beccastareyes: (discourage dreams)
I've spent so much of February trying to prepare for interviews (and also being sick) that finding my 'normal' routine is hard. Today I have a couple more job applications to send out, and some science to do, and I should probably see if Mom tackled the Giant Laundry Folding Backlog, but it feels weird not prepping for something.

Anyway, I got back from my interview on 10th February, and after a couple days, got plane crud (aka a cold). I recovered, then managed to get norovirus, possibly from Dad's cooking*. Forty-eight hours before I needed to be on a plane for a job interview. So rather than write my teaching demo, I got to sleep and freak out about still being sick when I needed to fly, and watch my little brother treat me as if I had the Black Death or smallpox. (He had a basketball tournament last weekend, so was determined to Not Get Sick.) The only one who was happy was the cat, who can't catch norovirus, and likes it when humans lie in bed all day because he can sleep next to a nice, warm body. (Plus my room is the most awesome room in the house in his opinion, because he's not supposed to be in there.)

The flight out was a bit turbulent, and I missed a connection, but I got there. The interview went well: the more you do something, the better you get. And despite forecasted thunderstorms and fog, the weather in South Carolina in February is welcome after Nebraska in February. Also, I recovered enough to have sushi on Friday**.

* Two of the five people who ate Dad's black bean-and-rice salad got sick. Not enough to confirm it, but definitely suspect.
** I suspect my hosts were hoping that they got a job candidate who likes sushi.
beccastareyes: Image of two women (Utena and Anthy) dancing with stars in the background.  Text: I have loved the stars too fondly... (stars)
... is that my sinuses decide that two days on planes in a row is not something I should ever do again, even on medication. Forgetting my water bottle (I fill it after going through security) doesn't help. Seriously, I'm just glad one day of travel didn't stress my sinuses out too badly, so I didn't feel like crap at my interview. (And of course, just now I remember the prescription nasal spray I have that is supposed to enlarge my nasal passages to improve drainage.)

As for the interview, it went well. Everyone seemed really friendly and collegial, so most of my questions about the job are the existential 'what do I want to do with my life' ones: basically I'm nearly 30 years old and still don't feel like an adult. Maybe taking time off between college and grad school would have helped, but grad school classes were hard enough with just a summer between them and physics classes. Being an authority in my job -- whether it be 'you are in charge of XYZ course' or 'do you have any ideas for research projects?' -- scares me.

Maybe that's one reason I wasn't in a hurry to finish grad school: being a grad student is a pretty comfortable life for me.
beccastareyes: Image of Sam from LotR. Text: loyal (Default)
I want to write some more book reviews (or book rambles) and writing thoughts, but I've been a bit under the weather.

Cut for Uterine/Menstrual Problems. )
beccastareyes: Image of two women (Utena and Anthy) dancing with stars in the background.  Text: I have loved the stars too fondly... (stars)
While I was in Nebraska, my dad went in for a planned surgery. A colonoscopy had found a suspicious-looking polyp near his appendix, and the doctor wanted it out. Dad was more complaining about the pre-surgery prep and not being allowed to go into work than the surgery itself. So, I wasn't too worried about it: a bit annoyed that I had to hear it from Mom, who heard it from Ben.

This evening I got an email from Dad: apparently they tested the bit of tissue they took out of his intestine and it was Stage I colon cancer. Dad says that there's a over-90% chance that he'll live at least 5 years without remission -- that's generally how cancer statistics are listed. From what the Internet tells me, that means the cancer didn't make it past the muscles in the colon yet, and wasn't in any of Dad's lymph nodes, so it was pretty much local. Google tells me that normally they just treat it by cutting the suspect bit out (aka what they already did), but Dad mentioned 'molecular medicine' improving his odds, which makes me think he's also trying chemo.

But... cancer is scary. Both my grandfathers died of lung cancer*, and my grandmother died of leukemia. I also had a cousin who had thyroid cancer, and two of my uncles' wives who had cancer (Uncle Bobby's first wife had brain cancer, Uncle Donny's wife had breast cancer). Which... is reassuring that people survive cancer nowadays.

This also goes on my medical history as something I get to watch out for as I get older, along with type-II diabetes from Mom's side.

Also, the fact that my parents can get seriously ill is also scary.

* Granted, they both smoked like chimneys.
beccastareyes: Image of Sam from LotR. Text: loyal (Default)
Yuletart extension. Huzzah! I'm still going to try to get some painting done today, but that means I can focus on some of the other art I want to finish tonight.

Medical TMI )
beccastareyes: Image of Sam from LotR. Text: loyal (Default)
Just got back from the doctor. It's apparently something with my middle ear and Eustachian tubes*, since everything from the outer part of the ear to the drum looks nearly perfect. He can't tell me more than 'here's some OTC stuff that might help, and if it's not better by the time you get back from Thanksgiving Break, I'll refer you to an Ear, Nose and Throat specialist'. Mostly because the antibiotics that cleared up everything except this, so it's probably not bacterial, just 'clogged head tubes'.

I'm starting to feel like I should be on House, except I don't think he deals in 'minor symptoms that make patient feel like crap without any risk to her life or health'.

* Which apparently is really unusual once you're past age five. Yay me. -_-
beccastareyes: Text: Sigh.... (*sigh*)
So, anyone who doesn't want to hear me complaining about my minor health problems should skip the stuff under the cut.

Otherwise, click here )

Planning on spending my Friday night coloring art, considering [personal profile] anke has extended more than enough patience waiting on me finishing my [livejournal.com profile] mrcaex piece. After that I have archives to update -- I got an account at Artician and PaperDemon, so I want to play around and see if I like them. (And engage in the quest of 'how far back do I keep art around before it's all crap I hate'.)

* I do have active research, but it is currently stalled in the 'I should ask someone about this code because it is both doing exactly what it is supposed to do AND not returning a useful answer'. Basically, I am trying to find the best curve drawn through some data, and the program, depending on what method I use, does one of the following:
1. Returns my first guess to me immediately as its best guess.
2. Takes one step, then returns that guess, despite the fact that, by my eye, it looks worse than the first guess.
3. Goes off on a wild goose chase to give me something that looks worst than the first guess AND means something that cannot be actually true.
beccastareyes: Image of Sam from LotR. Text: loyal (Default)
I'm treating a sinus... thing* right now, so I get to wake up with a sore throat every day as nasty stuff in my head finally drains off. It's still screwing me up, so I also am still getting the sinus headaches. As a result, I'm cranky, and I overslept today.

Add in that I had to hang around the apartment to move the anime club archives on Saturday -- which also involved me hauling a car-load of stuff up half a flight of stairs.

And it doesn't help that I've got a million things to do before I start NaNoWriMo -- well, three pictures and finishing my Halloween costume. Which involved me swearing at the sewing machine when I tried to finish seams last night. Decided it wasn't worth my sanity to practice this now. It also makes me want a serger like burning, since that finishes seams on its own. (But might induce more sewing-realted insanity.)

On the other hand, I'm learning a lot more about sewing. Like how to properly press a seam and sew in a zipper. And using interfacing.

If I didn't have work stuff every day, I'd take a day off to clean stuff and work on projects. And to recover sanity. It's tempting to do so anyway -- show up for a meeting and go back home.

* My sinuses are clogged, but so far it's just mucus and not anything bacteria/viral. Which meant I was told to switch to an expectorant and given a steroidal nasal spray that's supposed to help the holes in my head expand enough to let things drain.
beccastareyes: Text: Sigh.... (*sigh*)
Me: [puttering around, getting ready for work and a doctor's appointment]

My Knee: Oh, no you don't! [sharp pain, nearly gives way on the way to the kitchen]

Me: $!^$*@^$!

I don't know if it's from a bike accident I had in college* or the car accident four years ago, but my right knee occasionally has these pains that make it really hard to walk. As in, I'm afraid to walk for longer than the length of my apartment without falling over, which puts a damper on walking to the bus stop for work.

Man, I wish I had my laptop home so I could actually get some work done.

Hopefully, it'll be gone tomorrow.

* I was out for a ride with Dad, and going too fast down one of the hills on the dirt road by his house. A car was approaching and I startled and fell over -- I wasn't hit by the car (that was the car accident four years ago), but I did scrape up my right side pretty badly. Wear a helmet, kids! (I had borrowed one form my stepmother and a good thing.)
beccastareyes: Text: Sigh.... (*sigh*)
I can't tell if this is the Allergies from Hell, making up for the two and a half weeks I was out of their clutches, plane crud or I caught Cassie's sinus infection, or what. But I have a sore throat and I can feel pressure in my left ear.

I couldn't sleep last night until I took some Benadryl at around 4, then was knocked out until noon. I'm on a decongestant and a 24-hour allergy pill, but my throat still itches. I'd take more Benadryl, but I'd rather not spend today asleep.

Though if I get annoyed enough, it might be worth it.
beccastareyes: (OMGYEY!)
Just dumped a lot of art to [personal profile] invoking_urania -- mostly 6 months of exchange art. I still have some fanart I drew for [livejournal.com profile] au_bigbang, and a ficlet I posted to [livejournal.com profile] fma_fic_contest

Also realized that I have proved to myself that I was suffering form mild allergies -- at least I didn't take my pill in the morning, felt unusually stuffy, so I took it and now am fine. It could well be that it was from the nap I took, and it wasn't a rigorous experiment, so I may have to repeat it. Just not on a day I plan on working.

I got The Language Construction Kit book, which was a bit overwhelming to read, but really inspired me. Darynese is pretty much mature enough that I can't tack on more major structural elements, but I have a few more things I could do -- expand the dialects and clean up my notes. Starsailor never was set out besides some basic principles, I mentioned Interling before but I have a feeling that needs me to be a better linguist to design, and there's also Nemean, an auxlang constructed from English and Mandarin* but designed to be speakable by humans and Starsailors.

I could also do something with Hinode and Hinoiri. Both would have a global language**, but probably one based on some strange reflection of Earth languages from the names. A lot of the history of the two places would be folded into languages and dialects.

* Possibly with Japanese influences (and also probably some touches of the Romance languages and the languages of the Indian subcontinent in the vocab) -- the idea was that vocabulary came from spacefaring cultures.

** Or at least a lingua franca. Delwyn's ancestors at least nominally brought most of the planet under control, so their language would probably be used much like any empire's -- as a business and trade language, even if the locals kept theirs. And the spirits' tongue would be too useful to dismiss as a trade language, since people all over Hinode would learn it. You'd get a lot of dialects and loan-words springing up, but it would let people talk to one another.
beccastareyes: (well that sucks)
I have a bit of a case of the winter blahs. Compounded by the fact I finally tracked down a problem in my work that meant that the data I had been presenting for a year was processed wrong. At least it was a case of 'the effect still exists, but has a different magnitude', rather than 'it doesn't exist. And occasional headaches.

Good things: [livejournal.com profile] ag_over_18 started a weekly voice chat for crafters. There's a focus on 'making doll stuff', since it is a doll-collecting community, but it gives me a chance to work on crafts with people keeping me company. And voice chats do seem to help with moodiness when I can't get out to people, and doing sewing while I talk makes me feel like I'm being productive. Maybe this is a sign I need to take up the Sunday afternoon Feminist Stitch and Bitches the Cornell Women's Resource Center puts on. I already tend to bring crafts to informal stuff the department does, when I'm not taking notes or eating -- the lunch talks and the weekly grad student seminar/journal club. Having something to do with my hands that doesn't take up much brain space away from listening helps -- I bring these things to anime club, too. (One point in favor of dubs is that it's easier to work while watching.)

My art is making me pretty happy. I need to do more of it -- that and promote the exchanges I'm in* (and work on the exchange pages I have to include all my characters). I'm also feeling inspired to start writing something on my comic, so I have it done and put to bed. That and singing helps with the winter blues.

Not the headaches though. I don't know if they are caused by sinus congestion or what, but I'm really getting sick of them, because I can't focus until the painkillers kick in.

* Hint: if you have original characters (gaming characters, comics/writing projects -- heck, at least one person has old OCs from fandoms), and can draw reliably enough to produce a picture once or twice a month, ask me about this. The power of art trades compels you!
beccastareyes: Image of Sam from LotR. Text: loyal (Default)
So, when I don't update Facebook or keep my cell phone charged, I get concerned emails from Mom wondering where I am and what I'm ding. Which is fair, since I need to get a local ICE person who will get notified if I do have trouble, and be responsible for making calls and stuff. (I need to ask someone around here.)

Also, my cousin Martha had her baby, giving me a sixth 'child of my first cousin'*.

Anyway, I'm all right, besides spending yesterday having a headache that meant painkillers and sleep. Better today, though the weather makes me want to ditch work early, pick up some staples at the grocery store, and then pretend the cold, cold universe doesn't exist. I've still got some tomato soup in the fridge, and supplies to make noodles 'n veggies.

Grace the cat is settling in fine, besides being convinced I don't spend nearly enough time petting and brushing her. I took a drawer out of my shelves to locate some Computer Stuff, and she decided that the empty spot was perfectly cat-sized. Then starting chasing her tail in it. She also discovered the shelf next to it, where I had, among other things, two pipe-cleaner dolls [livejournal.com profile] mirisa_ardruna made me. What I thought was her octopus toy this morning was the head of one, which now needs to have repairs done.

* A first cousin once removed, but this also covers my mother's or father's first cousins.

Stuff

Feb. 1st, 2010 08:55 pm
beccastareyes: Text: Sigh.... (*sigh*)
I'm hoping this is just hormones, but I've felt on the edge of tears for the last couple of days. It's about the right time of month to be PMS, and that combined with the effing cold weather is not a happy combination. I need to dig out my DDR pad and get some exercise in.

It also killed my urge to write, which is a shame since I just got a reasonably long fic idea for [livejournal.com profile] 31_days -- if I finish it, I'll have to post it on Amnesty Day at the end of the month. Also killed my urge to roleplay, so if people wonder where my replies are, that's it.

That and my shoulder is starting to hurt again, which worries me since I stopped PT last week when it stopped hurting. It seems to me that when tendon pain stops, it's a good sign that stuff has healed. To have it start up again makes me think there might be deeper problems. I'll start doing the exercises my therapist assigned me again, and hope that helps bring the pain down.
beccastareyes: Image of Sam from LotR. Text: loyal (Default)
Because you all care so much about my health.

Read more... )

My shoulder

Jan. 6th, 2010 06:25 pm
beccastareyes: Image of Sam from LotR. Text: loyal (Default)
So, I have a strained muscle in my shoulder. I must have did it last Tuesday, when I was traveling, since it showed up around then. After it didn't go away by the time I got back to Ithaca, I called the nurse, who suggested 48 hours of ibuprofen and heat, and then to come in if it's not feeling better.

It wasn't feeling better. The doctor looked at it and did a lot of 'move this' and 'does this hurt?' tests. She also said I was sitting crooked -- because of my shoulder hurting, I was tilting my head, and she wasn't terribly happy with my posture. She explained what was wrong, but I managed to already forget the names of things -- basically, that a lot of muscles and tendons and ligaments run around and through the gap between my clavicle and scapula, and something up there is swollen. There are some exercises I'm supposed to do, and I'm supposed to call the physical therapist, which I did, but they weren't in the office when I got back to my apartment and called. I hope it was a 'stepped out for a late lunch' and not a 'gone till classes start'. It's an on-campus thing, so that's not a problem.

It's making things a pain in the neck to get work done, since the last thing I want to do is sit at a computer and type. I'll have to focus more on working in the morning until this heals up, since 8 hours lying down tends to make things feel better.

Today

Nov. 1st, 2009 07:35 pm
beccastareyes: Image of Sam from LotR. Text: loyal (Default)
I was all set to spend today cleaning, except then I developed the headache from Hades after going to the grocery store -- the same one that kept me in on Halloween. It's gone now, but it was enough that all I got done was spending the afternoon passed out on my bed asleep*.

Well, and a drabble. Added a new fandom to 'stuff I have written' -- yay for drabbles about book fandoms. (Suddenly you see why I took to Yuletide like a duck to water -- writing for odd fandoms is one of my favorite things to do.)

I am not adapting to the early darkness at all. For an astronomer, I sure hate the dark. No, that's not quite true. I like the dark when it comes on after I eat dinner and can sip my decaffeinated tea and watch the sunset, then go out and look at the stars. Not so much when I come home from work in the dark, or have to wake up before the sun.

* My normal response to pain is OTC painkillers and sleep until they take effect.

Tomorrow work should be busy -- I got a lunch seminar and a meeting with my advisor on 'where I am going with research**', and a lot of paper-writing and stuff.

** Basically, I'm done with one major project, unsure if I should pursue the other one further or just finish and publish, and suspect that I might need a third project to get enough dissertation writing material, but I'm going to ask my advisor. Also mention something someone mentioned to me at DPS about something I brushed over in my talk, and maybe calculating a lower limit on something. (Except I don't know -- or am not sure -- how. Maybe that, plus the F-ring feature thing that I'm helping Matt with, but is low on his priority list, would be enough stuff -- 'cept the F-ring stuff is Matt's project, and I'm just giving him the data from my data set to add to the data he has.)

Health

Oct. 20th, 2009 01:51 pm
beccastareyes: Image of Sam from LotR. Text: loyal (Default)
I'm home today. Not really intentional but this morning, my lower digestive system decided it was going to gum up the works and make me feel like I was going to have to expel everything from the other end. I'm better now, after spending the better part of 3-4 hours either in the bathroom, curled up feeling sick, or asleep*, but this is part of a long line of annoying minor complaints I've had for the past two weeks.

Though, there is something. I had my yearly blood test last week. Since I'm on anti-anxiety drugs, the psychiatrist wants to make sure any feelings of moodiness, anxiety, depression or lack of energy (not to mention the side effect of feeling sleepy) were due to a busted brain and 15 mg of Lexapro, rather than everything else, I have to get blood drawn yearly. Except the only time this actually happened was when I was first medicated in '07. In between, the lab started testing Vitamin D levels.

Yesterday, I got a call from the nurse noting that my Vitamin D levels were low, and could I please come in next week to consult? I figure this is probably a mix of me not drinking milk and the fact I'm not eating as much fish as I used to. On the other hand, one website says as little as 10 minutes in sunlight should give me enough Vitamin D, assuming my body isn't breaking the parts that make it. Especially considering I have fair skin.

Before then, I hit up google for Vitamin D deficiency in adults. Rickets is what happens in kids, and it's apparently a lot less fun in people who are trying to grow bones than people who just need to maintain them. Adults just start bone softening, and are at increased risk of osteoporosis later on. Also, apparently you get pain from this, and fatigue. It would be really nice if the aches and pains were just from 'crappy diet' and would clear up if I start taking a multivitamin.

Bah, all my bitching about health makes me sound like an old woman. I'm not even thirty yet.

* Sleep is generally how I deal with feeling crummy, unless it's too crummy to sleep.

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