Sunday Stealing: The High School Questions

Another post this week from Sunday Stealing because I had so much fun with last week’s! And I figured since my last day of high school was actually 13 years ago yesterday, this would be a fitting topic to have fun with. So without further ado…

Sunday Stealing: The High School Questions

1. Did you date someone from your school? Yes.

2. Did you marry someone from your high school? No.

3. Did you car pool to school? Yes. I was not a morning person. When we would pick up my friend Jenny at 6:45 am every morning, as we did for seven years, she would deliberately shout “GOOD MORNING!” at me as soon as she opened the car door, just to spite me. I would grump back at her. The only day I ever shouted “GOOD MORNING!” back was on our very last day of high school ever: June 10, 2004. Continue reading “Sunday Stealing: The High School Questions”

The Objectification of the Dancer

As we enter into the thick of dance recital season, this topic popped into my mind. Little kids are cute onstage, but it doesn’t take long for them to grow up into a world where they are objectified for their looks.

I grew up dancing. I started dance lessons at the age of three, and from then on, you couldn’t keep me off the stage if you tried.

IMG_2023
Age 4

I was a darn cute little thing in my little tutus. But it only took a few years for the conditioning to start. Continue reading “The Objectification of the Dancer”

Maybe This Time…

There are many days on the calendar that are a challenge for infertile women. Christmas for sure, when all you want is to see the new little stocking hanging with the others for the first time. Halloween is despised, as you throw up your hands at seeing one more infant in a cuddly, warm lion costume. (Last year I sat in the bedroom with earphones on while my husband passed out the candy.)

But there is no holiday out there that stings so badly as the one that singles out the fact that you are not a mother: Mother’s Day. A day just like any other for those who aren’t part of the exclusive mom club (although loving on our own mothers takes the sting out to a degree.)

IMG_1294
My mother and mother-in-law are the best I could ask for!

And is it really necessary for every single email on this particular day to be about Mother’s Day? Happy Mother’s Day! Because you’re an awesome mother, buy something from New York and Company, REI, Athleta, DaySpring, UncommonGoods, Wayfair, Ancestry.com, Kohl’s, and freaking Pro Compression Socks!

But I digress.

Mothers work hard to keep their families on the go day after day and should be lauded for it. Among dozens of other tasks, whether it’s packing lunches, doing countless loads of laundry, cooking dinner, driving to and from school/soccer/music lessons/birthday parties/sleepovers/etc and making sure the bath is done with enough time for a story before bed, mothers get it done.

I want to work hard for my family, too. Continue reading “Maybe This Time…”

Nocturnal Musings #18: A New Me?

I haven’t done one of these in awhile. My last one was in December, I believe. Even in two short months, my life has changed a great deal. Not for the better, unfortunately. And since I’m having some painsomnia along with my general refusal to sleep at night for the most part anymore, I guess I may as well talk about it to some more sympathetic ears than I’ve been getting the past few days.

I lost my job last week. I understand why, but that doesn’t make it any easier to bear. My FMLA ran out last June, after which point my job was unprotected; they could have gotten rid of me then. Instead, they gave me as much time as they could for me to get well enough to return to work, which I failed to do twice, once in October, and again in January, when I was diagnosed with POTS. (Here’s a bit of what a day in my life looks like now thanks to POTS, except I pretty much stay in bed now.)

img_1916
My life now. Not as nearly as enjoyable as it looks. (The smile was for my mom.) I would give almost anything to be able to get up and do things for more than 5 minutes!

But anyway, now it’s prime recruiting season at the hospital and I’m not naive enough to think they would keep me any longer. They’d rather replace me with a new residency graduate who has some clinical knowledge, but has absolutely no idea how to actually be a pharmacist.

Although I don’t feel quite as bad sometimes when I think about what a literal revolving door my specific tiny department within an enormous department is. And it is a tiny department, with something like a dozen pharmacists total for a 24/7 operation. But since 2010, the year I started working there, I’m 99% certain, if my list is correct, that I am the 20th pharmacist to leave. In seven years.

img_1910Yet my emotions are still very raw. I keep crying periodically. Ok fine, I cry a lot. I want to scream and throw things and then go to bed and never wake up. I’m back in what I call my depression hole; I have periods where I just won’t talk and will only communicate via head movements or shrugs because I feel if I open my mouth to speak, I’ll fall apart. I took the picture on the right immediately after I found out so I’ll always remember how much it hurt.

So now the big question is, what do I do with myself now? Honestly, if I ever get well, I don’t know that I have the intention of reapplying in the future or to ever practice pharmacy again. What a waste of six years of education. I was never a good pharmacist in my opinion anyway.

But David and I had a heart to heart Friday night between us and God. We came to the conclusion that I’m basically going to start my life all over again. I’ve been through so much in the past year (or even really the past four years starting with my celiac disease diagnosis, then the endometriosis…) Between all my diagnoses, my surgeries, trying to get better on a deadline when my body wasn’t ready, being stressed out by that, getting worse, and so on, it’s finally time to take my foot off the accelerator. I’m setting intentional goals that I (hope) I am capable of and can work towards.design

  • Not thinking about work or a return date or ever going back there ever again.
  • Do my cardiac rehab to the best of my ability in an effort to improve my POTS, and therefore my quality of life.
  • Do things I want to do that will make me happy.
    • Writing
    • Reading
    • Blogging
    • Studying the Word
    • Listening to music
  • Take baby steps towards normalizing my life.
  • David will encourage me and I will encourage him.
  • Focus a bit on getting the house cleaned up.

So, really, living my life the way I  want to, with as little stress as possible to maybe help promote faster healing. No deadlines.

A new me.

I started life over again in 2004 when I started pharmacy school, leaving behind my old life of dance and musical theater.

I started life over again in 2010 when I graduated from pharmacy school, got married, moved, passed my boards, and started my career.

And I’m starting my life over again in 2017 when my health is in shambles and my pharmacy career is over.

We’ll see where the road takes me. But after all I’ve been through, I can only hope it’ll be to a happier place.

💛ribbonrx

 

The I Dare You Tag

I found this fun-looking and thought-provoking tag over at bluchickenninja (you should totally check out her blog) and decided to tag myself! Anything to distract me from the daily grind of my myriad of chronic illnesses.

1. Which book has been on your shelves the longest?

Audition by Michael Shurtleff. It was gifted to me by my high school musical theater director when I graduated in 2004. She was devastated that I decided not to go into theater, but gave me the book in case I ever wanted to.

On the inside, she wrote, “Laura- this book is a jewel- my theatre ‘Bible.’ I know you’ll love it…and I know you’ll always find a way to be onstage…it’s in you and you’re too good not to. I’ll always believe in you! Love, Ran”

2. What is your current read, your last read and the book you’ll read next?

I have two current reads: Ravensbruck by Sarah Helm and The Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick. My last read was When God Doesn’t Fix It by Laura Story. And what will I read next? Hmm…probably The Radleys by Matt Haig.

3. What book(s) did everyone like and you hated?

Ok, I know not everyone liked these, but far too many people did and it irks me. That would be the disaster known as the Twilight series. I can’t stand Bella and how she completely shuts down when Edward leaves and how she is completely reliant on him for pretty much everything. What a pathetic reaction, and not a representation of a real, healthy relationship, yet the author has convinced millions of teenage girls that that’s how love is and what every teenage girl should strive for. And Edward is just a little bratty jerk anyway.

4. Which book do you keep telling yourself you’ll read, but you probably won’t?

Les Miserables by Victor Hugo. I attempted to read it while I was doing the show when I was 16, but I didn’t get very far through “the brick” before I gave up.

5. Which book are you saving for “retirement”?

Probably Little Women by Louisa May Alcott. The movie is one of my favorites of all time, so I tried to read the book when I was 12 or 13 and just couldn’t get into it.

6. Last page: read it first or wait till the end?

Wait until the end! If I accidentally end up reading the last page (like if I’m checking to see how many pages the book has), I get very sad, because then why bother to keep reading if you know how it ends?

7. Acknowledgements: waste of ink and paper or interesting aside?

Kind of both. I always skim them to see if anything interesting catches my eye.

8. Which book character would you switch places with?

A Hogwarts student, most likely a Ravenclaw, since that’s the house I always seem to be sorted into.

9. Do you have a book that reminds you of something specific in your life?

img_0966One Million Lovely Letters by Jodi Ann Bickley. This is an absolutely beautiful book, “The inspiring true story of a young woman who survived a life-threatening illness and sends uplifting letters all around the world- a lifeline in her own darkest moments.” I read this book in February 2016 when I was beginning down a path of chronic illness that, four diagnoses later, shows no signs of slowing down in the diagnosis department. I was diagnosed with a brain tumor, a hernia, an aneurysm, and postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS) and I may also have Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (EDS). My life is far from a picnic, but this book reminds me of when it all began a year ago. Ok, now I want to read it again. Add it to my list!

10. Name a book you acquired in some interesting way.

See answer to number 13.

11. Have you ever given away a book for a special reason to a special person?

No, but I remember I loaned a book to my ex-boyfriend from high school and I never got it back.

12. Which book has been with you to the most places?

Probably Eyes Wide Open by Ted Dekker. I carried it back and forth in my work bag for ages, hoping to have some down time to read it. I brought it with me on our hike to the bottom of the Grand Canyon, where we stayed at Phantom Ranch. I think I brought it with me on our trip to the U.K. And I believe I ended up finishing it during a slow night shift at work about a year after I’d started it.

13. Any “required reading” you hated in high school that wasn’t so bad two years later?

Walden by Henry David Thoreau. Our English teacher was obsessed with Thoreau and it was the hardest unit to get through because he expected us to understand fully what we were reading and produce stellar essays from it. But since it was the first unit we did at the start of the school year (to show us what was expected of Advanced Placement English students), our class really bonded with each other and our teacher. When he was forced to retire at the end of the school year due to stupid politics, he knew no teacher after him would ever attempt to teach Thoreau, so he let us steal have the school’s copies of the books so they wouldn’t be thrown out. I still have my copy and treasure it.

14. What is the strangest item you’ve ever found in a book?

I don’t think I’ve ever found anything strange in a book, except maybe the name of the previous owner.

15. Used or brand new?

It depends on the condition. I adore used paperbacks, but prefer hardcovers to be brand new.

16. Have you ever read a Dan Brown?

No, and I really don’t intend to.

17. Have you ever seen a movie you liked better than the book?

The Lord of the Rings trilogy. Don’t get me wrong, Tolkien was a one-of-a-kind writer. His books are beautiful. But seeing the characters come to life in such a beautiful way is just breathtaking.

18. A book that NEVER should have been published.

Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton. Because really, who attempts suicide by sledding into a tree?

19. Have you ever read a book that’s made you hungry, cookbooks being excluded from this question?

Reading The Plum Tree by Ellen Marie Wiseman made me crave schnitzel and spaetzle because the book takes place in Germany during World War Two.

20. Who is the person whose book advice you’ll always take?

My friend Sara.

💛ribbonrx

The Graceful One

via Daily Prompt: Graceful

I don’t usually participate in the daily prompts, but this one I couldn’t pass up. This will simply be me reminiscing about my former life, and maybe what could have been had certain events not taken place.

I grew up dancing. From the age of three to the age of twenty, I was a dancer. From the age of eleven to the age of eighteen, I was involved in musical theater as well, which was the best of both worlds to me because I loved singing and acting. But at the heart of it all, I was a dancer. Continue reading “The Graceful One”

I’m Not Shy

Mental health disorders in children aren’t something that are talked about a great deal. Probably because we don’t like to think that our innocent children can have a disorder that can lead to, among other things, the stigma that they’re “crazy” or result in the ultimate of tragedies, suicide.

But this post isn’t about suicide awareness or childhood depression. It’s about a struggle of mine that started when I was a child and continues to this day: social anxiety disorder. Continue reading “I’m Not Shy”