Hanging in there

The days seems to go by so quickly, which isn’t a bad thing. That just means the end of the semester will be here SOON! I think back to when the semester started…and how crazy things were. Things have not let up, many things have gotten even more complicated and crazy..but what has changed is that the semester has come to about a month left! Wow! One month and this semester will be over. To prepare for the end of the semester, I have one major test and one major paper to work on. The crazy Spring Break I had ensured that I would not be stressing out about small things….YES!! But I do have to keep going and stay focused on the projects. I have learned over the years, it is much easier to do a big project in small pieces over weeks than it is to cram the entire thing in to a few days! 

So here in a few minutes I will head back to my office so I can work on a draft of a paper! I am almost done, my goal is to have a finished draft by tonight so I can review and edit it and submit in advance. Then I will continue to work on my spreadsheet that I am using to learn my cases. Whew! 

Good news is that I am all packed and ready to go! I leave on Wednesday! Geez…last trip for a while…hopefully not but i do not have anything else scheduled right now. Off to get something done 😀

First Attempt

My first attempt with bouquet making. I decided late Sunday to see what I could do with silk flowers. So off to Michaels….and after a few hours you can see what I came up with! Not too bad!

Chapel is picked, and I think I know where we will go for dinner. This celebration is going to be small. I like those intimate gatherings where you can talk to everyone and enjoy a great night of laughing and making memories. We have a Brazilian steakhouse in mind. It is a really cool place where people can pick a lot of different meat to eat. Very cool I think.

So once I get the venue for dinner, I’ll work on finding a bakery and then a salon that is open on Sunday. I’m continuing to look for the special dress. I found one I love but still need to see what else is there.

Slowly but surely things are coming together. I’ve setter making notes to myself of things that I would want to share as part of my vows. Hmmm what to say 🙂 or not say!

I stated Accutane today!!!! Yes I was nervous but hey let’s get it done! I was soooo scared I would go broke doing this treatment, so thankful insurance approved so I did not have to pay near what I expected. Tonight my tummy is not happy but I’m hoping that will pass after the first week or so! Hoping anyways!

Let me know what you think of my first try on the bouquet! I’m also including a picture of the chapel.

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Whew…one more week done!

The week is done! I survived…do you hate sometimes the feeling that you are dragging yourself through the week! I know today I was exhausted…last night I came home from work and I went straight to bed. I slept until almost 10:00p.m….I woke up, and ended up going right to back to bed. My body just needed that rest. I spent all of Spring Break working…so the blessing is that now I am not nearly as pressured to get homework done. Not only that but I also have a little bit of time to work on my dissertation research! POSITIVE!

Great news to share, my husband and I have decided to have a vow renewal ceremony! We are coming up to five years this year…and if you have read any of my blog you can imagine how these years have been. From diagnosis of RALF, hospitalizations for both my husband and I, and many other things….we have gone through some crazy hectic times. We are planning a very small intimate ceremony at a chapel and then a nice dinner afterwards. More details coming but I will say I am enjoying looking at different planning ideas. Never having planned a vow renewal it is interesting to research what you do and don’t do. You can do flowers..which I plan on doing. You can have attendants (not called Maid of Honors/Best Man) which we are doing. The ceremony is focused on us, sharing personalized vows and re-exchanging our rings. I also am planning on getting a nice new dress (not a wedding dress), and hubby a nice suit. We also are going to order a cake….nothing fancy or crazy but something nice. I’ve scoped out a few restaurants where we might have our private dining experience after. Guest list is also way smaller than a normal wedding (we only had about 20 when we got married)…this time it might be the same or less. I personally don’t enjoy being the center of attention so the smaller the better.

It is great to have hopefully an awesome day to plan! Keeps me focused…keeps me positive! I’m down to 6 more weeks of school! YAY! Cannot wait!!! 🙂

 

Focused

Focusing through the pain is sometimes the hardest thing to do! The Fibromyalgia flares tend to come from no where some days and then joined with that the joint pain from the Rheumatoid Arthritis just makes for a rough day! I’ve been spending my Spring Break studying and working hard to get ahead. My goal is to get homework done so I can move on to other things. There is so much on my mind tonight, many decisions are coming up and so much is going on. I have learned though to just take one thing at a time as there is only so much that can be done.

One major good thing for tonight, I was mailed a recording of my late father. That was the first time I had heard his voice in nearly six years. I never realized how much I missed hearing him! I am so thankful that the CD was mailed to me…it was very touching and just what I needed tonight.

Off to more homework! And remember..no matter the pain…focus on something good! Sometimes it is hard to keep that focus…but stay strong!

Spring Break!! (Finally)

Do you ever feel as if the days fly by! Well thankfully I will say the days haven’t felt this way on Spring Break. I will be honest, the break couldn’t have some soon enough. I am feeling the exhaustion every day…it makes things so frustrating…when I have work to  do (or homework to do) that just seems like it never gets finished. But you know that is what this week is for….this week I will focus on getting ahead or at least getting things done! That said, I am realizing that my body/energy has to come first and that I have not been doing.

As I write, my legs feel absolutely broken…while I have not gone outdoors I have not doubt rain is coming. My legs are tingling and the ache has been so horrible all evening..no matter how I sit/lay down/do anything the pain never ends. Ahhh one day I might actually get to sit down and NOT hurt! Wouldn’t that be awesome. The bad news is that after a near $700 bill I found out my current rheumatologist is now out of network!!! Nothing like finding it out with a big bill right! I called my insurance (when I first got my insurance…back in November) and at that time all my doctors were in network. Apparently, that changed after January 1st and I never though to check again! Wow!!! So now after paying that much money, I realize I need to find a new GP…that can refer me to a rheumatologist….a whole new rheumatologist!!! UGH!! So what I’m going to do is go back to the GP that originally diagnosed me with RA….I hope she will refer to me to someone I can stand! Definitely won’t like…I’m nervous about this…I really hope for a smooth transition!

That said, my dermatologist is also out of network but now that I have started the accutane process…I’m going to wait until next week to decide. Yup, next Thursday I go in for more tests and a decision by my derm doctor on accutane. If she says I’m good to go..I will go ahead and start…which means I will stay with her until I’m done with the process. If she says no and more antibiotics or face cream…then I will go ahead and start looking for a dermatologist that is in my network.  Ahhhh the medical things we go through…can be so complicated…annoying…frustrating…and more words than I think I could fit in here.

The positive news is that I know my new GP diagnosed me with RA….I hope she trusts her decision and does not make me start again! I’m holding on to that positive news! You have to hold onto something positive….the negatives can swallow you up unless you fight back with something positive! Off to do more homework!! Stay strong, and FIGHT!

Brrr it is cold

What a cold winter…that seems to  NEVER end!!! The temperature has dropped again….which I think would be alright except that we are also experiencing rain!! UGH!! : ( I still am amazed how my body reacts to the rain. I am amazed how it has changed over the years. As a kid, living in Honduras we had six months of rain a year. I loved it! I loved hearing the rain coming over the mountains, listing to the rain as it hit the tile roof and then of course running around putting buckets everywhere because the roof leaked so bad.  Now, two days before the rain comes I know it will rain. My ears feel the pressure change….the muscles in my legs begin to burn and achke..then my joints follow. My hands swell and so many joints begin to have that nagging pain that doesn’t go away no matter what I take. Sleep is near impossible, simply because I am so miserable that I cannot get comfortable in bed. Wow how years have changed things! Yet, you know I still love hearing the rain outside…I love watching it  rain….my body just doesn’t like the rain.

But today again, it got cold! Good thing I love wearing boots 🙂 That is the one positive of “winter” weather…I get to wear boots and cardigans at work……but I will say I do miss wearing just heels or regular shoes. Boots though keep me warm and that is definitely a positive when it comes to working and not letting the pain get the best of me. 

I felt like I accomplished a good bit of homework this week, I’m working on a Spring Break schedule so that I can get ahead in my homework and put about 20-30hrs of data collection into my systematic literature review. Twenty hours is the minimum that I hope to hit, and I think it will be possible!! (Crossing fingers)

I spent some time this weekend thinking again…what do I want to do….where do I want to go…where will I be happy…what job can I do physically/emotionally…and so many other questions. Yes it is that time in my life where one journey is ending and I must prepare myself for another journey! I am nervous…but also I know that all my education was not for not ….I will get a job that will use my skills and a job where I am happy. Now though is the time (for the first time) to realize my personal educational career is coming to an end and what do I want to do now. It is exciting actually to know that I’m going to NOT have homework every night of the week, instead I can just focus on a job where I can do something good for students. It is a no brainer that I will stay in higher education, I love it. …but do I want to go up for a tenure track position….do I want to go for an administrative position??? Which sounds betters? Which works better for me? I have tossed the idea around of going for an associate/assistant dean position….I think I could do it…then I could move up to a dean or maybe vice president position. But at the same time I love the idea of teaching students and working in research. I have seen the lack of research surrounding my dissertation topic…there needs to be more..I would love that to be me! Then again, I realize how hard it is to get tenure track jobs….but those that know me would say I would not back down from the challenge. I know deep down…it if is meant to be…it will be be. 

Off to do some law book reading! Rest well everyone!

At times in our lives, we get so busy and so into things that we don’t stop and reflect. Tonight, I had one of those stopping and reflecting nights. I remembered, wow it has been almost six years since I heard my dad’s voice. I didn’t realize until I stopped to think about it, how much I missed hearing my dad talk.  I have pictures that I can look at and memories but it is so weird (at least to me) how hard it is to not remember what his voice sounded like. I barely remember his laugh, so tonight I sat and wondered how awesome it that we now, in today’s world, the ability to capture voice and images. That is so cool! 

I spent the day working on homework and catching up on my rest. The balance thing (yet again) has come to be very important especially since I took a new job about a year or so ago. Things are busy at work, it is every more so critical that I make sure I take me time. I turned off all my alarms and realized, that I could only do so much with little sleep. I needed to make sure I took care of me. So I rested today for a long time before I got up to do some work. And yet again, I could see how much I could get done when my mind was fresh and my body in less pain.

I was able to spend some time organizing my pictures, ahhh my Africa pictures like always pull at my heart. I love getting my emails and checking Facebook to see all the great things World Help is doing. So many amazing things, one day it would be cool to take an even bigger part of helping the many areas around the world (Www.WorldHelp.net). Cannot wait to one day go back to Africa! 

Rain is coming, in the midst of a flare but you know I know things will still happen…I will still work! Thankful that I can push through…at least today. I have been so blessed this week…there were days I was so tired and down..then I would get a text  from a friend. It really brightened my day. I realized this week more than ever…how critical it is to have those encouragers in your life. Even if it is a simple text that says “hey thinking of you” it does a lot. 

Off to get a little bit more homework done before I have to go rest again! thankful for everyone who sends so many amazing encouragements my way!