Daily Post 092: Being Right

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I’m doing well today and I think a lot of that has to do with the fact that I got a full night of sleep last night. It’s the first night since last Saturday evening that I’ve gotten more than three hours of sleep. It makes me realize, once again, how important sleep is in regards to the equation of Life.

And, once again, as seems to be the case so often this past year, it has been a while since I’ve written.

Work is going well.

The patient I infiltrated the other week is doing well. His arm bruised a little, but he said it didn’t bother him and he let me cannulate him during his next treatment. He’s been extremely kind and understanding and I’m grateful for him trusting me enough to still be his tech. We still smile and chit-chat. He still lets me spread his blanket out over him after his treatment is initiated. We’re still ok and that makes me feel ok.

I ended up having a surprise 12-hour shift this past Saturday, which is why it feels like I’ve been playing catch-up until today. I was scheduled to close the South Omaha clinic, which went surprisingly smoothly. While I was in the middle of closing the clinic I received a phone call from another FA saying she, “knew it was a long shot, but would I be willing to close another clinic in the area.”

I guess their tech was sick and then stopped answering her phone and they were pretty much screwed because no one else could close the clinic for them.

I really didn’t want to. I wanted to go home. I was supposed to go to the gym and the grocery store. I was supposed to prep for my five day work week and recover. I ended up accepting the shift, though, because I know what it’s like to work short-handed.

I hadn’t changed into my sandals yet. I was still in work mode. I was still in the area rather than being halfway through my drive home. There was no real reason for me to say no, especially since I was already getting overtime pay and there was a double incentive added for the hours I would be working at the other clinic.

I’m not saying that I accepted it purely for the pay, but I can’t say that it didn’t feel nice knowing that my time was being compensated pretty fairly.

Because I worked so late I was tired by the time I got back to Hickman. The shopping didn’t get done and the gym for sure didn’t get done. I was still tired Sunday when I woke up, too, so I didn’t really start doing much until later in the day. I also had a pretty deep, emotional conversation with Ox that day about our relationship.

I needed the rest in the morning and I feel like we needed the conversation to happen as well. It just sucked that the results of those choices meant I was up pretty late cooking. Since I  wasn’t able to get through all of my cooking Sunday, Monday, after working 12 hours, after going to my rescheduled training at the gym where I died a little bit… I came home and finished up most of the cooking which, again, put me getting to bed way later than I should have.

Tuesday sucked. I was exhausted before I even got out of bed. I covered my shift at Captial City and was grateful that the last hour I was there they had me in the back room making needle packs, alone, away from people, doing a mindless task that didn’t require mental effort.

I came home and slept for a few hours in the afternoon. I didn’t have combat practice this Tuesday because the first Tuesday of the month the group travels to Omaha to practice with people up there. I woke up from my nap when Ox came home. I wasn’t able to fall back asleep until later in the evening since everyone was home and awake and watching TV. It’s one of the downsides to roommates or living with other people in general. I don’t get alone time very often and it will never happen in the evening.

I slept alright Tuesday night once I could finally get back to sleep. I slept more than I had any of the previous nights, but with a 12-hour shift ahead of me I knew it would still be borderline brutal by the time my day was done.

I made it through it, though. Working a normal day at my clinic with my FA was nice. It helped that I had a day off in my future to look forward to.

I submitted and have been reimbursed for my travel expenses for the month of May. I have a report already created for the month of June. As I cover extra shifts I’m adding the expenses to it so I don’t forget anything at the end of the month or have to spend a billion hours filling it out.

I talked to my FA about my position at the clinic since that’s something I’ve been worried about. With the new tech going through training and living in Beatrice I’ve been worried about being pushed out and having to work in locations I don’t care for.

Beatrice is what I think of as “home”. I like my patients. I’ve been there for four months now. I have systems in place. I know where things are at and how they’re organized. I’m confident with the machines they have. I like my ride to work in the morning even though it’s early. I don’t want things to change all that much.

During my conversation, my FA explained that the new tech would have precedence over me at the clinic until we opened the TTS shifts again so I would float to other places until that happened.

After some time alone to process that information I realized I was angry and hurt. I found this out Monday before I went to the gym. I talked to Jon on my way home and he agreed that the information was pretty shitty and that I should tell my FA how I felt.

He jokingly told me not to kill the new tech to which I replied that I didn’t want to kill her, I just wanted her to quit. I wanted her to realize how hard this job was and to realize she wasn’t cut out for it and to quit before she started.

I had met her for a few hours a while back. She had come to the clinic with her trainer. I can’t explain why, but I didn’t like her. It was a feeling. Some sort of itch in the back of my mind that said, “You won’t like working with her.”

As an INFJ I have learned to trust those unexplained feelings. I don’t have to have a logical reason for why. She was nice to me. She seemed well put together. But there was something… dark? about her. Snake-ish. Back-stabby. I could work with her if I had to, but I would never trust her to not throw me to the wolves if it would save her own skin.

That evening I ended up getting a phone call from my FA. She wanted to reassure me that she wanted me on her team. She didn’t want me to feel kicked out or like I didn’t matter. She also said that things change very quickly and that the new tech had just given her notice and would not be working at the clinic.

I’m still trying to figure out those emotions. I had said I wanted her to quit only a handful of hours before getting this information, but I hadn’t really thought she would. I hadn’t meant for my words to actually happen. So there is a small measure of guilt. Sort of like I wished for something ill to happen and it came true and so now Karma is going to be looking for payment.

On the flip side, the reason she gave for quitting was that she “didn’t have enough time to sit down.” Totally in the wrong field if you ever think you’re going to do anything less than six miles during your shift. “Sitting down” is not a thing that happens. When it does you’re grateful for the unexpected blessing. You never go into the day expecting quiet, smooth, non-stressful. You prepare for battle with your most comfortable shoes and accept the day is not going to go how you envision it. Patients will not show up. Patients’ blood pressures will bottom out. Patients will get sick. Patients will be late. Patients will want off their machines early. Patients will want another cup of ice. Patients will want you to get something out of their bags for them.

On top of that, you’ll still have to prepare for the next shift or the next day. You’ll still have to do water checks. You’ll still have to count dialyzers or make needle packs. You’ll still have to generate treatment sheets. You’ll still have to do a million other things.

“Sitting down” isn’t one of those things.

So I can’t say I’m heartbroken over her leaving before she even got halfway through training.

I’m saddened that we will still be running three days a week for a while now. We’re still down two nurses and now a tech. It’s just me and my FA dedicated to the clinic at the moment and my FA honestly shouldn’t be on the floor. She should be doing FA work, not nurse work, but since she’s also an RN she’s filling that gap as best she can until we can get a solid team together.

I’m saddened that it didn’t work out but I’m also relieved that she didn’t get hired on, that we didn’t open back up to six days a week only for her to turn around and quit on us later. I would have rather it happened now rather than in the future where it could have done more harm.

It leaves me feeling more secure in my place at the clinic. I still feel like I made the right choice and I think things will go differently during future interviews as they look for another tech. When Mrs. Quitter was hired on we were still open six days a week. She negotiated during her interview that she would not float to other clinics; she would only work at the Beatrice location.

That’s why things were looking icky for me since we moved down to only three days a week. That’s three 12 hour shifts. She would need all three days to meet full-time standards. That means I would have to go somewhere else since she was specifically a “non-float” team member.

I don’t think they will let that fly during future interviews. I can’t say they won’t for sure, but I think they will consider me a bit more during the process.

I think that’s about it for work. Lots of actual working getting down. I’m up to 56 hours of PTO so the trip in August is looking good. I’ll have the time to cover it without having to starve. Hooray.

Ox and I are doing well. I don’t know what else to say in that regard. I think me working so much is putting strain on me which in turn is straining our time together. I think I do need more alone time then what I am able to get. After next week I think I will refrain from picking up days during the week. I think if I pick up extras it will only be on Saturdays because I need the silence and space I get on my Tuesdays and Thursdays.

I’m grateful for the support and understanding that Ox gives me. I’m grateful that he tries to help me through my stress as much as he can. He lets me cry. He lets me talk. He lets me make my own choices and he helps me get through the consequences.

He answers all of my silly questions like, “Can I still come home?” He encourages me to get my tasks done when I’m feeling low and tapped out and would normally let them slide, leaving my next day that much worse off.

I’ve started to make his lunches. He went to the store and bought gym clothes yesterday. He worked on the addition Sunday. We bought a window AC unit for our room yesterday along with going out to dinner together.

I think that helped me sleep deeply last night; having the cool air circulating around the room. I feel like we’re doing pretty well with adulting the shit out of Life. We got the countertops for the kitchen done finally. We got a new sink that I absolutely love, and we’re in the process of installing a water filter for it as well. That’s currently needing some tweaking, but it’s in the works. There’s still more work to be done with the kitchen, but it’s progressing, as are other areas in the house, and it’s visual progress so my brain is more ok with what’s going on.

I might not get all of the alone time I need or want, but I am fortunate enough to live in a safe and caring environment. I still enjoy living here, even on the days I feel overwhelmed, and I still think that moving was the best choice I could have made for myself.

I had a “weigh in” at the gym today with my trainer. At first, he was giving me a bit of a hard time. According to My Fitness Pal, I’m usually over my calorie intake. He wants to keep me around the 1700 mark, but if I’m under 2000 I feel ill. Since it’s not a “want” but more of a “need” to eat, I haven’t felt bad about eating. I burn roughly 3k in calories at work. I deserve a burger patty damn it!

Well… I got on the scale and it said I was up a pound. More talking from my trainer. More looking at what I’m eating and when. Eggs don’t last long enough. I’m starving by the time I’m able to have lunch…. blah blah blah…

We hooked me up to electrodes to get my body composition…

I’m down one pound of fat and up two pounds in muscle.

Yes. I am a badass and I will still have my burger patty and I will stare you down while I eat it because I’m a bawce that’s why.

It’s one of the reasons I hate scales. The body comp makes me feel validated for all the times I said I was hungry and still ate regardless of what the numbers were. I wasn’t eating carbs. I was eating protein and veggies for the most part. I was trying to be smart about what I was consuming while still listening to my body when it was telling me it wasn’t getting enough.

I think my trainer has a different opinion of me after today. He knew I used to workout hard with jiujitsu and stuff, but I think seeing a two pound gain of muscle shows that I’m not playing games. I’m for real doing this and my numbers can’t be cookie cutter like everyone else, and just because I gain doesn’t mean I’m gaining the “wrong” stuff.

It’s just like all the other times in the past where people would ask me, “You look great! How much have you lost?”

Me: Well… funny story… I’m up 5 pounds even though I’ve dropped 2 pant sizes… Sorry… No awesome, “I’ve lost 50 pounds in four weeks” story here…

It can be demotivating depending on the numbers you look at. The scale sucks. No. Seriously. Fuck that jerk.

That’s the best advice I can give anyone who’s struggling with self-image or letting numbers convince you “you’re not doing good enough”.

If your clothes are fitting better that’s all the proof you need that you’re making progress. That’s not something that’s made up inside of your head. Pants zipping up easier, shirts fitting looser… That’s real. More real than the scale telling you that you’re failing.

All the scale can do is tell you that you are heavier than what you were. It can’t tell you if that’s from fat or muscle or a 20-pound backpack on your shoulders. The scale is stupid.

So yeah… My words of wisdom for the day… Fuck that guy.

In general, I’m feeling better and I’m doing pretty well today. I’ve already killed it at the gym with plans to go to the Anytime Fitness here in Hickman to row for a bit since I have T-Rex arms. ;-;

I got that membership Tuesday after my craptastic day of exhaustion. One of the biggest things adding friction to getting my workouts done is how far away the YMCAs are in relation to where I live. I have to drive further from home or past home to get to them, and after working a full day that is a really hard hurdle to overcome. I want to go home. I want to change out of my scrubs. Adding an extra hour to my day just in travel time is normally a “nope” by the time I get to that point in my day.

With this gym, it’s literally within walking distance. The classes they offer happen at 6:30 so I could always make them after work. They’re 24 hours so I don’t have to worry about them being closed during the time I want to do something. They have nice, new equipment, including jump boxes. So much excite : D

I’m hoping it works out and that I utilize it more than what I have been with the YMCAs. If I do, then I’ll most likely end my membership with the Y, and pay the increased fee to work with my trainer. In my mind, it would be worth it. I don’t like paying for things that aren’t being used and I’m getting really good results with him so I know he’s worth it.

So yeah… I’ve cleaned the kitchen. I’ve done a load of laundry that I still need to fold and put away. I’ve washed the sheets and need to switch them to the dryer so I can wash the blanket. I’ve talked to my brother. I’ve written. I’ve napped. I’ve eaten. I’ve cleaned the room and the kids’ toy shelf…

I’ve been a badass for most of the day. I’m going to try to keep it going by getting up to do things now.

Until next time.

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Daily Post 076: Re-Finding My Routines

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I’m almost at the end of my second week at my new home clinic.

That means I’ve had almost two weeks to find my routines again. I can’t say that I’m back to them 100%, but I’m getting there.

I wake up in the mornings at 3 am on the days I work. That’s thirty minutes to an hour later than what I had to do in Orlando. An hour may not sound like a lot, but trust me, there’s a huge difference between 2 am and 3 am.

Depending on how the night went and how cold it is in the morning I may shower, or not. When it’s below freezing outside I’m more concerned about being warm rather than not having bed head. I’ve been able to enjoy cups of coffee again with an egg sandwich which I cook fresh instead of having to have eggs premade because that’s the only way I’ll get breakfast if I do.

I pack my lunch box with my premade lunch containers. I add a fruit or protein bar. I add a pudding, too, but I don’t always get around to eating it. I’m not heartbroken over that fact. It’s there if I want it and for whatever reason, that’s comforting.

By the time all those things are done, it’s about time for me to head to work so I’ll go back into the bedroom and let Ox know that I’m about to leave. I’ll change out of my sleep clothes into my scrubs. I have my own locker at work so I’ve started leaving my work shoes and googles there, which means I slip into my sandals, allowing myself to stay in “gearing up” mode during my thirty-minute drive to work.

Ox and I will have a cigarette together on the porch in the darkness of predawn. Lately, I’ve been saving my coffee for that shared moment together; another added layer of warmth to my morning along with our quiet conversations and hugs goodbye. And I realize there’s not much of a “lately” since I’ve only had two weeks to figure out my mornings, and only six of those days have been ones where I’ve actually worked…

Ahhhh data… how I wish I had more of you…

I’ve gotten comfortable with the drive to Beatrice. I’m sure I’ll get iffy with it again once winter comes back and I have to really start driving in the snow and ice, but for now, with the seasons changing, the worst I’ve had to worry about was one morning when it rained. Being from Florida, that didn’t bother all that much. It just sucked that the lines on the road were a little harder to see.

I’ve been getting to work 15 minutes early. I’ve opened the water room on my own a few times so I’m comfortable with adding that to my routine. I think after the next two days of training I’ll be confident in my ability to open the clinic on my own.

Yesterday I was able to talk to my new FA about some of the changes I would like to make. She was on board with them, which is super fantastic since all of the changes would make my life as a tech easier. I also got confirmation that my certification does entitle me to a raise and that I will be retro-paid for it. Everyone still thinks I’m doing well and that I’m a good fit for the clinic. I’ve meshed well with several of the patients. I had one of the say that they’ll keep me which made me smile.

Overall, my work days are settling into a routine that leaves me with enough energy to do things when I get home, or at least with the time I need to recharge for the next day. It’s a nice change from what I’ve been used to for the past year.

My “off” days don’t have as much of a routine, but I’m trying to find one for them.

Today was my first off day where I put real effort into figuring something out. I didn’t stay home all day. I didn’t sleep all day, though I did go back to sleep after Ox left for work.

I got up around 10:30. I made breakfast and had a cup of coffee. I sat on the porch and had another cigarette as I enjoyed the cool breeze and sunlight and quietness. I showered, hoping that would spark me into actually do stuff. I’ve noticed the days where I don’t shower in the morning seem to be harder.

I made a shopping list since I needed things for my lunches at work and for the enchiladas I was supposed to make for dinner.

There was a fitness place I wanted to check out so I called and made sure it was ok to come in for a free workout. I also packed the car with more things that needed to be donated.

It was a pretty light to do list, but I was ok with that. I’ve been having anxiety over getting back into the routine of working out. I know I’m not where I was at this time last year. That’s a hard pill to swallow and it’s easier to not acknowledge that fact rather than actually doing something about it. That doesn’t get me back to where I was, though.

I miss the dojo. I miss punching and kicking things. I wanted to try out 9 Round to see if it could help me find what I feel I’m missing.

It was a decent workout. Definitely the hardest 30 minutes I’ve done in a while, but it’s not really what I’m looking for. I don’t think it would be worth the money they want. I wouldn’t be happy or fulfilled with it. Maybe if it were cheaper… but even then, I would feel like there’s something lacking… It’s only part of what I want.

I’m glad I went. I’m glad I pushed as hard as I did. I coughed for most of the day afterward because I haven’t had to breathe that deep or hard in a while. My body is sore. I’m tired and I feel like I’ll sleep well tonight. I also know that I need to drink more water before going to sleep because I’m running warm still. Blarg…

It’s a good step forward, even if it’s not the route I’ll most likely end up going with.

There are a few other places I want to check out, but I think the dojo in Omaha is going to be the one where I find what I’m looking for.

After my workout, I drove to the Goodwill to donate the stuff in my car. I still had to use my GPS to get there, but after seeing the route on my phone I knew where to go because I recognized the streets. I’m getting better at navigating and I know eventually I’ll be able to do it without double checking myself with my phone.

After Goodwill, I went to the grocery store for the foodstuffs I needed. I treated myself to some cans of Bang, the energy drink one of my senseis turned me on to. I had to use my credit card for the groceries, which that payment is up to $300 now, but I’m ok with that.

I’ve survived March. I’ve paid everything that needed to be paid. I’m doing ok, and this next paycheck is where I start recovering, assuming nothing else hits the fan. I should be getting my tax return and the check from Full Sail soon. I should be reimbursed for my certification test, the registry fee, and retro-paid for my certification. I also should get my raise for my annual review at some point.

All of those things will help once they actually happen and I should be ok until they did actually happen since nothing ever happens in a reasonable time frame… I mean, NOW is a reasonable time frame, right?

After the grocery shopping, I headed home. I stopped by the Dollar General near home since I wasn’t able to find a pumas stone at the grocery store. I most likely overlooked it or something, but it was a new store and I was proud of myself for getting everything else on my list without asking for help so I didn’t mind stopping at a second store that was on the way home to see if I could find what I wanted.

While I was at the Dollar General I got shampoo and conditioner specifically for dyed hair since the stuff I’ve been using eats through the purple dye in my hair. I’m not one to be girly or anything, but I’m used to the dye lasting for a month at least, so when I’m two weeks in and it’s already faded looking I’m not really an ecstatic camper.

Once I checked out, I hopped across the street to the gas station and got gas for the car so I wouldn’t have to worry about that in the morning or after work. I’ve been getting pretty awesome gas mileage even though I’m having to drive a bit further for work. I have literally no stoplights on my way to the clinic. It’s a smooth thirty-ish minute drive of music and sometimes an annoying driver who leaves their brights on because they’re a dick, not that I have strong feelings about that or anything…

When I got home I cleaned up the kitchen and put the groceries away. I bought premade salads. I didn’t think I would have it in me to made a whole much of stuff from scratch but I still wanted to eat well. It was a bit on the expensive side, I mean, $10 for two salads is pretty up there when you can make six for that much if you just buy everything yourself, but if it helps me keep on keeping on then for this week I’m ok with it and we’ll see how next week goes.

I listened to music for most of the day which I also think helps. I’ve found a lot of new songs that I like. I made a bit more progress in organizing and cleaning the kitchen and I was able to make the enchilada dinner for everyone.

It turned out a spicer than everyone was expecting. I wasn’t a fan of the tortilla shells either, but there’s a lot of the meat filling left over, which I was a fan of, so I can have little nacho lunches.

I resisted the urge to get lunch while I was in town, waiting until I was home to make a ham sandwich. Go me. Not sure why that matters, but it does.

Overall it was a pretty low key day, but I think I’m guiding myself back to the path I want to be on. Doing an actual workout took a lot of… something… It didn’t leave me beat, but on a mental and emotional level it took more than staying home would have and I feel I need to let myself acknowledge that. I gave a lot today. I need to not let that go.

I work tomorrow and Saturday. Saturday is a short day though, so I should be done before 1 pm. Ox has said we can do more in the addition this weekend and it’s something I’m looking forward to if the weather isn’t super crummy.

I’m looking forward to going to work tomorrow and taking measurements of the shelving in different spots so I can figure out what size containers we can use to make things more organized and flow better.

There’s a lot of things I’m looking forward to. It’s a good feeling.

On that note, I was supposed to have my therapy conversation today, but that got rain checked. My therapist wasn’t feeling well, so we’re going to try to find a time next week to talk. I’m worried about her because there’s more to the story then I feel I’m allowed to say here. It’s not my story.

I also got a message from my blacksmith this morning. That leaves me feeling sort of defeated. He says I’ve grown distant…

All of the months I was in Orlando where we didn’t talk and things were fine. With him working double shifts and taking care of his granddaughter and being busy… All of the times he didn’t reply to my messages and things were fine.

I move out of state and we go two weeks and suddenly I’m the one who’s distant. It feels unfair. What am I supposed to do differently? In my head, nothing changed. But I guess it did and I don’t know where to go with that.

I had to be understanding and secure and breathe through the feelings of loneliness and accept what I had in regards to our relationship because of the limitations it had. But when the situation is reversed I’m distant and in some way not giving enough.

It… sucks, I guess. If it was supposed to be good enough for me then why isn’t it good enough the other way around?

I talk with Big Bad more, but that’s about the same as it was. Our text messages never really touch on the deeper topics that I need to feel truly connected. It feels like small talk most of the time which is… alienating I guess. There are a lot of people like that in my life right now.

Why is it I always save writing about the deep, dark stuff that I need to meditate on until the end of my day where I need to be unwinding and going to sleep? >.<

Damn you, Brain. Damn you.

I’ll figure it all out eventually. I know I will. Tomorrow starts the two weeks of mom’s hospital stay though, so I’m not all that worried about hand-holding others through their hard times. I’m financially survived my move. Now I need to emotionally survive reliving my worst fear.

I’ll be ok. I know I will be. That doesn’t mean it will be pretty or that it won’t suck.

Daily Post 068: Moving On

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I’m back home. Or rather, I’m back at my apartment.

My evening was decent. Big Bad and I talked for a while at the kitchen table before going back to the bedroom to cuddle and sleep. I slept deeply up to a certain point then tossed and turned for a while. My back was bothering for no apparent reason which made it hard to fall back asleep. I eventually did, so I feel fairly rested, more so then I have since I’ve gotten back from my trip. It’s my second day off in a row, another day with few obligations and so I’m hoping for the trend to continue. The trend of recovering and feeling more myself energy wise. More able to do things and less like avoiding people.

Things between Big Bad and I seem fine. He was interested in hearing about my trip. He still seems supportive of my decision to move, and that support feels genuine. I think there are feelings on both of our parts of sadness that our time is finite. Realistically, if I leave when I’m hoping to, we may only see each other another three or four times. One of those times will be the Warrior Dash that neither of us has really prepared for. I know I will do fine on the obstacles but I haven’t run much at all this past year so I feel like most of the course is going to be walked again.

I’m not really sure how I feel about that.

It’s sobering to realize how much I haven’t progressed the way I wanted to physically. Ever since April I’ve done nothing but cut back my time for training. Ever since getting a job. Though I still eat fairly clean I can see a difference there, too. It’s harder to drink water because I’m less active, and I don’t think it has solely do with the fact that it’s winter, though I’m sure that’s not helping things.

I don’t think I’m disappointed in myself. I do think work kept me from doing as much as I wanted to in regards to working out. I think I made smart choices in most situations. At the same time, it would have been nice to progress more than I did. It’s more of a wistful longing rather than shame or disappointment. “It’s not bad, but it would have been nice…” sort of a feeling.

I’m worried that the Warrior Dash won’t be the uplifting event that it has been for me the past two years. I’m worried it’s going to be clouded by the fact that I’m leaving. I’m worried it will be cold and windy that day. I worried it won’t be fun. I’m worried that potentially my last time with Big Bad won’t be a warm, positive memory.

After having our evening together though I think even if it ends up being an icky day that we’ll be ok. We can still have good times together even though they’re numbered. It doesn’t change our friendship or the connection we have. He’s still one of my closest friends and it’s reassuring that even with the news of me leaving, we’re still able to be ourselves.

I haven’t spoken with my blacksmith much. He knows the interview went well, but since I still don’t have official news yet it’s hard to reach out to people. I don’t have answers to their questions.

After speaking with my boss Wednesday we agreed to wait until noon Friday. If the FA in Nebraska still has not contacted either of us by then, then I will call and see if she received my email. I know everyone gets busy and at the moment I may not be their utmost priority, but it’s hard to plan for things when I don’t know, officially, what is going on or in the works.

There’s still the chance for this to fall through, or for the time frame to be drastically different than what I’m expecting. Waiting a month seems doable. Two months would be harder. Three would downright suck. So, hopefully, after my phone call today I will have a better idea of what to plan for.

Since the move in a pending event and because I haven’t been using them the way I intended, I will be canceling my gym memberships today. Both the 24 Hour Fitness and the Title Club Boxing. That would give me roughly $100 of my paycheck. My heart aches from the thought of their cancelation. In a way, I feel like it’s a defeat.

For so long I said I wouldn’t give up the dojo or my training, and yet that’s the first thing that got sacrificed. Actually… my evenings with Big Bad were the first thing to suffer. Instead of my two nights a week it changed to only one. Then came the dojo, then Title Club, then my personal training since I didn’t have a way to pay for it anymore.

It’s frustrating, constantly having to give things up because of outside sources rather than because I want to. Work and shitty roommates not paying rent…

I woke up this morning, a Thursday, a day I had personal training for so long, and decided that instead of fighting and feeling bad for not being able to achieve what I want, I will cancel my memberships and continue to rest and focus my energy elsewhere.

I still need to become certified for work. I need to figure out logistics for the apartment and moving. I need to research cost and potential storage. I need to also ensure I don’t burn out with work, which means downtime away from people and a break from higher level thinking and planning.

Stepping back and being a bit reclusive for the next little bit might make things easier. It’s still winter. It’s still a time for reflection, something I really haven’t done much of, at least not in writing.

I’m still tethered to my roommates at the moment. I got paid this morning. Without their additional contributions rent still won’t be able to be paid. I’ve sent messages to both of them, letting them know the situation. Even once it’s paid I won’t have enough to pay my remaining bills until they finish making their full contribution.

It sucks knowing my bills are the ones in jeopardy. I’m the one having to hold my breath and hope that things work out. I’m the one still donating plasma to stay afloat.

Warren finished his leadership training yesterday. He’s applied for the second interview for the team lead position. I’m hoping that works out for him. It would mean a potential $2 increase.

In that regard, his side chick is interested in moving into the apartment if I leave. Essentially, I would be signed off the lease and she would take my spot. Warren has discussed the situation with her. Financially, this apartment is only slightly more expensive than the one she currently pays for on her own. She has agreed with Warren to continue paying that amount if she moves in, so he would only need to pay the difference. That means most of his extra income could go towards paying me back.

That would be amazing.

I’m not sure what Kyle intends to do, but he knows my leaving is a pending event. Once I know a specific date it will be easier for everyone to start moving forward. Side Chick would have to break her lease, which will be $1800. Between her, Warren, and myself, it shouldn’t be that terrible of an expense all things considered. It’s one of the reasons I plan to continue to donate plasma. Any extra money will help make this happen.

And writing about money makes old wounds ache because I’m still owed so much by so many people. If I had that back, if I hadn’t helped others, I would be better able to help myself right now. It’s fallen to the way of wishful thinking as well. It’s a golden, rose-colored imagining, one which has never held up with brought into the coldness of reality and facts.

Soon I will be able to make the phone call. Soon I should know a better, more solid time frame. Soon I’ll be able to start planning and letting people know logistics. Soon I’ll start being able to set goodbye outings and establishing closure.

Soon I’ll be able to move on.

Daily Post 056: Meditation Needed

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Things have been ok. More ok than not.

My brother might be seeking therapy. He’s having a hard time and I can only do so much. I think it would be good for him to see a professional. Since he doesn’t have health insurance he’s having a hard time finding someone who doesn’t charge $120 an hour. Seriously… My brain can’t even…

I asked my therapist if she had any resources for the Daytona area. She mentioned a few and also offered to work with my brother if I was ok with it.

I am. I think she may be able to help Jon work through his self-worth issues and the feelings of abandonment and rejection he’s struggling with. I think there’s a lot of stuff still buried from mom’s death and his time in the Army. Maybe even from his divorce.

I need to send him my therapist’s contact information, but we’ve already talked on the phone and he knows that he has options now. I think that along helps him feel less lost.

Big Bad and I didn’t end up seeing each other. That sucked and is part of why I’m mostly flatlined today.

We were supposed to see each other Wednesday evening. He was feeling under the weather and I was exhausted from work. We decided to rain check the evening for Thursday instead.

I went to training Thursday. I stopped by the Salvation Army before going home to donate some odds and ends. I also found a swimsuit I liked so I can make use of the jacuzzi at the gym. I donated plasma later in the afternoon. I went to my sports bar afterward to eat and study for my certification. I went to the dojo that evening.

I didn’t do very well. And I guess I need to rephrase that. I did fantastic for already having trained once that day and donating plasma on top of all the other things I got done. I was fatigued before I even stepped on the mat.

We did a lot of cardio for the warm-up with rolls and cartwheels. I was paired with a newer guy I’ve never met who was also about half my size. It made performing the techniques hard. I didn’t want to be paired with someone I didn’t know. I really didn’t want to be learning a new technique. I would have preferred focusing on something I was already comfortable with.

Towards the end, I was paired with a purple belt. I explained why I was so tired. He said that was fine. We could spar for as long as I felt ok, but as soon I started feeling bad to let him know.

We did a few sort rounds alternating from starting in back mount. He was complimentary when I wormed my way out of his holds and answered my questions when I wasn’t sure about something.

I left before the class was over. I didn’t care if it looked bad to others. I haven’t been there much. I didn’t do much during the class. I didn’t stay for all of the sparring rounds.

Irrational Right Brain: Fuck you, Imaginary Judgemental Person. You have no idea what I have or have not done. You have no idea what my days are like or what I’m going through.

I messaged Big Bad once I was in my car. We had joked around earlier in the evening about playing video games but nothing had been definitively said about me coming over.

When I asked if he wanted company he said he was going to sleep soon and that maybe it would be better to hold off until Monday to see each other.

I’m proud that it didn’t feel like rejection or abandonment on my end. I do think that shows personal growth. My past hurts and insecurities have less sway and influence over my present emotions.

It still wasn’t a good feeling. I had been looking forward to seeing my companion more than once in a seven day period. I was looking forward to being cuddled with him and breathing in his scent. I was looking forward to not being alone.

It didn’t work out that way, though.

He sent a text message saying he missed me. I texted back saying I missed him, too.

Since I ended up with time to myself I went to the gym, put on my new swimsuit and alternated between the pool and jacuzzi. Cold helps with inflammation while heat helps promote blood flow and healing. I went back and forth a few times until I was ready to go home. My body felt better. I know I’ve been pushing it hard this week, especially since I did basically nothing last week. Compared to how I trained before I got this job I feel like I’ve been pretty inconsistent.

It’s weird. I know I’m at a higher level than what I was, but I also know I’m not where I want to be. I guess it’s like how I feel about my writing right now. I’m inconsistent. I let things get in the way. I’m tired of that.

I’ve been sort of sad since last night. Since not being able to fall asleep in Big Bad’s arms. It’s not the same type of sadness as when I hurt over mom. I haven’t thought too much about these feelings to understand them fully. I know what I feel is not rejection or abandonment, which is good. But there is something there that I need to figure out.

I had thought about not doing anything today. I thought about letting that sadness fuel a rest day. Stay home. Chillax. Be anti-social.

Irrational Right Brain: You’re not wallowing. You’re just indulging in not doing anything… Shhh… It’s ok…. Come to the dark side… we have cookies…

Instead, I ended up going to the gym for a HIIT class my trainer was running. Yes, my body was still sore. Fuck it. At least I could spend the rest of the day knowing I didn’t let sadness win.

Only one other person showed up to the class. It was nice to not have to deal with eight or more other people. It was just one other new person and she was pretty cool.

She said she had seen me on Tuesday doing my box jumps and that she was super impressed. I got to talk about how I’m training to be a fighter.

The class itself was pretty intense and I’m glad I went. Afterward, I came home and curled up on the couch for a while. Eventually, I was recovered enough to go upstairs and shower. I put away the clean clothes that were still in my laundry basket before filling it with all my dirty stuff and taking it downstairs.

I started a load of laundry and ran the dishwasher before heading out to my sports bar again. I’ve made it through another chapter in my certification book. I’m trying to make that a requirement on my “off” days. I need to get this certification out of the way, preferably before January so I can focus on school.

I paid rent. I had enough to cover all of it, but that only leaves me with $150 to my name with an electric bill, internect bill, car insurance payment, and phone bill to pay. I messaged Warren asking for his payment so I could pay all of my obligations. I haven’t gotten a reply from him yet. We actually haven’t spoken to each other since Kyle moved in. As long as he pays what he owes I don’t care. My opinion is still that he’s a man child and that our friendship will never be able to recover to what it once was.

My reward for studying and paying as many of the bills as I could was going through my email and catching up on the blogs I’m behind on. I’m also allowing myself the time to write.

There’s a randori session later today at the dojo. I know Jim will be there since he’s running it. I don’t know if I should go or not. I don’t feel like pushing myself. I think Jim would train with me if I asked him to. I haven’t made up my mind. If I don’t go I feel like it would be because I’m sad from not seeing Big Bad.

This is one of the few times I can make it to the dojo and yet I’m not going?

Maybe I do need to sit and meditate on a few things instead. Maybe doing a bit of emotional work would be better in the long run. My shoulder was giving me issues this morning, too. It was more of a sharp pain rather than a muscle pain. I had to modify a lot of the push-up work because it hurt to put weight on my left shoulder.

Blarg. I’ll figure it out.

For right now I’m going to go. I need to run to the store for laundry detergent, also a bottle of Fireball. At the moment drinking a little at the end of my nights is how I’m staying away from cigarettes.

I work tomorrow. Here’s hoping it goes smoothly.

Daily Post 054: Comfortable Sadness

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I’m in a bit of a funk and I know I am. I can feel how my body is tired from everything I did yesterday which I’m sure is a contributing factor. My pulse has an arrhythmia that also isn’t helping I’m sure. And of course, since I’m tired and worn feeling I feel my grief more acutely.

I guess it started last night while I was showering. I was reflecting on how well I did yesterday. I biked to the gym and did a plyometric workout based on the different exercises L has had me do in the past. I followed that up with a half mile run before biking back home. I haven’t plotted the course but I think it was roughly four miles round trip.

Later I biked to Title Club Boxing for the boot camp conditioning class then biked back home. We’ll say that’s another 8ish mile though I think that’s lowballing it.

So yeah. Roughly 12 miles biking, a half mile run, and two conditioning classes. 30 three foot box jumps. Yeah. I pushed myself yesterday and it was awesome. I loved all of the sunlight I was able to get. I ate well and drank plenty of water.

I was thinking about how I’m doing well even though mom isn’t here. I don’t feel guilty for doing well. I don’t feel guilty for living my life and enjoying my bike rides and smiling and living.

But I’m sad now.

I miss her. I want her to be here so I can tell her about my day. I want to tell her how I’m scared I won’t be able to jump the red box on Tuesday even though L says I can.

I want mom to tell me I can, and she can’t. And that sucks.

I guess it’s not really a funk I’m in. I guess I’m sad today and I didn’t really realize it until now.

I woke up this morning and was proud of myself that I got out of bed and downstairs before noon. Before 9 am in fact. I had thought I would be so tired that I wouldn’t do a lot today, and to be fair I haven’t done a whole lot, but the morning started better than I had anticipated.

I made coffee and for the first time in a long time, I made an egg sandwich. I sat outside on my doorstep eating and drinking my coffee instead of smoking a cigarette. I bought a pack a week ago, but it’s gone and I haven’t replaced it. I don’t want to replace it, but I’m wondering now if a lack of nicotine is part of the sadness I feel; withdrawals in addition to everything else.

Regardless, the morning was nice. I felt like I was doing well in caring for myself and recovering. My knuckle is almost back to normal. I thought about going to my sports bar for lunch. I could take my flash cards with me and begin studying for my certification. I could do things today that didn’t require a lot of energy because I didn’t have much to give.

I spent most of the afternoon on the couch instead. I washed my dishes from breakfast and that’s about as far as I made it.

Eventually, around noon, I went back to my room since Warren woke up and was in the kitchen. I didn’t feel like being around people, though we did patch things over yesterday so we’re talking to each other again.

I still don’t feel like being around anyone but at the same time, there’s this need to not be alone. It’s frustrating. Like sandpaper inside my skin. I know there’s this irritation but I’m at a loss on how to ease it; sooth it. Nothing on this plane can make it better. None of the people in my life can be my mom. Not Warren, not my brothers, not Big Bad, or anyone else who loves me or I love in return.

It’s an ache I have to breathe through, function through, fight through, until I adjust to the pain and it fades into the background again, white noise in the chaos that is my life. A vibration that is always there that seems to be louder in the silent, quiet moments I allow myself even though I don’t think my grief itself ever really changes.

When I got to my room I started researching hospice RN positions.

It was something my brother and I talked about when I brought up the subject of going back to school for an RN degree. I don’t think I want to work at a hospital. I don’t want to change patients every day. I like that about the dialysis clinic. I know my patients and they know me. We share inside jokes. We pick on each other. We feel sorrow and pain together. I know them. I care for them. I like that about my job.

I’m not sure what I want to do with my life. I still don’t have an end goal, especially right now with the sadness hugging around my shoulders like a blanket. A soft, heavy blanket that is comforting in its own way. It’s familiar. I know what my grief feels like and I accept it.

The hospice thing is more just looking into other options I gain by becoming an RN. It’s another field I think I may find fulfillment in. I read several posts about what working as a hospice RN is like. I also looked up wages since pay is a logistic concern that would need to be looked into at some point regardless of how fulfilling I think something might or might not be.

It’s definitely more pay than what I’m making as a dialysis PCT.

Aside from that I’ve halfway chatted with a friend from California and arranged to pick up Mother Earth from work. I actually need to leave before too much longer to do that. It’s the only obligation I have today and so I feel shitty for not wanting to do it.

We’ve agreed to go sit and have lunch which I am actually looking forward to. I’m not looking forward to the driving, to having to get gas, to having to deal with traffic.

I’m looking forward to sitting and being injured and for that to be ok. I just wish there wasn’t so much to do to get to that point. The thought of the effort makes my shoulders physically hurt, like getting into my car is some huge weight I have to lift. I know it’s not. I know I can do it. I wish I knew why internally it feels like I can’t.

I’m worried that I won’t be accepted to the RN program since most programs are competitive or have a waiting list. I’m worried that I won’t get much for financial aid. I’m worried I won’t be eligible for reimbursement through DaVita because I haven’t been employed long enough. I’m worried about paying rent. I’m worried about keeping up with my training. I’m worried about Scarlet being sick and aging. I’m worried about letting the people in my life down because I don’t hang out often enough / well enough.

I don’t know why I have all of this hanging over me right now. I don’t know if it’s a matter of “misery loves company” and so it’s easy to see and find the negativity that isn’t really there, or if this is my brain telling me to slow down and process through some of the shit I have going on.

Right now I’m tired.

I’m tired of making sure my ducks are in a row for the meeting with my admissions advisor on Tuesday, which they are so there’s really nothing else to do other than wait.

I’m tired of making sure everything is ok with the lease renewing and that paperwork gets done, which that’s all squared away as well.

Maybe, since a lot of the stuff I’m stressed over is now stuff I can let go of, all of this is the stress I wasn’t allowing myself to feel. I had to keep going, keep doing, keep figuring out, and now, today, I don’t have to. Today I can be sad and tired and cry silent tears and it’s ok. It’s not interfering with anything. All my stuff is done.

I hope tomorrow feels better. I hope work goes smoothly and that the new schedule is out so I can plan my next six weeks.

Everything is temporary, including this moment. I know I’ll get better and I know I’m not broken. I know things are ok. I’m just sad and it’s ok to be sad sometimes.

I love you, mom. I miss you and I hope where ever you’re at that you’re having a good day.

Musing Moment 109: What I Am

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strong

That is Google’s definition of the word strong.

I fit this definition.

Because I fit this definition the next logical step is to accept the fact that I AM strong.

It IS ok for me to accept this aspect of myself. It is ok to be stronger than others. It is also ok to be weaker than others.

Accepting my strength does not make me better or worse than anyone else. It does not make me unfeminine.  It does not make me arrogant or conceded.

Being strong is simply a part of what makes me, me.

My goal is not to be strong. Being strong is a byproduct of being true to myself and that’s ok.

I am Jennifer Conley, daughter of Susan Conley, and I am spiritually, emotionally, and physically strong.

 


 

fitness

This is Google’s definition of the word fitness.

I fit this definition.

Because I fit this definition the next logical step is to accept the fact that I AM fit.

I get sick less often and I recover faster when I do. I am less tired and sore after physically demanding activities.

I am more fit than I was in my past. I am more fit than some people, less fit than others, but that does not mean I myself, in this moment, am not already fit.

This is another aspect of myself which is ok for me to acknowledge and accept. Recognizing this as a truth about myself does not make me egotistical or narcissistic.

I can let go of the nebulous goal I’ve had for years. I no longer want to “be” healthy. I AM healthy, and it’s ok for me to want to maintain and improve upon my level of fitness. Much like the term strength, wanting to improve something doesn’t mean I am not already that thing. I am fit and being fit is now a byproduct of being true to myself.

I am Jennifer Conley, daughter of Susan Conley, and I am fit. I am healthy; spiritually, emotionally, and physically.

 


 

Time for Some Goals

 


 

I have affirmed for myself that I am strong and fit, so now comes the part where I figure out what I want my foci to be and why I’m still dissatisfied with myself even though I consciously know I have drastically improved.

Firstly, I have determined there are things I do not want.

I do not want to be a certain size. I do not want to be a certain weight. I do not want to be “buff” or “one of the guys”.

I want to be myself and I want to be human.

Cool. Those seem easy enough to fulfill, right? Go me for setting the bar super high. : D

All joking aside, I have determined there are three things, in particular, I would like to focus on.

I want to improve my cardiac endurance, I want to be more agile, and I want to be more flexible.

 


 

Cardiac Endurance

I will complete the Spartan race in December.

This is now my immediate goal.

I want to prove to myself that I’m able to do it, regardless of if I run the whole course or not. I want to show myself that I’ve improved and that I can keep reaching higher and higher. All it takes is time and determination; dedication.

My reward for completing the Spartan course will be new compression gear. New shirts and shorts; my birthday gifts to myself.

I will begin running twice a week to improve my cardiac endurance.

My next goal will be running the Warrior Dash in February. I will run the whole course. My reward for the Warrior Dash will be new Vibrams and flipflops.

In April, April 4th specifically, I will go to my sensei and express my interest in being a fighter. This will give me two months to reflect on my journey and solidify my next courses of action.

This admission to my sensei will begin the next phase of whatever I decide my life to be.

 

Agile

Agility is the speed and strength at which a motion can be performed.

Being agile will help make me a better fighter and give me an edge against bigger, more muscle-bound opponents. I can improve my agility by incorporating plyometrics into my workouts. I can quantifiably measure my agility by tracking how high I can jump, how quickly I am able to complete sets along with how many repetitions I complete during a set.

My current goal for measuring my agility is jumping the red box at the gym. I am already at blue, a step above both gray and green.

My reward for jumping the red box will be new boxing gloves.

 

Flexibility

While being agile is more connected to speed, flexibility is more concerned with the range of motion one can attain during an action.

This is something I feel I have largely neglected since mom’s death. I can feel how my hamstrings and hip flexors are tight, how sometimes it’s hard to keep my knees from bending while I stretch. My range of motion is not what it used to be and I can feel that difference within myself; that limitation.

I will incorporate yoga back into my routines. I will attend a yoga class once a week.

My goal for measuring my flexibility in my hips, hamstrings, back, and shoulders is to hold a complete and properly executed “Standing Bow Pose” for 10 seconds.

At this moment I do not have a reward for this goal.

 


 

So, why so dissatisfied?

 


 

I’m not really unhappy with myself. I don’t look in the mirror and berate myself and say unnice adjectives inside of my head like I’m my own bully. But there is a level of “not quite there yet” within myself that I don’t like.

I don’t have the body I “want” to have and so I haven’t really accepted the improvements I’ve made even though I appreciate them and consciously recognize that they are there.

Like, dude, seriously, I have guns now. And not just nerf guns. Actual bicep definition and yes, it’s as sexy as it sounds.

So what gives? If I like the changes I see then why am I “not ok”?

After researching and looking up the definition to different terms like I was back in middle school or something, I think I’ve figured it out.

I want to be leaner than I currently am. I want to have a different body composition.

The good news?

Becoming leaner is something that is inevitable for me. Like strength and fitness, becoming lean is and will continue to be a byproduct of being true to myself. Nothing needs to be changed or added for me to reach this next “nebulous goal”.

I am leaner than I was six months ago. I am leaner than I was when mom died a year and a half ago. I am leaner than I was four years ago. The dissatisfaction I feel with my body is largely due to the pressers of society and my own mental image of what I “should” look like.

The best thing to do is to not become discouraged that I am not “there” yet. I need to be patient with myself. I need to keep in mind that rest days are important and that there is such a thing as pushing too hard. I need to stay the course and not get frustrated. I want to get “there”, but I want to get “there” in a healthy and safe way. Becoming leaner will come in time. It’s already drastically improved and will continue to do so all on its own.

I’m not sure if becoming leaner counts as a goal. I don’t think it does and I’m ok with that. This isn’t meant to be a goal, more a realization of why I feel dissatisfied with myself. That dissatisfaction is uncalled for on my part. I should remember how far I have come rather than focusing on what society thinks I should be.

I am doing well and this aspect of myself, my body composition, will continue to improve and change as I keep myself focused on my goals and commitments.

Daily Post 041: Not Much To Report

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As the title says, there’s not much to report today, which is good because it’s already 9 pm.

I slept most of today. Normally I would feel like a slacker for that, but surprisingly I’m ok with it. All my meal prep was done. I did laundry so I have clean clothes for the remainder of the week. Nothing else really “needed” to be done, so instead, I caught up on resting.

I did go to spin class today. The Shefit bras are still living up to my expectations. I could tell my body was tired from kickboxing because I was putting more weight on the handlebars of the bike. I’m glad I stayed for the whole class, and I feel like I did well. I guess this is more of an awareness that I am only a human who does need time to recover.

I met a woman in the locker room who commented on my purple hair. It led to a really awesome conversation and left me feeling connected with the world. Hopefully, we see each other again at some point.

L created a “workout” calendar for me. Too bad I don’t know what my work schedule is so I can’t promise to actually adhere to that particular calendar. I already have an idea of what I want to do anyway, so I’m most likely an annoying client in some regards. I appreciated her taking the time to create something for me. It gives us a starting point that can always be modified as needed.

She’s going out of town for a few weeks which is another reason she wanted me to have the calendar. L created a couple of workouts she wants me to do while she’s away. I think I’m going to swap some of the excersies out for tire flipping and box jumping. Those are fun and things I am comfortable doing on my own.

Tomorrow is an early day. I’m not going to start off at the gym. I’m going to try to sleep more and go straight to work instead. Depending on how I feel afterward I might go to the gym to row, maybe run. Sitting in the sauna would be nice. I do think it will need to be a lighter day, especially if work is intense. Well, really, regardless of what work is like. I’ve done three intense days in a row and I have plans for kayaking Saturday and a body conditioning class with my brother on Sunday. I  need a break or  I won’t be able to survive the weekend.

My blacksmith and I have tentative plans to see each other tomorrow night. I hope it works out. We had to cancel our plans Wednesday night. I guess his work is being annoying.

I still don’t know my schedule for next week. That’s a bit frustrating. With luck they will let me know tomorrow otherwise I won’t know when to come in…

I still need to ask to have Saturday off. I know that will put me short a few hours but I would rather be short and go kayaking with Big Bad before starting my first official week out of training.

Other than that, I figured out the issue with the gym payment. Since Warren and I are on the same account they were billing him for both his membership and my membership. When I checked in before the spin class I added my card to the account so there shouldn’t be further issues. I also spent about an hour talking to a friend / former student. That’s the main reason for being a bit behind tonight, but I had that phone call scheduled for about a week, so really I did it to myself.

Anyway, since that’s all the excitement of today I’m going to finish my tea and shower so I can try to get about 5ish hours of sleep.