Because all experiences are valuable.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

It's Greek to Me?

I'm sad today that so many of the blogs I follow don't post often, or at all. I was wondering if I should give mine up, but then I went and read some posts, and was disappointed there weren't more, so I will keep soldiering on with mine, even when I am pressed for time.

Everyone said medical terminology was an easy class. Maybe it will be, but I find that it is a lot of terms, suffixes and prefixes being thrown at me rapid fire. The worst thing is terms that are stuck in my head, some years old, that I have been off target on defining. It is so hard to replace old information with new, correct information. I think a lot of us have a general idea what surgical suffixes mean, but general isn't good enough in nursing. There is a big difference between the suffix that means to suture, to repair, and to fix in place. Those are three different terms. As with most languages, one single letter can change the whole meaning. Tracheotomy vs. tracheostomy for example. Arthrodesis vs. arthrodynia. I'm glad I had experience with Greek and Roman Civ (two of my favorite classes in college actually), feeling somewhat comfortable with the language helps. The best is I just know how to pluralize the Greek and Latin root words, probably from that 2 years of G/R Civ. That is one less thing to worry about.

I have my first exam today over three chapters of terms and suffixes. I might as well get to it. But first I think I'll add a couple of pictures from Greece. Boy, Reid sure was young. Reid had some good feedback today from his percussion instructor that really perked him up. We are both still fighting this damn cold. Cephalgia, be gone!!! If you have a blog, please keep writing! I'm still out here following along.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Hocus Pocus Puppy

I'm sitting here watching Hocus Pocus, starring Bette Midler, just about my favorite Halloween movie, and listening to my former dog snuffle. My adorable pup, Sandy, went with Jason in the divorce, but the is here on business, so I get to keep her overnight. She is simply the cutest, and she was so excited to see me. That is always gratifying.

I think I'm getting somewhat less popular at school as of today. I got the results of that second chemistry exam. I scored a 114. I don't really know how very many other people did, but the results were pretty widely scattered. But several people told me just how gosh darn annoying I am.

I know they don't really mean it. I am more than happy to help anyone study. Another big anatomy test on Friday, and I started another class today, Medical terminology. I'm pretty tired, but I'm going to upload a few pictures to this blog of Reid and his fellow Drumline members from the Bands Of America Regional at Jacksonville State University, Alabama, two weekends ago. It was their best performance to date. Next stop is the SuperRegional at the Georgia Dome!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

On A Bridge Over Troubled Water

I had one of those unique experiences Wednesday, the kind this blog loves. Driving home from school, I reached the bridge on Hwy 306, and the traffic stopped dead. After a few minutes I had made it to about the center of the bridge, when police cars started to arrive. One state trooper turned around and raced back the other way. I realized later that he had gone to close down the road in the direction from which I had come. Two ambulances passed, then about ten minutes later, a fire truck and a fire rescue unit. It looked like I was going to be there for a while.

The cars behind me began making three point turns and heading back the other way, one by one. I had turned off my engine and started watching Dancing With the Stars on my phone, so I was somewhat startled when I discovered that I was alone on the bridge. Some cars in front of me had either turned around as well, or had inched up far enough to get off the bridge. You can see a few up ahead in the distance. I wondered if they knew something about the bridge that I didn't. Personally, I was enjoying the breeze across the lake and being suspended above it. Another half an hour crept by...

I got out of my car and wandered around, looking over both sides.

The ambulances and fire trucks came back by to get to the hospital in Gainesville. The firemen waved at me sitting on the bridge railing.
I thought maybe the cars would start moving, but they didn't, and no cars came from the other side.

Then I heard the lifeflight helicopter circling. It must have been a really terrible accident. It is a weird feeling to just be there and not know what is happening. I did some calm meditation for the poor people in the accident.

I took some pictures...

Then I noticed something odd approaching from the south on the lake. It looked like an entire dock had broken free and was floating toward me. As it neared, I could see that it was newly built and being pushed by a tug boat sort of thing.

It was speeding along rather quickly, considering its size.

As it got closer, I started having an interesting, if shouted, conversation with the man standing on top. They had seen the helicopter, as well, and of course, could see that I was the only one on the bridge.

It had been pretty cloudy, and rain was approaching, but just as they passed under the bridge, the sun came out. I mean literally the moment they appeared on the other side. It was neat.

And....off they went.

Another lifeflight helicopter arrived. Guy works at the Home Depot not far about twelve miles from the
bridge and he said even he saw the helicopters.

After another fifteen minutes, I decided to go ahead and turn around and go back. It had been an hour and fifteen minutes, it was starting to pour rain, and it would take me 45 minutes to get home if I had to go all the way back to Gainesville and down to Hwy 369.

So, I've thought about it a lot since Wednesday. I wasn't able to find any information about what happened. But I've thought about it in relation to my life. My tagline is all experiences are valuable, but it could have a corollary, I suppose, that most experiences happen just when they are supposed to, for us to learn something, or notice something. Is that a corollary? Am I using that correctly? So why did I spend an hour in the middle of a bridge all alone? No one else got out of their car, or walked on the bridge. What does the bridge represent, there above the flow of life and the lake...

I waited patiently to be able to move forward. I could see that there were roadblocks and sadness ahead in my way, and I was willing to wait in peace to make my way home. But the rain came and suddenly in the lightning, the bridge didn't seem safe anymore, and I had to turn and go back. Back from whence I came, to get home another way. Why the smiling Dock Delivery Man rafting underneath me and the attendant ray of sunshine? I know it means something. I can feel it from very far inside the medullary cavity of some long bone somewhere. (I'm doing well in anatomy.)

I don't know the answer yet, but I'm not going to forget the experience. I think it will all come clear to me sooner than I might expect. For the moment, I am thankful that there is more than one way to get home sometimes. I hope I always know where home is, in the days ahead of me. I hope you all do, too.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

DragonCon : Minnie Me, Weird Al, Master Chief and the Winged Monkeys

Minnie Me and Weird Al
I want to catch up a bit again. I just caught up on Ali's blog, Key To My Wonderland. Fun stuff. I realize how far behind on adding pictures I am, although all my Facebook friends get to see my life in overwhelming detail, I'm sure, so I don't want to turn this into a photo show. But I did say I wanted to add more DragonCon pictures from a month ago. Wow! You know that phenomenon when you can't believe a month has gone by since an event, and yet it also seems like so much has happened that it must have been two months ago? There should be a name for that. If anyone has a suggestion, please add it!

So...DragonCon pics. The largest SciFi/Fantasy convention in the country by far, maybe in the whole world!
I worked this convention back when it was in its fifth and sixth year. It was raucous fun way back then, and I'm thrilled to see how it has not just grown, but exploded. You can't imagine all the different fan tracks, contests, panel discussions and parties. Something for everyone the least bit interested, and a huge parade down Peachtree Street. For the Costume Designer in me, this is The Event!

watching the LOTR costume contest

this guy's kilt was made of metal rings!

Predator VS. Wolverine

Mad Hatter Me and Andrew Green

The best Joker and Harley Quinn I saw, and I counted 22 Harley Quinns

another good one- Joker and his crew

PennyWise the clown from IT

Nice kids huh? One yawning, another licking a knife. Swell.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Student, Teacher, Baby Mama

Oh! He did it again. Tonight he sucked me into watching Baby Mama, with Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. Actually, this is a really cute and fun movie. Reid and I love movies. Greg Kinnear is always great, too.

What does this have to do with anything? Not much! But then again, if you have followed my blog for long, you know I usually manage to make it all mean something anyway. I've been pleasantly surprised at how the concepts in my Anatomy and Physiology class have overlapped with my Gen. Chem/ Intro Biochem class, and even how concepts from my statistics class have found their new frames of reference in my world. I've always been "good" at education. That sounds like a poor sentence, but it reflects a truth. The pursuit of knowledge is like a sport in some ways, like a game, even. It takes dedication, practice, desire, and some level of innate, genetic talent. I think it probably takes having had educationally supportive parents as a foundation, even years later.  It takes an interest in the sport in general. Have you ever seen a great football player who didn't follow football avidly, or a great golfer who didn't know the lie of every great green?

Being a good student is like that. Every new thing I learn becomes part of a huge web of "stuff I know." It all connects. I can't stop it. I think it is likely annoying to a lot of people, because it is hard for me to keep it all in. The stuff just pops out all over. I'm like a Build-A Bear with too much stuffing in the head. (But wow I have the cutest little clothes!)

I spent some time with Reid last night going over the Central Limit Theorem. He is doing a statistics unit in math. I'm really glad I have been doing the same thing in my class at Brenau, and that I have a superior instructor. His level of knowledge makes him well-qualified, but what makes him a superior teacher is his genuine desire for his students to understand the material, and its usefulness and value. I don't know why so many of the teachers my sons have had just seemed to want to present the material in the approved testable manner. (don't get me started on No Child Left Behind.)  Because David Cook cares that I actually learn the application of statistics to the world, I was able to teach my son. How is that not the greatest thing? Yesterday, my friend Frank spent hours working with his daughter, Skye, on her homework. (Her magnet school seems like a real bear. I'm not convinced a child really needs 12 hours of education a day. Ever hear of the law of Diminishing Returns?) Guy calls Jason sometimes for help. Guy helps me with my chemistry, and I in turn teach whatever I can learn outside of class to my friends Abby and Melissa. My friend and lab partner Brittany teach each other in anatomy lab. One of us always knows the correct answer, and why it is correct.

In Baby Mama, though a comedy, the two women could not be more different yet, as is common in movies, they each teach the other something about how to be a real human being, while learning together what it means to become a mom. Sometimes being a mom means planning a nice dinner of Lobster ravioli, fresh broccoli, smoked salmon and garlic bread for a tired and stressed teenager. Sometimes it means yelling at him to do his German homework. (Reid!! do your German homework.) Sometimes it means threatening to take way his phone if he doesn't stop texting and go to bed, or allowing your "baby" 18 yr old to go his own way and live his own life (someone named Guy is currently skipping class tomorrow to go to Florida, Lol.)
This is not new material. This is not groundbreaking stuff. But it is my life, and my journey, and it makes a pretty good movie, full of lessons and setbacks, and even the occasional happy ending.

Guy and Reid at class of '85 gathering

Sunday, October 3, 2010

The Early Bird

Instead of writing my blog and posting pictures and such, I got sucked into watching the movie 2012. Entirely my own fault. Well, not that it wasn't entertaining, but what a collection of cliche's (sorry, I don't think Blogger will let me do the French diacritical mark). Oh good Lord the song at the end is the worst thing ever. Who approved that dreck?

 I really hope if 12-21-2012 is supposed to be some disaster that it decides to hold off for another year. I'd really like to graduate nursing school first. I would be a lot more useful that way. Frank and I have talked about this sometimes. I had an interesting, if brief discussion with Alex, Frank's son, about the 2012 scenario, and/or concerns about the Greenland Ice shelf and some Mega volcano that is supposed to blow any time. I'm tired and don't feel like googling it. But I remember living in Washington State like 12 years ago, and learning at that time the Mt. Rainier was overdue to blow its top just like Mt. St. Helens did. Alex is a really sharp guy. Reid said the other day that Alex is smart, talented and funny and that's the kind of person that he likes. I'm just randomly jumping around in this blog, I know.

Call me a crackpot, but I do think it is highly possible that something dreadful is coming. But I don't think we can really do all that much to prepare, other than gain as many useful skills as possible. So while I'm learning all this nursing stuff, sometimes I think in the back of my mind that I'd better do a good job because people might need my help even more in the coming years. Maybe that would be good for everyone to do, just learn something new to them, maybe something that is a useful skill. It sure wouldn't hurt anyone.

I didn't finish my chem lab sheet for tomorrow, so I'll do that and get some sleep so I can catch the worm tomorrow. Ha ha Yeah right.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Mad World

Gracious this week has been packed. I had an Anatomy exam, an Anatomy Lab exam, and took the Kaplan Nursing school admission test tuesday night from 5pm to 8pm. Plus working on Statistics, trying to learn Chemistry, Reid had a game Friday night as usual, and today is their first big competition at Kennesaw Mountain High School. I will have to go join them about 4pm to braid girls' hair and keep up with uniform parts like the plumes and gauntlets. The show is called Luna Fx this year and is really really cool. It includes the song Mad World which I just adore.  The original I'm pretty sure was by Tears for Fears. (I'm a big fan) then it was used in Donnie Darko (movie- Jake Gyllenhal, I recommend, but it is weird and creepy, beware), and then used to advertise Gears of War the video game. Maybe it was in the game, too, I'm not sure. But it works beautifully in the show. Very haunting.

I have some pictures of last week's game, and will take more at the competition tonight. Hopefully I can get them on here tomorrow! Hugs to all.