Wednesday, May 14, 2014

5 Years Later

Today marks five years since I had my scoliosis surgery.  I am eternally grateful to Dr. Hey and his team for their incredible work.  Most days, I don't even remember that I had the surgery.  I am reminded only by the faint scar on my back, by minor pain when I sit in church pews since they simply hit my back in the wrong place, and by metal detectors in airports. Otherwise, I am fully functional.

I walked four miles today.  Five years ago, I could not even walk to classes at Duke a few hundred yards from my dorm without experiencing excruciating pain and terrible shortness of breath.  My experience has been truly amazing, and I thank God every day that I have been given the opportunity to live as I live now.  I am so incredibly blessed.

Friday, May 14, 2010

One Year

Today marks the one year anniversary of my surgery, and I'm doing wonderfully. I'm so thankful to Dr. Hey and his staff for fixing my back and giving me the confidence that I didn't have before. Things are great. The school year was fantastic, and I've just been thriving. It's truly amazing how having a straight back has impacted every other aspect of my life, and I couldn't be happier.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Duke Versus Pfeiffer

Not much has happened since my last entry. Just studying, writing papers, and more studying. And also working at the mental hospital, which I love. This weekend is Parents' Weekend at Duke, which is not saying much for my folks since they come visit me once every 4-6 weeks anyway, but they came for the afternoon to go see the Duke/Pfeiffer basketball game. Who ever thought that Duke and Pfeiffer would play each other, and in Cameron Indoor? Amazing. We were able to get three tickets for $20 each, and even though they were on the back row, they were still good seats. Cameron is so small that it doesn't really matter where you sit, and it was definitely a different experience for me to not be sitting in the Crazies section! I still did the cheers and everything, of course.

We went to dinner first and then headed to the game, where we had a blast. Marold and Gene got to experience what the atmosphere in the stadium is really like, and I know that they were blown away by our school spirit. All the Pfeiffer players looked like middle school kids compared to our players, so it was especially funny to watch them up against Brian Zoubek's 7 feet and 1 inch. Since we whipped them (128-70), I thought that the three of us should celebrate with a brownie ice cream sundae at the Loop. After we finished eating, the parental units left, and now I'm back in my room debating whether or not I want to read my newest Nora Roberts book or do some Latin homework. Whatever homework I don't do today, I'll have to do tomorrow, so it's a tough choice!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Autumn Update

It's been a while since I posted last. The delay is mainly due to two illnesses, back to back. Also, the week before fall break was insanely busy with two papers (8 pages and 5 pages) and two tests. That caused me to get a rotten cold, from which I recovered over fall break. However, when I came back to school, I got sick all over again. I'm just now getting over this cold, but it's been really stressful, too. I felt so poorly over the weekend that Marold and Gene had to come up Sunday for moral support, especially to get me motivated for an adolescent psych exam I just took about an hour ago. Luckily, that's the only test I have in that class this semester. Still, I have another Latin exam coming up next week. I just can't escape work!

Andrew and I seem to be on really good terms now. In fact, he invited me to study with him Monday night. Naturally, no studying occurred. We just goofed off the whole time, and things felt back to normal. I'm still extremely independent, though. Jordan must be really busy these days because she is always turning down my offers for dinner or to hang out, and I never see her either. At least I have an amazing family to be my constant support.

As a reward to myself for getting through another test, I'm going to Barnes and Noble this afternoon to buy some new Nora Roberts or Nicholas Sparks novels. I plan to sit in the cafe for a while and enjoy a krispy of rice and a caramel apple cider while reading my new book. I desperately need to relax, and I plan to start doing so this afternoon. After my trip to Barnes and Noble, I get to enjoy The Office, and then I plan to take a wonderful, hot shower. Oh, by the way, Jim and Pam's wedding on The Office last week was phenomenal! Kaitlyn came to my room, and we watched it together. We both definitely shed some tears. What an amazing episode!

Okay, perhaps I should pay attention to my personality psych class now. Notice that I said perhaps. I'll probably end up doing something else, in all honesty, but at least I thought about paying attention momentarily. That's what really counts, right?

Friday, September 25, 2009


I just got back from going to Southpoint with Jordan and Rebecca, where we shopped a bit, ate at the Cheesecake Factory, and then went to the Halloween store, where a group of people were performing "Thriller" with a little boy Michael Jackson. It was awesome. We thought that we were ready to leave until we were convinced to learn the "Thriller" dance with the other people in the store. We looked retarded, I'm sure, but we had a blast. Plus, we only stayed to learn half of the dance. It's so hard!

Anyway, today was really busy. I went to work, which went well again, and then I had to head back to Duke for a Latin exam. I studied a lot for that exam, so I certainly hope that it's reflected in my grade! After my exam, Jordan and Rebecca convinced me to go to the mall with them, and the rest is history. As for this weekend, I have far too much to do to enjoy Duke's homecoming festivities. I have 2 papers (3-5 pages and 7-10 pages) and a test for this coming week. The worst part of it is, though, that I'm coming down with a cold or something. My throat has been hurting, my nose has been stuffing up, and there's a lot of pressure in my right ear, which makes swallowing extra painful. I can't afford to be sick! Now is definitely not the time. What a thriller.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Home Yet Again

This past weekend, I went home again. I was planning on staying, but Jordan went home, and there was really nothing keeping me here, so I decided I'd just make the drive. We went to Waffle House when I got there, and the rest of the weekend was just really relaxed. This week hasn't been bad so far, but I have a Latin exam Friday and then 2 papers (3-5 pages and 7-10 pages) and a test next week. The good news is that it will be fall break after that. Still, it's not gonna be fun. I'm already really stressed out about it.

Last Friday, I worked at the mental hospital for the first time. I had a really good experience, actually. I started out at the school for adolescents with behavioral disorders, and then I went to the school for adolescents with mental disorders. In both cases, I really felt like I was making a difference. The kids were really receptive to the fact that I was trying to help them, and the two boys I worked with in the afternoon both drew me pictures to put up in my room. It was really rewarding, and I hope I'll get to work with some of the same kids, as well as some new ones. I only had boys on Friday, so I'd like to work with some girls, too.

Right now, I'm sitting at my desk and watching the rain pour outside. We just got a little bit of hail, actually. It's pretty cool being on the 5th floor and watching the weather. Climbing all these stairs has also helped me tone up a bit, especially in my legs. Since my parents have seen me every weekend so far, they've noticed the difference in my leg muscles as it has happened. There are benefits to living up in this tower. I really do love it.

I have the two most precious second cousins ever, and there's another one on the way! It's a girl! That means Helen will have a perfect playmate! I hope Edmund doesn't get left out! Of course, he'll probably become a total ladies' man and be right there with the girls. My current desktop picture is super-cute. I just put two pictures beside each other, and it makes me so happy when I look at it! Here it is. Aren't they both absolutely precious!?

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Helen Elizabeth & Home

I went home again this past weekend to see my new second cousin, the precious Helen Elizabeth Klauder. As soon as I got home on Friday, I hopped in the car with my parents and headed to the hospital. Mary and Ben looked great and so happy, and Helen was sound asleep. She's absolutely gorgeous! I held her the whole time we were there, and she just looked so angelic. Her features are perfect, and she's just a doll. It was hard to leave the hospital because she made me want to take off a year of school and become Mary's nanny, but we had to leave eventually. I can't wait to see her again.

As for this week, it shouldn't be too busy. In fact, I only had one class today because my adolescent psych professor was sick. I slept in until 11:30, got up, and read some more of my new Nicholas Sparks novel, The Last Song. It's really good so far, except that it reminds me a lot of Life As A House, and except that Miley Cyrus has been cast as the lead for the book-based movie. I don't think I'll like the movie, but the male lead is pretty hot, so I might like it after all. Minus Miley, of course. On Friday, I start working at the mental hospital, so I'm pretty excited. I went to orientation for it last week, and we were told about how we should act around the patients. We were also told about some special patients they have, one of whom believes she is married to Barack Obama and he will be calling the hospital soon to have her released, and another who thinks he's Jesus and they're trying to crucify him. Luckily, I'll be working with the kids and adolescents, so I don't think I'll run into many of the super-crazy ones. From 11:00 to 11:45, I'll be doing P.E. with some kids who have behavioral problems, I'll take a break, and then from 1:00 to 2:00, I'll be tutoring and interacting with kids who have mental illnesses. Should be a loaded day, especially since I have Latin at 3:05 on Fridays, too. I think it'll be a good experience, though.