Tuesday, September 6, 2011

And the Adventure Continues

Wow! It's been two and a half years since I've posted anything on here. Boy have things changed! I find it hard to believe sometimes just how much has changed. First of all, the day before I wrote my last post, the woman I'd been dating and I made it official that we were an exclusive couple. She did a lot of encouraging thru the next few months of training for that triathlon which I did in fact complete! What an awesome adventure that was!! My parents came from Iowa and Gina, my girlfriend, were there to support me on race day. It's an amazing feeling to be peddling down a beautiful road and have someone thank you for what you're doing. Why? Because I took part in that triathlon as part of the Team In Training for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. I had raised over $2500 for cancer research. Random strangers who were also competing thanked me more than once while running my race. It was awesome and beautiful and exhilarating to say the least!

But wow, things have changed since then. It's been a little over two years and I've hardly set foot in the gym or at boot camp since then. My two awesome trainers at boot camp went their separate ways and the contrast between the two of them which always kept me on my toes went out the window. I liked the fact that they worked differently. It was a way to keep me from getting bored. When the two business partners went their separate way, it was a fight to see who was going to keep who for their "new" boot camps. I wasn't impressed and it turned me off to going to boot camp. Needless to say, I've gained back all the weight over the passed two and a half years. I still enjoy a good workout but I guess I haven't made it a priority, something I'd really like to change.

Let's see, what else do I need to bring you up to speed on. Hmmm, on the work front: Still a pharmacist. Still LOVE my job (most days!). In April 2009, less than a year after graduating and only nine months after getting licensed as a pharmacist, I was made the manager of the crazy busy pharmacy I worked at. I continued working there until this past March. In February, my company decided to shake things up and moved my awesome district manager to a new district and relocated my store into a district we should not have gone to. I instantly sent a message to my boss to "take me with you!" And there begins a new page in the story. I'm currently working in a rather difficult store an hour from home. Whereas my previous location was about 18 minutes to and from home. I wouldn't go back to my previous pharmacy without some major changes happening, the least of which would be bringing my boss back with me. I do enjoy my one hour commute as it gives me plenty of time to listen to books on tape. For those of you who may have this opportunity as well, SimplyAudiobooks.com is just like NetFlix only for books on CD. Love it! I've finally "read" some books that I've been waiting to read for years.

The next big development, I bought a house! YAY! We are finally out of that awful apartment complex. But before we left, the property manager actually moved in across the hall from us. That sort of made things a little better but there was no way I wanted to stay at that point. We bought our house in a town about 20 miles from there on December 8 and officially moved in right around the New Year 2011. We were promptly on the phone with RotoRooter after moving in. We bought a house that hadn't had occupants since the previous May or before and apparently the plumbing (and heating) needed a bit of an adjustment. Despite the yardwork and the maintenance, I LOVE my house! We should have done a little more research on our neighborhood but we have good neighbors on one side and across the street, a big dog and a fence so we're doing well!

I should mention the house we bought has SIX bedrooms. Well, could have six bedrooms. We set up three bedrooms and used the other rooms for other purposes (a library, a dressing room, and another large living room). But that leaves us lots and lots of room to entertain guests or have roommates.

So, we decided to host a foreign exchange student! Stay tuned for our adventures. He's been here for two weeks and we're having a great time!

Monday, January 12, 2009

My Next Adventure

I really need to update everyone soon but right now I just wanted to tell everyone about my latest adventure! I signed up for a triathlon! OMG!!! How scary?!?! But it's something to challenge me and see if I can actually do it and also it's for a great cause! I've signed up for part of the Team in Training for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. If you're interested in reading more about it check out my webpage: http://pages.teamintraining.org/ma/HyannisT9/sricharioh

Thanks for everyone's support!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Rough Sailing

I haven't written in awhile. Partly because I've been busy with work and partly because I'm stressed out. But today I'm writing because I'm sad and just wanted to write.

It's been a rough week. I found out Wednesday that a friend's husband had passed away. My friend is in her mid-30s. It doesn't hardly seem fair the hand that life has dealt her. I can only imagine what this week has been like for her. You see, she and her husband were excited to finally be catching a break. Her husband had suffered from kidney disease for several years and after a long, long road of dialysis, a kidney transplant offered the hope of a new life, a new beginning, a chance to finally LIVE. The transplant went well. Things were looking good. People were congratulating them on the hope of their new future. Then, as life would have it, in just a blink of an eye, things took a turn for the worse. He became septic and was on life support and just days passed before he was no longer walking this earth with us. The hope of a new beginning was devastated by the passing of a "gentle giant" of a man. My heart aches for the future that could have been but will never be and tears fall for the pain my friend must be feeling.

Normally, I'm a very sympathetic person. It's typically not difficult for me to put myself into another person's shoes and somewhat experience the pain they are going through but today I had to work and I had a very hard time doing this. I had an 81 year old woman come in to pick up her medication. She made a comment that her husband had been in the hospital and recently passed away at which point I immediately said I was sorry to hear that. But when I told her to have a good day and she grumbled something about there won't be anymore of those I felt like yelling "at least you had a lifetime with her husband. My friend had five years. How is that fair!" Thankfully, I bit my tongue because a lifetime or not, it's painful to lose your best friend but that didn't mean I wasn't on the verge of tears right there in the middle of my pharmacy. Perhaps I should have taken them up on the offer of having the entire weekend off. . .

Monday, September 22, 2008

Results Not Typical

It’s hard for me to believe that what I’ve done over the past eleven months is “not typical.” I get up at 4:45 AM, Monday through Friday to exercise. I found an amazing program through the internet called Bay State Adventure Boot Camp that literally wears me out for an hour every morning while the rest of the world is still laying around in bed. By 6:30, I’m smelly and sweaty and completely psyched that I’ve done something so good for myself.

What I like most about boot camp is I don’t have to think about it. I set my alarm, get up, go to boot camp and Alexis and Erica have the entire workout planned. I just have to do what they tell me to. It’s never boring. It’s never redundant. It’s different every day, not just for the exercise but depending on the people that are there that day. Alexis and Erica motivate me every step of the way but so do the other ladies from camp. It still amazes me how many people come up to me and tell me how good I look. (Thanks!) And while I know I’ve lost a lot of weight, I also know there’s a long way to go still.

As with most people, the journey of my weight loss started several years ago. I was sort of successful with other programs. I lost 20 pounds going to weekly meetings but it wasn’t fun and one day a week wasn’t enough motivation for me. When I moved away from that area I stopped follow the program. Two years into graduate school and I’d gained 50 pounds from eating too much greasy fast food. I decided that it was time to do something about this especially since I was in the health care business. There’s nothing like having a doctor tell you to stop smoking and then seeing him standing on the corner puffing on his own cigarette. That’s kind of how I felt. How could I possibly tell someone they needed to exercise more and take better care of themselves if I wasn’t doing that myself? So I Googled personal fitness trainers one day and found Bay State Adventure Boot Camp.

I will never forget my first day of boot camp! My body was not happy to be up that early and certainly was not impressed with what I was making it do. Now, fifty-five pounds lighter, I don’t really care what my body thinks of me! The little aches and pains, and even the major set backs requiring time off (bursitis and a car accident with whiplash), and I’m still going to boot camp five days a week. You couldn’t possibly get me to stop going! I love this program and I love the people I’ve met through it.

Besides looking and feeling so much healthier, I’ve been amazed at the other areas in my life that boot camp has affected. Boot camp has given me back so much more than I ever put in to it. It’s given me back my music. I can sing and play my flutes without gasping for air anymore! It’s given me back mountains and nature! I LOVE being outside and now I’m not panting and stopping every five minutes when I’m climbing mountains. In fact, I ran up part of the last mountain I climbed! It’s also given me back the children in my life. I can outlast my niece and nephew when we’re out playing! I can keep up with my cousin’s two year old with a smile on my face! That’s all in the past year! Next year. . . a triathlon!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Not Always What We Appear To Be

This will probably be a pretty random blog if I write everything that's been on my mind lately! I apologize for the sporadic changes of topic beforehand :)

I pulled into the parking lot of my apartment complex this morning after boot camp and kind of had to laugh about the little red sports cars "status symbols" parked in the back lot. One has a license plate that says "VOGUE" and it's had a flat tire for months. MONTHS. What's the point of spending all your money for a fancy car you can't fix? The other little red sports car has it's muffler held on with some wire that looks surprisingly like a coat hanger. Again, what's the point? Spend all your money so you can look like you have money but when in fact you take a closer look, you're as broke as the rest of the world. Hmmm, I guess that does kind of sound like an American thing to do. . .

The other day I went out for coffee with a friend of mine. We spent the majority of the time talking about whether we were ever going to have kids. I said no, not really. We went through the whole "selfish" thing. Neither of us think it's selfish. I like my lifestyle. I like being able to throw things in a bag in five minutes or less and head over to a friend's house for the night. I like being able to take off for the weekend and only have to worry that my cats have food and water and a litter box. I think it's more selfish to think that you're so highly important that you need to continue your gene pool and raise a snotty little brat that you can't discipline in this country. Okay, maybe selfish wasn't the right word but with the government and other people sticking their nose into everyone else's bedrooms, child rearing habits and all our other personal business, I think it's seriously detrimental to the well being of children these days. Whoever heard of a school shooting when teachers could still spank kids? These days teachers are too afraid of their kids to discipline them. Heck, I've talked to parents this week who don't hug their children, even in the privacy of their own home, because they're afraid of what might happen to them. How is that good for the kids?

My friend and I also talked a little about jobs and careers. I've been a pharmacist for a whole whoping month now and I have to say. . . I LOVE it! I'm so happy to be done with school and working again. I never thought I'd say that. But I am really enjoying what I do now. Now, I firmly believe that people should do what they love but I know from my own experience that many of us can't live off the salaries of what it is that we love. I have too many friends that are artists of one sort or another (writers, painters, musicians, etc.) who are living between friends, living with parents, between jobs, just doing whatever it is that they can do to live the life they want to live. I've seen people take this to the extreme where they'd be living from a backpack, biking to the grocery store miles away, because they believe and love the environment so much that they don't want their footprint to be the one that destroys the atmosphere, etc. They spend days teaching the children how to love the world they live in and the rest of the time showing the world how to do that. And they LOVE it. They wouldn't change a thing. It's called courage to be able to do what you love and turn away from the critisism of the rest of the world that thinks money is everything. It takes a leap of faith to walk a path that the world sees as different and it's these people that I love meeting. I know by looking at my life from the surface, I have a well paying job, I live in a nice apartment, etc. that I don't really look like I walk any path other than what the world sees as normal but get to know me and you'll see things are not what they always appear to be.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Too Good?

Do you ever think life can be too good? Sometimes I think that when I'm as happy as I've been lately that somewhere along the way karma's going to come along and knock the chair I'm sitting on right out from underneath of me.

But things have been great lately. Here's the newsflash: I am NOT moving to Maine. I should have realized that things that sound too good to be true probably are. I gave up a lot of money to stay where I want to be and you know what, I'm very happy with the decision I've made! I told my boss and the recruiter from Maine today that I was not going to be moving to Maine. The recruiter basically said thanks anyway and my boss said "There IS a God!" Hmmm, I think I made the right choice. I've been working a lot lately and the last two days have been great! I worked in two different stores and both of them want me there full time. It's so great to feel appreciated! Who wants to leave a situation like that! Yeah, the money would be nice but I have a regular income now that actually pays the bills and there's still some left over at the end of the day! Eventually the school loans will get paid off. Until then I'll muddle through just like always.

I've had a nice break from boot camp this week. I think my body needed some down time. That being said, I hiked six miles one day, walked/ran two miles another day and walked two miles today. Oh and biked almost five miles another day. I just had the opportunity to sleep in on those days!

Life is amazingly good right now! Who could ask for anything more?

Saturday, August 16, 2008

I Survived

When a dream you have finally happens and the person who started you on that path is no longer in your life it makes for some crazy mixed emotions. Kelly, my ex-girlfriend is the one who pointed me down the path towards pharmacy school. I haven't heard from her in several years now and as I sat at the pharmacy today, my first day as a pharmacist, this was what I thought about.

Dear Kelly,

As I sit here behind the counter of the pharmacy, my first day as a licensed pharmacist, you are on my mind. What a strange thought to occur after not having heard from you in several years. But then I realize that maybe it's not so strange because had it not been for you, I may very well not be where I am today. Life is strange sometimes, the twists and turns and blows we have to survive to get to where we dream of being. I think I thought about you today because this was a dream we started together, me being a pharmacist. And now, this is a dream I've realized without you. It was a lonely first day at the pharmacy. I thought about how I was going to come home to my empty apartment and it made me miss having someone to share my dreams with. I am the only one of my friends from pharmacy school that comes home to an empty house. It's not usually something I think about. I have plenty of friends and family that have pulled me through pharmacy school. Who have dealt with the blood, sweat and tears that came with it. And part of me is glad you didn't see that side of me. But part of me wishes you could see just how strong all this has made me. I don't mind being alone. I know that if it's supposed to be any other way, it will happen when it happens. Until then I'm happy with my life.

I've done some pretty amazing things since I last saw you. Not the least of which is finishing pharmacy school and getting licensed. I've also traveled around the country. Trips that at one time I probably would have liked to take with you, but I've gone with friends or even total strangers who became friends and I've loved every moment of it. I've spent almost two months on Indian Reservations in the past year. I've been from Arizona and New Mexico to Maine, from Florida to South Dakota, from Missouri to Wisconsin and back home to Massachusetts. I've seen the beauty of this country and grown to love it in a way that I never had before. It's amazing the layout of this country and the dreams it inspires.

In the past nine months my friends from school and here in Massachusetts have watched as I've transformed my somewhat goal-less life into a path of change which the momentum has yet to slow. I joined a fitness program after my life changing experiences in New Mexico. I've lost nearly 50 pounds and found a new life and a passion for life that I never had before. Chances are, a year from now I may just be completing my first triathlon. The long term goal is to be a head turner! For now I'll settle for the small goals that add up to that one big goal. It's been one baby step at a time and I finally managed to run a mile without stopping the other day. In ten minutes and seventeen seconds. Not bad considering in April it was taking me eleven minutes and fifty-four seconds!

I'm also getting ready to move to Maine. I'll be living up near my grandma and working at the pharmacy where she gets her prescriptions filled. It'll be nice to be out of the city despite the many people I will miss when I leave. I'm sure it'll be like when I moved down here, I'll be back as much as I can. I'm excited to be living near family for the first time in my life. Speaking of family, it's grown in the last year. I now have two nephews and a niece. My sister adopted an adorable two year old, Matthew. He's certainly going to keep them on their toes! Erin starts school on Monday. Can you believe she's nearly six now? Ethan's going to be in fourth grade and is a smart little man! Now that I'm a pharmacist though, I don't know when I'll see them again. I'm hoping that I can get back to Iowa for Christmas but the move to Maine and all will determine if that's possible.

I wondered today what the journey of the past few years would have been like had I had a partner to share it with. I'm sure some things would have been different but I'm sure I wouldn't be who I am today if I did have a partner. The struggles I've been through with school and my personal life over the last four years have shaped me and made me the person I am today. So, I survived pharmacy school and I survived my first day as a pharmacist. And here I am now. Turning the page on the past and wondering where the future will lead me. It's scary and exciting and overwhelming all at once. Ah, the possibilities!

I hope life has been as good to you as it has to me in the past years!