Saturday, January 28, 2012

Help, I'm trapped!

This is me on the inside:
I saw the orthopedist.  He looked at my MRI and told me that I have not one but two cysts (one on each hip).  I also have labral tears.  He also said that I'm looking at having both of my hips replaced at some point in probably the next 20 years.  Apparently, I have the body of an 80 year old woman.

The good news it that as far as exercise and physical therapy for my hip, skating is probably one of the best things I can do.  At some point, I'll probably have to have arthroscopic surgery, but since it isn't really bothering me that bad yet, I can wait a while.  Which is good because I can't afford another surgery.  Of course, the day after I find out about all of this, I take an epic fall at practice and slam down on my side.  I laid there, writhing in pain for a good 3 minutes, unable to speak while my teammates were asking me question after question after question.  I was getting so annoyed.  I just wanted to be left alone.  I mean, obviously I love them and they were concerned about me, but I was in so much pain I couldn't answer at the moment, and they kept talking to me.  When I finally was able to speak again, I said, "I'm fine.  Just stop talking to me."  And now I am growing the most epic of bruises on the back of my thigh.  I can't wait until it reaches its full potential.

We have the top derby coach in the nation coming for a 4 hour clinic tomorrow.  I am so unbelievably stoked.  She's doing a two hour table top coaching session for the entire training committee (all of the captains, the director of training, and the head ref) before the 4 hour clinic.

In work-related news, I wish I were good at math and had become a math teacher.  It would make grading less time-consuming.  It's either correct or incorrect.  Grading 7th grade short stories is both entertaining and mind-numbing.  I had a kid title his story, "Live or Don't."  It makes me laugh every time I think about it.  He's the most adorable little guy.  My students have been pretty cute the last couple days (but boy were they atrocious at the beginning of the week!).

Saturday, January 21, 2012


I stole this from Caitlin at To Make Love Stay, who stole it from Sam of Young People in Love.


It's hard for me to get the energy and motivation to get out of bed and leave the house.

 I'm reminded of how much I love my family when I stop and think about how I only see them twice (maybe 3 times) a year.

 I feel self-conscious when I am getting ready to play in front of 600 people and realize that I'm one of the biggest girls in my league.

 I am mildly dishonest when I tell myself I will be better about budgeting my money next month.

I can't imagine a world without books.

 I'm surprised that I still am teaching for this district considering how much I abhor it.

 I get a little too easily wrapped up in anything and everything roller derby.

 I indulge in guilty pleasures like the Backstreet Boys Pandora Station (even though I was never a boyband fan when I was a teenager). 

 I wish all things in life were as wonderful as the feeling I got when my Red Red team won the tournament in December.

Rainy Day

This is happening right now, making it very hard for me to type this.  Ollie insists on sitting on my lap at the most inconvenient times, but when I want to cuddle with him, he has no interest in sitting still.  He wants to play and jumps all over the place.  He currently has my left hand pinned down with his head.  But he's so cute, I don't want to move him.  :)

I went to the doctor on Wednesday and got the results of my MRI.  I have benign (whew!) cyst in my hip.  The doctor was pretty sure it was benign when she sent me for the MRI to begin with, but wanted to make sure.  The MRI did, however, show that I have a slight tear in my hip socket.  So, now I have to go back to my orthopedist.  I'm not sure how you heal a hip-socket tear.  I'm assuming skating is probably a no-no.  But, I haven't seen him yet, so he hasn't told me I can't skate.  So, I will continue to skate.  Innocent until proven guilty, and all that.

I asked her about the leg pains (I've been having weird random leg pains since October.  I thought they were exercise induced but then I got them when it had been a few days since my last practice, so that theory didn't really work anymore).  I also told her that I feel like something on my body always hurts.  It's not always the same place.  She tested a few areas on my body and determined that I have a mild form of fibromyalgia.  She then asked how I felt about taking an anti-depressant.  Anti-depressants have been proven to help with fibromyalgia.  I wasn't very keen on the idea of taking an anti-depressant.  I'm not keen on the idea of taking medication every day for the rest of my life.  I guess I feel like it's a sign of weakness.  (Oddly enough, I am already on a medication for the rest of my life--levothyroxine, which is for my thyroid, but that's not something I can control.  Does this make me a hypocrite?).  She explained that it would help with my anxiety, my general lack of energy, and my fibromyalgia symptoms by increasing the levels of seratonin in my body.  I reluctantly agreed.  I am actually feeling okay about it now though.  It will be great not to be in as much pain and to finally have energy.

There is a breaking-in period with the medication, of course.  The first day was WEIRD!  I suddenly felt like I needed to run laps around the school.  Then, I just wanted to lay down on the ground and take a nap.  Then, I felt jittery like I'd had 20 cups of coffee.  Then tired again.  I just didn't feel like me.   Here's hoping I get used to it quickly.

This afternoon, I'm going to see Avenue Q with Nurse Rackula for her birthday.  Holler!  I've seen it twice already (once when the broadway production was on tour, and once earlier this month at our community theater production).  It is absolutely hysterical.  I'm excited, but this rainy, blustery day is making it really very hard to do anything but sit here in my pajamas.  Even though it is already 2:00.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Rants about my dipwad school district.

I am so frustrated by my school.  I honestly don't know how the District hasn't imploded on itself and crumbled to pieces.  The district and its schools are so poorly run.  I've taught at 3 different schools in this district and I have never really felt supported by the administrators at any of them, and forget about the people at the district level.  That's a whole different story.

We have this class called "Opportunity" class.  It is for the kids who are such a problem that they can't function in a regular classroom (we're not talking about special education students.  This is for students who do not have any learning difficulties or an IEP).  These are the kids who take an entire class hostage with their poor behavior, or show no respect to the teacher, etc.  Once other avenues have failed--counseling, detention, suspension, etc, a meeting is set up with the student's teachers, parents, counselor, and an administrator and it is discussed whether or not opportunity is the place for the student.  There are only a handful of spots open in Opportunity as the Opportunity teacher cannot be expected to handle too many of this type of student at once, since the teacher is with those students the ENTIRE day.

I had a student in Opportunity all semester who just came back to me and has made absolutely no improvements.  His first day back, he called another student a bitch because he was bullying her and she shoved his binder away from her because she was frustrated.  He also says, "make me" when I give instructions and then gives what he thinks is a genuine I'm-just-kidding smile, but is really a genuine I'm-an-asshat smile.  He has no remorse for anything that he does wrong.  He has no respect for women.  He waltzes in to class 15 minutes late and is super loud and disruptive when he comes in.  As soon as I turn my back, he is throwing something at someone, taking something that doesn't belong to him, or out of his seat bothering another student.  And my only choice is to give him detention (which he doesn't show up to).  If I send him to the office, they send him back saying I haven't done enough of my own interventions.

At the last school I was at, Opportunity students had to earn back their regular classes gradually, and a meeting occurred with the teachers-of-record and the opportunity teacher to discuss whether or not the student was ready to come back (part of the deal is that the student needed to be turning in the work being sent to him/her in Opporunity).  At my current school, we got an email from the AP (assistant principal) saying he was coming back.  Both the art teacher and I emailed asking if there was going to be a meeting about it because he hadn't turned in ANY work in 15 weeks.  We got no response.  The first day back to school, there he was, gracing my door with his stupid jerk face.

I don't dislike kids.  I like all my students.  No matter how annoying they are to have in a big class that I have to manage, I still like all my students on a personal level.    My students love me.  I'm not saying this to brag.  I'm saying it because it is true.  I'm very easy to get along with.  I treat them like people, not children (even though they are).  I share students with other teachers who are just fine for me, but terrible for other teachers.  It is really, really hard for me to dislike a kid. This kid is a bad seed.  He does and says terrible things.  I've not seen a single redeeming quality in him.

That is just one example of why my school sucks.  Another?  A colleague of mine had a student who, when given any kind of direction by herself or her instructional aide, would say, "Shut the fuck up, bitch."  This occurred on an almost daily basis.  This is not just disrespect.  It is harassment.  It took the administrators and entire semester before they took him out of her class and put him in Opportunity.  He was never once suspended for this behavior.  The admin is always telling us we never do enough.  We're expected to hold our own detentions (because the school can't afford to pay someone to run detention), unpaid, beyond our contracted work hours.  A kid has to be assigned 5 detentions before we are allowed to send him/her to the office.  So, if you have a kid who is loud and obnoxious and you can't teach over them and you've assigned them detention, but they still won't shut up, you just have to put up with that student.  And so do the rest of the students.  Who aren't learning anything.  Because said kid won't shut up.

My hand hurts from typing.  It is all bruised from being run over by a skate at practice last night.  I love teaching.  I love teaching.  I love teaching.  /rant.