Rough Year Ahead

I’m beginning to understand why, on our first day in a skills lab, a professor told my accelerated nursing group:

“Tell everyone you love that you will see them next year.”

When she said that, I cringed. I don’t want to wait a year to see everyone I love. In a year, Alex will be three. I can’t not be a part of his life throughout this next year. There is no way I can possibly just say, “see you next year, buddy!” I can’t survive a year without enjoying date nights, watching quality television and movies, cooking a meal, with Zach.

How am I going to make it through this year?

I don’t know the answer to that, all I know is this: I will make it through. And while I will certainly be less of a part of my son’s life, have less quality time with Zach and more quality time with my 1000+ dollar books, I will make it. The year will go, and I will come out on the other side with a second Bachelor’s degree. I will make it through.

“I’ll see you next year, buddy, more often. But I’ll do my best to be with you one thousand percent whenever I get to see you this year.”

Family shot!

Whirlwind

The last few weeks have been busy.

I took four final exams, a quiz, and did a barrel full of homework.

I had blood drawn, went to seven various other appointments, dyed my hair and didn’t spend nearly enough time with Alex.

I drove six hours to visit my bestest friend in the whole wide world.

I drove another six hours home, picked up Alex from daycare, and spent the evening marveling over the fact that he somehow grew an inch and learned approximately one thousand new words and phrases while I was gone for three days.

Today, I’ve spent the entire day playing with Alex and dealing with ridiculous amounts of paperwork. I’ve printed forms, registered to have my fingerprints taken by the FBI, finally got Pitt to give me my financial aid, and received instructions for my surgery tomorrow. No food, fluids, alcohol, cigarettes, nothing, after midnight. I can’t go to the bathroom in the morning because I will be getting a pregnancy test (no, there is no way) and I must shower not once, but twice with anti-bacterial soap.

This whirlwind has been stressful; it’s been horrendous (I get unnecessarily stressed about exams) and wonderful (spending time with Sarah and her family).

Tomorrow I get to forget about it all. I will be knocked out, cut open, and when I wake up I will get to spend time doing absolutely nothing but resting. And right now? That sounds pretty nice.

But then it will be back to the grindstone. Finishing up all of the things I have to do for nursing school: more clearances, some vaccines and tests, more paperwork, applying for more loans, buying books, and spending as much time as humanly possible with my son.

He won’t be this cute forever. And I need to breathe it all in while I still can.

Alex

Mommy Confession Part II

I confessed recently. I admitted to being sick of being a stay at home mom.

But now I have another confession: I’m scared to death of not being a stay at home mom.

As hard as it can be as Alex’s number one, I can’t even fathom what it will be like to not be his number one. The thought of not being the person who takes care of him the most horrifies me.

Starting at the very end of August, Alex will be attending daycare full time. He will go in every morning and spend all day with his daycare provider. Zach will likely be the one taking him in most, if not all, mornings, and Zach will be the one picking him up most, if not all, evenings.

Two days a week I will have to be in clinical starting at seven in the morning. Seven! That means I will be out of the house before Alex even wakes up in the morning. Two evenings a week I will be in classes and labs until 7 at night. That means that I will likely not be home before Alex goes to sleep at night.

And then? And then there is the fact that I will be a crazy full time student. Not just a full time student, but crazy full time. This program is intense: getting a (second) bachelor’s degree in one year has to be. The studying that I will have to do is going to drain every second of every minute of almost every day that I am not actively in class, lab, or clinical.

All of this is scary enough on it’s own, but then throw on top of that the fact that I will not be Alex’s number one? I’m freaking out.

When it’s time for cuddling before bed, he won’t ask to cuddle with me. When he wakes up during the night he isn’t going to call for Mommy. When he wakes up in the morning he isn’t going to say, “No! I want Mommy!” When he falls and hurts himself, he won’t want me to comfort him. I won’t be his number one.

I’m not scared that other people are going to be taking care of him. I have complete trust in Alex’s daycare and more than complete trust in Zach. Alex will be well taken care of. It just… won’t be by me.

I am petrified.

Playground!

10 Things You (Probably) Don’t Care About

The wonderful Trinity at Phanatically Speaking recently tagged me in a meme. The rules of the meme:

The Honest Scrap award is given by other bloggers who consider a blog’s content or design to be brilliant. The awardee must then post ten honest things about themselves and pass the award on to other bloggers who fit the bill – in other words, whose blog is brilliant.

(Can I take a moment and say that I blushed when I read that? I feel so special!)

So, ten honest things about me, in no particular order (unless you count the order of how my mind comes up with ten things):

  1. I have lived in over 18 different places in my life. I have lived all over the city of Pittsburgh, in houses and apartments, and lived in Florida for a (not so lovely) short time during my sophomore year of high school and Massachusetts during my three years at Smith College.
  2. I get cold really easily. When most people are comfortable, I’m cold. When most people are complaining of the heat, I’m comfortable.
  3. When I cook, 90% of the time it is with some asian influence. I find “American” food horrendously boring, and I rarely find meat and potatoes to be anywhere near as good as stir fry on rice, indian or thai curry, or udon noodles topped with just about anything. I use soy sauce, ginger, chili paste and sesame seeds more than seems possible.
  4. I have successfully lost at least 40 pounds. I estimated my starting weight when I began this weight loss journey in January, so I don’t know the exact amount. I am very happy about it (though I still have a bit more to go), but very not amused that this weight loss has given me gallstones and the need for surgery in August.
  5. I didn’t learn how to study until I left Smith College. While I was a pretty good student during my three years at Smith, it wasn’t until I was home with an infant and limited time to focus that I really learned how to study. I currently have a 115% in one of my classes thanks to a great curve, but without the curve I would have a 98%.
  6. I know nothing about pop culture. If you name a singer, actor, model, or just about anything to do with the behind the scenes of movies and TV, I won’t know who you are talking about. There are exceptions, of course, but for the most part I never know what people are talking about. It obviously doesn’t bother me enough to put any effort into learning about these things. But I do know all about the Real Housewives of everywhere and Jon and Kate.
  7. I kind of have 7 siblings. My father was married before he met my mother, and with his first wife he had 7 children. So, I have 7 half siblings. And something like 23 nephews and nieces, including many who were my nephews/nieces before I was born.
  8. I want to have another child. One day, not now or any time soon, I would like to have another child. I don’t care if it’s a boy or a girl, though I always pictured myself as a mom of an older boy and a younger girl about five years apart. So, here’s hoping I can convince Zach of that!
  9. Removed.
  10. I would go vegetarian if Zach would. I don’t want to have to deal with making separate meals, and while Zach has become very willing to eat many vegetarian meals I prepare, I’m pretty sure he would have a conniption if I took all meat out of our diet.

And now I must tag:

Jen at jayesel
Dawn at Red Pen Mama
Sarah at Becoming Sarah

Popped Collars

From eighth until twelfth grade I had a strict dress code. We could wear khaki or navy pants, but they couldn’t have cargo pockets. They also couldn’t drag on the floor, and if you wanted to wear shorts? They had to be no more than three inches above your knees. There was also a uniform skirt that could be worn: the boring ol’ plaid type thing.

As far as shirts went, we had to wear white, navy or yellow collared shirts. They could be polo shirts, or button downs. Shirts had to be tucked in, and they could not show your stomach. “No Midriff” was the rule.

We even had to wear white or navy socks, and only black, brown, white or navy solid-colored shoes. Hair color had to be “natural,” as did any makeup worn. Talk about boring. Especially when you are a teenager.

Wearing the same outfits year in and year out really got to me. I hated khaki pants. I could not stand polo shirts. By the time I graduated, the thought of putting a polo shirt back on my body would literally make my stomach turn.

But then time went on.

I grew out of my hatred for all things khaki, all things collared. In fact, I love polo shirts and I adore oxford-style shirts.

And I love nothing more than to dress my son in total prep attire.

Seriously, little tiny prep boy clothes make me so happy. The little polo shirts, the little plaid pants and shorts, the button downs? Be still my heart.

Can you say, PREP?!

And, yes. Sometimes I even pop his collar.

November 4th: More Than Just Election Day

There are 57 days remaining until the end of the year. That means 2009 is right around the corner.

Before 2009, though, three very important dates will pass:

First, my birthday. We all know how important birthdays are, right?

Second, Christmas. I have always loved Christmas. It’s my favorite time of year. Between a birthday and Christmas, you really can’t go wrong.

Third, I will be graduating. Finally. I have worked so hard to finish up my Smith degree, and I just can’t wait to be done with it. I’ll by no means be finished with school, but I will have completed my Bachelor’s degree, and only one semester late.

It’s too bad all of this is happening at once, though. If you have a birthday near Christmas (Hi, Anglophile Football Fanatic!) you understand how much it can be a bummer. Now throwing my College graduation on top of that? Kinda sucks. But it will be an exciting week with a birthday celebration, Christmas, and a graduation party.

On top of all of that, I should be hearing from Nursing Schools regarding my application for entry in in Fall of 2009 sometime this winter. My fingers are crossed.

Now please, go vote. Sure, November 4th is a lot more than just election day: it’s Laura Bush’s birthday and Flag Day in Panama. But if you do nothing else today and you live in the United States, vote. After you vote, you can get all sorts of free stuff. So, if you need a good reason to vote, vote to get free stuff. Also, vote because it is your right. Every vote counts.