It is done…

Eight months of blood, sweat, and tears (and yes, all three were shed….) and I am done school. For second term, my lowest mark was 83.1%, my highest was 95.96%. I made it onto the Dean’s Honour List for the second term in a row. Although it seemed like an eternity while I was going through it, I can’t believe how quickly it flew by. In eight months I learned how to use eight new software packages and four languages. I have crammed so much in my brain that I can no longer remember what I went into another room for, even after I’ve picked it up, but I can take apart an image of a skull and have it roll across the computer screen. Not a bad skill to have, not when you’re the Witch of South Mountain.

I can honestly say that I’m exhausted. The course was a two year program, smashed into eight months. I stressed myself out for so long about absolutely everything that all I want to do now is stay curled up in bed with the covers pulled over my head and avoid the world entirely. When I do get up, I want to nap. I question my sanity, I question my health, and I hope that things return to normal. But I don’t know what normal is anymore. School became normal. Although it was stressful, it was comfortable. I was safe there. I had friends going through the same thing and we spent a lot of time together. Now I’m done. I don’t have a job, I don’t have school, I have no money coming in, and I have a house and bills to pay. So now it’s a new stress. A similar stress as I had before I went back to school, but… it’s exactly the same but completely different.

Now the job hunt begins. Again. At least this time I have more skills. I have a University degree AND a Collage diploma. Surely someone will want me… won’t they?

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Heavens to Murgatroyd

It has been a month since I last posted. That’s terrible! I can admit to being completely distracted and bogged down by JavaScript and PHP, both languages I wish I never had to learn. I think it’s safe to say that I’ll never be a back-end developer. If anyone were to hire me for that purpose, I’d probably break the internet. Billions would be at a loss as to how to communicate, since cursive writing isn’t being taught in schools anymore. It would be complete and utter anarchy. It might even create a second ice age, wiping civilization, as we know it, out completely.

Okay, well, maybe not quite that dramatic, but I’d suck.

Not much else has happened in the last month, other than my boyfriend trying to kill me with his shoes, and then being attacked by a rabid trampoline. Other than that, it’s been quiet. My boyfriend claims he’s not… he says he’s far more subtle than an obstacle course in the dark that I am unaware of, but I’m keeping my eyes open, just in case. He does write horror, after all.

When noodles attack

Let me begin by pointing out that I am the epitome of elegance and grace. *snort* If you’ve read my previous posts about some of my concussions, surely you will agree.

I had a very late start to my day today. I had a class on PHP that started at 9am, but after waking up in full blown cold-mode (the second cold I’ve had in 3 1/2 weeks that has again settled in my lungs) I decided that extra sleep was a higher priority. Besides, no one wanted to hear the hacking and sniffling joy that I was first thing this morning. My second class, however, was mandatory so I had to haul myself into Ottawa. I survived the class without too much incident. I tried to be as subtle in my disgustingness as possible.

On my way home, I discovered just how hungry I was and realized that I was not going to make it home without starting to feel faint. Luckily, there’s a Farm Boy on the way and they have really yummy (and healthy!) salads. Me eating salad in the car is never a graceful thing to witness, because I use my fingers, and they are usually rice dishes. Today, however, I do believe I reached an all new low. Thank goodness I was alone.

I opened the container and perched it in a safe spot where I could access it without taking my eyes off the road. Safety first. Today’s choice was a bit different. I got a lovely curry noodle dish. I was almost to the bottom of the container when it happened. A particularly long noodle materialized. I stuck out my tongue to safely guide the tasty, noodlely goodness into my mouth when I hit a small pothole. The (very sticky) noodle sprang up and plastered itself across my face. The surprise of that caused a sharp intake of breath, and that’s when a tiny noodle was sucked down my throat. This started a coughing fit so violent that I had tears streaming down my face (trickling along the still plastered noodle) and I was waiting for the wet thwacking sound of one my lungs being ejected from my body and onto the dashboard. After what seemed like an eternity, my eyes dried up, the noodle was removed, and the coughing eventually ceased.

I should probably make sure I have cookies in my bag from now on.

And if any members of any police forces are reading this, this never happened. Nope, nope, nope. Complete fiction, I swear.

I wrote the shittiest poem. It was voted so.

Shitty-Poetry-Belt_0

For those that knew about it, I wrote the shittiest poem of 2015, according to readers of ChiZine.com. I’m pretty excited about that, because I was up against my published boyfriend who is damned good at writing good stuff and shitty stuff. I wrote it for school, actually, since I’m learning web design… This was my poem, y’all. 🙂

Oh The Coding We Shall Do…

Would you, should you, code responsive design?
You surely must, or some might whine.
Devices now are of many size,
and so the site must be quite wise.
Mobile users see a tiny screen,
instead of wide, longer must be seen.
Many challenges there surely be,
like making sure that all can see.
Mobile users like to zoom,
and that makes a coder’s head kaboom.
Making pages fit to scale,
will unerringly make a coder wail.
The breakpoints needed for a media query,
can surely make a coder weary.
If these challenges run amok,
any coder will yell: What. The. F$%k?

In all fairness, the esteemed Geoff Gander, otherwise known as my boyfriend, wrote a fantastic poem and it must be shared, because not everyone clicked the “read more” button. I offer you:

All Staff

By Geoff Gander

I moan softly in frustrated sorrow,
Fidgeting in my hard, rough office chair
Like a lion in a cramped cage.
“Just a short meeting,” he said.
His tongue flattened and forked
As he spoke.

I wince and clutch my stomach,
Singed by a noxious brew
Of curdled milk and stale coffee.
“Sure, I’ll have another cup.
No sugar, though.
I’m cutting back.”

I pinch myself to stay awake,
Straining against the droning hum of
Bureaucratic bafflegab.
“What the hell did he just say?”
Glazed eyes stare back
Uncomprehending.
Should’ve had another cup.

I grit my teeth,
Groaning as the Sands of Time
Course downwards.
“Why are we still on the first agenda item?”
I fight back tears of remorse
For the life that I am losing.

Every.

Second.

I think my brain is broken

It’s 2:45 on Saturday afternoon. I’ve done nothing. So far, all I’ve managed to accomplish is feeding the cats, cleaning the litter box, and turning the dishwasher on. That’s it. I sat down to do some assignments due next week and my mind went blank. I couldn’t remember anything from last week in my web development class. Nothing. I have no idea what I’m doing. It’s a very scary feeling. I feel like my brain is actually broken. I’m not sure why I’m even blogging this because I can’t think of anything to say. Maybe that’s why I’m saying it, even though that makes absolutely no sense.

I wish I’d heard the actual snap, because then I could pin-point when my brain broke. Unless it’s just in melt-down mode. Melting is quite quiet.

Oh how exciting!!!

As I mentioned in my previous post, we’ve hurtled into the joy and bliss of WordPress. I started this blog as one of my portfolio submissions to get into the program. But, it’s been pretty fun and a good place to vent, so I’m keeping it up. This week, however, I learned more, so I’ve gotten fancy. I now have categories.

And there was much rejoicing. *Yaaaayyyy*

rejoicing

My brain may explode soon…

Three months ago, I was unemployed and stressed. I am now longing for days gone by. When I was unemployed, I applied for 307 jobs in six months. I was busy. But, I was also depressed and sleeping a lot. Other than job hunting, I was reading books… that’s about it. Not a vigorous schedule, but, in all honesty, when one is depressed, that’s a lot. Fast forward three months. I went from sleeping late, napping, looking for jobs, and reading books, to school. WTF?

I don’t regret going to school. I know that my future is going to be brighter when I’m done. But, that being said, should I have gone back to learn everything new? In 11 weeks, I’ve been given instruction on Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, Dreamweaver, Premiere Pro and Bridge. Don’t forget Sublime Text 2, Mamp, FileZilla and now WordPress. There’s a *kaboom* right there. That’s nine software packages in 11 weeks. Then you throw in HTML, CSS, Javascript, JQuery, PSP, fancy photography and video techniques, lighting, and infrastructure architecture (structure of a website). I kid you not, all I want to do is nap in my spare time.

I’m excited to be learning all this. I was reminded to think of all the things that I could not do in November. It’s pretty cool. But it’s also pretty scary. Because I’m not sure I know all the things I’ve learned so far. Have I really learned it? Or have I been going through the motions and just getting lucky in following along? I don’t know. My grades range from 89.9% to 100%. Apparently, I’m doing pretty well….

But you know what’s missing? I seem to have lost my weirdness. I haven’t had a single zombie garden gnome attack me in my backyard. But, then again, there’s still snow on the ground. What zombie, in their right mind, would wander about in sub-zero temperatures. I have some blissfully bizarre (but wonderfully funny) classmates that I get together with for beers at the school pub – usually on Thursdays. We’ve had some seriously fucked up conversations, which is awesome.

But despite all that, I find that I’m spending so much time trying to make sure I stay on the honour roll that I’m losing myself. There are only five months left. I hope I’m still the same me when I’m done…

Time flies…

Going back to school is a funny thing as an adult. This week has been reading week, which means it’s almost half-way through my first term of college. When I went to university the first time, right out of high school, reading week meant travelling home and hanging out with my parents. When I went to university the second time, it meant being able to ONLY work 40 hours per week and not have to worry about going to school at night. Now, I’m back to being a full-time student as a 40-something person, and it means soooo much more. And there’s a lot of napping involved.

I went from no hope, and a scary future, to learning all the new things, and still a scary future. My brain has been in overdrive since January 5th. I’m still terrified that I’m not going to do well in this course, despite the fact that my lowest mark is 89%. I’m convinced that the professors will see that I’m just treading water right now, and take bets on how quickly I’ll sink when I get tired. I’m afraid that I’m not good enough, and that I still won’t be when I’m done. I’m terrified that I will have lived on less than minimum wage, sacrificed too much, stressed over every bill and expense in order to get this degree, and that I’ll still not find a job in September.

I’m trying really hard to change my thinking, but I’ve spent 40-something years thinking negatively. I’m surprised by what I’ve done… Every now and then, I stop and think about it, shake my head, and think WTF? But on the other hand, it doesn’t feel weird. Going back to school, and wandering the halls of academia still seems like the natural thing to do. So, I guess I’ll keep treading water, and hope that no one notices that I still have no fucking clue what I’m doing…

It sure looks pretty…

Well that was a rather inauspicious first day of school…

I woke up at the crack of pre-dawn and managed to get myself out the door at the time I had actually wanted to leave. That was pretty impressive considering that I am not a morning person. I had cleaned the car off the night before from the day’s ice-rain storm so there was no scraping to be done. Or so I thought… Turns out I had forgotten the whole passenger side of the car. I managed to scrape a small amount off, enough to see out the window, but the rest of it was left as a sheet of ice. Who needs the passenger door when you’re by yourself?

The journey itself was uneventful until I got into the city only to be reminded why I live in a small town. I really don’t like the city and l like the drivers even less. After a few curse words and practically falling asleep as we crawled along at a speed I could probably outpace on foot, I arrived for my very first day of college. I pulled up to the parking lot and rolled down the window to get my parking ticket. No, wait, I didn’t. The window was frozen shut. No worries, I just opened the door and reached around. But no… somehow, during my 64km journey, my door had frozen shut. I double-checked that I had unlocked the door – because I have been know to qualify for the Midvale School for the Gifted – but no, I was trapped.

By this time, another car had pulled up behind me and was awaiting his turn to enter the parking lot. There I am, heaving my entire body weight repeatedly against the door to no avail. I doubt the man behind me was impressed when he saw me put the car in park and start crawling through to exit the passenger side. Thank god that side opened, which is ironic, since that was the side covered in ice. Around the car I go, gesturing apologetically and squeezing between the ticket machine and the car. A very pissed-off yank on the handle freed my door! Hooray! But, of course, I was too close to the machine to get back in that side. Around the car I venture again, giving the (I would imagine irritated or amused) driver behind me the thumbs up, and clamber back through the car. What a great day to wear a floor-length coat… But I digress… I got my ticket, whooshed through the entrance and quickly pulled into a spot where I could hide my embarrassment from the individual who witnessed this entire encounter.

Once I regained my composure I ventured into academia. The first orientation was a bit strange, but interesting. We were then fed pancakes, which was awesome. Following that was an orientation about the program itself. It was very informative and I’m officially both excited and terrified of the future ahead of me. After that, I got my picture taken for my student card and I headed back to the car.

I was almost back to the parking lot, walking a bit quicker than I should have been since it was bloody windy and cold, when it happened. I crossed the last road, stepped onto the sidewalk, and what did I find but sheer ice that had not been salted after yesterday’s previously mentioned ice rain storm. It would be interesting to note here, that I fell and sprained an ankle on Christmas Eve Eve. It is healing but at the moment I’m wearing boots a bit too big so my ankle is comfortable. These boots do not have good tread… I was propelled a good five feet, balanced on one foot (the bad one) as the sidewalk started to angle down into the curb. I angled with it, slid with as much grace as one can as they are pinwheeling, panicking and trying to protect a brand new laptop, and landed like a lead balloon on my posterior. Again, there were witnesses.

Needless to say, as I drove home, cringing and cursing at every pothole that jolted my newly cracked tailbone, through gritted teeth I repeated to myself “It sure looks pretty… It sure looks pretty…”

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