Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Sex Toys

Okay, so I have a few. They help keep me sane in my days and nights of singleness. One's been getting more action than others lately; a gel, pink dildo. I looked for it last night in its normal hiding place under my bed; out of sight of peering son's eyes. IT'S NOT THERE! I actually get on the floor and look. Nope, no sign. I check the bathroom cause maybe, just maybe I tossed it into my cabinet after I washed it and the kids were coming home from school. Nope, not there either. How the hell can a dildo get lost? It's not like I travel with it everywhere, and it's not like I don't know where it's been. I don't use it anywhere but there, in my room. How the hell can a sex toy just up and disappear?

I'm sure curious to find out where it will turn up!

Addendum: Found it! Under the bed, just like it should be. I swear it was not there when I was looking for it that evening. At least my "intimate friend" has been found.

I have to laugh. A woman friend I've been working on a project with came by to pick up the part I've completed so far. I put the work in a "Good Vibrations" paper shopping bag.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Good Job

Most of my days are spent behind a desk these days. 1/4th of my work hours is spent in patient care, with the remainder of my time hitting the keyboard and other such necessary, but sundry, stuff. Today when I wandered into the NICU to pull some data from a chart regarding ventilation hours, I ended up talking to not just one, but two new mothers. I was so glad to be able to spend this time with each of them. The first mom was getting frustrated with trying to get her baby to breast feed. As the baby was being tube fed at the time, and sucking like a mad man on his pacifier, I discussed with this mother how to read his feeding cues. I also let her know that even though the doctor may have ordered the baby to try to breast feed every other feeding, the breast is available really only when mom is in the hospital. I interpret these orders loosely, i.e. out of every 8 feedings, 4 can be at the breast. It works. I helped this lovely mother to position the baby at her breast. You know what? He latched on and suckled until he was full. Hopefully he will be going home a day or two sooner by having that little bit of success. She knows he can do it now!

The other mom was from farther away. Her baby needed a treatment that the hospital at which she delivered her baby could not provide, and the other hospital close to her house would not accept her insurance (THAT is a whole 'nother tyraid). She was so worried about her baby and about making enough milk for him. Again, I was able to spend some one-on-one time with her and her husband, discussing strategies for successful feeding, both while in the hospital and when at home. I probably was away from my desk only 45 minutes, but I was able to touch both these women's lives (and their babies) in a way that was meaningful to each of them. It's simple things like that which make me love my job.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Is it me or the OTHER Susan?

Have you ever done a google search on your own name, just to see what comes up? I've done it a few times and the results have changed over the years. When I first discovered the internet and search engines, I was a competitive masters swimmer. I held a few top 10 times for my age group back then, so a search on my name resulted in links to these pages, which are now long gone.

When my kids were younger, I'd help out in the classrooms. Then a search popped up results linking me to that school, about fund-raising efforts or classroom parties.

I just did a search today and found two newsworthy entries. This is hard, as the *other* owner of my name is a reporter in Ohio. All her entries are newsworthy by definition. As Ben, my youngest son says, "Mom, you are a celebrity!"

Addendum: Make that three entries

Elephant Seals

I've been wanting to see the elephant seals during their semi-annual coming ashore for quite some time now. Elephant seals are true marine mammals, coming ashore only twice a year; to birth and mate in the winter, and to have a catastrophic molt in the summer. Remainder of the time, the males head north to the Aleutian Islands while the females head west to the pelagic zones of the northern Pacific Ocean. It is only during these two coming ashore periods that the seals are social. They live a solitary life the rest of the year. Researchers, observing data from tagged seals find that seals never just hang around when they are in the ocean. The seals are always making some directional progress, whether the seal is diving and hunting or in its semi-sleep state.

So much for their natural history. We drove down to just south of Pescadero, CA to visit the elephant seals at Ano Nuevo State Park. The only way to view the elephant seals is to be on a guided tour, led by docents. On the drive down, with blue skys punctuated by billowy clouds, we saw one area accented by a very dark storm cloud, obviously unleashing its fury on the land. That storm marked the location of the park. We arrived early and due to a cancellation we were moved to an earlier tour. We were bundled in raingear (goretex pants are so wonderful to own!) and headed off to the staging area. Shortly after our tour began, the winds shifted and blew the storm south, away from us. Watching the beasts was facinating. Mostly they just lounge around, watching. A few lucky Alpha Males get lucky, servicing their harems of 35-50 females, but mostly they are guarding away the beta males from their harem. Procreation among elephant seals isn't very impressive. No movement. No obvious male or female parts. Not even a glimpse of a bacula enhanced male organ. To top it off, it's all over with in about 30 seconds, without even a grunt or groan of satisfaction from either party. I had always thought animal sex was something more.

That said, enjoy the photos if you are so inclined. Link via the title of this blog.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Bad Dreams and Restless Nights

I love to sleep. I've always enjoyed a good night's rest. Even as a child, I loved to go to bed, with a book, and read until I fell asleep. I remember my mom or dad checking on me before they went to bed, feeling them slide my glasses off my face (yep, with rhinestones, even!) and turn off my light. They'd rescue my book and try to save my page, if they could, but I have a habit of dropping my book and losing my page.

I still go to bed the same way, with a book. Lately, it seems I just get through a few words before I start drifting off, or reading the same paragraph over and over again, because I just want to finish this page before I go to bed.

These days, no one turns off my light. On a few occasions, my son has turned off my light when we wakes at 6 am to play on the computer before school. He's sweet when he does this; turning off my light, pulling up my blanket to my shoulder, and giving me a kiss on my cheek before he closes my door to let me sleep another hour in peace.

Even though I love sleep, I hate not sleeping. Last night was another of those nights. I had weird dreams,too, which added to the restlessness. I'm in an online program and I kept having "pop up" messages in my dreams about things I've missed in my never-ending set of deadlines, or I'd have "pop up" posts from a student disagreeing with the last set of points I tried very hard to support with references. I also had imaginary IM messages from friends, telling me various things; some of which I wanted to hear, but mostly things that made me feel stupid and embarrassed. Where is all this coming from? Logically, I know that our dreams are our subconscious mind releasing its own thoughts and concerns. I never really worried about not being a good student, though. I've finished 25% of my program with a 4.0 GPA. I have, however, been contemplating not finishing my classes back to back. Full time post-graduate program and mostly full-time work is hard. With a family and a pending divorce (note to self, find all my paperwork and then make that appointment with Mr Bunn),the time commitement feels ever-present, without a light yet, at the end of that tunnel.

I can do this. I know I can. I just need to have good nights' sleeps, without waking every half hour to look at the clock and without pop up messages interrupting my dreams, adding to the sense of real life that already feels pervasive. I need my rest, damnnit! and I want it to be fantasy in my dreams.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Cold, hard dose of reality

Today I feel as if I've lost my internal compass. The course I thought I was on is not the course I am following. I'm lost and not sure how to figure out where I am. I know I'll figure it out eventually, but until I do I feel disoriented and lost.

How did I get here? I met a man. Classic story, I guess. We met, by coincidence, online. We played together often. We emailed and IM'd eventually and grew to be friends. We shared hugs and snuggles online, but not anything more graphic than that. After about a year of this almost daily interaction, I let him know I could stop by his city on my way to a conference across the country. Initially he didn't want me to, but I did. We met. We had a great time together. We continued to talk online. 10 months later, I thought it was time to see him again. I took a long weekend and flew out just to spend time with him, over both our birthdays. I gave him a quilt; his second from me. We had a great time together. By this time, I'm hooked. I find him charming and fun and smart and filled with common sense. Talking to him is not difficult and sharing space with him is easy. I admire his patience; mostly because I lack it. I note when he's forced to wait for things, he grows calm and his face relaxes. He grows beautiful when he waits.
3 months later I fly out to visit again. A week this time. Again, I find myself peaceful with him and I love him. I let him know that the next time I visit, he needs to invite me, as the previous visits I had let him know I was coming and he (gladly, I hope) met me and spent time with me, but it was at my insistence. I need to feel wanted.

It's been two months. I need to schedule vacation time for the coming year with my work. It's an annual quest for time off. The most senior person gets the time she wants. The next person gets her time off. The third person gets whatever time off she wants.. until the 4th person. We are only allowed 4 people to be on vacation at one time, and only 3 people during the valuable Winter Vacation time. I need to decide by 2/22 and already there are times I won't be able to get off. I've also committed to covering for Ann, my jobshare partner, for late July-early August so she can go to Hawaii with her husband and a work friend. I let my online love know that I needed to plan time off and reminded him that if he wanted to spend time with me, he'd need to let me know.

Silence. I've heard it said that silence is golden. It is not. Silence here is filled with doubt. I feel unloved and unwanted by silence. I feel embarrassed by silence. How can I care about a person so very much and not even realize that it's not returned, in kind? I feel stupid and silly. And hurt. I think the worst is the hurt. I don't measure up. I'm not young and beautiful. I don't have the body of a 20-something. I'm middle aged after having two kids- and my body shows this. I have giant boobs and lines up my abdomen. Am I really so hideous? Obviously I'm filled with doubt, self-doubt.

Patience. I'm trying to have it. My logical mind says to be patient. My daily, rational thought says that he's there, almost every day, to talk, to play, and to just share time together. My emotional center is crying, though, that he doesn't want to see me again. I rarely don't know what to do, but this is one of those times. I'm lost and I don't know my way home. Yet.