BY Amanda

06/01 Direct Link

This month marks the end of many things. End of semester (oh yes please), end of my last stats subject (double yes please) and end of the financial year. It's a time to review the budget, get ready to put in my tax return (and work out the most effective things to spend it on), plan what to do in semester break (cleaning and gardening feature highly unfortunately) and feels like the end and the beginning (which of course it is). It also is a time to start planning to cook cakes and puddings for Christmas. It's a busy month!

06/02 Direct Link
I love my house when it's peaceful. I wasn't well today and have spent a quiet, uneventful day at home alone. There hasn't really been anything profound occuring, just the hum of the washing machine, my occasional muttering as I grapple with the intricacies of assumptions for ANOVA and an adventurous bird who is oblivious to the noise of the traffic as it whistles cheerfully in a nearby tree. My peaceful existence is shattered as family members arrived home, the worries of their day are expressed and turbulence reigns once more. But the peace was really nice while it lasted.
06/03 Direct Link
I try really hard to find something positive about each day. I'm not suggesting that everyone should walk around in a false euphoria - that's delusional. But, all too often we concentrate on the negatives and ignore the positives. I guess the negatives are often more impacting and attention-getting, but the perceptions that we have are generally skewed. As proof, I offer my post of yesterday. "A quiet, uneventful day"... It was great! Serene and peaceful, productive and satisfying, and yet there was little spectacular to write about. I'm thankful for days where there is little to write about.
06/04 Direct Link
This is the first Saturday I haven't had outings planned in a long time. I try to make sure that Saturday night is mine. The rest of the week is for study, Sunday is predominantly for church and family, Saturday day time is for family, housework and study, but Saturday night is mine! I take time to see a show, visit friends, or relax. But, not this week. Exams are looming and all available hours are freserved for study. Hopefully the extra effort will reap the rewards I need, but I'll be glad to get my Saturday nights back.
06/05 Direct Link

Making a decision before you are faced with all the confounding pressures of a situation is the smartest way to choose the right thing to do. For example, if you decide beforehand that you will always be honest, then when you are faced with the temptation of telling a lie, your actions are easy. Despite the temptation to do otherwise, you've already decided on your course of action. I find Sunday's are a similar issue for me. Due to religious reasons I have chosen not to work, and not to study. When faced with a conflict my action is clear.

06/06 Direct Link
To qualify yesterday's entry. It is supposed to be clear, and I feel better when I stick to what I've previously decided. There are occasional times, such as when exams are looming, that it would be really, really tempting to just work through. But, I've made a decision and a promise that I won't. Sunday is a special day. It's not just about going to church, it's the whole day that is special. I don't really care if that makes me unusual or unpopular - that's how it is for me. Bottom line, I feel better when I'm true to myself.
06/07 Direct Link
I'm really disappointed in you; and cross with myself that I'm using this post to express it instead of telling you how I feel. Perhaps it's safer this way. At least I won't say anything in anger (or hurt) that will bring a wedge between us. It's your birthday. I've messaged you and tried to ring and you can't even acknowlege it. Your not just some acquaintance I think of you as one of my children. Unless you want something I know I won't hear from you.  I can't force us to be close but I am disappointed.
06/08 Direct Link

There's nothing to write about today. My day has been filled with work and study. There's been no time for anything else, and there won't be until after my exam next week. I'm getting really tired and it is now just a matter of digging deep and soldiering on.

I'm quite sure this post is boring enough without going into the intracacies of statistics and yet there is nothing else in my head...

Work, study, work, study, work, study, work, study,work, study, and for a change, study, study, study. Tuesday is too soon but can't come quickly enough.

06/09 Direct Link
The panic is now starting to set in. I don't know enough, am not smart enough, don't have a good enough memory. Nothing is sinking in and I'm convinced I'm going to fail. It doesn't matter how much I study, or how much others tell me that I'll be fine. It also doesn't matter that I feel this way before every exam and then get really good marks. In fact, tonight, none of it is relevant as this panic and despondency permeate my soul. I sigh, take a deep breath, wipe away the tears and open my books again.
06/10 Direct Link

There's a lot riding on this exam. I won't fail the subject, but not getting a high distinction is equivalent to failing the subject when it comes to being invited to do honours. I'm currently sitting on 80% for the subject and need to get a minimum of 90% in the exam to get the grade I need. That's a really big ask! I'm honestly not sure if it's achievable. The pressure is really starting to tell as Ipush my body to ridiculous limits to achieve this goal. I'm very, very tired and ready for semester to finish.

06/11 Direct Link
I'm on the downward track. Just this weekend to get through and I can take a break. I long for a day relaxing and doing just what I want to, whether that is lots or nothing. So just long as it doesn't involve a text book! I can feel my mind wandering to my next set of subjects and I make a mental note to look at what text books I need AFTER Tuesday. Getting side tracked is sooo easy to do. I lie down with formulas and snippets of information "I just might need" rolling around in my head.
06/12 Direct Link
Rationed sleep doesn't make for a good study buddy. Six hours is the maximum I can allow myself right now. There really is way to much to do, too much to remember and accomplish. Every task is taking much, much longer than I'd anticipated and I feel old and slow and dumb! I need sharpness of mind and clarity of thought, not this fuddled old brain that is struggling to keep up. It isn't true that what man can conceive he can achieve. I can conceive lots of things that my uncooperative body won't let me achieve. 
06/13 Direct Link

Today we celebrate the Queen's birthday. At least the rest of the country may well be celebrating. I have my exam tomorrow and my day has been mostly filled  with revision and study. I've checked the forum a few times and others are also stressing well. We've tried to encourage each other and dispell nerves with reassurances of how well we've all done until now. It's been a harrowing semester and the need to excel has taken it's toll on most of us. This is a very competitive degree, but there are very few who aren't team players.

06/14 Direct Link
Invigilators are paid simply to make sure that you follow the rules. It's not rocket science. So, do you think it might be a smart idea if they actually knew the rules? So, I don't understand why our invigilator, lovely lady though she is, couldn't get the time of the exam correct, or how many pages of notes we were allowed to take in. And I also don't understand how an exam paper could have missing information! If you want me to answer the questions, giving me the right data might be a good start. I'll apply to resit.
06/15 Direct Link
I can't resit that nightmare of an exam until October when the next exam session is organized. It feels so unfair. That means I'll actually need to remember what I've learned this semester while trying to learn info from two new subjects. This could be a very challenging semester. I'm not very impressed. On the good side, there's nothing I can do this semester break so I might as well enjoy myself. My list of things to do while not doing anything is long and exciting. It includes a pyjama day, movies, a little spring cleaning and lots of sleep!
06/16 Direct Link
I had planned to do so much today. My first day's break from both study and work in a very long time. Unfortunately, my body has different ideas. I'm exhausted! I've tried to do the spring cleaning, but I just keep "sitting" and then I realise an hour has gone by and I've done nothing - again! I'm not used to my body demanding time out. I am planning a yummy tea for us though. It's unusual for me to have time to cook and just be "mum". Everyone needs a mum now and then, no matter how old you are.
06/17 Direct Link
I have more energy today, but instead of cleaning as planned I have spent the day enjoying myself. A trip to the movies, lunch with a friend, time reading a novel. What bliss! What luxury!!! I could get used to this life for at least a few weeks. Then I'd get bored with the lack of achievement and set my sights higher again. But, I'm beginning to realise that I need to schedule regular time off. Time away from family, grandchildren and responsibilities, so that when I come back I enjoy those things. It's time to take care of me.
06/18 Direct Link
It is Saturday and I'm enjoying being a grandma. When my grandchildren are good they are delightful. When they aren't so good, they're still wonderful, but not quite such a delight. It's hard to be good when you are three and full of energy. But today was one of those perfect days when all went well. We cooked a chocolate cake in the shape of a train, with lots of carriages. The intricacies of the mold were lost when we put the icing on, but it didn't matter, it tasted great! Home made pizza for tea! Special, precious, irreplacable days.
06/19 Direct Link
My grandhchildren have this sixth sense when I am in a rush. I need to be at church before 9am as I'm responsible for the music. If I was smart I'd get up earlier and pre-empt their requests, but I'm not - especially in holidays. Today they smelt my toast. You can't resist a 3 year old saying "Ma ma (he can't say grandma yet), yumms for me too". Then his brother appears and it's breakfast all round, and I'm late again. I eat my toast in the car carelessly dropping crumbs everywhere and make it with seconds to spare.
06/20 Direct Link
Another day to myself. I can't explain the thrill of the luxury of time without pressure. I spent the day getting new tyres for my car and then ambling around the city. I'd planned to see a movie, but there were so many  books on sale that they took precedence. I'd much rather become absorbed in a book than see a movie and the specials were so good, I'll be absorbed in a book for many, many hours to come. Books really are one of my passions. The written word can take me to places a movie never could.
06/21 Direct Link
Today my knee has decided to play up. I can hardly straighten it without significant pain. So much for the spring cleaning. However, there is always a silver lining, and this one equates to more reading time as I give in to the enforced rest. I'll see the GP this afternoon, but for now, it's nice to have the excuse. Of course, each time I look up at the extractor fan that needs cleaning, or the curtains I meant to wash I wish the day had gone as planned. But I can guarantee that they will still be there waiting tomorrow.
06/22 Direct Link
I find myself wishing I had another couple of weeks off with nothing specific to do rather than go back to work tomorrow. Instead I will make the most of today and remind myself that it wouldn't feel so great if there wasn't a contrast. Both knees have fluid build up and we're not quite sure why. Anyway - sore knees or not, there are some things I want to achieve today and I'm determined to get them done. The extractor fan now glistens, the house is spick and span, and I've seen another movie. A fitting end to my break.
06/23 Direct Link
Now I know why I do not take long breaks. A backlog of a week's work is quite enough to come back to. Reality has hit hard today. It feels like every medical officer in the department has waited for my return to discuss their specific query or problem and none of the backlog has even been looked at yet. I guess there is always tomorrow. I will sleep well tonight. At least I can go home and relax, cook a meal and relax some more rather than forcing my reluctant brain to comprehend five hours of study. 
06/24 Direct Link
Ordinarily I'd be delighted it was Friday. Especially as D is going away for the weekend and I'll have the house completely to myself. However, there's so much work to get through I wonder if I'll leave here before Saturday. I find it helps if I put things in piles and label them. They're not done, but it helps me feel as if it is manageable and organized at least. I hate having a messy desk and being in a muddle. I've achieved that much at least today plus managed a few of the more urgent tasks. Yay for me!
06/25 Direct Link
Well it was supposed to be a wonderful, carefree, solitary weekend. Instead I got three quarters of the way to Mannum when I receieved the first phone call. Mates don't ignore you when things go pear shaped. Friends worth being called friends inspire you to be the best you can be, not behave in a way that makes you uncomfortable to be around them. I'm sorry it didn't work out. Hours later you arrived home and it was easy to see this had been the worst 24 hours for you. You're home now, you're safe and I'm a mum again.
06/26 Direct Link
Life's back to normal this morning and I'm ok about it. Almost late to church again, the mad dash to get out of the house - I really need to get up earlier - the afternoon nap, the evening debrief. Hugs from grandchildren, domesticity, planning for the upcoming week. We had friends come for dinner and it was lovely to spend time with them. We talked of special things that had touched our hearts. Memories of times bitter-sweet came flooding back and I realised how much I've grown. How much we've grown. How glad I am to be who I am.
06/27 Direct Link

Our secretary messaged this morning. Her precious Milo passed away in the early hours of this morning. He meant the world to her family. He was the child she couldn't have. They will miss him terribly. I doubt she will be at work at all this week. My heart goes out to her. Reality also hits and means I pretty much have 2 jobs to do. The task list is getting longer by the minute. I'm very glad I had my break. At least I have energy. A few carefully worded emails will induce team work and we'll get through.

06/28 Direct Link
Some people might think taking a week off to cope with the loss of a pet is an over reaction. Until a couple of years ago, that would have been my take on the situation. But, when you adore them as much as she does. When they are such an integral part of your family that they substitute for the children you can't have. When they bring you the unconditional joy and comfort that humans sometimes can't. Then I can begin to understand the devestation when they finally pass away. Her pain's tangible and only time can heal the wound.
06/29 Direct Link
It has been a day of finalising issues and making new beginnings and I feel both optimistic and timid. I feel liberated that I have finally said how I feel. It's not okay for me to have the left over crumbs of your life, to always be the instigator of contact and invite myself to your house. It isn't that way when you want something and it isn't okay when you don't. I deserve better than that. If I lose you because of this, then, I didn't have you in the first place. Sadly, I suspect that is the case.
06/30 Direct Link

New beginnings can be daunting and I'm a little daunted. You've been an integral part of my life for many years, and now you won't be. I will walk my path alone. That isn't to say that I won't have friend - I am blessed with more than my fair share of wonderful friends - but you, who knows me like no other and still loves me anyway, will not walk my path with me any longer. That's a little sad, but it's ok. This was my choice and it's time. An eagle flies alone and it's my time to fly.