Thursday, September 15, 2011

Comfort zone

Tuesday evening I came home to my empty apartment (after a crazy embarrassing time at my first kickboxing class) with a bruised and swollen arm and my first parking ticket. And I got to thinking, "Man oh man is it hard to be outside of my comfort zone." 

Most recently my comfort zone has included things like: driving the same way to school and home every day; parking in the same wide spots in the parking garage; attending lectures for 4-6 hours a day; studying the same way for every test; going home, making dinner, and eating with my love; doing yoga in my living room and jogging for exercise.

Things that are outside of my comfort zone are things like: having to drive a different route or to somewhere I've never been; parallel parking; sticking a needle into someone for a grade; getting needles stuck into me for someone else's grade; not being able to successfully study the same way for a test; trying new ways to exercise that I have never done before (and/or that I'm horribly bad at); and being home alone every night this week. 

Sometimes I would much rather just stick to what's comfortable.

I have to keep reminding myself of how amazingly good for me getting outside of my zone really is.

The whole grad school thing really doesn't give me much room to get comfortable. It's a continuous challenge. There have been many-a-day when I look up from studying and say "Why am I doing this to myself? School is HARD!" But whatever. Now phlebotomy, on the other hand, was an extra challenge! (I got it first try for the test, by the way! However, my friend, who drew my blood, had a little bit of a harder time..... resulting in that bruised and swollen arm I mentioned.) 

I've been trying to get exercise other ways too. Trouble is, I'm no good at any of it. Swimming, racquetball, cycling, Pilates, kickboxing, etc... but I've decided to keep doing them anyway because it's so rewarding to see improvement every time I try! (That's easy to do when you've got such a long way to go!) And I do think that all of those things are fun, too. Just... embarrassing.

And the parking ticket... I suppose I should know the parking laws in the state/city I live in, but the only other place I've really parallel parked was Provo, and in Norfolk there are no red painted curbs to tell you where you can't park. Trust me, I looked for it. I saw that blasted fire hydrant. I just didn't know you had to be a whole 15 feet away. The whole situation might not have happened, though, if I was comfortable with my parallel parking skills ('cause actually, I have none). I would have parked long before I even got to that "spot" that put me within 15 ft of the fire hydrant. So what I'm saying is, it's time for some dreaded parallel parking practice. Practice practice practice.

But as for the home alone thing? I could really do without that one and be juuuuust fiiiiine. No more business trips for a while, hon, okay?

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Labor, learning, and love

I don't know why Labor Day has to come at the beginning of September. Why not at the end, when I'll have a full month of this new semester under my belt, instead of just a week? As it is there are no more days off until Thanksgiving. Now, that was poor planning on the part of the holiday-deciders.

Anyway, to celebrate labor (?) we spend part of the long weekend at Lake Kerr with Mom, Dad, Beth, Dillon, and Dill's pal Josh. I really loved getting out on the lake in a canoe; it's just so fun and brings back so many memories. While the boys played basketball us adventurous girls went on an eventful bike ride.

Looks harmless enough, right? Blah--that stupid trail was covered in knee-high weeds and big tree branches and I'm quite sure nobody had been on it in at least a year. See?

That was one excited me.
Not to mention the swarms of mosquitoes and that it was a one-way trail, NOT a round trip like it said. But, all in all, a happy memory to look back on.
We're so happy:

Then on Labor Day we enjoyed another free-to-us sporting event: the Tides baseball game! I've never been the biggest baseball fan but I think these minor league games are so fun! It was an exciting, high-scoring game with like 5 home runs. That's what I'm talking about.

Then it was back to school for me. It was fun-filled week of endocrinology (love it!), surgical dressing practice, and phlebotomy! Our education in venipuncture consists of 1 one-hour lecture, a 40-minute practical session with a little practice on dummy arms, and then a 1-hour practice session on each other! Friday was an exciting day to be sure. I actually had a couple of unsuccessful attempts and a couple of successful attempts, so I wasn't feeling super confident. (I mean, compare this to the training phlebotomists get...). So, all in the name of learning, I brought home some stuff 

and practiced on the only willing subject I could find on a Friday night. 

(He was willing, I promise!) Ok so I don't have a perfect record, but would you? 

 Thumbs up=I did successfully (eventually) draw his blood. And he got brownies in return.

This guy loves me.