The final yard sprint

[Wednesday, early AM] Trying to write about my Iron Yard final project at 2:42am from bed using Android voice recognition for the bulk of my transcription of thoughts is not a recipe for a sterling blog post. But I lack the time to write something adequate.

No matter how much I do it’s never going to be enough. There is so much work that is needed to make this a legitimate website. This work could go on forever, and I kind of hope it does, but I have only had 3 weeks, and I only have a week to go.

Most of my classmates are in larger groups. I’m doing this by myself because I wanted this project to demonstrate all the potential that I have, whatever that might be, whatever I could possibly get done with regard to styling and HTML and Javascript and the Backbone framework and the Parse database back end.

But I know no matter how hard I work–I could work 24 hours a day–the design is going to fall short because I don’t know enough about awesome design and don’t have time to implement an awesome design. Integrating with api’s is going to fall short because there’s simply no time to do awesome things with them. The amount of information stored in the database is going to be limited simply because there isn’t time to build out an extensive data model. The CSS isn’t going to be extraordinary because I just don’t have the experience to make it as elegant as I would like.

I should define a scope of what to deliver at a minimum, and, I have, to a degree. However, it’s really difficult because I want this to be a fully functioning app. I don’t want this to be merely a demonstration where I can fake half of it, but rather a demonstration of something very real and functional that was created from nothing.

I am feeling enormous pressure to deliver something that is a fully functioning, particularly because the large groups will be delivering essentially complete web sites that are going to be functional in the real world. I put all of this pressure on myself because I simply don’t know what’s enough, at what point is it okay to say I will work on making this better later and that it does not have to do everything right now.

I know that no matter what I get done, it may not be apparent just how much effort I put into this. But no matter how much work I put into it, if you compare it to an established website by a very experienced developer it’s going to pale in comparison.

[Saturday, early AM] And my thoughts have pretty much been ditto early Thursday morning, early Friday morning, and right now.

I have been told the past few days to focus on design, which has just amped up the pressure, because, frankly, I didn’t spent nine weeks in the program to learn how to be a better designer. I always value good design, I cringe at bad design, and I feel pained when my own design is inadequate. But I came to the program to code–to learn everything I could about building front end applications with Javascript, and I wish that could be the focus of this final project. Instead, I find myself spending time on making buttons looks better. Why?

Because, next Friday, I have five minutes to present three weeks of work, which attempts to encapsulate nine weeks of work, which builds off a couple of decades of other related experience.

You could tell me to stop putting so much pressure on myself, but the audience for this five minute presentation is a group of local employers who are looking to hire developers. And I don’t expect to be employed by next Friday, so presenting my best self is advisable.

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Battling the demon of unrealized potential

I’ve had notes for this post for over two weeks now. I just haven’t made time for writing in here, other than that reactionary post the other day about feeling the need to place value on my education and experience. I only happen to be writing in here now because I have a little bit of time. I may actually get to sleep before 1AM tonight. It hasn’t been abnormal for me to be working on a homework project until 2 or 3 or 4AM…or all night, as I did the Sunday night before last. I am consumed by my Iron Yard work, and apart from the real need to look after my health, this is not a bad thing. But it has been stressful. I work this hard, not because The Iron Yard forces me to, but because my future is riding on this, on my ability to tap into and realize my potential as a creative and analytical thinker.

A couple of weeks ago, I began writing about how I had been feeling that I was learning well for the first time in a very long time. I had such positive feelings regarding what I was doing, this career overhaul, this pursuit of knowledge and growth in an area I have real passion for. But then the self-doubt began to dominate. I had listened to a speaker recollect how he had started programming in BASIC as a kid and just kept moving forward from there to conquering the world. I thought about how I had done that (Well, the first part of that.) I had programmed in BASIC as a kid. I kept going. I coded in college. I learned HTML 20 years ago in college. I built my own websites. I did a little here, a little there. But, essentially, I stopped. And thinking of this can bring me to the verge of crumblign. In a parallel universe, I could be the guy speaking to coding academy students about how far a passion for coding could take you. But I’m not. I’m 38 years old, and all I can do is move forward with whatever my brain can do now. I have no choice but to do this, but I don’t know how to avoid being overwhelmed by past failures and self-perceptions of inadequacies.

A week ago, I was hearing the phrase “only been doing this for four weeks” bandied about, with regard to the high caliber of work that my class is doing despite the very limited experience of many. But rather than soak up the praise, I was lost in my own personal equation “four weeks + twenty years”. Everyone comes from different backgrounds, but I’ve been trying to make a go of this for two decades. I didn’t just learn HTML four weeks ago. I learned in back in 1995. And kept up for a few years, and then fell very far behind. So when I start to feel lost, that perhaps I’m falling behind, and I’m spending hours troubleshooting unsuccessfully, and I’m jumping down rabbit holes in search of solutions, I get pretty demoralized. I often feel as if I have some nebulous block to realizing my potential. This block numbs me. It nauseates me. It consumes me.

I didn’t want to write about these feeling while I was too deeply entrenched in them. I’ve muddled through them and think I’m at a better place now. There’s some self-censoring at work here. I don’t want my own struggles to reflect badly on The Iron Yard. Also, for better or for worse, I now blog under my own name. Presumably, I’ll have a main website fairly soon that merely links to this blog, rather than being defined by this blog, so there will be a small buffer between the guy who is trying to impress others and the guy who admits to battling the demon of unrealized potential.

Anyway… I want to write about the game I made, but not right now, because I’m about to fall asleep. Before 1 AM. Go, me.

Nobody cares where you went to school

Dave graduates from DukeExcept that if I went to Duke University, I had better mention it, even if I didn’t love my time there and don’t bleed Duke blue now. I had better mention that I’ve worked for Duke and for Cisco…and done work for start-ups and government agencies, even if I wasn’t loving what I was doing most of the time. I had better mention that I designed, developed, deployed, supported, maintained, and upgraded help desk and other service management applications for a decade-and-a-half, even if I would have rather been doing something else and struggle to adequately explain why I didn’t.

None of this matters to me, in the sense that I’d like to put it all behind me. I just want to be a damn good front end engineer.

But I did do all that stuff. I was a smart guy and maybe I still am (even if I cannot extemporaneously describe my career body of work more gracefully than by referring to it as “all that stuff”.) I was often told that I was doing a great job, even if I didn’t think so myself. Imagine what I could do if I really enjoyed my work.

All of this matters. Somebody will care. Many will not, and that’s fine. But if no one knows because I don’t bother to mention it, no one has the opportunity to determine if they care. (I just reread this paragraph. Yes, it’s horrible writing. I shall leave it in as a monument to horrible writing).

And perhaps somebody will care that this guy Dave is a bit too self-deprecating and too honest for his own good. That’s fine.

WordPress, it is

WordPress, it is

Since I failed to gain mastery of PHP in the decade or so I was dabbling in it–first, with my grand plans for the defunct Toastie Radio site (I miss that), and then with my seven years of WordPress blogging–I thought it might be time to switch to a platform that’s Javascript-heavy. After all, Javascript is at the heart of what I’m working on in front end engineering boot camp this summer, and what I’ll be working on going forward in my career.

Aside…I do myself a disservice to imply I’m learning Javascript for the first time right now. I’ve known enough to get by when it’s been needed for web tweaks in my jobs over the years, and I’ve stuck it on my resume. But there’s a dramatic difference in scale between using Javascript to dynamically update a web page element here and there or pop up some dialog boxes and actually building websites. This is a good example of the very vague statement I made about a month ago in which I declared that I did not want to be a generalist. I did not mean that there is anything wrong with being a “jack of all trades, master of none.” I just never saw myself of much of a jack of anything. How much expertise I have in a skill I claim to possess has always been difficult exercise…

You know, I’m going to table this line of thought for another time. I wasn’t planning a mammoth post, and I’m not going to make one, but I’m also not going to censor myself and delete what I’ve started.

My point in posting this link is that WordPress is becoming more of a Javascript-based platform, and that means any inkling I had to abandon WordPress is probably gone. I obviously don’t follow WordPress closely enough to have known this until now. I’ve basically been on auto-pilot for the past couple of years as far as learning anything more about developing for WordPress. But I hate to abandon this platform I’m so used to, despite my mini-rant about some annoyances I have with the .com site. I’ll probably move this to a self-hosted site at some point, but I have absolutely no time for that right now.

I’m really psyched about this.

Ideally, I’d make some time to get to work on customizing this blog some more. (This theme doesn’t put a YEAR on the post? WAT?) But I already have a custom theme to play with on Top 379. (I need to explain that someday, or look for an old post that explains why I have a countdown of songs by the like of Air Supply and Barry Manilow. Or do I have to explain it? So many tangents, Dave…) And, more importantly, I’ve got a quite complex web page to build over the next three days for class. Any activity that diverges from that should fall under categories such as physical activity, basic chores, and Orange Is The New Black.

Grad school (I suppose I should say a word)

…because a couple of people had asked about it when I wrote a post two months ago. I’ll offer a brief summary. It doesn’t matter to me that I did, in fact, get accepted. I got the impression that the bar for admittance wasn’t that high. The impersonal, pithy communications I received to notify me of my acceptance and to inform me the next steps went a long way in my forming a negative opinion about this program. No one has even contacted me to ask why I haven’t enrolled in any courses, though courses for the quarter STARTED LAST WEEK. I don’t want to say the program is a joke. The degree is probably very useful for some, and coursework would probably be very helpful to me in getting me on a different career trajectory. But it’s not worth $XXXXX in fresh debt. The whole episode has been a been a big disappointment.

Advance directly to Square One.

Grad School

I just sent in an application for grad school. I’ve been contemplating this for about four months. I haven’t posted about it, because I didn’t let very many people know. I wasn’t sure if I would do it, all the way up until quite recently.

I have considered several different areas of study over the past, I’d say, one to three years. No, I’d say I’ve considered several different areas of study for the past 12 years, since failed attempts at going to grad school for psychology. There are so many reasons why I haven’t applied to anything until now, and I won’t go into them.

As far as this last chapter of grad school planning, I initially developed a strong interest in a local program. It would have been essentially full-time, though, somehow people tend to find time to work full-time as well. I wasn’t sure what I’d do. I ultimately decided the program wasn’t for me. Maybe I thought it wasn’t for me because I wasn’t sure that I’d get in. I spent most of December and January figuring I’d apply, and the idea faded away. I don’t know if that was the right decision, but that opportunity is off the table now.

Then I considered an online program through a very good university that isn’t based around here. This would be a part-time program, which I convinced myself made more sense than a full-time program. Still an online program, the very notion of it, gave me pause. I countered to myself that online programs are extremely common now, and despite some definite advantages of the physical campus, online degrees are simply practical. I had done the research on the university. It would be a quality degree.

I rushed to sign up for the GRE and spent much of January studying for it. Actually, I had spent a good part of December studying for the GMAT. I actually wasn’t planning to go for an MBA, but the GMAT actually made more sense for what I was planning to apply for at the time. Come January, the GRE made more sense. And so I took the GRE at the end of January, and I did fairly well. I was a bit disappointed to not have done better on the Qualitative portion, but I think it was good enough.

I rushed with the GRE becaue I had a mid-February deadline for this online program. Then, the first week of February, I was presented with a potential opportunity at my job, something that completely threw me for a loop, enough so to give me pause about grad school.

And I did pause. And pause and pause some more. February wrapped up without an application. My main hesitation to really that I didn’t want to ask people for recommendations if I wasn’t going to follow through an actually apply…or follow through if I were accepted somewhere. This probably wasn’t the best reason to procrastinate. In reality, even if I took on a new job role at work that gave me something completely different to do, a part-time degree can take at least three years to complete, and I probably would want something else to do in three years anyway.

So, enter the month of March. The new job role possibility seemed to be hitting roadblocks. There was still another deadline of mid-May for a later start date for this program.

However, all along, I had in mind a different online program, also through a quality university. And that’s the one I decided I’d apply to. The past few weeks, my mind has been focused on the application for this program. The application is due tomorrow, either midnight tomorrow or midnight in a half-hour tonight. You’d think I would’ve asked for clarification on that. I did not. So I’ve submitted my application. The deed is done.

I’ll find out if I’ve been accepted in about a month. If I’m accepted, I’d start very quickly, in mid-June.

This isn’t the traditional type of grad program that most people consider when they think of grad school. I’ve had to get over that, or at least try to. As much as grad students complain about grad school and warn others against it, I still have always had a romanticized view of “going to grad school”. I know way too many people who went on to advanced degree, and I’ve always had advanced-degree-envy. But I’m not “going to grad school”. This is not so much an academic pursuit as it is a professional one. I’m not going for a degree in something that is completely removed from what I already do. I’m going for something that will allow me to get out of that thing I’ve been doing for 15 years, that everyone I know knows I can’t stand.

So…WHAT EXACTLY AM I APPLYING FOR?

I don’t want to say here, because, if I get into this program, I won’t want anyone associated with the program to easily uncover this site. So I’m happy to tell you privately.

And that’s that for now.

Demotivator of the day

A couple of months ago, I went through the challenging ordeal of perusing papers from years ago, mostly of the academic variety. I don’t think I delved into quite how demoralizing this was. I wouldn’t have. I do still censor what I’ll put in here, whether or not that seems apparent.

Now, I’ve just gone through the contents of a filing cabinet. Mostly healthcare records from the past decade. Don’t need those. Amazing the sheer volume of medical history I have, but I don’t need those. There are pay stubs from old jobs. Don’t need those. Offer letters from old jobs. Plenty of junk that doesn’t affect me a whole lot.

Then there are the random journal entries, from 1998, 2004, 2006…from when, I suppose, my means of electronic recording weren’t available.

Never read old journal entries unless…well, I can’t think of a good reason to ever do this…

Papers and notes from old jobs. Doesn’t sound so interesting until I uncover

1) Notes from a job where I really felt I was making a difference day in and day out (too bad I had to be in Knoxville, TN to find that; I couldn’t stand to be in Knoxville, TN day in and day out)

2) Documentation of test cases for and usage instructions for an application I developed within the first three months of having been introduced to the wretched application development platform that begins with R, whose name I won’t utter, and (to be fair to it, pays most of the bills, and could be a fair tool if anyone ever bothered to fund and manage it properly). I probably learned more and achieved more in that three months than I have in the subsequent…many years, the sum of which I won’t utter.

These finds are all the more shattering when paired with the quote-of-the-day from a figure at work, who advised me to “Tone down your aspirations.” That’s all I’ll say about that, since I can’t trust the internet to not link my name to this blog. There was some context to these remarks, but I’ll still note it as possibly the worst and most demotivating advice I’ve ever received.

Raw follow-up

That was a bit unhinged. But, guess what? I am completely overwhelmed and exhausted, and there’s not an ounce of relief in sight. So I vented in here, as I am prone to doing. And I’m sure I’ll do so again. And maybe I’ll do it a lot. If it seems like a sudden turn toward the pathetic, you just need to sift through years of blog/journal entries to find plenty more of the same (not that I’d recommend or wish for anyone to do so).

I spent an hour earlier doing yard work. I applied mulch to some dying emerald green arborvitae. These two pathetic trees should be really easy to take care of. But I’ve just about killed mine

I spent a good deal more time trying to deal with the insidious vine plant that dominated my front yard. I used to think it was cool, how it would grow so fast, and I could wrap it around stuff–a couple of years ago. But since I’ve had zero energy for yard maintenance, the vine plant has taken over everything. It’s swamped my baby crepe myrtles and my azaleas and my juniper. You won’t find one yard in an inhabited Durham home with such ridiculous overgrowth. So I just started pulling and pulling and pulling. And now I can see the other things that I’d actually like to take care of. But I have no idea how to kill this stuff and make sure it doesn’t keep growing.

The vine plant is an apt metaphor for life. I can pull away a ton of it, but there’s still a ton more that I can’t rid of it, and it’s just going to keep growing back. I don’t see how I will ever get a handle on it.

Back to last night’s rants…I’d only publicly write about my bitterness towards Duke Health if I had an alternative, and I do. Before the recent near-transplant mess, I had been on a path to getting on the Carolinas Medical Center list, and my assumption was that I’d inevitably get transplanted in Charlotte. I’m ok with going back to that plan. I have been going to Duke for healthcare for nearly 18 years, and overall, I’d say they haven’t gotten it right. And so, at my greatest moment of need, I’m so disappointed that they’ve put the burden of worthiness of care on me. Can I cope with what’s required of a transplant patient at Duke? I cannot get the thought out of head, “Where was this interest in helping me cope for the past 18 years?”

Why have I remained a patient at Duke so long? Why wouldn’t I? Who would not trust one of the premier medical centers and health systems in the world? There were lots of blips along the way, but as my kidneys failed and I approached dialysis and transplant lists, I’d be wise to live close to Duke Hospital so I could easily take advantage of that world-class care.

Boy, do I feel like a moron. I had no idea that I wouldn’t get to actually go to “Duke Dialysis”, that I’d be sent to facilities that sorely lack professionalism, skill, and empathy. I had no idea that the transplant team operated in a bubble outside of the rest of the health system, and that I’d be treated like an uneducated, undisciplined child. I had no idea that there’d be no dialysis options that could easily co-exist with a full-time work schedule. I had no idea that there’d be no one capable of meeting my mental health needs as I dealt with this end-stage renal disease, that social workers will be more concerned about you having post-transplant rides to the hospital than emotional support over the years you wait and your body deteriorates and life is a daily struggle.

Then again, I also thought it would the best possible job to work at Duke in the years of kidney decline. If I was going to have an IT career doing something I was good at but had no passion for, at least, if I did it at Duke, I’d be helping my alma mater, and it would surely be a fantastic place to work.

So wrong. And after five years, I so could not stand not being able to make the most of my potential in my field, to have my expertise routinely ignored, and (to be honest) to be paid far less than I thought I was worth, I took another job. While struggling to balance dialysis and chronic fatigue and chronic pain with working full-time, I decide to switch jobs. And I went to a global company, with far more complex systems, with a far more distant management structure, and, as I’ve discovered, a similar lack of appreciation for my very specific expertise. It probably doesn’t seem like I’m busting my ass, and I wouldn’t think I was from an outside perspective, but I am. I am, because I have no choice. I simply don’t know how I’d survive if I weren’t working.

I know people who have overcome far more. They’ve had physical challenges I cannot imagine. They’ve faced death and the sense that their dreams would not be attained. And, yet, they’ve persevered and survived and thrived.

I don’t see myself becoming one of those success stories. The best people will be able to say about be someday is, “At least he’s not suffering anymore”.

I know this is not the tone that anyone wants to see in my blog. No one wants to read this. And I certainly don’t want to be a burden.

Stuff circa January 8, 2011

Dating I went on a date a few days ago, and it was heartbreaking. It was a stark reminder of why I rarely ever go on a date. I battled for ninety minutes to be funny, engaging, and charming. She often seemed genuinely interested in me. I rattled off feelings about being on dialysis and transplant lists that I hadn’t shared with anyone. I, briefly, had the sense that it was ok that I hadn’t been to other countries, held an advanced degree, read five books a month, or looked like every healthy bike-riding guy who comes into Whole Foods. There were five or ten minutes when I had self-confidence. But later that night, I received the “I don’t think we’re a match” email. Rather than pick myself up, dust myself off, do whatever one is supposed to go to keep functioning, I took the rejection as a gravely-wounding piercing. I did not react as such by choice. This humiliating numbness is a physiological reaction I’ve been getting since I was in grade school. Allow myself a moment of being open to something amazing, and I will inevitably experience crushing agony. This never changes. At 35 and stuck on dialysis, the cumulative weight of all of these rejections is indescribable. I do not know anyone who gets how badly this feels.

Housekeeping I had been so excited that I was finally, after years of thinking about it, going to get a housekeeping service to come and clean up my place. I had been reluctant, in part, for so many years, because I feared that such a service would be unable to do a whole lot without me first doing a hefty bit of pre-cleaning. How can they clean the floors if I don’t remove the clutter? How can they clean the kitchen if I don’t do the dishes? But the same fatigue and paralysis that prevent me from going through a stack of junk prevents me from vacuuming the floor. If I can do the first part, why do I need to hire someone for the second? But I reasoned to myself that there must be services to clean the homes of those who pass away or those who simply live in extreme filth and can’t help themselves at all. My place isn’t nearly that bad. These services must know how to help me. But my original fears were realized. When a rep came by to discuss my options, I was told that, no, the cleaners would not throw anything away. They would not do my dishes. They would not pick up piles of stuff. They’d do cleaning and dusting of areas that were already clear, thus validating my theory that only people who have reasonably clean homes actually hire cleaning services in the first place. I still plan to use the service, but my enthusiasm has most deflated. The phrase “putting lipstick on a pig” comes to mind. I’m going to pay them a couple hundred bucks to make my baseboards shiny. The place will still look like a dump.

Work Let’s assume no one from work is reading this. I am overwhelmed by my new job everyday. No one has told me I am failing to meet expectations. No one has told me I am doing anything wrong. But I just assume that I am. My brain is not up for following phone conversations with a dozen people scattered across the world. My brain wants to engage is problem-solving off in its own space and does not want to be interrupted by endless meetings and endless exercises in documenting what I haven’t had the chance to even do yet. And then there’s the small matter of, everyday, wondering how I will put in a solid effort alongside my thrice-weekly dialysis sessions. My body and mind are exhausted, and there seems to way for them to rebound as long as I rely on a machine to filter out toxins from my body. Sounds like a bad time to have changed jobs! Except my last job was soul-sucking; I needed to move on. I don’t regret taking the new job. I regret that I don’t have 2-3 years of savings so I can just do what most dialysis patients do, which is to go on disability.

Dialysis I had figured out what made me so horribly uncomfortable at dialysis, but I never shared the resolution. First, I didn’t want to dwell on how the medical establishment had failed me. Second, dialysis did not turn into a picnic, and it just didn’t seem useful to comment on how dialysis had become just a little less intolerable. At it’s best, I’ll have competent techs and a quiet, pain-free treatment. But, at it’s best, it’s four hours out of the heart of my day that will cause my body to feel uneven for another couple of hours and fail to give me any noticeable boost in energy or affect.

Metablogging I post the croutons as a reminder to myself of a part of myself that I hope still exists, even if it’s easy to cast it off as foolish and naive–the young, unapologetic romantic. Or something like that. I still mourn Toastie Radio, my attempt in the early part of the 2000s to share the music I liked with the world, which at some points, like then there’d be 40-50 concurrent global listeners, came close to being gratifying. In the end, it was a failure, a colossal waste of time and money…and the currency of optimism, of which I’ve always been short-changed.

I posted an unflattering shot of my gut because I wanted to document the time prior to my nephrectomy surgery. I have profile shots that make that distended abdomen far more grotesque. Then again, those shots may be from 15-20 pounds ago. It’s unfortunate that I can be 15-20 pounds down from my heaviest weight and not feel the slightest bit of accomplishment. I don’t feel anything, because my body is weak and completely lacks agility. I’m a sloth. And I’m clearly not having any success on the dating circuit.

I post about politics as a reminder that I’m thinking about these things. I regret that I can’t write intelligently about these issues. It’s much simpler to just throw up a link to someone who had written something intelligent.

When I write a long post like this were I’m stressing about the consequences of my writing, I must put to the back of my mind the thought of who may be reading this. Family members read this. People solely interested in kidney disease and dialysis read this. Former coworkers read this. (I hope no current coworkers read this). If I worry about how I’m coming across, then I’m writing a different blog. Perhaps one day I’ll have a blog dedicated to a particular topic, and I’ll write it in a professional matter, and it won’t be self-absorbed.

For now, above all else, this blog is a coping mechanism for everything. I am not always explicit about how a given post is meant to be therapeutic. Ideally, I’d be writing more. I’d be writing just like this. Granted, it’s 3:52AM, and I don’t strive to be up at this hour on a regular basis. But the benefit of 3:52AM is the lack of inhibition. I’m just writing what comes to mind, and I’m going to hit the Publish button, and this will be up there in the morning. I can go back to sleep with a far-clearer head.

The next four/five months/years

If this Duke tenure lasts four years, that would be terrific. Unfortunately, I’ll be working under the three-month temp label, which I know should be insignificant, but until I go perm, I’ll be worried. And I’ll be worried today, that I’ll find out I’m in way over my head.

Meanwhile, I could’ve slept an extra hour. As I typed the above, I got a call from Melinda from Kelly. I don’t need to be there until 9:00. I now have an extra hour to kill. I’ll get some coffee and a yummy pastry at Caribou.

Geez, it’s been 12 years since I had my first first day at Duke.

Can’t sit around the apartment and pick up cat hair on my first-day polo shirt.

Not driving three hours. Will be home tonight. Yay.
Another first day at Duke.2005.07.05

And my tenure working for OIT at Duke University lasted for four years. It lasted for 5 ⅓ years, obliterating the spans I spent at previous jobs and winding up well over a year longer than my undergraduate tenure there.

This is not the time to write about my tenure working at Duke. It’s end was necessary, but sad, nonetheless.

I am frankly petrified about my new job. I should have a lot on my plate, and I look forward to that. But I’ve got another plate to contend with…a heavy plate that I carry three times a week called dialysis. How these two significant time commitments will coexist, I still do not know. Between HR’s unwillingness to address the issue during the window of the last three weekds, and my dialysis facility’s unwillingness to level with me concerning realistic shift options, I don’t know what my schedule for even tomorrow will be.

Must try to get some sleep, though I know that, since the age of five, I don’t get much sleep the night before The First Day of &;.

I put together my new IKEA coffee table today. I was pleased with myself for that. It’s a massive toy for the cats; I know they appreciate it.

I also spray-painted the light-wood-colored Mission-style plant holder. It was a…I don’t know the color…but now it is black. This shall be a black living room, with some hints of brown. Like this really matters, given the average of 2.84 people who see this living room on average in a given month.

Aremid new coffee table bw