Archive for February, 2008

It was difficult last semester to get my head into studying and I totally forgot, that taking graduate courses meant writing papers.  Long papers that have to be to perfection and in a style that most of us are clueless to.  My first paper is due in a little over a week and I have yet to start writing and reading.  I guess not that much has changed in my approach since my days in college 35 somewhat odd years ago. 

However, I am thrilled that we’re situated in a classroom that is acoustically better for me.  The powerpoints are awesome as the Professors follow them pretty much to the letter, so hearing, is not a big issue.  I so wish we had powerpoints when I was in college.  I doubt very much I would have been a Social Worker had there been an easier way to grasp the material with hearing loss back then.  I can just feel all the emotional anxiety creeping up on me as I think back to the days of College.  It certainly was not easy.

Well, it also looks like I’ve hit the half way mark to this sabbatical and I am very aware that one day, I have to return to the work force. In the meantime, I plan to enjoy it, embrace it, and get the most out of it and who knows, maybe now I’ll feel good about retiring one day.

Graduate classes are so different from undergrad.  The workload is bigger and though there are no exams, the writing of papers are somewhat foreign to me after 30 years.  Somehow, I’m feeling it was alot easier to study for an exam than write a paper in APA format.   I’m sure I’ll get the hang of it after this first paper is done.  I just have to get started since its due the first week in March.

This has to be the fastest year in history for me.  Every month flies by as though we were in a race.  The idea of having to return to work is so anxiety provoking that my chest closes on me at the thought.   This has been the most creative and best year I’ve had in a long time.  Everyone should get a year off, three quarters thru their life…lol   I learned that I need to laugh more, take some things less seriously, other things more seriously and nothing is more important than my children, my husband and my parents, which I already knew.  And that good friends are the ones who truly stick with you through thick and thin, in sickness and in health.

I’ve discovered that taking care of your elderly parents is not for sissys and that I am not necessarily going to grow old the way they did.  That having a pet in your life is a very good thing.  Having a hobby is important but having love and someone to love back is not just for the books.  Count me in as one of those people who believe in romance and forever after.  to be continued

There’s been so much drama in my life these days and sometimes I wonder whether its because I have more time to focus on it being that I’m on a sabbatical.  Sibling relationships can be so complex, especially when there are elderly parents involved.  Everyone wants what they think is best for their parents but no one is on the same page.  I don’t ever want my kids to be in the position that I’m in now with my siblings and my parents.  It’s so stressful and it rips whatever connections u have, apart. 

Although my parents are very fortunate to have each other and still be in their own home at the age of 89, I sometimes wonder, is this the best we can do?  They are nowhere near independent, they have to have two people with them at all times to care for them.  And though my parents are alive, they are fragile physically and mentally.  I can’t imagine what its like to be 89 and I’m not so sure I want to.  

I have to admit, I actually found it very relaxing to shut off my hearing aid (and since I have no speech discrimination in the other ear), the sound of silence, and of course my tinnitus, was a welcoming change.  I decided to brush up on my skills for the silver jewelry making course and so I went to the Y to do some benchtime.  It’s awesome to be so hyper focused on something.  I’ve never had this experience before except for maybe when I’ve been involved in a relationship..lol.

There were other people in the room doing very advanced work.  Occassionally, someone would be staring over my shoulder and I could sense a question being asked.  I would turn on my aid and state I have a hearing loss. Naturally, the response always seems to be, “oh, I’m sorry.”   Why are people sorry? I’ve stopped apologizing a long time ago for not hearing so don’t be sorry or feel sorry for me, just rephrase if I can’t hear you…..lol

My sabbatical is truly turning out to be radically great.  I’m so enjoying everything I’m doing and learning and I am certainly learning alot of new things.

What’s the purpose of research, if when you go to read it, it seems as if its in a foreign language?  My assignments this week were from the Journal on Autism Spectrum and the DSM IV handbook.  Maybe it’s me? But I keep rereading the paragraphs and feeling as though I’m not getting it. 

While checking things out on google, I came across the readings I was assigned in “laymans” terms.   Really, it said, article in “laymans language.”   Now what I don’t understand is if the Professionals are writing papers of interest for others to learn from and/or work within their client populationtion, why aren’t they writing in language that can be understood by all?  I’m sure there are parents out there who have autistic children and want to learn about the different techniques developed in working with this special population.  How is a parent to understand? Must they rely on the Professionals to explain it?  Wouldn’t it be nice to have parents come to a meeting prepared with questions after researching the different methods themselves?  or maybe, I’m just reading the more complicated material…lol

It’s all so strange to me.  This semester makes last semester look like disneyland.  I’m still hoping to have fun and learn something new.  Call me crazy!

Graduate courses are so much harder than undergrad.  I can’t believe the difference in the course work  and the notable difference in the student population.  No sneakers, thats first..lol.  I guess most of the students are coming from work.

The Professors expect so much more and there are no tests. Just very long papers that I learned must be typed in a certain format otherwise they won’t accept the work done and will not return it to the student for corrections.  YIKES!  Can’t help but wonder how I ever made it through my Masters back in the 70’s? It’s all a blurr to me.