Wow, it’s been over two months since I posted anything, and I didn’t finish my Lord of the Rings challenge because of course I didn’t. I’ve had a lot going on this whole time, from dating – and subsequently breaking up with – a new dude to new job to holidays to adopting a new dog – Tilly! – so it’s been a little too crazy to do much other than … well, live my life. Now that we’re a month into the new year 2023, I started coming up with goals I’d like to accomplish this year, one of which is to write on here more, somewhat like a diary but also just to keep myself accountable to write daily, even if it is just to bitch about something. I’m not sure what I’m going to do with this site at this point, but I want it to be as big a part of my life as it once was. I also want to get back to painting regularly; I got an iPad for graduation, so I’m trying my hand at digital art, even if I am absolutely sucking at it so far. I really should probably take a class?

As far as the actual updates, first, the dude I dated was obviously not the right fit, and honestly, I shouldn’t have been dating him in the first place. I was hoping that when he said he was an asshole (selfish and ignorant – his words, not mine) that he was just being self-deprecating, but nope, he was very much like he said. He consistently ignored my boundaries – one example is that he continued to call me Jenny, after I explicitly told him I hated that nickname, and that’s a tamer one – and would never communicate with me about what he wanted unless he was upset with me for not reading his mind. I look back over those two months and wonder what in the hell I was expecting out of a relationship with him. But thankfully, I’m now happily single again and unfortunately back on dating apps that are, because I live in a red state, populated by nothing but conservatives. Ugh.

Second, I ended up choosing CVICU/Neuro ICU – the pods – over the regular MICU as my permanent job placement after my residency. Technically, I’m still in residency until this October, but I’m now considered an orientee instead of a resident. Anyway, I was really nervous initially; the pods are intimidating with how much you have to know and do. But after my rotation with my preceptor, I fell in love with it. I’m still incredibly nervous, considering the high acuity of patients I care for, but I feel more confident than I did even two months ago. It’s going to be a hard year, but I feel like it’s going to be so worth it. I’ll have to get more training on more advanced therapies – ECMO, CRRT, Impella, balloon pumps, etc. – but I’m sure that, by the end of my first year, I’ll be ready to grow my knowledge base. Plus, I want to take the CCRN exam, which I’ve heard is even more difficult than the NCLEX … ugh.

Third, the holidays. Sigh, the holidays. Our Thanksgiving was postponed due to my parents having Covid for the second time, and when we did have a family meal, we ate breakfast food; it’s not the worst thing, especially since I love breakfast food, but everything just felt off. Christmas was the same way. I can’t explain it in a way that makes sense, even to me, but I felt like it was just another day that happened to include presents. Maybe it’s because I’m no longer a kid? But I’ve been an adult for twenty years at this point, and you’d think that I’d be feeling this way for a long time. It could also be because of the stress from the last three years, in between Covid, nursing school, starting a career, watching my parents decline in health, seeing my grandmother living and deteriorating in a nursing home, realizing I am reaching the point of no return when it comes to becoming a mom (other than to Nelson, Tilly, Ramses, and Mushroom) … maybe I’m just numb. I started to come out of that numbness somewhere around two weeks ago, coincidentally around the same time as my fourth update:

I adopted the most adorable pittie named Tilly, and I love her.

Initially, Nelson – my other dog that adopted me instead of the other way around – was really hesitant around her because she’s a lot more active than Cupcake, my sister’s 15-year-old pittie, but they play all the time now. So much so that it can get a little annoying at times. But it’s been absolutely delightful to have a bully breed again. When I found Tilly at the Nashville Humane Association, I saw so much of Zola, my old bulldog, in her that it was almost an immediate connection. As I write this, she has her head resting on my knee, and she’s snoring up a damn storm. It’s basically heaven.

Alrighty, I have quite a bit I have to do this afternoon to prepare myself for the next two days – 2 12-hour shifts – so I’ll be getting on that, the first of which is to get on a treadmill and begin my journey back to being in shape. This time, though, it’s going to be for me and not for anyone else. I think that’s one thing I really enjoy about getting older; I care less and less about other people’s perceptions of me and more about making myself happy. Which is why I have four animals and spend most of my time doing what I want these days.

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