Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth." Genesis 9:13

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Just so you know

When I was a senior in college I was severely depressed my last semester. Thank God I was down to only a few classes I really needed, and I was able to cut my schedule down to basics. I did a lot borrowing other people's notes, taking tests at later dates, and getting lectures about how this was wrong from a certain professor who I still resent, and who is allegedly quite popular for his caring and understanding with students. Not my experience, he was actually rather mean and non-empathetic to me, but whatever.

Anyway, I wound up on an antidepressant that was pretty heavily sedating, which just made things worse because I wanted to sleep all the time and do little else. It made me sleep through things for the first time in my life and I became somewhat paranoid about this.

When finals rolled around I had a few classes that I really needed good grades. Because I was never a very good test taker I had rarely been in that situation, relying on papers and labs to increase my grades long before finals. So I studied even harder than usual for those tests that were for 4 classes strategically arranged in my scheduling plan to be easy. (I had a dual major so I planned very precisely as a freshman what classes I'd take when and then took very full loads each time except that last one; I had planned the last semester which I wouldn't have needed if I had only done one degree to just finish the last 2 classes for the major that came easier to me and allow me a few electives/grad school pre-requisites.)

My very last final ever happened to be the very last possible time slot. We tried so, so hard to study for that final. We did. But somehow we found ourselves doing all sorts of crazy things until later than my medication usually let me stay up if I wanted to be awake the next day. (For example climbing on the roof of the old student union building....) So I had not been asleep terribly long but had fallen into a very deep sleep, the kind of sleep that feels like it has gone on for weeks, when my roommate came in about 2:30. I woke up, saw the time, began screaming at her at the top of my lungs about why she had let me sleep so long, didn't she know I had a final, and throwing on clothes. I was fully dressed before she was able to push me down on my bed and inform me it was 2:30 AM and I had 12 full hours before my test.

That kind of stress always feels like "finals week" to me. Probably it always will. And every year in my profession Christmas week is finals week. There is crabbiness and stress and between now and Christmas day someone will die (this year I sadly think it's going to be 2 people, one of whom I love), and the hospitals will send every person who is not on a ventilator home so the doctors get the day off and I will have to do evaluation after evaluation, often on very sick people. People get more emotional, and this wears on all of us and so we do too, and then the other Christmas stuff adds in there. And for me I have my own personal Christmas issues.

So far this week I've been gone at least 12 hours/day. I still have a lot of wrapping to do. I am very tired. I don't see a lot of posts coming, and if you made it to the end of this I'm impressed. Things should settle about the middle of next week. I'm sure I'll be back before that, but I've been posting pretty regularly lately and doubt I will be for now, so just know I've not fallen off the earth, I'm just taking the finals of life.

Back soon. Hopefully with good grades....

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