Tuesday, December 31, 2013

The year that was, and the year that will be.

2013 was chock full of exciting and wondrous things, and a few things I'd rather never have happen again. I will forget to mention great swathes of things that mattered, I'm sure, but that is par for the course. The things that seemed so horrible at the time (I'm looking at you laptop crash!) have faded from the forefront of memory, as most unpleasant things tend to do.

It was an accident prone sort of year, between ending up on crutches and having my car totaled (and still feeling the ill effects of that, to be honest) I spent more time in doctor's offices than any other time in my life (excluding the years I actually worked in a doctor's office). But I'm still grateful that nothing worse came of it, and the kids were not with me when the accident happened.

Educationally, I received a master's degree and finished the PA program. It isn't a small thing for anyone, but considering my past it meant more than I had imagined. I still felt a bit silly in the black robe, but participating in the ceremony is something I'm glad I did for my family. The certification exam is still hanging over my head, but that is something that belongs to 2014.

Employment-wise, it was an interesting year. My husband's promotion determined where I'd be searching for a job, but it is something that he earned and something he worked very hard for. It did mean that I've become a labor department statistic (ie: the under employed), but considering the job market in my state (largely non-existent) I'm fortunate to have found something that allows me to actually live at home and work as a PA. And I couldn't have imagined a nicer place to start out working though, honestly. My boss is really great! The pathologists are nice too, but not as fun to hang out with!

Moving back to where I lived before would have been easier if we'd stayed in the same house, but... for the children's sake we uprooted ourselves and found a homey house in the best school district we could find. We're firmly ensconced on the other side of town from where we were before, which meant condensing the old house, the NC apartment, and whatever we inherited from my parents into the new house. So much moving! On the upside, we now have two extremely well seasoned cast iron pans (and so many magic bullet cups). Ah, but I loved house hunting. I always do. For the potential of the places, and the dreams of lives that may be lived there. I even tagged along when my best friends in Durham were looking for houses, I couldn't help myself.

July was miserable for all the goodbyes. School ended and most of us scattered, leaving behind the teachers, PAs, residents, pathologists, techs and everyone else that had been so important during our time there. And then I had to say goodbye to Durham itself, and all the places I'd come to know and like. It was a sad month, my best friend (since 1996!) moved far, far away and then I had to leave my other best friend there in NC while I moved far away. In a lifetime of moving and meeting strangers, there are three who have become my closest and best friends. One had to move away, one I had to leave behind, and the third I finally got to live with again after being apart for two years. The latter helped offset the former two. Getting to be all together as a family, and living with my dog again is good.

Things that I've never experienced before happened... for instance I was mentioned in the dedication of a book (I'm actually in a book circa 2000, but as one of dozens of people)! And we had a housewarming party, where forty people crammed into my kitchen while ignoring the entire rest of the ground floor. Oh! And I've started baking, which seems a small thing but it is something I've always been intimidated by but after the previously blogged about pie making weekend (inspired by a conversation at work one day), I've gotten more adventurous!

And as this has gotten quite long, I'll wrap it up. 2014 will be here soon! Let's hope it is a good one.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

And I've studied sporadically at best...

I need to dig out my sealed transcripts so I can sign up for the certification exam. Having a date will help with motivation, I think. November was good for studying, December has been very Christmasy with some interspersed studying.

On the upside, Christmas is now over and we had a lovely time. My family all came to visit for a few days and it was really nice, probably the least stressful Christmas we've ever had. We tried to model things on my husband's Swedish Christmas traditions and it went over well.

I worked Christmas Eve and the day after, which is about what you expect in the medical field. Things slow down but it doesn't stop because people like to get things done while their deductibles are already met. At least I didn't have to work Christmas Day, which my sister's had to do several times in the past.

Friday, December 13, 2013

December has been busy...

I don't know if traveling over Thanksgiving just put us behind, but December has felt like a month of catch up. My husband is working some evenings and some weekends, so I'm trying to pick up the household slack while studying and getting ready for Christmas and working. Somedays I just want to hang out in a blanket fort, reading something fictional and fun.

But work is still going well. Lots of babies being born apparently, but relatively slow on colons. Things come in waves with no rhyme or reason.

My student AAPA membership expires at the end of the month, so I should probably look into renewing that.

Sunday, December 1, 2013


My husband took advantage of some black Friday-esque sales at Brooks Brothers while we were driving back from our holiday trip to DC (since we don't have a store locally, it made sense to stop when we saw one). And it made me really grateful that I wear scrubs to work. I put a lot less thought into what I'm wearing on a given day to the hospital...light blue scrubs every day. They are hospital issue, which makes sense for the type of job I have. In a position where you could be soiled with chemicals and/or bodily fluids, it is comforting to know that non-contaminated clothing is as close as the break room.

Plus as a new grad, it was nice not to have to buy a new work wardrobe...