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BY Amanda

06/01 Direct Link
It always unnerves me when the doctor's room calls. Today when  they rang I couldn't take the call, and they left no message. It's probably just to let me know there has been a cancellation and ask me if I want to go in early, but now that all the test results are back I find myself feeling a little unnerved by the number on my phone and the recorded message signifying a closed office when I try to return the call. It will all be revealed soon enough, but its still unnerving never the less.
06/02 Direct Link
It's time to focus on exams. I've organized to take the next couple of days off to prepare and next week I sit both exams. It always amazes me that people think I'm so organized. I'm really not kidding when I say that if the exam was today I'd fail. There just isn't time to fit everything in and so I rely on last minute cramming and faith. Eeenie, meenie, minie, mo is much more effective after a prayer! On the bright side, my study plan is set and I'm confident I can do this. Roll on semester break!
06/03 Direct Link
It's been an awesome day. I've studied, undisturbed, for hours. I have accomplished so much more than I thought I would and that is great. I'm tired, but it's a "good tired". I need to stop now and rest. There is always the temptation to look at one more concept, just a couple of more pages. Then my eyes start to blur and my head starts to ache and with resignation I realise that my body won't manage any more today and I close the books. I spent 6 years not accomplishing anything, the drive to achieve now is huge.
06/04 Direct Link

Today is much busier than yesterday and it is with some frustration that I realize I won't manage to get everything on my  list accomplished. Appointments all morning mean that I have started to study later in the day and there is a full 12 hours of tasks to do. Once again, I ask myself why I leave things to the last minute? But I didn't really, it's just that there is always so much to do that "last minute" eventually occurs. I know I could lessen my workload, but then I'd regret things I discarded.

06/05 Direct Link

My brain has decided its time to stop thinking. Its been a very full day of studying. I started at 8am and its now nearly 1am. There are so many things that I still don't know and probably need to know for the exam on Monday, but I can feel my body literally shutting down and no more will go into my head. I've done as much as I can and can honestly say that I've given this my best effort. I can't ask any more of myself than that. Whatever will be, will now be. Its time for bed!

06/06 Direct Link

It's Sunday and that's a special day for me. It's not only the day that I go to church and reaffirm the commitments I've made, but  a time for quiet reflection, rejuvenation and removal from worldly things. It's not just an event, its a whole day. I don't shop on a Sunday, not only because it would be out of place, but also because I don't want to remove the opportunity for others to be able to do these things that I consider are special and important. I always feel better after Sunday - it gives me perspective. 

06/07 Direct Link
My first exam today and I did ok. All that hard work paid off. The exam was fair and did what it was supposed to do, assess your knowledge. It was really comforting to know that I knew more than I thought I did. My secret fear (that's obviously not such a secret anymore) is that the next lot of study will push all of this knowledge out of my head again and I'll be a lousy psychologist because I won't retain and recall all I need to know. Its a daunting responsibility undertaking a profession that actively helps others. 
06/08 Direct Link
Well, I asked for additional feedback regarding an assignment and I got it. Now I'm overwhelmed. Although I got decent marks but you'd never guess it by the comments. I thought I'd done a really good job, but by the feedback there was so much wrong with the report that its really dulled the mark. I'm feeling really flat. I can't think about it any more because I have another exam that I'm seriously under prepared for in 2 days time and I need all my energy and concentration for that. I'll revisit this later when I'm not so fragile.
06/09 Direct Link
I'm beyond tired. I can't think anymore - seriously. That's a phrase that is flippantly used, but I mean it literally. My brain has gone into holiday mode a day too early and I can't bring it back. I read and re-read with the same effect, I might as well be staring into space. Nothing is going in anymore, its as if I've reached my quota and my brain has hung a "No More Room" sign out. It literally hurts to think and my eyes will no longer focus. I'd like to do more, but I'm at my limit.
06/10 Direct Link

As hard as I try to revisit subject matter before my exam today, my brain is still resolutely defying me. It's decided that its time to stop and there is nothing I can do to counteract it. I can't even take in the MCQ's on the website anymore, so I've stopped and rested. I have no idea how I will go this afternoon. Please brain, be there when I need you. Please help me to recall the things I've mercilessly hammered into you in the last few weeks. Please don't let me down now! Deep breath - I can do this!!

06/11 Direct Link
I'm done for this semester and any word I try to find to describe the relief is inadequate. The exam was ok, I finished in just over an hour rather than the two and a half allocated and I'm happy with my effort. Now its time to focus on the convention. Over a hundred single people to plan activities for this weekend. Our service project fell through a couple of hours ago and I have to come up with another one and resource it before bed and run a games night in the meantime. It's hard work but not unachievable.
06/12 Direct Link
A brilliant day!!! The games night was a huge success. Strangers are now at least acquaintances, and hopefully will progress to friends by the end of the weekend. The service project really had a profound effect on some people and I couldn't have hoped for a better outcome. The botanical gardens was a real tonic and the dinner dance as we cruised down the Port River was energizing. The only glitch was zealous bus driver who was determined to give us a city tour despite our frustration with less than an hour to prepare for dinner. 
06/13 Direct Link

An exceptional day - I've met so many amazing people. I've been really humbled by their kindness to each other. Many have a tragic story and have been battered and scarred, and yet they've picked themselves up, dusted themselves off and continued on their journey. Instead of being bitter about how hurt they've been, they've used their experiences to help them become stronger, wiser and kinder. They have an empathy that can only come from experiencing heartwrenching pain, and I feel so privileged (if a little ashamed at my inadequacies) to have met them. They've left me determined to do better.

06/14 Direct Link
So much in my head, so few words. These things are important - friendship, showing love, being kind, family, patience, tolerance, making the most of every day, being the best person you can be, looking at the positives, minimizing the negatives, gentleness, honesty, integrity, morality, having fun, caring more about people than things, smiling, laughing, helping others, trying to see the best in others, genuinely trying to understand, admitting weaknesses, taking time out when you need to, sometimes just stopping and being still, appreciate beauty in all forms, praying, music, singing. I've experienced them all this weekend and I'm so blessed.
06/15 Direct Link
I met him at convention and he is really special. I watched his incredible kindness with an older lady who was having a difficult time and was really touched. Nothing was too much trouble and he was always helpful. He was a true gentleman and in my world they don't come along every day. He was calming and accepting when I was exasperated and inspired me to be a better person. I really like that. I liked his common sense, practical approach. He asked for my email address and phone number. I hope he calls.  
06/16 Direct Link
It's amazing how quickly life can turn upside down. It seems the only thing that is constant is change. I'm not opposed to change, but change for its own sake is impotent and futile. If it's not broken, why try to fix it? In addition, it frustrates the heebyjebby's out of me when we don't learn from the mistakes of previously implemented change. If it didn't work last time, what makes them think it will now? It seems once again we are under restructure on the pretence of saving money. I think they're just moving deck chairs on the Titanic. 
06/17 Direct Link
I want to be kinder, really I do! I want to be able to look at others and put aside minor frustrations. To say only positive things, to be thought of as the person who never has a bad word to say about anyone. I want to set an example for others and inspire them to be better people. I want to promote unity, tolerance, and yes, even love. I really, really want to do those things and be that kind of person. Then he walks through my door and I realize I have a long, long way to go.
06/18 Direct Link
My first time with writer's block while on this site. I think, go away and think some more...  and ... no - nothing pops into my mind as being worthy to write about. "But, there must be something. How can one go through a whole day without having something noteworthy happen?" I chide myself. However, try as I might, nothing comes to mind. This has to be the longest hundred words I've ever written, and so I think some more, convinced there has to be something. But... no, and so I resign myself to writing a page of "nothing".
06/19 Direct Link
My day started at 5am when I crawled into bed next to my 2 year old grandson and finished around midnight when my 7 year old grandson finally went to sleep. The hours in between were filled with precious moments. My 10 month old granddaughter jumping up and down with delight to see me; cuddling the 10 week old who is just beginning to smile; sword fights in the back yard while tripping over the dog. Cuddles, smiles, giggles and laughs; the occasional tear as someone takes someone else's toy and singing songs in the car on the way home...
06/20 Direct Link
My grandson has started to talk. True, he was a bit of a late bloomer, but he is making up for it now. He's managing to string words together and while we're not quite at complete sentences yet, he can certainly make his wishes known. The key now is to encourage him to communicate with words rather than tantrums and tears. We are getting there. I think one of the most wonderful sounds to come out of a child's mouth, next to mum and dad has to be "grandma". However, I wish he'd waited a while longer to learn "no".
06/21 Direct Link
Where did the weekend go? I feel like I've only blinked and it's Monday again already. My body protests that a weekend filled with grandchildren does not equal anything near a rest and it would now like a day off to recover. But that is not to be, and so I stand under a hot shower trying to ease the aches of this tired body. I make a vow to get fitter and healthier. However, that dissipitates significantly, in both desire and intensity, as I reach work and head for my morning hot chocolate. Oh well, welcome to Monday!
06/22 Direct Link
I'm becoming acutely aware of my shortcomings. Please don't misunderstand - I'm not doing the whole "I'm a terrible person" thing, but I have been surrounded by lovely, kind, gentle people just lately and I've realised there are some areas that I would really like to improve about myself. In the past I've beaten myself up over not being good enough, in fact, I've pretty much blamed myself for anything bad that might have happened, and not only things that have happened to me, but things that have happened to others around me. This is a much healthier outlook on life.
06/23 Direct Link

Blaming yourself for things that aren't your fault is a trap that those who have been abused can easily fall into. If you've been told often enough that you're no good, or stupid then eventually you start to believe it. You become confused about what you could have done that resulted in being punished, but figure you must have done something. You struggle, in vain, to work out what it was, so that you don't repeat the offence, and so inevitably, when you are punished again, it reinforces all the negative things you've been told.

06/24 Direct Link
It's worse when you see your children getting hurt. You've been told that everything is your fault, you're stupid or bad, or both, and so you start to believe that your children's experiences are also your fault. Again, you're not quite sure how it all works. You agonize over ways to make it better. You walk on proverbial egg-shells trying to make everything perfect so no one gets hurt, or even uncomfortable and then your heart sinks when it doesn't work out. It's harder when its your kids - much, much harder, and life begins to feel quite hopeless.
06/25 Direct Link
Because you would never dream of hurting someone else, you rationalise that you must have done something quite terrible to be hurt this badly, but you just can't work out what the hell it is. Perhaps its because you're so stupid - a fool could work it out, so why can't you? Obviously you deserve it, or it wouldn't be happening. Even when you start to realise you actually don't deserve it, you still blame yourself, because staying around for it just confirms that you're dumb. It's still your fault that your kids are unhappy, after all - you chose their father.
06/26 Direct Link
It took me a very long time to work out that it was never about me and I wasn't responsible for the whole world's pain and misfortune. At times, I still find myself wanting to rescue and then feeling like superbitch when I don't, but I'm getting better and wiser. A lifetime of abuse can take its toll, but recovery and healing is possible - I'm living proof. It helps to be out of the situation, in fact it's absolutely imperative. It also helps to have caring people around you who can show you what love really looks like.
06/27 Direct Link
It's hard not to let the pendulum swing too far the other way. I used to be such a push over, now I worry now that I'm too critical. I'm also really uncomfortable in some situations, which leads people to believe that I'm aloof or a snob - if only they knew! It's been lovely just lately to be around people who are self-assured, kind, generous, gentle and tolerant. People who you can be at peace around. I'm lucky to have friends that not only give me a great example, but who extend all of those wonderful attributes to me.
06/28 Direct Link
And so that brings me back to my earlier statement - I'd really like to change some things about me. I'd like to be kinder, more self-assured (genuinely rather than just fooling people into believing it) and more tolerant and gentle. I laugh quite a bit these days and try not to sweat the little stuff, but I could do better. But now its a healthy journey that comes from a desire from self-improvement rather than an unhealthy desire to recompense the world for my existence. Now, I can acknowledge the good things I do and plan healthy improvements.
06/29 Direct Link
It's Tuesday again, and predictably an insanely busy day. However, today emotions are also running high. We have angry staff, attacking staff, tearful staff and even staff seeking legal advice. There is definately something in the air today that makes me want to duck for cover and pray for tomorrow to hurry up. I crave a quiet spot where I can actually concentrate for more than a couple of minutes at a time and peace reigns.  I guess its important to remember that some days you're the pigeon and some days you're the statue. Today, I'm the statue. 
06/30 Direct Link
Today is the last day of the financial year. It's usually the time when those who have money look at last minute bargains and those who don't have money wish they'd been better at saving or dream of spending their tax returns. For me, this is the time of the year where I hope and pray that whatever tax rebate I get will cover my school fees. At least I won't finish this degree with a huge debt and that's a positive. I just hate the seemingly endless bundle of forms that require completion to make it all happen.