“I never cut class. I loved getting A’s, I liked being smart. I liked being on time. I thought being smart is cooler than anything in the world” – Michelle Obama
Seven days have passed, seven new points of knowledge have been acquired:
- My dad is a (semi-)genius! Yes, he fixed my laptop! :D It’s not working like it did before, but at least he got it up and running again. I have internet access and thanks to my back-ups I didn’t lose too many files. Just some pictures and audio, nothing I can’t survive. Phew!
- 2015 has fifty-three weeks… I always thought a year had no more than fifty-two weeks and never actually really thought about it, but apparently there is a system, which differs over countries (hurray for cultural differences!). The Netherlands uses the ISO 8601 system, which means our weeks officially start on Mondays, and that the first week of a new year is the one that contains at least the first four days of January. Hence, it is possible there’s an “extra week” in this (Dutch) year.
- Being honest (and hoarse) can get you what you want without guilt. The flu is going around again and this Monday I felt a bit under the weather. A day later I felt too sick to work a full day, but not sick enough to stay home. So I called my supervisor and told her exactly that, and she was kind enough to change something around in my schedule for Wednesday. She scrapped one client of my list for that day and called for a replacement. Result: everyone happy, no guilt, and I didn’t overwork.
- Never lose hope; just when you think all is lost, you’ll find exactly what you need. Although my flu was still in violent progress, I did manage to get up and pay IKEA a visit with my parents this week. We were on the lookout for a nice small side-table for me, but nothing matched our requirements (or measurements, really). But just as we were on our way to the exit we passed through the bathroom section and almost literally bumped into the most perfect side-table ever! (I’d like to point out I do not enjoy shopping in general, but shopping for furniture is even worse, because my dad always thinks he knows best and he keeps telling everyone he does. Also, shopping for furniture with a know-it-all-father and a fever does NOTHING for your spirits as you try to stay positive).
- Nothing is more comforting than a mother’s hug. I had a breakdown last Friday. I am not proud of it, but I couldn’t shake the feeling that the Universe must hate me loads, because not only has this year been messed up to such an extent it’s beyond believable, I was also sick on the one day that’s sacred to me: my birthday. I mean, my birthday was Saturday, but come on: if you’re harvesting a fever the day before, you know you’re not going to be a lot better twenty-four hours later.
What made it even worse was the fact that my mother had caught my flu, which was evolving into pneumonia (although we didn’t know at the time). So it was safe to say that ALL ideas I had had to do on my birthday were useless, including Plan Z I was desperately holding on to (visiting a safari zoo and going out to dinner). It was not going to happen.
So I snapped. I hadn’t had a meltdown like that in a long, long time, but I couldn’t stop it. Irrational thoughts clouding my head, grief overwhelming me, sadness, sorrow, you name it. I broke down in tears and I cried until my entire face was wet from tears; I don’t think I’ve ever cried so much in my life. All the pain and sadness cumulated over 2015 (and maybe even before) just came out and I couldn’t stop it.
And then my mum hugged me and let me rage and weep for a good twenty minutes. I knew she lied when she said we’d make it work, that I’d have a super day, but still. The warmth of her hug was so comforting, I calmed down eventually.
…My birthday was still sh*t, though. But at least we were together.
- Which brings me to my next point: it’s okay to be sick on your birthday. It’s also okay if your mum is (as long as she gets better). It’s even okay if, on your birthday, you have to rush your mother to the GP-weekend-substitute-offices (don’t EVEN ask, our health care system is lame and messed up) which is located near the Hospital of Horrors the same mother got so badly maltreated for cancer once, you swore you’d never set a foot in there ever again.
And it’s also even maybe a little bit okay if the doctor who is supposed to diagnose your mother with pneumonia calls it a “classic case of COPD”, only because she admits to being a smoker (?? – I think we would have known if she had had COPD, since I doubt that evolves overnight from being down with a cold to practically coughing your longs out). To add to the horror: every time he spoke he looked at ME and not her, plus at first he didn’t want to prescribe her with antibiotics, because it wasn’t pneumonia since she “didn’t have a fever.”
But it’s all okay now, because she ended up getting the right drugs, and I was with people I love. I got attention, cake, presents, there were many pandas involved, and I got to hang around on the sofa all day with my mother, a blanket and the TV.
- Everyone can learn to sing. Apparently, singing off-key is not genetic and it doesn’t mean you stink at singing altogether. In fact, according to a TV show about the human body, your brains can learn the differences between notes and they can translate this back to your vocal cords, so you can hit the right ones. Basically, everyone can learn to sing by taking lessons and practising!
Unfortunately, a friend of mine, who’s a singer, told me everyone has his or her own vocal range, and although you can stretch your abilities a bit by rehearsing, you can’t extend your range.
Oh well, I wasn’t planning on ever singing in public anyway, so I’m good :)
So far my list of this week. I’d like to end it with a Song Of The Week (aka a song that’s been bothering me for multiple days during the past week, a true recurring ear worm). This week it’s a Dutch song, the title is Niet Normaal, which translates to: “not normal”, and they sing about not being normal (what a shocker!).
I’m curious to see if it gets stuck in your heads as well, especially for those who don’t speak Dutch ;)
Happy week 45 to you all! :)