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I’m a dreamer

I am a dreamer. It doesn’t take much for me to start day dreaming. I mostly do it in the car on the way to school. I turn the radio up and start driving and one thought triggers another, then another, and before you know it I am day dreaming about being the lead singer […]

The art of believing.

You know that feeling when you are about to make a running jump over a wide span of area to another side? Its the feeling when your roller skating and you see a small drop off coming up real fast and you have to make a decision. You have to chose between putting on the brakes and ungraciously rolling and tripping into the grass along the side walk OR taking the jump. If you have any inkling of doubt and you make the jump, that little bit of depleted confidence somehow changes your physical reaction. That doubt holds you back the littlest bit to make the jump an unsuccessful one, a disaster, and somehow disables you to land with your feet on the ground without missing a beat. You know that feeling? Have you ever been in this type of circumstance and just went for it, without putting on the brakes, putting in 100%, believing that your going to land with both feet firmly on the ground, moving forward in the direction that you intended? Sure, you might have been scared, but you saw the end result in your mind right before you took the leap, and it was a good one.

There are a lot of things in our lives that are hinderances to success. However, I believe that we allow them to be. We become submissive to those things that are holding us back.

Here is an example of a decision I made a long time ago that I always look back on because it gave me confidence and it reinforces the principles that can lead one to success.

When I was 18 years old, I worked in an aluminum die cast factory for a summer. I was a young girl who worked in a job that was highly dominated by men. I was put into an entry level job, but months later saw a posting for a fork truck driver. I thought, “How cool would that be to drive a fork truck?” I had only seen men in this job. For the most part, they were older too and looked like they had been driving these trucks for a decade. The job was open to anyone, including me. A second after the question went through my mind, “Can I do this?”, immediately the answer was “No way!! What would they think? I would stick out like a sore thumb! They would have doubts about me before I even put my foot on the gas pedal.”

And then….Immediately after that. I told myself “REVERSE that thought! What is the ultimate question here? The question is “Do I want to do this job? ” Before I even answered that question, I thought to myself, whatever the answer is, I am going to wipe away the thoughts of doubt and proceed with no fear in what I really want for myself.

The answer: I wanted it!

I am so glad that I did it, not because of the job itself, but because of what it taught me. Its my life lesson to apply and have forever as an example of not turning back or having doubt.

So, I urge you to foresee the ultimate outcome and erase the doubts that overcome you. Go for it. Go for what you want. It will always give you a return that will shape you and guide you into a better you.

California Gurlz

                                                                                                                                                                                 It was 1998 and my spring semester at Southwest Missouri State University in Springfield, Mo was over.  My last final was done and I packed up everything that I owned  into the light blue plymouth Voyager that would be my ride to Wisconsin.  This Voyager was the van that I had helped my mother pick out when we needed a new vehicle.  

                    My father is a traveling salesman.  During my last years in high school, my family had gone through some financial struggles.   For a while, we got by with one vehicle.  My father would take this vehicle on the road and we would have to manage without a car for a week or so, until he returned.  One day, my father gave my mother and I some money and sent us to look for a vehicle while he was on the road.  It wasn’t long before we saw the light blue plymouth Voyager.  At 17 and not really knowing much about cars, my mom and I checked the van over for signs of rust.  We started the engine and listened for anything out of the ordinary.  We looked under the hood and checked for signs of leaks underneath the car.  I hoped that we wouldn’t be taken by a predatorial car salesman making a sale due to the lack of our knoweledge about cars.  Apparently, we found nothing wrong with it, because the next memory I have of it was driving it to work the summer before college.

          The dorm room was empty and the van was packed to the hilt.   I said goodbye to the friends that were still on campus, took a goodbye pic of us and  hopped in the van and headed toward the highway.  Now, I wasn’t the most experienced driver.   I hadn’t driven the van since purchasing it in 1997 and had purchased and owned a car for only the 3 summer months between the spring and fall semesters of 1998. Sometime during my school semester, my family had gone through some more troubles and asked me to lend a hand to help pay for some maintenance on the van.  It was near the end of the semester and once the van was fixed, I had asked my dad for the van as a means of making it to Wisconsin.  So, kindly, during his travels, my mom and him dropped off the van 2 weeks before the semester was over so that I could travel north after finals were done.  It sat there until I was ready to embark on my 8 hour trip by myself, only a road map, no cell phone, and everything I owned in the back of the                      On my way to Wisconsin, I knew that I would be passing through my hometown Columbia, Mo and had decided to take a quick tour of the city as it had grown in the time that I was away.  I had left early that morning to give myself  a lot of daytime to drive,  so I figured I had the time to check a few things out.  At some point, while taking a trip down memory lane through Columbia’s back roads, I checked my reflection in the mirror.  I really can’t remember why I did that, perhaps I was about to visit and old friend.  The second I took my eyes off the road, I swerved and ran the van right into the deep gutter along the side of the road.   A loud boom, a thump to the top of my head and the sound of struts resounded as I lost control of the van.  In a split second, not wanting to be stuck in the gutter, I kept the momentum going and barreled through back up to the top of the road again.  I just sat there, driving slowly, listening for something to fall off of the van.  As I regained some composure, the next thought I had was, “I better get the heck out of dodge before I don’t make it home at all”, and I sped off to the highway to continue the long haul.

            I had drove for hours and hours, finally wishing that I would just get there already.  I had missed some exit to take my around Chicago and ended up winding my way through the city, adding I’m sure hours to my trip.

                   Finally, I seemed to be getting somewhere.  I was nighttime and I didn’t have many more miles to drive.  I reached Rockford, Il and everything was swell and then POP!  A loud noise came from the engine as if a rocket had hit the hood.  My car was decelerating and I slowly rolled to the left side of the highway and turned my hazards on.  I sat there for a minute, taking in my surroundings.  Cars whizzing past.  No sign of a town or exit in front of me.  No sign of any town or lights behind me.  To the left, I see some twinkling lights through the bare trees.  A 5 foot chain link fence and a small forest is the only thing blocking me from what I think could be my help.  I gather up any necessary items that I might need and head across the highway.  I secure my items inside my hoodie and make a running start toward the fence and launch myself over like a lousy catapult competitor.  Mid air, I snag my new Adidas sweatshirt that my friend, Andre had bought me. 

           Andre, was on the SMSU track and field team.  I would describe him as the guy out of “How Stella got her groove back”.  A dark guy with an accent that seemed to come from the tropics.  Andre had bought me this $50 sweatshirt in attempt to date me, I think.  I refused it, but he insisted that I have it.  It was now my favorite sweatshirt.  I had never had a name brand sweatshirt and loved that it was embroidered with ADIDAS on the front. 

                  When I felt the sweatshirt snag on what was possibly some barbed wire, I was ticked that I wasn’t more careful. That was the least of my worries.  I felt so small and destructable with no other comforting lifeform nearby and out in the open without any sort of protection.   I headed toward the lights, which seemed to be a bit farther than I thought and finally emerge in the middle of a small subdivision.  I knock on the door of a house that I observe has quite a few lights on.  After the man answers, I explain my situation and the man and wife kindly let me use their phone.  

                        It’s really strange the bits and pieces a person remembers and what gets thrown out of our memories.  I really can’t remember what order the events of the night happened.  I remember the man took me to a nearby gas station where I made arrangements with a tow truck driver.  I had to weigh out my options, pay the tow truck driver a per mile fee to flat bed the van and drive me the rest of the way home OR to have it taken to a nearby facility and not get home that night, with nowhere to  stay, no cell phone and no ride to a hotel room. I decide to pay the steep fee and be taken home.   I ride over an hour in the cab with the dirty tow truck driver, making whatever type of conversation can be made from 2 people from different worlds. 

              As we reach familiar surroundings, I feel so glad that we are almost home.  Upon arrival, he lowers the van oddly so that the front wheels are set in front of the cement parking block.  This could be problematic in the morning but I don’t even care.  I pay the driver, say my thanks, walk to the apartment door, turn my key and start a new chapter in my life.

I will be headed for Cancun in about a week. I am not saying that to rub it in or anything. I am very excited for the trip. I would love to travel to many more places. It’s just this little anxiety thing that I have. The airplane ride makes me a tiny bit nervous. I hate being put into very tight spaces with no easy way to exit or in this case, no way to exit and survive.
When I take the park n’ ride school bus to school it gets crowded and they fill up the bus so that all the seats are taken and the students are sardine packed in the middle aisle of the bus. The entire bus is packed, from the back all the way to the bus driver in the front. It is a short 10 minute ride, but it takes a lot to keep myself from going into a panic. My mind starts to race, my heart starts beating faster, I feel like I might pass out if I don’t get control of myself. It would do no good to panic. I actually have to tell myself that the bus is not getting smaller. If I absolutely had to, I could stick my head out the window. I didn’t realize that this problem or fear was creeping up on me until last summer when my sister came to visit. We had taken Eric’s 2 door sports car to church. It was Eric, Marie and I. On the way to church I was in the front seat. For the way back, I had offered to get in the back seat, so Marie didn’t have to climb in the back. So, I climbed into the back and put my seatbelt on. Marie put the passenger seat back so she could get in. I’m thinking, “Hmmm, this is not very spacious back here.” She shut her door. I looked to the side for a window. “Hmmmmmmm, the window is tiny and doesn’t open. Hmmmmmmmmm.” My heart was starting to race. “Breath. It’s hot. Need air….ok, we’re moving………………then I scream “STOP! STOP! Let me out right now, you need to let me out right now. STOP!!!! Open the door! Sorry, open the door!” If they hadn’t acted so quickly I might have went into a full blown panic. I told myself that I would try to never let that happen again. I don’t ever want to cater to a fear like that. So, I have ridden in the back since, even for a full hour with 4 people in the car. It was about 3 times during that trip that I felt my fear creeping up on me. I just took a deep breath in until the dizzy out of control feeling went away. Ok, just one more story about this because I think it’s kind of funny. At work we have moved our CT department to a new location. We have a little room that we can use to put our personal stuff in. We were talking about getting lockers and I had mentioned getting the full sized lockers. My co-worker Netasha said, “Yea, we should get those, then we can stick you in there.” She doesn’t know this, but a week or so later, when I was trying to fall asleep, I had thought about what she said. From that small thought, my mind just took off on it’s own. I imagined them shoving me into a locker and locking it and forgetting the combination and having to call maintenance to cut the lock off and having to feed oxygen tubing into the locker so I could breath. Then I snapped back to reality. That would never happen, right? ….but then why do they always say, “It’s all fun and games until someone gets hurt.”
ok, so about this plane ride…. I will be fine. Just venting a little of my anxiety.
Here’s a funny story though. The last time I flew, we were delayed a bit because the airplanes were in line getting ready to take off. Our plane was headed to make its way into the waiting line. So, it was as if someone in line waved to our pilot like heres an opening for you (like we do when driving in our cars). We started rolling forward and then “screeeeeeeech”. The pilot hit the breaks and we all heaved forward (a little slower motion than actually getting whiplash in a car). Someone behind us loudly said, “So, now they’re gonna get out and exchange insurance information.” It was a good chuckle in a tense situation

BWW’s Blazin’ Hot Wings Challenge

It was a little over a month ago that my friend, Brian, had mentioned the Buffalo Wild Wing challenge. Originally he had thought that the challenge was eating 6 wings with BWW’s hottest sauce. We agreed that it would be fun to attempt this challenge. I explained that before I was to commit to anything I would first have to try the Blazin’ sauce to see if I was going to be able to handle it.
I soon went to BWW’s and ordered the Blazin’ boneless wings along with some Caribbean Jerk and Parmasan garlic wings (some of my favorites). After inquiring about the challenge, the waiter explained that the challenge was eating 12 tradional bone-in wings in under 6 minutes, you get nothing to drink, no dipping sauce, and only one napkin. As I stuck my fork into the hottest wings, the waiter said, “you might not want to eat those first…it’ll probably ruin your appetite for the others”. I was too curious as to how hot they really were, so I dug in. The first couple bites weren’t so bad…but then the heat slowly became more intense until I could hold out no longer and took a sip of water, thinking that would help it subside. It actually made it worse. The customer service was unsually superb that day, because a manager had made his way to our table and was asking how everything was. As he looked into my bloodshot eyes and upon seeing my blotchy face and sniffly nose, he had a look of bewilderment. “Fine..a..fine..whew…everthing is great”, I said, wishing he would leave me alone and not be a witness to my agony.

Eric just sat contently across from me chuckling and shaking his head. So, I stopped on my third wing and decided I had no need to continue and I would save my determination for the challenge when it really counted. On the way home, I asked Eric to stop at Woodman’s so that I could run in a get a donut…it just sounded like a good way to escape the fiery feeling that had infiltrated every tastebud inflaming them into individual H-bombs.

We mentioned this BWW’s challenge to a few of our friends and they were excited and ready to participate. We arranged for the four of us, Brian Haley, Jacob Capodarco, Sarah Covey, and I to meet at BWW’s. It wasn’t us against each other…it was us against the hottest wings BWW’s has to offer. The waitress approached Sarah to take her order. Sarah meekly said, “I would like to order the 12 wing challenge, please.” After taking all our orders, waivers were brought out for us to sign. It explained a possible risk of death that they would not be responsible for. Also, one condition was that if we vomited, we would have to clean it up ourselves!! Soon, the wings were brought out right out of the fryer and the race was on. With the wings being so hot in temperature it was difficult to down the first few. It took me about 1 minute to eat just the first one. I couldn’t even look at anyone else because I was trying to focus. Time seemed to be just flying by. I wanted to see if I was the only one that was eating so slow…and I WAS. For every one wing that I ate, Brian was eating 2!!! After 3 minutes, beads of sweat were dripping from Brian’s face. Jacob looked like the heat had consumed his face yet he still remained focused and Sarah had puffy watery eyes. After 5 minutes, Jacob had ate all 12 wings…and then Brian finished his. Sarah looked close to being finished….and I…well, I was on wing number 5. “TIME!” At 6 minutes Sarah had only 3 wings left and I had 6 wings left. It looked like our table had been gassed. Difficulty breathing, red watery eyes, runny noses, swollen lips.

Tall glasses of cold milk were brought out as requested, but I’m not sure if it helped though. I chewed my gum like a maniac. The waiter announced Brian and Jacob’s victory and the whole restaurant applauded them. They had their pictures taken which will be posted on BWW’s wall. I will be looking for them the next time I go.

I had a great time and am happy to have done this with some friends. I will alwalys remember it and wonder why I did it. I still don’t know…I guess I would have always wondered if I could have done it if I didn’t try. :O~~~~

Day one of blogging

Hello. This is my very first blog. I have been wanting to do this for a while. I have no idea where to start. Maybe I should tell you a little bit about myself. I still never know where to start…I’m guessing what I do for a living might give a little insight to who I am. I have been working in Radiology for the past 7 years. I graduated as an Xray tech in 2006 and have been making big bucks ever since (Just kidding!). So, Xray was interesting, at times. I’ve seen some strange things since I started in the profession. I had to Xray a finger by itself once, with no person attached. Yea, the guy chopped it off in the snow blower. Why do people stick their hands in there if it gets jammed? I guess it just means job security for me. Terrible though. Many of the outrageous things that I have seen, unfortunately, people have done to themselves. Once, when I was working in the ER, I got an order for an abdomen xray. I was specifically told not to have the patient move or sit up AT ALL. So, we logged rolled him and put the plate behind him and took the xray. We were looking for a foreign body inside his body. I was thinking maybe he swallowed something sharp. Once the xray was developed, I didn’t see anything foreign inside this man. I went to retreive the chart to see what exactly we were looking for and there on the chart it said, “10 inch cucumber in rectum”. OMG! No wonder I couldn’t see it. Cucumbers are mostly water. I could tell many more stories. If there are any techs out there reading this, feel free to comment or leave a story of your own.
Ok. So, after about a year and a half in Xray, I started to get antsy to learn something new. That is just the story of my life..I always feel like I need to be learning or doing something different after a while. That is when I started to train in the CT department. I do like it better than Xray. It is a good job, but I cannot see myself doing it and only it, the rest of my life. That is what I am doing now while I am going to school. About 1 year ago, (this must have been when I had a lot of time on my hands) I made the desicion to go back to school. I would say it was a well thought out, impulsive, decision. 🙂 So, I am in my second semester of school, majoring in Mechanical Engineering. I cannot tell you how happy I am that I made that decision. I love learning everyday. I am not going to pretend like it’s a cake walk, or that everything comes together perfect everyday…because, for sure, it does not. I am challenged every day that I have class. I have plenty of frusterations. At the end of the day, I am so unbelieveably happy that I have overcome them. It’s like playing SuperMarioBros and making it to the next level. It’s frusterating everytime that dang fireball erupts from the firey pit and gets ya, but when you run to the finish line, you feel victorious.
So, I think that is all that I will write for now. Please stay tuned for more journal entries.
Thanks for reading.