Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Bullets of back to school

- So I was grieving in a major way, and I took what I was thinking was too much time off work. But, you know, I can see my way to feeling better now. School has started and - unexpectedly - I feel the potential for lifting up, though I also feel that it will be a slow process. It's as if, at least, I can imagine it, where I couldn't for a couple of weeks there. And I think that time off was important. I was talking about my lack of work with someone today, and she said that she had been told by someone, when she had her own loss a couple of years ago, "grieving's work." I hadn't thought of it in quite those terms. But it's true. I was working while I wasn't working on my "work."

- Certainly I'm lifting out of the exhaustion that was killing me. That week of ER every night, two weeks of antibiotics, followed by last week - of being, unusually for me, unable to sleep - took their toll. Such a toll that I felt something was really wrong. But today seems to mark a turning point, and I feel more energized than I have for a while (which isn't saying much).

- My classes are fine, I think. Very, very smiley. Very excited about content, judging from nodding and engagement. Very, in the upper-level class, responsive to my talking about the necessity of cultivating patience and openness with difficult material. And damn, do they ever like certain kinds of gently self-deprecating humour. I'd forgotten that.

- Grad-student-o-rama for me, this term.

- In fact, my friend S and I have decided to plan a little cocktail hour thingy - well, a cinq-à-sept - for grad students who study X, later in the month. So they can meet each other and combat their isolation. We'll have it at S's house. (Don't we wish we lived lives where we had cinq-à-septs all the time, before we swanned off for dinner and more drinks, somehow non-drunkenly?)

- Wore fabulous new skirt - one of a kind, ordered on Etsy - today. I might need to marry fabulous new skirt.

- But administrative duties are going to be the death of me. People, never be a very junior-ranking department of one who is also charged with single-handedly growing it into a high-performing behemoth.

- Good/weird: I may get to make a hire; I may get a colleague - will know in next couple of weeks. (Yay!) Would then be chairing hiring commmittee. While also looking for a new job myself?! Ugh - can you say awkward? Am not sure what to do about this.

- A very sour note: I'm pissed. At a healthcare system that a) never referred me to or even said anything about physio either during two months of incapacitation or after crutches came off (I found someone on my own), and b) let me walk away from the hospital last week with absolutely no guidance. Nothing about what to expect, what to do, what not do. No benchmarks for progress, no idea of what to look out for. Even when I asked, just basically shrugged and said, "you're fine." Well, it sure as hell doesn't feel fine, and I can't stop worrying. And maybe everything is okay, but I don't know, do I, because I've been told NOTHING. Grrr.

- Tonight had spur-of-the-moment socializing. My friend S drove me home, and I suggested she come in for dinner. I made pasta sauce while she did a salad, and it was easy and she was home by 8. Why not more of this? I love this. If I had me some more impromptu socializing, I'd be a happier hilaire. I would not feel as if everyone I know here is thoroughly brutalized by their jobs. In the wake of break-up, spur-of-the-moments feel particularly important, taking the place of that mundanity lived with a partner, even from far away.


plam said...

Hey, the Quebec healthcare system also was going to let my girlfriend go off without physio after she broke her ankle. But Dr. Google knows some things at least. It's a bit strange: some doctors hate it when you use Dr. Google all the time and others just don't follow up. I hope that physio is helpful for you.

(She got good ER care in Vancouver though, for what that's worth.)

Great to hear that some things are going well. I actually had lots of chatting today and promises of future socializing. I kind of feel like I have lots of work to do though, and I won't get to do any tomorrow due to service and other tasks either.

Now I can hear, presumably, undergrads walking around outside and partying or something.

dbm/gaa said...

I was so sorry to catch up with your posts and read about the break up - ugh. Grieving is some of the hardest work I've ever done, so you are right to count it as labour. It doesn't go away quickly, either, so make sure you try and factor that in as well. And grief on top of physical injury is especially hard, you are likely to be exhausted for awhile.

Psychgrad said...

I agree that grieving is work and it's as though you have to do that work or else it just comes seeping back.

Healthcare, for the most part, is crap. It seems as though doctors that do a thorough job are an exception rather than the rule. You may need a doctor's note for your health plan to cover physio expenses (not difficult to get), but you don't need them to refer you - so I would just go for some physio on your own.

Maggie said...

You know, sometimes it seems like some basic, non-work-related human contact is the cure to many, many ills. I hope you're healing well, Hilaire, from *everything.* You deserve some happiness about now.

Maude Lebowski said...

ditto to what maggie said. and to what the others say about the "grieving work."

i'm so happy to read about happy things happening for you. you so deserve it.

take care, girl. :-)

heu mihi said...

I'm glad that you're feeling a little better! Sounds like there are some good things mixed in there (having a local friend is SO important). Hopefully this year will be better, too, just because it won't be so new.

Good luck with the leg...!

Feral Mom said...

I prescribe as many impromptu cocktail hours/potluck dinners as you can shoehorn into your schedule. Haven't been here for a while, and just wanted to add my hugs. I am so so sorry about your breakup. Please take care of yourself.

BTW, I joined the Academic Writing Club and it has made a huge difference. I'm actually writing again, and sometimes even enjoying it. Thank you, Hilaire. You've always inspired me, and now I owe you. Seriously.

And finally, I hate that you are having the Year from Hell. My life fell apart in 2002, but things have been getting better ever since. Today, I feel very lucky and mostly content. My wish for you is that you find yourself on an upswing, from here on out.

Warm wishes from Southern California, headed north to you.

What Now? said...

It sounds like life is, at last, looking up a little for you, which I'm so glad to hear about. I am worried about your leg, however; is there another doctor you can talk to, maybe even get an x-ray of it to make sure that it knitted properly?

JustMe said...

glad things are looking better for you and i hope things improve for you healthwise!