Thursday, March 31, 2011

Girlfriend

After talking with my friend/YSA leader Alyson, it has really hit me that I need a girl friend. I have lots of friends, but none who I am really really close to. I am in desperate need of somebody who I can go do silly stuff with, somebody who I can tell everything to, somebody who I can go shopping with, cry with, talk about guys with, trust, love and just be a friend with.
I have plenty of long distance friends. But having someone who you can do things with in person is so different. And I haven't had somebody like that since my freshman year of high school.

This is one really important reason why I have chosen to go to BYU-Idaho. I'm not going to get a good girl friend in Dubuque any time soon. I need to have a special connection with somebody who I will see often. Not just in class. Not just on Sunday's. Not just in the summer time, or once every couple of years. It really hit me last night that I'm kind of lonely. Yeah, there are people I talk to, and enjoy talking to, but I don't have that best friend relationship with anybody at the moment.


I can't wait to get out of here and spread my wings.


fyi, I'm not lesbien here! lol! Just to clarify ;)
Day 13 - Goals

I have many goals, long term and short term.

Some of my short term ones include: passing the stupid class with that ridiculous teacher. Continue to practice and do well for my sophomore recital in a few weeks. Continue being persistent in reading my scriptures daily.

Some long term goals: graduate college - obtain a bachelors in Muisc Ed, Cello Performance, Music Therapy. Masters in Occupational/Music Therapy, Cello Performance. Get married in the temple. Continue to find better ways to live a healthy life. Improve my physical strength so that I can one day bare children with a loving husband and won't become sick from exhaustion because I'm not strong enough to have children and nurture them.
Day 12 -What you believe.

I believe in work. Persistence, faith, prayer, and that we all have the potential to do many great things.

For a summary of my religious beliefs, here are the basics.

There is a lot I believe in. I figure if you know me and talk with me, you probably understand.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Challenges

I am extremely behind on this 30 day thing. We are now in the final 6 weeks of the semester, which means life is beyond busy. That one teacher is still being ridiculous, but I am not alone in my frustrations. I don't know if that is a good thing or a bad thing, because now that means other people are having anxiety and frustrations, too. I wouldn't wish that for anybody. Oh well. It is nice to know it is not just me having a hard time with her - my frustrations are legit! And I'm, sick of talking about it!
I have SO much to do these next six weeks!!! I have three large research papers to write. I have 15 hours of classroom observations to complete. I have a minimum of 8 hours of volunteer hours to complete. My sophomore recital is in 4 weeks and 3 days. I have a 45 minute presentation to give with my class in front of a couple hundred people on discrimination in higher education. Exciting, huh?
On top of it, my stomach has, as expected, decided to stop working properly and make me sick again. As much as this stinks, I'm actually glad it is happening in a way because I am learning more and more how to work with my body under stress. It will be very helpful for times later in life when I know I will have even more stressful and far more serious situations to deal with than what I have now. Learning to manage my health is one of the more important things I will learn as an undergrad.

I'll try to catch up more on this challenge thing...

Day 11 - Favorite TV Shows
I swear I don't watch a lot of TV, but I do record shows on DVR so that on those rare occasions when I do have a chance to sit down and relax and let my mind have an escape from the world, these are my favorite things to watch.

 Forever a favorite and a classic.


 My newest addiction.


 So intense!!!!!!


 Yes, the storyline is ridiculous. The music is fabulous. It's all hilarious.


 The writers for this show are geniuses.


  Comedy is my favorite escape.

As corny as the host is, I love this show. Hilarious.
Day 10 - Something you're afraid of.

Being in a serious car accident.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Day 9 - A picture of your friends.

I have a variety of friends, near and far, close and casual, and everything inbetween!

Clarke friends Kristin and Sam!


 Heather and I have known each other forever. Seriously.



Alan! He's on his mission in Chile right now (as seen in picture)!



Courtney!



Brian and Emily!
Nick!


Marlynn! I love her.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Day 8 - A place you've traveled to.

A place? I have been to loads of places! I'm going to put up more than a place. I can't put them all (there aren't pictures of a lot of them and I don't have the time!), but I will put ones that I have available on facebook.

Unfortunately I do not have any pictures available from Washington DC, but this is me when I was 15 at Virginia Beach. My high school's music department takes a large trip somewhere in the country to compete/perform every two years. My sophomore year was to DC and Virginia Beach.


 My senior year of high school we took the same music trip to New York City. It was so fun! I had never been to the big city, so it was definitely a unique experience.



Family reunion in 2007 was in San Diego, California.



After the reunion, we headed north to see the big trees. Giant sequoias. They were enormous!!



After the big trees that year, we went to Yosemite Natl. Park. It was very beautiful.



We flew home from this same 2007 trip from Las Vegas. On the way there we drove through Death Valley, and stopped to see some of the sites in Vegas, including the fountain show.



Florida is a place I definitely want to go see again! I love the beach.



This last summer we had a family reunion for the other side of the family in California, but this time on the northern end. We spent a whole week camping in Mt. Shasta. Real camping. No reservations to make in order to stay. We just find a place and set up! We parked ourselves next to a creek. We took water from the creek and boiled it to use for drinking and other things, such as short showers and cooking. We also used snow on the tops of mountains to keep in our coolers to keep food cold. That week we climbed about 3 mountains, one of which had a pure water lake at the top that we got to swim in. We also went hiking/exploring in an ice cave. It was probably close to 4 miles long of pitch black darkness. We had flashlights, gloves, lots of layers on for warmth, and our curiosity to lead us the way. No tour guides, hand rails, nothing! SO COOL!!



The day before we left Mt. Shasta, we were referred by cousins to this site about 5 miles away from the camp. There is a ledge right next to the waterfall that you can jump off of. We jumped off the cliff (which is a lot higher than it looks in this picture! This is a canyon-like area and the picture was taken while climbing back up - this place is huge! Those trees are enormous!), swam over to some rocks and rock climbed back up, ran over and did it all again!



I had been here before many many many many many years ago, but that was before the age of digital cameras. We stopped in Utah on our way home to stay with family, then drove south to see the arches.



Instead of traveling through Wyoming on the ride home from the west, we decided to take a more scenic route through Colorado. Though the whole trip is about 12 hours longer, I prefer driving through Colorado than Wyoming any day.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Day 7 - Favorite movies.

Movies is plural here. How nice is that?
These are only a few. I love so many!

Dumbo was my all time favorite Disney movie as a kid. I always cried (and I probably still do) during the lullaby.


Monsters, Inc. was one of Pixar's best in my opinion. This, and The Incredible's are pretty much tied for my top favorite Pixar movie. Oh also, I absolutely love Pixar. They have yet to truly disappoint me.


This is one of the only movies that makes me cry every single time. I absolutely love this movie. I don't entirely know why, but I think part of it has to do with the fact that it is a story of 4 sisters, all about the same age distance apart as my sisters and myself. I relate to it really well. I love it.


This, along with Little Women, is one among the very short list of movies that make me cry. Great story, I relate to it through swimming, and it always gets me at the end!


This movie...has the best soundtrack. Hands down. That is why it is on this list.


This movie is great!!!!! If you take it too seriously then it's stupid. But if you take any opera too seriously then it is going to be complete nonsense! That is the point. This is a brilliant depiction of the dark love story.



These movies were great!!!!


The Lord of the Rings movies were just awesome. I learned the stories before I saw the movie, which made them even more interesting. These, along with the Harry Potter movies, are some of my favorites.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Sappy

I've been feeling depressed on and off over the last several days, so this post is entirely dedicated to being therapeutic and whiny and venting. While, yes, I do look on the bright side, sometimes I just feel like crap and that is that. Feel free to read and tell me your thoughts/give me advise/ANYTHING!!

I think I try too hard. Then I think I am too hard on myself for blaming myself for trying too hard. I don't know. I do not like being confused. Why am I so stupid when I like a guy? Fear of rejection? Cluelessness? I don't think I even try, so it's not a matter of trying too hard, it's a matter of not even thinking and doing something stupid like talking too much or making assumptions or wanting more out of whatever is going on than will actually happen. Making things up in my head. I hate not knowing. I swear if I had a way of looking at my life in 5, 7, 10, 15 years, I would do it in an instant. I just want to know that things are going to turn out okay, I will make the right decisions about college, I won't be such a nerd and an embarrassment that I never get anything more than a "friend" in any kind of relationship.
And that's where I face my fear of being pushy. I do NOT want to give the impression that I'm searching for a boyfriend, because honestly, I am not. If things start working out between myself an a guy, awesome. But I am not desperate. I know perfectly well that I can be single and happy. My issue is....I like a guy. And I'm terrified of doing something wrong.
Of course, I know all the sayings...something about love not caring if you sound stupid or not, but I'm nowhere near the love stage yet. I'm just in the like. And if I ever want to get to the love stage at any point in my life, I need to make sure I don't make a fool of myself and become unattractive in that way.
And I don't know what to do!!!!!!!!!

Next on the list.... this teacher. This crazy teacher. Crazy teacher who I offended. She is messing with my head. I feel so stupid in this class, the way she makes faces at me as if I'm delusional. Dangit I wasn't expecting to cry while writing. This lady is making me ill. Literally. I've been up late tonight thinking I'm going to throw up. We had a meeting with the dean of undergrad students after the one-on-one meeting I had with her that did not go well whatsoever. This one went a bit better, but I do not feel any better about the situation. Now instead of being the offensive smart alec student that needs to be whipped into shape, I am now the over-emotionally driven teenager student who should get with the game and grow a backbone.
Of course I know I am neither of those, but this lady is giving me that label. (which, by the way, I have a problem with labels. I should write a post about it sometime... right up there with my issues with Disney Channel...)
This lady does not make her syllabus clear. Maybe it's because of the fact that she keeps CHANGING it... nahh, that can't be it. That wouldn't be any reason for confusion.. nah. I'm just not bright enough to keep up with her 21st century fast tempo ka-POW.
Two late assignments because I did not understand the syllabus and she sent me an email tonight completely baffled as to why I was confused. Maybe, just MAYBE, it's because we get SO MANY EMAILS from her every week and we can't find all of the attachments, and then she keeps CHANGING it so many times, you lose track of which one is which.
No, I'm just unorganized and need to work on some professional skills.

UGH. I AM organized!!! I just physically cannot handle being handed so much constantly changing information and be expected to stay on top of it all!!! It's the same way when I am trying to listen to someone talk to me, or try to read something when there is too much noise. A loud conversation 20 feet over there, noisy television on in the next room, music playing somewhere nearby and something like a blender or somebody searching through a drawer for something, making noise. I cannot take it all in and still be expected to listen to what someone is saying to me. I become lost. It's impossible to focus. And it is exactly the same way with this class. There is too much going on besides this class. I can handle all of that just fine, but when this class starts making things difficult, it's like the changes happening to the syllabus and the stupid things coming out of this woman's mouth are the person trying to talk to me, and suddenly the rest of my life is too noisy for me to hear it. Difference is... I can move to a quieter room when things get too loud to hear. In this situation, I am glued to my seat and the noise isn't extra noise. It's life, classes that will actually make an impact on what kind of career I will hold, and every other thing I cannot just get up and walk away from.


Now I get to try and go to bed, forget about my insecurities, pretend I don't have class with this lady tomorrow, and not puke. I'll see about classes when I wake up, and if my head isn't in a toilet.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happiness

Though there are still plenty of issues with the same...ahem..teacher (even though I'm not Catholic, I've given up mean words during the lent season, and hope to continue beyond the holiday), I have plenty to be happy for. The weather is beautiful outside today! I don't have piles and piles of homework anymore! More will come, but for the time being, I'm all caught up. And it feels GREAT!!! I've made a new friend recently and he's just the kind of friend I've been needing for quite some time. I love my Clarke friends, but it's really nice to have somebody my age, my kind of calm, intelligent, fun, yet reserved personality, to talk to about whatever. It's just really really nice.
I also received an email from BYU-Idaho about a scholarship! The music department alone is going to pay half of my tuition and all of my cello lessons if I go there. Cello lessons are approximately $400 a semester there, so that will be really nice!

Now for that 30 day challenge...
Day 6 - A picture of something that makes you happy.

Well, I don't know if I can pick one thing, so I will put up a few.


Gus


Tango


Hoover

My dogs make me happy! They never fail. Even when they get into garbage or chew my shoes, I'll still love them and they still make me happy. :)


Swimming!
I love swimming!

Roller Coasters
I love roller coasters. I smile just thinking about them. :)


The Temple
The temple makes me happy. I love going there.

All of these pictures, except for the roller coaster and the one picture of me, were taken by me.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Catching up a Little

I'm attempting to catch up a little on those day "challenges". Just going to do two today. I wanted to do one yesterday but never had the time

Day 5 - Your siblings.

I have 1 older sister, Molly who is married to Kevin, so I have 1 brother-in-law. I have two younger sisters, Sally (16) and Grace (11-going on 12). Then I only have one younger brother, Oliver (8, going on 9). We all get along really well, actually, with a few tidal waves of tears and shouting here and there, nothing out of the usual for a family of 5 kids. Tears and tantrums become far less common as everybody gets older. We're pretty much an awesome family. ;)

Molly and Kevin





Grace (left) and Sally (right)





Oliver
Day 4 - Your parents.

I don't know what to say really, my parents have always been there for me. We don't always get along, but what kind of parent and child don't disagree at some points?
Anyway. I'm blessed to have such good parents who love me and take care of me. And all of my siblings, too.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Bad Dream

I was so happy to have my alarm clock wake me up this morning! I was having the worst dream!!! It wasn't even realistic, but it was so crazy and scary and upsetting that all rational thought that I normally get in dreams ("wait a second, this is dumb! This has to be a dream!") was pushed aside and I just had to mentally experience all of these horrific crazy events.
It started at Clarke. I was walking outside, a little ways behind two of my professors, John and Amy, who were heading inside. John had left a coffee mug on the side walk - I guess it was a really special coffee mug or something. I picked it up and was running inside to give it to him, when I tripped (I later discovered it was a trap, the president of the school, vice prez, other figures of authority, and some of the teachers I am having issues with set it up for me to trip). The mug broke. I gathered all of the broken pieces and stumbled inside to give John the pieces and give an explanation. However, I tripped again and one of the shards of the broken mug cut his leg pretty badly. I was then dragged off by some people working for the president. They accused me of stealing John's valuable possessions and acting barbaric and insane by smashing the mug and then assaulting him with the remnants.
So I was dragged off to this place.. I still don't quite know what exactly it was. It was sort of a mixture of a detention, a prison, a camp, all in a poorly-built bad-looking castle-like place - and it was there that people who were "misbehaving" or needed "special attention" were punished until they learned to follow orders and "behave" themselves as the school deems worthy.
I was the new person in the system. I was the only one who saw this whole establishment as being unjust and something that needed to be fought. I was the rebel.
The specifics as to what happened from there are kind of blurry, but I remember some of the things that would happen. We were not given a place to sleep. We had to find safe places to sleep where dangerous creatures, like snakes and spiders, couldn't get to us. This often meant being cramped in a cement floor in a closet up high in a rickety tower. I remember people were whipped and I was, too (though I never felt it, thank goodness!). People were tortured into telling the "truth" about what crime they committed that landed them there. This included poisons, being hung naked by wrists or ankles, being strapped to a chair and having your hair pulled out and finger nails dug into your skin. I remember that guys who behaved well for a minimum of two weeks could have sex with (rape) a girl. The girls they could chose from were on a small list of both new girls and girls who were not behaving. I, being the only rebel and also being pretty new, was number 1 on the list. When I figured this out, I tried to sneak out so I could run away before the guys could find me. I managed to find my phone in a locker that had a number of my items hidden away. It had been several days and I had missed a date with a guy. I first wanted to call him and tell him where I was and that I needed his help to get me out. When I called, the "the number you are calling has been disconnected" message. So I tried calling my parents and sister. I received the same message for all of those calls. I ran. I knew the authorities would know I was escaping and would catch up with me soon.
I did get home, but only to find that my family thought I was lying about where I had been. They told me to stop being so immature, quit making up stories. We were going on vacation to Utah to see some cousins. I remember seeing my cousin Shelley, Ben, his wife Dani, and I saw Daina in the distance. We were out in the field and they believed my story, but seemed to be in a trance or something, my story didn't bother them. I asked my parents for the guy's number. They had the same number I did, and it didn't work. I asked my sister for his number, and hers was different. When I called, he believed my story, but did not want to date a girl who could potentially be a danger to his life because of the people who were after her. I wanted to chew him out and tell him he was a jerk and a chicken. I then saw him and chased him down. For some reason, he was dressed like an old woman. This disgusted me and ticked me off. (again, it's a dream, it was crazy!!!) He told me I disgust him and to never speak to him again. This really upset me, seeing as all of my other friends from Clarke and around the area thought I was losing my mind and were avoiding me like the plague. So I ran away from him and back to my family, where I was caught and taken back to the prison place. I was eating lunch with some girls who amazed I escaped and wanted to hear all about it. I told them we needed to take this place down and that I knew some people (the YSA's in my ward) who were going to help attack from the outside while we brought it down from the inside.
There was a lot of hiding, sprinting, sneaky deeds and stealing done, but in the end we managed to bring down the institution. We had to run before people could try to catch us again, and this time it was for good. I got home though and everybody still thought I had lost my mind. None of my friends would speak to me, the guy still hated me, and I ultimately decided I was going to leave town and never come back. Go to school far away and live there. I didn't need this.


That was it. My alarm woke me up right as I made that decision. I was SO RELIEVED!!!!
I have the stupidest dreams! All they do is cause me to wake up with this feeling of despair in my heart. And it haunts me all day!
Funnily enough though, I know where half of the things in the dream come from. Like the professor. And that I was being set up to fail. Being forced to live up to unreasonable (and dishonest) standards, wanting to rebel. My silent fear of rejection. The rest is a mystery to me though.

So whenever somebody wishes me "sweet dreams!", I hope it's an honest wish next time. :P

Day 3

Day 3-Your first love.

My first love was Josh. I learned so much, and though the heartbreak was no fun, I've come out of the relationship a different person; changed for the better. There are some things you can learn by watching other people, and there are some things you have to experience yourself in order to understand. I did my share of that. And I'm glad I did.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

I Think I Think Too Much

I really do.
I don't think I want to write down all of my thoughts either, because I would then talk myself into circles and it would be never ending and there would be no point to it whatsoever. Except to maybe get it out of my head and onto paper...well, the internet. A document.
To irrationally and generalize/sum up my thoughts.... I hate politics. It upsets me how offended people get and how hysterical so many people behave when something doesn't go their way. I know it's irrational, but when somebody tries to explain to me where I'm wrong and how I'm not a good person for saying such things or having certain views, it makes me very upset and want to give up all together and just cry.
I hate feeling out-smarted when I know I know a lot, I just don't care to get into such a deep conversation about it. For politics.
I think I'm out of patience for ideas.

UGH and Day 2

Day 2 - Meaning behind your blog name.

There really is no meaning...well, "blah blah blah" refers to my words, which are usually rambles about whatever, so I sarcastically make those seem unimportant by labeling them "blah blah blah". Whenever I ramble, I always like to remember that there are more important things in life to worry about than whatever it is I'm rambling about. It keeps me focused and I think helps support rational thinking.
But sometimes I simply need to vent and it really is unimportant. So it's all blah blah blah. :) By me!


I. Hate. Cramps.
I get them so bad. I cannot walk. My whole area from my lower absomen/back to my knees swells. I feel like doing absolutely nothing except being sedated and remaining unconscious through this whole ordeal. I have to go to work tonight.
Days like to day, naproxen sodium is my best friend.
Things could always be worse though. And I'm glad they're not.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Insomnia

I am really enjoying being on spring break right now. However, it is really messing up my sleep schedule. I keep sleeping in past noon and I literally never fall asleep without medication anyway, but now, even with medication, because I'm getting so much sleep, I'm restless. Tired, but restless. Not exhausted. Just very tired and not feeling top-notch. And restless.
Lucky for me (and all other students starting school after break next week), day light saving time starts on Sunday. We lose an hour! Right before classes! Yay! That will certainly help.

Enough with the pessimism, there is a lot to be happy for, no need to waste time complaining.
My friend Nikki has been doing this on her blog. I did the facebook version, the 30 Day Photo challenge, and this one seems to be a little more geared towards blogs. I can't upload pictures every day (rural internet), but I can do the challenge anyway and upload pictures later.

So here is Day 1:

Day 1-Introduce, recent picture, 15 interesting facts about yourself





I am Laura, I play cello and piano. I have short hair and I don't know what color my eyes are.

1. When it comes to politics, I have my opinions, often very strong opinions, but I rarely share them for the sake of keeping peace and preventing turning friends into enemies. O_o I have views on all of that as well, but it's easier to just stay quiet and let the voting do the talking.

2. I absolutely LOVE roller coasters. Any day I ride on a roller coaster is a happy day for me.

3. I love Eeyore.

4. My memory is huge. And I do not know why. Some people find it creepy. My family finds it astounding. I just see it as a part of who I am. I remember everything and anything unimportant. Things people said and did, when they said it, why it was (or was not) of relevance, and anything else I might be able to throw in there. Like the day of the week and the time of the day. I would give an example but it would take to long to explain everything that happened. O_o

5. I love cake. Cake is my favorite food.

6. I hate sea food, coconuts, pineapples, fancy foods, raspberries, strawberries, plums, fast food, licorice, garlic, ranch, asian food. 
I also cannot have: dairy, veggies (except for potatoes), red meat, many nuts, high citrus fruits, also (by themselves) apples, grapes, bananas... though I love apple pie, grape juice, banana bread, lemon cake and orange cake. :)


7. In the past few years I have started to love dresses. I love dresses. Too bad I love being comfortable even more, otherwise I'd wear dresses a LOT more often. However, despite this girly interest, I cannot stand to have my nails painted.


8. Two major talents of mine that I am very passionate about are music and art. Playing, listening, studying, writing, leading, learning, performing music is what I love. Creating, observing, becoming inspired, working, admiring, sculpting, emoting through art is a talent I have that I am very grateful for.

9. If I had no musical talent whatsoever, there are many other careers I would consider: Interior Design consultant. Fashion consultant. Makeup artist (stage makeup). Child Life Specialist. Meteorologist. Astronomer. There are more but I cannot remember them at the moment.

10. For the last 6 years of my life I have been battling Crohn's Disease. It has changed my life in so many ways. Though I strongly dislike it, I do not resent having it. I am who I am today because of this, and I'm proud of the adult I am becoming.

11. I love to learn. Everything and anything. If my master plan of education works out (where I'll get all the degrees I want), I'll be going to school for a very long time. But I am ok with that!

12. Summer is my favorite season.

13. Before I die, I want to travel the world. I want to visit every state in the USA(36 down, 14 to go!), every continent (I'll be ok if I never see Antarctica), learn some languages, and just travel. I love traveling.

14. I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. All I can say is I am so grateful to know the things I know and belong to this church. It means my life to me.

15. I have soooo many problems with Disney Channel today. I will post a blog rant about my issues with this channel sometime.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Lotsa Thoughts!

It has been such a ridiculously crazy week! But in the midst of it all, everything is looking up. :)

I'll delve into the not-so-fun stuff first.
I just received an outline back (from this very same teacher mentioned in my earlier post) and received a solid D on the assignment. For not being quite as specific as she wanted on one little part of the paper. That's it, literally just ONE thing. Ok, well it's marked in two spots, but it is really the same one thing, just mentioned twice. So it gets a D.
Yeah, my suspicious are confirmed...she has it out for me. This is not going to be a fair battle.
At least I know what I'm worth and she can never give me a grade on my life.

Moving on...I guess there's really not too much to say, other than I am learning so much about myself that I never realized I had as a part of me. I love it! It's so exciting, and I'm becoming happier and happier. Maybe that's partly because it's spring break now and I don't have classes all week, but part of it is also that I'm learning so much about myself, what the Lord has planned for me, the gospel, realizing the blessings I have in life (particularly friends), and just learning to love others and myself in a smart and mature way.
I really do have great friends. Every person I know who I talk to and interact with and everything...there are so many people out there who I care about and who I love... and it's just starting to dawn on me that they love and support me, too.
I learn new things everyday! Not only about myself, but about others! And I learn things about the world, history and geography and cultures and current events. Back to learning about others, I had a lovely brief conversation with an older lady in the ward today who just stopped me to tell me she loves my music and hopes I keep it up for a very long time. (I haven't played in church in so long! I appreciated the loving compliment.) We got into discussing how much we love music. I admit, before this I knew very little, if anything, about this woman, other than she was recently very ill and that she and her husband have very strong testimonies in the church. But today, I learned she used to be a professional bassoon player!! She went to all-state in high school! She played in the symphony orchestra for a VERY long time! She used to sing, she used to draw, used to do all sorts of things.
It is amazing how much you can learn by simply appreciating other people and being loving in your conversations.
I've made this change recently in my life and the blessings are certainly without number. Many that I probably don't even recognize, and probably won't for a very long time.
I have much more work to do (I have a whole lifetime of work to do!! Haha!), but I'm grateful for all of my friends and family for the support you have, even if it's simply a casual conversation. Knowing me and simply liking to talk to me...coming out of a few very hard years of depression these recent months...it is more than I can ever fully explain.

So to all my friends and family who read this, Thank You. You are all great people. :)

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Change

No, this is not an Obama campaign.

The last six months of my life have been full of change. I have learned so much about myself that I never even realized, simply by making changes to my daily routine and changing the way I think about the little (and big) things in life. I have gained greater appreciation for many aspects of life, both positive and negative. I feel I have changed for good, in a very good way.
I had to make choices that were not always easy. Such as looking at my life and eliminating all parts that can have even the slightest negative impact on my life. If some things could not be removed, then I had to remove my negative thoughts on such things and learn to either appreciate the things I learn from them, or just ignore them and focus my attention elsewhere.
It took a very long time for me to realize how much of an impact it makes on my life. My behavior, my thoughts, my values and love for my life. I plan to continue to remove unnecessary and avoidable negatives from my life throughout my entire life. This, along with living the life I know the church has taught me to be true, I feel will help me over-all to become a happier, wiser, successful and more open person.

I'm grateful for all that I have and all that I have been blessed with. I am grateful for the direction my life is moving in and I look forward to the future.


Yay life :)

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Not Being a Catholic in a Catholic School

...or a liberal in a catholic school.
I go to a private little catholic university that nobody has heard of in historic Dubuque, Iowa. This school is run by nuns. For the most part, it is a a wonderful conservative liberal arts school. Lots of upsides to it. Including the fact that, because my dad works here as chair of the Physical Therapy dept (the largest dept at Clarke, btw), I get a large tuition remission. Aka, I go to school for [practically] free.
For the most part, I haven't had many problems when it comes to tolerance of my religion and views. Up until this semester, that is.
College has not be unreasonably stressful until I was cornered into taking a class I did not want to take. I did not realize that I really did not want to take this class until it was too late, and now I am stuck. And there seems to be no way out.
The professor (I suppose I should say the associate professor....she has worked here 17 years, has a PhD and is still not a full professor...) assigned us a last-minute assignment to completely splurge our gut response, or in her terms, "word vomit", on a response paper to an extremely long article on women, their roles in education through history and their importance now. With a feminist approach.
To see my response, check out my facebook note.
I did not expect this paper to cause as much of a fuss as it has already.
I ended up meeting with the teacher, by her request. I opposed at first, saying I would like to have the meeting with my advisor, and my advisor said she would like to do it in her own office. The teacher refused, saying she wanted to meet with only me and in her own office.
So I went. I was scared going, because I was not sure what to expect. I suspected that maybe I was being too dramatic by being so nervous, but I soon learned I should have been more than scared. I should have gone in with more courage than she has rationality (which is not hard to do). However, I didn't, and the hour-long meeting was by far the worst hour I have ever spent here at Clarke University.
She concluded the meeting hoping I had learned something.
Well Ms..we'll call her Ms Smith (that's common and discreet enough).. here is what I learned, based off of what you told me:
I am crazy. Crazy crazy crazy. For taking 17 hours. (the maximum you can take without paying extra is 18...paying extra you can take no more than 21.) She looked me in the eye and called me "crazy".
Unless I learn to change my attitude and value on other people's opinions, and the fact that there are people out there who will disagree with me and not be rational about it (ahem..exhibit A..Ms Smith...), I will be a failure in life.
My opinion doesn't matter (this was an opinion paper!!!!!), and I will not be successful if I continue to have such an ignorant, snotty, rebellious, republican attitude.
I need to learn to not take offense to things I disagree with (but it's completely ok for Ms Smith to throw a hissy fit over my disagreement to her assignment. Yep, all is well-thought-out and logical upstairs for Ms Smith.)
I should plan on taking 6 years to graduate. (aka I'm slow from my health and not too smart. BULL! This lady knows NOTHING of music education and the way it works.)
I may end up being a 34 year old returning to live at home with my parents because of the way this economy is going and because of how long I should take in school and the likelihood of my success in a career because of my health. I guess nobody is going to want to ever marry me and I'll be a complete failure in all job opportunities. Hmm. Thanks for giving me the heads up, Ms Smith! Appreciate it! In all seriousness now, I actually take that as a form of discrimination against myself as having a disability and being told I will not make it very far. I am hurt. Offended. (but wait, I have no need to be offended because she has a PhD, as she very forwardly reminded me, so she knows what she's talking about. As an undergrad, I'm just a moron.) Yes, I have a health disability. I have complete confidence that I will be successful in whatever path I choose as a career, because I know how to work hard within my limits. That is smart. Many healthy people don't understand that they too, have limits. But I know mine, and I know how to disperse my time and energy efficiently. I also have passion. And focus. I am determined and strong. I am a leader and am NOT a push-over. I am many more qualities that will help me become a successful person in life.
One waste-of-time-and-energy opinion paper and one person who likes to throw hissy fits to make her look smarter is NOT going to keep me from fulfilling my dreams.

I would not be taking this so seriously if I did not feel threatened that my work will be unfairly judged from this point on in the class and will therefor have a negative impact on my GPA. My fears of this are valid. My advisor (and many many many many many other parents/faculty members) has told me that this is not the first time this kind of problem arose with this teacher and a student, and every single time she has been uncooperative and unfair. This will more than likely not be the last time, either. But my plan is to fight this. Fight this, and probably lose. But this "fight" will go on record...as it has in the past...and someday, because I, and many other brave students in the past, have stood up to her, some future bright and brave student will win and shut her and her ego-driven madness down.

Point is, with this teacher and the system she works in with many other faculty members, I do not feel welcome with my opinions and beliefs, since I am neither catholic nor liberal. They claim to be open and welcoming...but I guess that's only if you agree with them.

And I'm learning that unfortunately, much of the world works this way.
I want to change that.