Saturday, December 31, 2011

Plans Go Awry, But You've Got to Have Friends

I know when I posted in August I planned to get back here at that time.  Well, you know.  Life happens.  Work didn't really slow down the way I thought it would and there was this & that, and before I knew it, it was November 8 & I was having back surgery.  Yes, I decided to do the surgery, and I'm glad I did, but the recovery has been long and is still ongoing.  I'm planning another post later about the surgery & recovery in general, and things I've learned along the way.  I will go ahead and tell you know that I have some of the best family and friends in the world.

I also have some of the best coworkers.  One of the things that did not go as planned was the week and a half leading up to my surgery.  I work in Raleigh but Sanford, where I live, is an hour away and a much smaller town, so there are a lot of things that I buy or take care of in Raleigh rather than Sanford.  For example, I buy cat food at PetSmart because I can get the brand we use in 14 lb. bags.  I can get the same cat food in Sanford at the grocery store, but only in 3 lb. bags and at a much steeper price per lb. We have 3 cats, so that's a lot of money saved.  They real point is, I had sort of planned to do all of that running around and getting stuff we would need over the 2 months I was out of work in that week before surgery.  Yeah, that didn't happen.  I did manage to squeeze in the absolutely necessary errands (like cat food) but some others just didn't get done.

I previously mentioned that I am on the redistricting team for my division.  If you live in NC and follow the news at all, you know that there was a problem with the software that translates the maps into bill format was discovered in October. Suddenly, starting a little less than 2 weeks before my surgery, I was working 16 hour days for about 10 days straight.  First we had to manually determine how big the problem was, and then after the software had been reprogrammed we had to manually check to be sure that it was now pulling in the correct information. It was boring monotonous work, and there were only 7 of us that could do it.  Imagine looking at a page of nothing but 13 digit numbers and then at a map on a computer screen full of 15 digit numbers and finding the one with the same last 13 digits, clicking on the number on the computer and then highlighting the number on the page to show that you had clicked it on the screen.  Now, imagine doing this for 16 hours per day for 10 days and doing nothing else during your work day.  Sounds fun right? It also leads to this.....

Not only did other coworkers, who didn't have the necessary map software on their computers, bring us food on the weekends and evenings so we wouldn't have to live solely on pizza delivery, some of them stayed extra hours and read numbers to us when our eyes were getting so blurry we could no longer see.  Additionally, the other 6 coworkers who were doing this with me, let me leave at 2am Friday night/Sat morning before my surgery on Tuesday & not come back, even though I know they were there on Saturday and probably Sunday as well in preparation for the General Assembly coming  back on Monday to adopt curative legislation.  Even though it put more work on them, they understood that I could not go into surgery without a couple of days to get some rest, my blood pressure back to a normal level, and a few things done to feel like my house was ready for me to be laid up for a while.

Some great news since I last posted, my son who had deployed to Iraq actually made it back stateside before Thanksgiving due to the pull out of forces from Iraq, so even though we haven't been able to see him yet, we are thrilled that he is back safe.

So there have been other matters to attend to in the past few months than worrying about posting here, but I don't plan to give up yet.  I'm working on my goals for 2012 and will do a post about those sometime in the next few days.  They probably won't be as ambitious as they were last year, but I do better if I have some actual measurable goals so I can track my progress.

Hopefully, this time when I say I'll be back here again soon it will actually happen!