Thursday, January 31, 2008

[Nap, Please!]

Migraines are evil... evil, I tell you!

Once again, I've graded next to no papers.  I'd like to, but I can't think through haze.  I guess I'll let class go a little early and go home to see if a nap will fix what ails me.  Hopefully so, because I really wanted to have all the papers commented on by tomorrow.  

Crap.  Stupid head.  No mercy, I tell you.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

[16 Days to Singles' Awareness Day 2008!]

Looks like another anti-V-Day for me.  Oh, well... I think I'd miss making fun of it if I weren't single.


Sunday, January 27, 2008

[Brace Yourselves - It's a Doozy]

Against my better judgment (because I have something due tomorrow morning at 9:00, and I've not even begun it), I'm making a post.  Frankly (I'm warning you ahead of time), I've been feeling the cramps and it's time for a little emotional diarrhea.  My apologies to the easily nauseated and traumatized amongst you for my choice of words.  That's just me.

I guess I'll start at the beginning.  Break was nice... to a point.  Actually, it was quite lovely not doing any homework for a month and soaking up a few rays.  I didn't even sunburn, and Lord knows that's quite an accomplishment!  In that respect, Hawaii was amazing.

However, an increased awareness of suffering in the world also broke my heart.  Never before, when I'd visited the islands, had I seen so much homelessness and pollution.  Everywhere I went, I saw scruffy-looking men and women pushing shopping carts, begging for bus fare.  In fact, even when we went to I'olani Palace and walked the grounds, I saw people sleeping on the park benches.  In the midst of lush foliage and majestic architecture, all I could see was the abuse commercialism has brought to the islands.  As I walked down the canal, I spied signs warning people to stay out of the water due to its high levels of contamination.  I spotted piles of trash, including shopping carts and coat hangers, snagged on the rocks, and water that had once flowed crystal clear now possessed a thick, murky brown.  Halfway through my vacation, my delight tranfigured into contant heartache and nausea.  I could see that, on O'ahu anyway, we had destroyed acres of lush natural beauty, all in the name of economy and opportunities that many never actually have gotten to enjoy.  

Furthermore, I spent three weeks in a tiny room with my parents.  These two people, bless their hearts, have the best of intentions--always.  But the truth is, I cannot spend more than a week at home without losing five years of progress in overcoming miles of low self-esteem.  Before break, I knew I was gaining a little weight, but I could still look in the mirror and appreciate the Lord's master touch in creating me, flaws and all.  I even felt pretty.  A month later, every time I look in the mirror, I only see fat, dark circles under my eyes, a droopy eyelid, and confusion in my eyes.  I've spent, in the past few days, a good bit of time in prayer, trying to regain my sense of self-worth through His eyes, and I've made progress, but even last night, I spent about an hour bawling my eyes out, asking Him what could be so wrong with me that I only get attention from the wrong kinds of guys, and how many more times would I have to experience crushes and falling hard for guys who will never notice me--who will unknowingly break my heart, shattering it harder and in more scattered pieces with each break--before I will so much as go out on a date--just one--with a guy with whom there would be sincere mutual interest.  It hurts.  It hurts worse every time, and the last time, it took me almost a year before I could look at his name or see a picture of him without having to blink back tears.  I just don't know how many more times I can stand this.  I can't help falling--I wish I could.  Lord knows how I've tried to build up those walls.  

I know God is good, and I know, because I trust Him, that He has a purpose for this kind of pain and ongoing cycle of unrequited love/crushes.  Please don't mistake me there.  But the pain is real, and temptations grow constantly, especially when my self-esteem plummets.  I'm worn out from going around in circles like this.  

Furthermore (yes, there is more), I just don't feel like I can confide in my parents.  I know, very teenagery.  But honestly, sometimes it's like playing with dynamite.  Last night, for example, when I told my mom that our church is moving further north in Springfield (to a less safe part of town), she spent five minutes trying to talk me into going elsewhere.  I finally cut her off and told her that I'm not leaving my church home just because it's moving to a poorer section of town and that I can't live my life like that.  But she's so caught up in trying to protect me (and thus making me worry about her worrying too much) that I feel like I can't take a step forward without her having a heart attack for fretting.  I can't keep doing that!  I'm an adult now (yes, I finally admit it), and I have to live my own life.  Only problem is, my mom is who she is, and if you know her, well, you'll understand my dilemma.  Anyway, I'll do what I mean to do, but not without a great deal of trepidation, self-doubting, and just plain losing my mind.  

Even worse, when I'm in this kind of state, I have bad habit of mentally laying out all my disappointments (past, present, and yes, future) and studying them entirely too closely.  More than just singleness, poor self-esteem, and feeling out of the loop, lately I've been feeling a little jealous of those who have or will have children someday.  While I've always known that, if I get married, I'll adopt, I've also known that having children myself can never be an option.  Besides my own physical danger (misshapen uterus, the sac of spinal fluid located near the base of my spine), there is a one-in-two chance of my passing on the Nager Syndrome.  While I was blessed enough to have probably the mildest case in, well, history, if I had a child and passed this on to him or her, that child may not be so lucky.  I don't want to bring that kind of pain to a child, knowing my own experiences, when I know that risk is there.  Really, I accepted that reality when I was still a little girl; all the same, it feels like yet another thing of which I'll be left out.  That, too, hurts.

Do you see why I've been holding back in my blog entries lately?  I needed the presence of mind to be able to formulate my words coherently in the midst of all these thoughts racing through my brain.  I've just got a lot of confusion right now, and I'm battling with those voices that keep telling me I'm no good and I can't do what I need to do.  

Friends, I need prayer and affirmation.  I just got to the place where I'm not sincerely depressed, but I'm still borderline at times.  I'm really overwhelmed, emotionally and spiritually.  Daily, I'm battling temptations I've not had to really deal with since I was about 13 years old.   I feel like I'm under constant attack.  Pray, pleased, that I'll remember:

"We are pressed, but not crushed; persecuted, not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed; we are blessed beyond the curse, for His promise will endure, and His joy's gonna be my strength.  Though the sorrow may last for the night, His joy comes with the morning!"

Friday, January 25, 2008

[Attempting to Regrasp My Sanity]

I think my two most recent posts have set new records for lack of intelligence.  It's astounding, really.  I've just been a bit out of it with my antibiotics this week and last week, and while I have things to talk about, articulating them does not happen with ideal smoothness.  However, five minutes ago, I took my last antibiotic (finally!), so hopefully, I'll start making sense soon.

In fact, I think this evening or tomorrow morning might be a good time to talk about the vacation and why, if and when I go back to Hawai'i, it won't be to O'ahu.  

In the meantime, however, I have a class to teach and an hour in the rec center this afternoon.  Mom bought me some new jeans, and while one pair is pretty stinkin' comfortable, the other two pair (that I'm keeping) are a bit snug yet.  I will lose some of this weight however (I'm determined!), and I think that within the next 5-10 pounds off, they'll fit beautifully.  The one pair I'm not keeping, however, will not fit me in any facet of my adulthood.  I can't even get the buttons to meet, much less fasten.  I don't think I would've been able to fit in them at all after the age of 10, actually.  I know my limits--I will never be a size five (they're labeled 11, but I know better); I have hips and a butt when I'm at my ideal weight.  

Ah, well.  To school, to school.  

Thursday, January 24, 2008

[O...kay...]

The GA office is insane.  I don't think there's any more to add to that statement... 

"Don't let solid logic dissuade you from something you know is true."  There.  That sums it up.

For once in my life, I think I'm normal (by comparison).   

But it's amusing, if traumatizing at times.

When did I get so boring?  Seriously.  I have nothing useful to say... I just want to write.  The only problem is that I have nothing to say.  Yeah.  Okay.  That's all I've got.

Thank you for your time.

[/end weirdness]

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

[Yeah, don't ask.]

My sinus infection is nearly gone, but this nagging cough is hanging around like a persistent gnat that I just can't swat.  

I started exercising yesterday, again.  My arms, pecs, and butt hurt tonight.  A lot.  Yes, I'm whining.  Deal with it.  It's my blog and I'll whine if I want to, whine if want to, whine if I want to.  You would whine too if your muscles hurt you. (Ba, ba-ba-ba-ba-ba, ba!)

I'm still having a hard time getting back into the groove of things.  Maybe I'm just lazy... or maybe it's the drugs (antibiotics, natch).  I guess I'll know after Friday, when I finish them up.  

Well, this was officially a pointless post.  Where, oh where has my creativity gone?

Monday, January 14, 2008

[Be smart--don't waste the next five minutes of your life and read this entry]

Classes are back in action and... I have no opinion yet.  I'll let you know, perhaps, when I'm not so drugged up on cold meds.  

I haven't posted in a little while because I haven't had anything I wanted to discuss that I felt comfortable sharing with the cyber world (and my buds).  That, my friends, doesn't happen very often.  Usually, I'm pretty open with my struggles because I believe in vulnerability, but with my current struggles, things could easily be taken incorrectly.  That's hard for me.  

One thing I do want to express is frustration with men.  Yup, bitter single gal here.  Why is it, I ask, that I suddenly find myself the target of many come-ons (seriously, not bragging here... this is not the type of attention I want) from all the wrong guys (strangers, creepy old guys, the guys only interested in my, um, curves...)?  And why is it that, to my knowledge anyway, the right guys only see me as a sister-figure?  Seriously.  

I know it sounds completely junior-highish.  It feels that way too.   I just, argh.  Okay, so in Hawaii, I got a lot of male attention (for me, that is).  But it was pretty clear they weren't interested in me, per se, so much as a certain satisfaction.  Yes, I'm trying to be delicate here.  But the guys I would consider dating (guys I go to church with or school with that have the same faith) just keep on walking.  I think my signals have gotten crossed.  Or maybe I'm just being silly.

If you read this, you're a brave soul.  The inner-workings of Niki on cold medicines and hormonal insanity are not a pretty or sensible sight.  Yeah... Anyway, I spit some words out, so I think I've gotten a little off my chest.  

Another day of school awaits!  G'night!

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

[Another Year Has Come and Gone, and So Much Changed]

It's time for my annual New Year's Eve end-of-the-year reflection.  While most of you have already seen the ball drop, I still have another 2 and a half hours left before chaos erupts in the streets.

It's been a crazy ride.  This year, for the first time, I:
  • Worked night shifts--this only lasted a month, and frankly, I'm okay with that.  I like sleeping at night, it seems.
  • Hiked up a mountain--this morning, in fact.  Dad and I trekked up Diamond Head Crater to Le-ahi Summit, 560 feet above the crater floor--and let me tell you, it felt further.  We climbed three sets of stairs, each of at least 74, 99, and 54 steps.  And I'm more afraid of heights than I used to be, it seems.  Hehe.  I hugged the post the whole time I stood on the summit, mostly to keep the wind from blowing me off.  Oh, and I hate spiral staircases.  Just so you know.  But what a view!
  • I became a teacher, and I never thought I would.  God has a way of leading me down paths I never planned on.
  • I applied to, was accepted to, and attended grad school.  This, too, was not planned.
  • I had two drinks in one night.  And no, I don't plan to top that record.  That's my absolute limit.  This occurred at the luau last Friday night... and yes, I had a significant migraine the next day.  But, oh, I do enjoy those pina coladas.
  • I lived alone--completely alone.  Still do, actually.
  • I made a 4.0 for the first time since high school.  All this, while taking 10 hours and teaching six.  I can't believe it either!  But, gah, it was exhausting!  Just look at all the posts from this previous semester for proof.  So, I think I may survive.
  • I wrote a coherent 15-page paper.  My standing record before was a 12 page paper, and I can pretty confidently state that it was probably fairly rambly.
  • I got sixteen spider bites in one weekend.  Yes, that one bit--I mean, sucked--I mean, oh, I give up!  I can't really avoid a pun on this one.
  • I made a pumpkin pie... and it made me sick.  Ha.  I think it was the eggs, though... they tend to upset my stomach if they're not completely baked into the food.  
  • I faced real, sincere loneliness for an extended period of time,  I think it was actually November before I really got over it and started to make good friends with people.  I've always struggled with loneliness, but that was truly the pits.  
  • I spent approximately half of the year sick, whether sick to the point of going to the ER (in March) or fighting one sinus infection after another (February to April, and October to, well, now).  Yes, I'm in Hawaii, and I'm still going through about a half of a box of Kleenex every day.  I can't win. :)
  • Someone I know had a baby on my birthday (my cousin Chrystal, who is 2 and a half weeks younger than me, had a baby girl this year).  
  • I finally found my intended career--the one for which I feel entirely suited.  Amazing.
  • I stayed up for over 24 hours... more than once within a week.  Yeah.  Intense.
Crazy.

By the way, a Hawaii-trip post (all major moments to date) is forthcoming... but not tonight.  I need Midol now more than anything else.  Owie.