let it go (or, THP: Chapter Four)

(This is part four in a series about The Happiness Project, by Gretchen Rubin.  To start at the beginning, click here. )

Gretchen’s fourth task was ‘lightening up’ her parenting approach.  Even though I’m not a parent, I knew I could use some of her advice.  (Everyone who knows me is emphatically shaking their heads in agreement.) Continue reading “let it go (or, THP: Chapter Four)”

mid-semester freak out

Yup, we’re there.  All of us.  All sixteen of us in the program are just balls of stress right now, for one reason or another.  One girl’s dad has been in and out of the hospital for months now.  Another girl–a dear one to me–is going through a break-up.  Another is juggling multiple out-of-town trips this month, which tend to wreak havoc on school.  Yet another has been in TWO car accidents in a week–neither of which were her fault.  My carpool buddy just found out her senior practicum, the 5-week rotation we plan for ourselves in the spring, just fell through and now she has to start from scratch. All of this, in addition to working part-time jobs, dealing with boyfriends and families and kids and such.

I’ll say it again–going back to school is not for the faint of heart.

While this semester so far seems worlds better than last semester (the one in which I tried to hit the gym every morning at 5:30 yet didn’t go to bed early and thus crashed and burned halfway through), it’s certainly no walk in the park.  We’re 6 weeks in (praise God!), yet I haven’t been able to stick to a bedtime (I have yet to get more than 6 hours of sleep, and lately it’s been more like 5), or the KISS eating plan of chicken and veggies I kept thinking I’d implement.  Thankfully my workouts have stayed pretty steady, thanks to my pretty awesome schedule, which is probably the only thing keeping me sane right now.  I’ve barely cooked a ‘real’ meal (oh well), barely baked anything (probably better for the waistline), and just realized I haven’t updated our dry-erase calendar from September to October yet…if I wait much longer, I might as well just go ahead and put November up there!

This week in particular has been a banner week in the Layer house.  Due to evening engagements, Andrew and I have taken to corresponding via email–me writing to him in the a.m. while he’s still asleep and him replying (if I’m lucky) during the day.  Other than yelling ‘goodbye!’ as I leave and a few phone calls and glimpses of each other, we pretty much roll into bed at night and manage to say ‘hello’ and ‘goodnight.’  It’s that kind of week.

But, on a positive note, school really is amazing.  I’ve never felt more interested, excited and confident about what I’m doing.  I absolutely LOVE walking around the hospital in my white lab coat, reading about my patient in the electronic medical record, and then coming up with their nutrition diagnosis.  I just come alive when I do patient education–it’s so second-nature to me.  We had a workshop yesterday on tube feedings and I loved it.  We learned how to calculate the rate of a feeding and how to recommend everything.  I’ve also got my senior practicum set–it will be clinical–and it’s exciting.  I’ll get to experience both in-patient and out-patient, bariatric and general patients, as well as spend time in some of the ICUs and hopefully oncology and transplant units, too.  I definitely did not anticipate this, but I’m so glad clinic has proven to be a good experience.  Who knows what I’ll end up doing after I graduate at this rate?

On another positive note–it’s FALL and I’ve been stocking up on all the fall-scented goodies at Bath and Body Works like crazy!  (Gotta love those coupons.) I’ve completely outfitted my gym bag with all the necessities, and used my ‘pumpkin pecan waffle’ shower gel at home yesterday.  Amazing.  I’ve never been more hungry taking a shower in my life.

With the long weekend, Andrew and I are looking to get some R&R, and hopefully I’ll have some time to catch-up on school work and start the week off right next week–AND implement that earlier bedtime routine!


i miss running

And, apparently, running misses me, too.

I got this in my inbox the other day:

It’s from MapMyRun, and they miss me.  The last run I tracked was back in April.  APRIL.  (Now, I don’t track every run–really, I haven’t been running regularly since school started, but holy cow–has it really been that long since I mapped a new route??)

As I said in this recent post, exercise hasn’t been a big part of my life lately.  Sad.  Very sad.  The saddest part?  The increasing tightness of my jeans…

The other day, I really thought that to myself–that I did, in fact, miss running.  And working out in general, but mostly running.  We had a wonderful fall day earlier this week when I had a chance to run outside and enjoy the weather, but I didn’t.

It’s like I have a block or something.  I think my brain just cannot take a single additional thing to think about; between school, swimming, scheduling, cleaning, cooking, homework, house-planning and projecting, I just can’t squeeze anything else in there.  Now that the laundry room is done, I already a feel a little relief, but I’m not ready to jump into a rigorous gym schedule like I did so easily last semester.

And the good news is that, after two months of beating myself up over it, I’m giving myself permission to NOT work out right now.  I think my body, my sanity, my marriage needs it, heck–I KNOW my brain needs it right now.  I’m swimming twice a week now, and have high hopes I’ll get back to my punk rope class at the gym Saturday morning, but other than that, I’m not stressing.  Or at least trying not to.

I’ll hit the road again soon.

**Edited to add:  I wrote this post a few days ago and have been saving it in my queue until I had a chance to post it.  I’m actually going running in about an hour!  It’s 6:50 on Sunday morning and a friend/acquaintance (OK, it’s one of my professors who lives in Orchard Park…how does one refer to them?) invited me yesterday to meet her at a local park.  AND I made it to punk rope yesterday.  AND I’m back to calorie-counting; those pesky SEVEN (thank goodness it’s not more!) pounds have nothing on me!  The light at the end of the tunnel is shining down on me RIGHT NOW.