I will tell you there is nothing a woman cannot do that a man can. Even in regard to physical strength, I think it is less about nature and more about nurture. Boys grow up being told that bigger is better, more muscle is more strength. Girls are told the complete opposite. If the two were told the same things from the beginning, both verbally and nonverbally, I see no reason why women could not be as physically capable as men. So these are my views, and they always have been. I am not one to play the giggling, blushing girl, who is silently cpable of performing neurosurgery while orbitting the Earth. If I have the answers, i will tell you I do. If I excel in a subject, i will be honest ans say that I do. If I can kick your ass, you will know that too. But to use the word "feminist"??? I am reluctant to do so because I do not want to commit to the stereotype we have of the word. I like smelling like my Gucci No. 2 instead of patchouli. I like being heterosexual, that my husband likes to look at my boobs. But I also like that my husband knows my mind as well, and loves that too. See? I cannot get past the stereotype...

My level of disgust increased tenfold when the professor started to speak of the contributions of women in medicine. She actually was referring to nursing, and how nurses helped doctors and continue to do so today. What? You can be damned sure that my contribution to medicine will not be as a nurse. Not that there is anything wrong with nursing. But to insinuate that this is the only way women have left a mark in medicine is to imply that women cannot be influential physicians. Bullshit. Here, let me show you.

So I knew I wanted to blog about this. It has had me fired up ever since I left the class, and so I was searching the internet for the exact images she used in the lecture, and I found many more I love. I'll show them to you now.
I guess I am a feminist after all.

I should have known...This has been my favorite son since high school:

I Am Blogging as a method of procrastination....

A recent quote from me to my husband: "You do realize that I have a gazillion things on my mind and what you are saying to me right now is registering as "blah blah blah blah", right?"

New classes are cool. But crazy. I am left to ponder this riddle: WTF was I thinking? I think I will do well this quarter. Nothing has sent me into freak out mode yet, other than my schedule and infinite to-do list. Right now, I am just feeling a little overwhelmed by the sheer volume of it all. I need to find my groove. Seriously.

What in the blue hell is going on with this computer virus? Was I not supposed to get online today or something? My computer has not yet burst into flames, so I think I am okay...