Switching Teams

So I changed gyms the other day. It’s nothing personal against the previous gym, but when my psychiatric meteorologist told me that the one near his office had both an indoor AND outdoor pool I decided that I needed to check it out. I am possibly the world’s worst swimmer but I love being in the water in spite of my desperate fear of putting my face in it. A semi-outdoor lap pool in a Texas summer is exactly what the doctor ordered, literally.

There was something else that interested me. Classes. I have a serious love for fitness classes. Something about the instructor and the camaraderie motivates me and I was terribly interested in what they had to offer. I actually hadn’t hit the gym since I started my new job, and the location plus my schedule made it a little hard to go. This gym is – no joke – about 5 minutes from my clinic and has spin classes available before my shift. There is no longer any excuse for me not to go.

The first thing I learned is that going to the gym after work sucks. I’m tired, my feet hurt, and I smell like dog. If I go in the morning, I’m energized and ready for a day of gastric distress (shout out to my new probiotics) and inappropriate (in a good way) texts from my practice manager. Yeah, work’s still pretty good most days.

The second thing I learned is that Zumba is not for me. It ties in with the first thing, because the classes are at 7:00 PM, but the main thing is that I felt so damn awkward in it. Not only that, but there was literally no instruction. Everyone else in the class knew what to do and the leader handled the class accordingly. I didn’t enjoy it, and at the end my knees hurt. So yeah, no more Zumba for me.

My spinning class is the polar opposite in terms of enjoyment and just about the perfect environment for me at 6:00 AM. They keep the studio lights off so the only light is from the main gym coming through the windows and the music is driving and uptempo so I get the wonderful feeling of riding a bike in a cave. It’s beautiful, even if it makes my ass hurt.

Today I went to the gym after the staff meeting and started up Couch to 5K again, this time on the fancy treadmills with televisions and fans. It went pretty well, and afterward I rewarded myself with ten laps in the pool. It was pretty nice, even if I did look like a distressed seal in my beat to shit swimsuit. And yeah, I know ten laps is nothing but it took me almost 25 minutes to do them so I feel okay about it.

After yesterday’s spin class, today’s running/walking, and then swimming, my legs are pretty knackered. Tomorrow I get to go back to spin class and start the process again. Aleve is gonna be my best friend again, and I’m gonna start the Osteo Bi-flex again too. I’m grateful to RJ for giving me new running shoes, which I tried out for the first time today. They feel good. I feel good.

Maybe I’ll swim tomorrow too.


Tasuki Project – Jodee Rose

Here is the first piece I have received in my collection of Tasuki art. It is by the delightful Jodee Rose, who also goes by @fattieart on Twitter and is the mind behind Da Cheeseblarg, which is lovely and you should read. Once you read one post, it’s hard to stop. She not only drew him for me, she colored it too!

art by Jodee Rose 2013art by Jodee Rose 2013

I love that it’s Eikouden Tasuki. Y’know, the series where I no longer feel like a cradle robber (at least until I hit 40 and can call myself a cougar). Ahem.

Anyway, thank you Jodee!

Making An Example

Today during the tech meeting (the vibe of which was actually very positive and non-threatening), I got made an example of.

You see, I’m terrified of dental radiography. I might have mentioned this. The thought of doing dentals literally made me sick to my stomach. Whenever I saw one on the schedule I considered calling in with West Nile or something. I watched YouTube videos. I studied the dental radiography textbook. It just. Wouldn’t. Stick.

So last week there was this dental and I was as terrified as ever. They handed me the probe and told me to go to town. So I did, shaking the whole time. And that’s when the doc told me I did a good job (see yesterday’s post). The rest of the day was kind of lousy but for a couple of hours I was in my happy place.

Today at the tech meeting, we were talking about “you don’t know how much you don’t know until you need to know it.” Also about confidence. The practice manager, Mo, gave me a shout out and said that she was proud of me for stepping up and doing the rads even though I was scared. Then the head tech said that she saw my confidence this morning because we needed to do a film of the cat’s incisors and instead of fumbling around, I grabbed the probe and took the shot and that everyone should follow my example. It made me feel good.

You know how they say it takes two months for every good job to turn to shit? Well, I’m coming up on my three months and while I’ve had a lot of stressful days I feel like the overall vibe of the clinic is a good one. Our practice manager actually listens to and addresses our concerns, and she is someone I feel I can easily talk to about issues. The doc I work for is very critical and picky, but I’ve kind of got an idea of what he wants. And my coworkers are, well, respectful. No one makes fun of anyone else, whenever we laugh it’s with one another instead of at one another, and everyone works hard every day.

All I ever wanted out of a job was a place where I could work long-term and feel comfortable. I’m still hesitant to say that things are peachy because I’m seriously gun-shy, but right now I’m happy. Mostly.

You Had ONE Job.

Ha ha ha, what am I saying? Oh, right, I GOT A JOB. In case you were wondering why I never update this thing anymore, it’s because I not only got a job, it’s also because I just finished studying like a madwoman for my state exam to get back my credentials as a Registered Vet Tech. And even though I haven’t seen the results yet, I would like to go ahead and let you know that I kicked that scantron’s ASS.

The job has been going well. It has its ups and downs, like any job, and there have been some days lately that I have been pretty stressed. Friday I ate 10 Tums over the course of the day for various reasons. Immodium, Pepto, and I have become besties, as well as my Ativan and Xanax (not at the same time, you goof). I am a ball of stress, constantly worrying that I’ll make a mistake and get fired. That’s normal with experiences like mine, right?

Anyway, I have about two weeks to go before I will be through my 90 day learning period and while I am still terrified of dental radiography, the doc said he gave my last set of rads “a solid B+.” Coming from him – he’s super-hypercritical – that was like saying he was giving me a key to the clinic. (j/k, I already have a key. And an alarm code. I rule.)

Now that I’m getting paid on a regular basis, I have embarked on a project that has been in the back of my mind for a long time. I call it the Tasuki Project and it is fantastic. Basically I commission different artists to draw my beloved manga husband of (OH MY GOD) 17 years in their own styles and collect them, to be hung in my manga library like the shrine to Gen-chan that he deserves. I plan on posting them here as I get them, of course. Because why shouldn’t you be subjected to my insanity?

And now, to put on my scrubs again and go up to care for a hospitalized patient. Glamour and glitter, fashion and fame, and all that jazz.

Yes, I did just go with both Jem and Chicago. What of it?

Two Things!

First off, I had a working interview yesterday! That meant I had to dig out my scrubs and pray that they still fit. They did, and I didn’t even look like a sausage that popped its casing. Winning.

It was really nerve-wracking at first because I hadn’t even been in a veterinary clinic for over a year. And not in a general practice clinic for a year before THAT. So the first thing I did when I woke up was dig out my old radiology textbook and start reading until I felt I was up to par.

Right away, the other techs and I got along. We talked about where we’d worked before (one of them worked at one of the same places I worked!) and a little about our backgrounds. I helped monitor anesthesia, held for procedures, and at one point drew blood on a patient that the others couldn’t get a drop from. Winning. Again.

I came home after talking to the doc again and tried to take a nap but failed because of the bad case of nerves I had worked myself into. He said he’d let me know by Friday afternoon, so I expected a whole day of freaking out and wondering if they had someone else in mind. If you know me, this is not unusual.

I finally managed to doze off after wrapping myself in a cocoon of blankets (Mister E stole mine so I had to get another out of the closet), and I was just getting to the good part in a dream about a concert pianist when I was awakened by my MC Frontalot ringtone. I recognized the number so I leapt out of bed, ran to the kitchen and answered with my “I AM NOW COMPLETELY SOBER/NO I WAS NOT ASLEEP” voice.

I guess the interview went really well because I got the job. I start Monday at the exciting time of 7:45, at which time I’m going to get my schedule. Double-plus bonus? I told them I was going to be out of town the 17th and 18th for the Ft. Worth Music Festival and to see The Dad and they said it was cool. Woo!

I’m so excited to be working again, you guys. It means I can go to Whole Foods and get chocolate soy ice cream again. It means we can go to Minnano and buy potato croquettes again. I can buy manga. Trader Joe’s edamame. More manga. I can go to Calhoun concerts and run up another $180 bar tab feeding the guys beer and shots (I bet you can imagine the look on my face when I woke up hungover with THAT receipt in my pocket).

Serious. Excitement.

The second thing is something I put on my other blog but I figured I should put it here in case you don’t follow it. I put Minor Side Effects – a story I wrote back in 2006 before the big “zombie boom” hit – over on Smashwords for the very reasonable price of “free.” Okay, actually it’s a pay-what-you-want book, but I just want you to read the damn thing. That means you can get yourself a fun little (okay, 55,000 words) book for free! You can also pay $0.99, $5, even $20 if you’ve got money lying around and you want to help feed my cats.

If you want to try before you buy, there’s an excerpt right here. Then you can hop on over to Smashwords and get your copy for whatever loose change you might have in the cushions of your couch. No couch money? No problem! All I really want is for you to read Minor Side Effects, enjoy it, and maybe share it with a friend. It’s my way of showing my readers (of my books and my blog) my appreciation for your support, even if the support is immoral at best.