Archive | August 2013

Short and Sweet

Looking back on the past few days with rose colored glasses is pretty easy considering the good mood I am in right now. I had a relaxing afternoon running errands, treating myself to Panera, and catching up with my friend Amanda. Then I spent the evening with James. Now it is rainy and I am cozy on my couch after my weekly phone call with Carlie. I even organized over $100 in monthly savings by reorganizing my utilities. It’s been great!

But in reality it’s been a really rough week. Started with a great run on Monday. Then after class, headed down for pre-clinical meeting. My hospital is about 35 minutes away (with no traffic), so I carpooled with classmates. My clinical instructor is absolutely wonderful! On these days, we meet the patients we will care for the next day, and have the opportunity to look through their charts to develop a plan of care. But here’s the catch… We get home around 1700 and have to return by 0645 (which means leaving at or before 0600) the next morning. So in just over 12 hours, we each have a crazy amount of research on medications, disease processes, and nursing interventions to do. This week I was up til almost 2300 and woke up at 0445. Not ideal for being at my best.

The actual clinical time was great! They are easing us into things, so we mostly just watch procedures and ask questions. But soon we will be doing these things ourselves while being closely supervised by a licensed professional! There is so much to learn in the next few weeks!

So by the end of the shift Tuesday, I was so very tired, but I still had a lot more homework! I also had to take Bonnie to the vet to do something about her allergies (the answer is a short steroid course that I back off as she tolerates). By the end of the day, I just had to call it an early night and pick it back up this morning.

Class today was frustrating. I do not jive with our classroom instructor’s teaching style, and as a result, I feel drastically unprepared for next week’s test. But as I said, the day improved when I left school.

Tomorrow I have lots of studying planned, as well as a pre-race massage and dinner with AChan. Friday I help James with relocation. And then Saturday, I head down for the Half-Marathon! Woohoo!

So many things happening at once!

Beautiful Day

If I didn’t know any better, I would swear today was fall! I went out on a run this morning at 8:45am and the temp was in the 60s! It maybe got up to 70 by the time I headed back home. What a perfect start to the morning…and the week!

By the late morning, I meandered over to James’s place. I hung out while he was packing, because his big move is still on for Friday. I keep telling myself it’s only 45 minutes, so things will only be slightly more logistically complicated. We ended up going for a walk, because it was just too nice to stay inside. And then I left in time for a trip to the dog park, where I got more quality outside time.

I’ve been studying and chatting with friends this evening, but in a very nice and relaxed way. So it’s not like it put a damper on my delightful day.

Tomorrow I start my first full week classes, including my very first Med/Surg clinical days!

Location: Variable

So I have been driving all over creation to see friends, family, and then to finally return home. In the span of 6 days I managed to pass through 5 different states, though I was only sleeping in 2 different guest rooms. After leaving from my visit with Norma, I headed about 4 hours north to stay with Carlie and David in their new home. It was such a treat to have the opportunity to see it so soon after they moved in. It’s really beautiful and open-feeling, while also being right in the center of town, and within walking distance to David’s work and any number of stores, including a decent grocery.

While I was there, I enjoyed some of David’s delicious cooking (including breaded chicken and grilled salmon), celebrate Henry’s 4th birthday (including sprinkle pancakes and ice cream cake), went with Carlie and the kids to an awesome zoo, and just enjoyed their company by hanging out. Bonnie was happy to be there, too, because she loves David and Ben especially, and gets along well with their dogs.

I was also there because it happened to be a mere 2 hours from the wedding of some dear AmeriCorps friends. It was quite the reunion of TLs, which always brings back fond memories of those California days.

Here we are:

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So that was most of my Saturday. In the evening, after putting the kids to bed, Carlie, David and I played quite the rousing game of Family Feud on Wii. Sometimes the answers are so dumb, but it’s still fun to guess. Game nights are some of the things I’ll miss most about their departure. But they’re coming down to visit sometime next month, so maybe we’ll get another chance then.

Sunday I got a decently early start and enjoyed most of my drive until I hit traffic in the final 2 hours. I did have a nice lovely chat with Purcella that helped to pass the time. And I arrived about 30 minutes later than planned, which only threw off my day slightly. Rebecca was in my living room when I arrived, because I had given her the key to be able to come over while I was away and watch the Doctor Who episodes I had on TiVo. Later on, James came over, and boy was he a sight for sore eyes. We ended up watching an episode of DW and also the pilot of Breaking Bad. We made plans for tonight as well, trying to sneak in as much quality time as possible before school starts for me and his move to the new house (about 40 mins away).

And then this morning…I ran 12 miles! Had to do it on the treadmill due to the rain, but it was a success! Now I have 13 more days before the half, and the longest run I do between now and then will probably be 6 miles this weekend. I’m feeling positive, feeling ready, and trying not to sit too still today so I’m not crazy sore tomorrow.

Reflections

Sitting along the Nature Trail my grandparents built at their retirement community. They really were such wonderful and dynamic individuals. Instead of focusing on their personal retirement, they both worked selflessly to raise funds, plan, and install this beautiful monument to nature and their lives.

Yesterday after my run, we had a relaxed day. Ran a few errands. Ended up going out to a delicious Italian dinner. I leave later today for destinations northward. But for now, I’m just enjoying this unseasonably pleasant weather and the beautiful world around me. Love you, Gagi and Bapa.

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Wednesday’s Weekend Update

So I did get up and successfully complete 11 miles on Saturday! It wasn’t the easiest thing I’ve ever done, but also wasn’t the most difficult. I was definitely ready for it to be over, so I am going to have to really push myself mentally to get through 13.1 in just over 2 weeks…

I took the morning to recover (first attempt at an ice bath, shower, refuel) and then met the guys at James’s place to head down to take a tour of a science lab where our friend Anna works (again, location-specific details have been omitted). It was really quite cool to see how the research is done…and on such grand spatial scales. After the tour, we indulged in our favorite Brazilian grill for an afternoon meal. Then later in the day we met up again to watch Wreck-It Ralph, which James had never seen.

Sunday was pretty relaxed….we got a late start. The main events were a couple of episodes of Game of Thrones and a walk on the paved trail with the puppies.

Monday I actually made a pretty good attempt at productivity. I went for a mid-morning run with my new shoes. The right leg felt fine, but the left was a bit strained. I don’t know if it was actually the shoes or the fact that I neglected to do my normal pre-run stretching. I’m going to give them one more try, but I am fully prepared to return them. In the afternoon I did some shopping (mostly for upcoming birthdays) and then took Bonnie to the vet. She’s fine…has lost one pound since last year (now 18.5) and is now up to date on all her shots. My vet said she would be willing to come out for a consult to help Bonnie get along with James’s dogs if it continues to be a problem.

I had some time to pack before I went to Lara’s for a yoga session. The AC was out in her studio, so we worked a 96F! I don’t think I have ever sweat that much in my entire life, but it was an absolutely amazing practice. Lara really pushes me, and the result is that I am physically exhausted, but also mentally relaxed. Afterwards, Rebecca came over to watch Asylum of the Daleks, and I finished packing at a reasonable hour.

Tuesday I hit the road and made it to Norma’s by noon. We’ve been having a relaxed visit so far. This morning, after a solid night’s sleep, I went for a very breezy and hilly 5 mile run. Feeling great! Ready for anything!

Wacky Week

This Monday was one of the toughest ever for me, because I had to say goodbye to some amazing friends as they moved away. Really, in my heart, they are as close as family, so as happy as I am that a positive career opportunity is the reason for their move, it just means I am going to miss them even more. They stayed with me all weekend because we packed the bulk of their stuff on Friday. It’s so hard for me to imagine my life here without them, especially seeing their kids as they grow up, but it’s not as though I will never see them again. I already have plans to see them later this month, and the rest we will figure out as we cross those bridges.

A major player in the fact that I am not more of a complete emotional basket-case over their departure has got to be James. I’ve been hesitant to mention him on forums as public and permanent as the internet, but we’ve been seeing each other exclusively for about a month. He was the one I turned to after they left on Monday when I was lonely and needed a comforting presence to console me. We ended up going for a lovely walk on a nearby trail system. (Different than our walks in the woods behind his place where we let dogs run off-leash.) I actually met him back in January at a dog park event, and we became casual friends over the course of dog park sightings, movies, and other group gatherings. There was really not much of a ramp-up between our friendship and the start of our relationship, but as I got to know him, I could tell he was the kind of guy I could trust and have as a part of my life. It feels pretty great to have James in my life, and I’m looking forward to what the future brings for us.

Tuesday, I did all sorts of health maintenance activities, like doctors visits and a sports therapy massage for my running health. All news (like no cavities!) has been good news, and I really am ready to get back to running like a champ.

Wednesday, I worked a nice and easy double shift. I always appreciate those, because sometimes work can really be quite taxing, mentally and physically. I slept a good chunk of Thursday, but had an exciting reason to get up early. My friend Heather’s parents got her last-minute tickets to an awesome concert at a really nice venue. (I don’t want to say more because I try to keep this blog location-anonymous.) So, I drove down to see her and we had quite an excellent time! She’s a sorority sister, but a few years younger, and we have a scarily similar taste in music/books/etc. Needless to say, we are going to be hanging out again soon.

Today I am taking it easy and getting some things done around the house and a bit of prepping for school. I’ll probably go to the dog park if the weather cooperates. Tomorrow morning, I am getting up before the dawn to finally run 11 miles. The big race is just 3 weeks away, so I am pumped and ready to kill it!

Back to Square One

So this whole not running thing has been interesting. It’s not like I’ve been doing nothing, but it’s been strange to be ruled less by the sunrise schedule. But I decided the rest would do my knee some good. It remains to be seen after my appointment today if that was enough.

Going back a week, last Thursday Molly and I met up for a delicious kebab lunch before I went in to work a double shift. It was a relatively calm shift, and I actually had time to sit and interact with the kids (they painted my nails). Then Friday I slept until the afternoon, when I had a bunch of my friends-with-kids over for a pool party. It was fun! Kind of Carlie’s last hurrah before her family moves next week. Then, after they all left to put kids to bed, Lydia came over and we watched a movie and got in some good quality time. It was her last night in town before heading off to grad school. Very sad how so many of my friends are leaving me.

Saturday James came by with his two dogs and we started the process of socializing them by taking them on a short walk around my neighborhood. It did not go well at first. We had to keep Bonnie in a crate at his place that first day because we were nervous about bad interactions. Saturday evening we were supposed to meet up with a group for Red 2, but by the time we arrived at the theater it was sold out. We think some of our group got there early enough to get tickets, because we never found them. We decided to stay and see The Wolverine with Zach. It was pretty good, though I felt like it was one of those movies that would have meant more to me had I actually followed the comic books.

On Sunday, we mostly just hung out. He’s introducing me to shows like Game of Thrones and games like Portal 2. Very entertaining. The weather was nice, though, so we took the dogs on a walk in the woods behind his place. This time, all the dogs were off-leash and it went a lot better than I expected. Bonnie actually had a blast and got quite filthy playing in the creek. She even sort of played with his dogs. After the walk and 3 doggie baths, we tried letting them interact indoors freely. There were a few tense moments, but it went better than Saturday. I am hopeful, but I think we’ve still got a long way to go.

Nothing very exciting happened Monday, other than going to the dog park and hanging out with Carlie – our last girls night at my house before she moves. Tuesday I had Carrie and her kids over for the pool, then I went to training. And yesterday, I tried running again for the first time in a week.

All week, I’ve faithfully been taking a prescription anti-inflammatory and also “resting” relative to running. I told myself when I went out that I would stop if I felt any pain, and aim for 3 miles. Well, I made it 4.5 in 60 minutes with no pain, and decided not to push my luck any further for now. Before, the pain has always started around 40-45 mins, so I am hopeful some real healing has occurred. I am halfway worried I won’t be able to get anything useful out of my ortho appointment today because I am pain-free.

After the run, I did have an evening shift at work. I got to work with my favorite little patient again. Nothing dramatic happened. And I didn’t get stuck on night shift. Today I am doing some yoga, ortho, and hopefully taking Carlie and David to the park one last time.