30 January 2007

Arse chasing

I think my body's finally gone into full revolt. It's decided that I need to slow down a bit and has therefore decided to be TATT (tired all the time). I'm still losing weight, but only because I'm exchanging sleeping at unusual times for food.

You see, last week was deadline week. I pushed myself to the limits in order to meet deadlines that I had (surprisingly) left until the last minute. I don't think this went down well with the little people in my head.

When I should have been resting this weekend, I went on a course and agreed to help someone set some equipment up. I'm just far too nice for my own good. And it hasn't stopped yet....

I have, yet again taken on too much:
  • I've agreed to give a talk to a group next week, which means I have a powerpoint to write before then.
  • I've got a whole load of anatomy to learn this week
  • I stupidly signed up for an extra clinical session
  • I have a physiology assignment to do
  • And at some point in the future I shall be starting on a 10 week course.
  • I've got to fit a job interview in somewhere too....
I've never really suffered with headaches (aside from the occasional contraceptive related migraine) but I've been plagued with them since Friday. My head feels like it's in a vice.

As I mentioned above, I'm sleeping funny hours. I've started getting in from uni and having a couple of hours sleep, waking up around 8pm. This is fine, but then means I can't be bothered to cook so I have a snack and do some work, before crawling into bed properly at some point after 12.

While tonight I could really do with hitting the books followed by bed, I've got a meeting to attend at 7.30 and have promised to help some mates at the pub quiz later.

Something's gonna break soon. Probably my one remaining nerve.

28 January 2007


Hospital Phoenix is back!


* I know I've been a bad blogger lately, and I promise normal posting will be resumed this week when I can get my arse into gear again. My so called 'weekend-off' turned into the busiest one since September....*

26 January 2007

So slowly

Well, even though the diet has strayed for the last few days I've still lost a touch of weight. It's not a case of pigging out, it's a case of being stressed and eating whatever was available at the time, and then not eating anything else all day. This often led to an omelette and chips being the only food I ate in an entire day.

I know this isn't healthy but I've been so chewed up lately I've been chasing my own tail to meet deadlines.

So the new BMI for today is 26.1

Only another half stone to lose to get back to BMI of 25

25 January 2007


It seems like such a long time since I spoke star wars on Monday.
This week has been crazy busy, packed with stupidity on my part, and lots and lots of stress and panic....more on that later.

I've had a lot of frustration this week with people on my course, but I think that's going to have to be a different post.

I've also strayed slightly from the diet...but I've had a bad week, honest

22 January 2007

Speaking the lingo

A little knowledge goes a long way, or so it seems.

When speaking to a 7 year old boy post-surgery, it helps if you know a little (or a lot in my case) about Star Wars.

His parents accused us of speaking in tongues, but it put a smile on my face for the rest of the day!

I even managed to get him to tell me about his surgery, which was a rather delicate concept for a 7 year old boy, and he waved me goodbye as I left his bedside.

It's given me a rather warm feeling inside....now let's see how long that lasts for.

21 January 2007

Songs that get in your head

Laura prompted me to do this by getting a song in my head. This little tune has been following me around for over a week now. Enjoy

On why I shouldn't drink Coca Cola....

When I finished my A2 Levels (a shocking 4 and a half years ago now) I joined Weight Watchers with my mum in an effort to shift some of my rhinocerous sized body mass.

I was dedicated and determined and I lost 3 and a half stones (around 22 Kg I think) and reached my gold weight. In order to do this, I had to make certain sacrifices....like Coca Cola - the full fat stuff.

Diet Coke was completely allowed, as it has 0 points in it, and could therefore be consumed as much as was desired.

Obviously I complied and quit my fat coke for thin coke and lost the weight.

Having been beaten into submission this way and for so long, I found drinking fat coke unpleasant as it made my teeth feel funny.

It would appear that having quit fat coke for 4 years and then accidentally getting a pint last night had some unusual side effects.

I had the hugest caffeine and sugar rush combined, and proceeded to dance like a woman possessed for the next 30 minutes. My bar supervisor who was out with me was rather bemused as I was bouncing all over the place in a slightly odd manner, and decided to see how far it would go if he got me a second fat coke. Cue a very giddy, bouncy Merys who managed to make everyone think she was drunk out of her skull (except today I don't have the hangover . . . just toothache). I was so hyped up I didn't even have an alcoholic drink all night.

Moral of this story - never ever give me full fat Coca Cola unless you want me to annoy you for the next 30 minutes.

20 January 2007

19 January 2007

Apparent Intelligence

Despite today's appalling weather I am obviously a complete idiot (or getting better at cycling).
I rather foolishly cycled 2 miles in the wind and rain along the main road.
And didn't have an accident (but I did have to dismount for a huge puddle and walk along the grass).

Although on the way home, I was a tad more sensible (the wind was stronger) and decided to walk my bike home.
2 miles.
In strong wind and rain.
While wearing heels.
And carrying a dainty handbag.

I don't know which was more stupid actually!

18 January 2007

17 January 2007

For your entertainment

Is it wrong that I can remember this (or at least I think I can) coming out. Anyone know when it was released?

Deary Me

Who in the name of all things holy designs hospitals?
Is the sole aim to let medical students get lost while spying on them with CCTV?
And would it be so difficult to put a few signs up here and there?

Maybe this is how the government plans to cut obesity in young people - they're going to start with the medical students that are late for lessons!

15 January 2007

11 January 2007


As tagged by Laura and Faith

A - Available/Single?
- No comment
B - Best Friend? - Leela since I first met her at university
C - Cake or Pie? - Nothing beats a good pork pie (true northerner!)
D - Drink Of Choice? - Diet Coke or cloudy lemonade/dry ginger
E – Essential Item You Use Everyday? -my iPod and good hand cream
F - Favourite Colour? - Bright pink
G - Gummy Bears Or Worms? - Gummy bears
H - Hometown? - Somewhere in Yorkshire
I - Indulgence? - Snowboarding lessons
J - January Or February? - February - all the university exams are over!
K - Kids & Their Names? - Very random, I like names with 'X' in them
L - Life Is Incomplete Without? - good company
M - Marriage date? - No comment.
N - Number Of Siblings? - none
O - Oranges Or Apples? - apples
P - Phobias/Fears? - spiders, deep water, heights, (rather bizarrely) apple stickers.
Q - Favourite Quote? - "Elwood: It's 106 miles to Chicago, we've got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark and we're wearing sunglasses. Jake: Hit it. "
R - Reason to Smile? - I have a good life.
S - Season? - Winter.
T - Tag people? - Carmelo, Lola, John, Magwitch, Calavera and Angry Medic
U - Unknown Fact About Me? - I can break an inch of wood with my bare hands and two with bare feet.
V - Vegetable you don’t like? - Tomatoes (technically a fruit - I know), peas, beans, parsnips, carrots.
W - Worst Habit? - Falling over
X - X-rays You’ve Had? - both hands together, both feet together, right hand, neck and rest of spine, hips x2, both knees multiple times, both ankles. 2 x MRI. Many many dental X-rays. I must glow.
Y - Your Favourite Food? - Chinese/Japanese or very good Italian.
Z – Zodiac Sign? - Scorpio

09 January 2007

Today's BMI

BMI now is 26.80.

At least it's going the right way. 2lbs off.....

07 January 2007

Before I go...

Since the diet started officially today, I thought I'd give you a starting progress point. While I'm not going to tell you what I weigh, I will tell you that today's BMI is 27.16. And it's coming down....

A fresh start

I consider the new term my new year, and the resolutions start here.

I WILL DIET!!! And I will eat sensibly and lose weight. It started today and I've already packed myself lunch for tomorrow. Whether I actually remember to take it with me or not in the morning, is another matter entirely. The thought is there at least.

Tomorrow is going to be strange going back. But I will smile inwardly as everyone shows off their new clothes/makeup/jewellery etc.

The iPod is on charge for the journey in, the shoes are polished and my trousers are pressed. I guess I'm as prepared as I can be. On which note I'm heading off to my pit to rest my weary head.

Happy new academic year everyone.

06 January 2007

How do I love my housemates....

At the moment I'm not a happy chick. PMT kind of aggravates the problem...

I came back to university today at around 3.30. It's been a long journey here, and to save on stress and hassle, I'd ordered all of my groceries on Tesco.com. The plan was simply to accept the delivery and pack my stuff away in the kitchen.

What I hadn't expected to find was a kitchen table full of dirty crockery from my housemates. Which meant that I couldn't unpack the shopping as there was nowhere to put the boxes, which meant I sat and washed up for an hour, then dried up, and then put away all of their dirty dishes, and then cleaned the table before I could get my groceries sorted.

What was worse was finding some of my crockery amongst it, when I know damn well I washed and dried all of mine before leaving for vacation.
Not to mention playing 'animal, vegetable or mineral' with some of the stuff in the fridge. That was a delight I haven't experienced for a while. Never mind, the fridge is mine for a week now, and there's only my stuff left!

And I'm not just talking a little bit icky, I'm talking mould, and smell and everything with a sticky, slimy residue on it. Oh, and half empty wine bottles left all over the place. I hope they had a really good time without me, because I'm going to make the next month hell for them. Oh, and in case any of you have rumbled this blog, you owe me a bottle of wine each.

"I can't talk now, I'm on a train!"

Well, as the title suggests, I'm writing this while sat on one of the many trains on the way back to university for the new year. I would blog this while I was actually on the train, but I refuse to pay £2.95 for half an hour of the 'excellent' wireless connection that the train provides.

I'd never really noticed just how many trains provide laptop sockets now, but am I ever glad that they do. When I change on to my next train I will be fishing out a DVD and vanishing into a film somewhere. Possibly, the excellent Nightwatch (Russian with subtitles - definite science fiction horror.) which I'm having to watch again, as I didn't follow it enough the first time.

I intend whole heartedly to sit on the next train (which is 2 hours) and stuff myself with chocolates because I have PMT and stomach cramps and veg. I don't care how many dirty looks I get for consuming so much chocolate, but I do care if I get chocolate in the keyboard.

I don't usually mind train journeys, but today I am carrying too much luggage to make for a comfortable journey. I have a suitcase, a laptop, a huge rucksack and a carrier bag with everything I couldn't fit anywhere else. I'm also wearing a long winter coat and 2 fleeces, as I couldn't get any of them in my bags.

I would love to just drift off to sleep, as I'm more exhausted returning to uni than I was upon leaving it in December. But Tesco.com are delivering me some shopping later today so that I can survive until I can get to the supermarket.

I very much doubt there will be anyone else in my flat when I return, as they're on reading week at the moment, and I'm going to be the first one back. As I was the first one to leave, I dread to think what state the kitchen will be in when I return... My first task is to wash the teatowels that have been festering in a corner since September. The problem is that we all have them, and we all use each others...but no-one ever washes them. Which is kind of gross. I'd started leaving dishes to air dry, as it was vastly more hygienic..but that prompted other (lazy) people to use my stuff as it was clean and on public display. I'm going to cap all of that by washing the tea towels and keeping mine in my cupboard away from lazy housemates. We'll see how long it actually lasts for.
When I get back I also have a lot of ironing to do. Sales shopping this week meant that I bought an awful lot of new clothes, but many of which were extremely creased. Particularly clothes bought from the Next sale. But I can cope - I actually like ironing.

I think I may also have to tidy up in order to find a home for all of my next christmas presents. Ah, such a chore.

New Year's Resolutions

• I WILL lose at least a stone. And I mean that. I will post a progress report on here weekly and it will come off.
• I will try and stop moaning about this place. I promise I will TRY. I'm not promising I will succeed.
• I will cycle more and not fall off. I will also wear my helmet more often to prevent brain leakage onto the things I hit.
• I will update Twitter every day, whether I have anything exciting to say or not
• And I will be a good blogger...... (draw your own conclusions!)

Review of 2006 - October to December

October gave my 23rd birthday, and I began feeling like a real old fart on my course, surrounded my 18 and 19 year olds, and older than those who had taken a degree by a year due to my MSc. At least I'm not the oldest one in my year by a long way....

I found a new bar job which I love with all my heart. I'm working again in the Student Union building serving hand pulled ale and enjoying the company of the regulars. It's a little less loud than my previous SU bar, but I can cope, and I'm very lucky to have the job! (I'm also allowed to drink while I'm at work, and gain free entry to any events on the night I work, which is a nice perk.)

October doesn't stand out as an astonishingly interesting month, although I did have a lot of back problems until I persuaded the university to provide me with an orthopedic mattress.

November saw me driving a longer distance than I have ever done before, and doing more motorway driving as well. I've never had the opportunity to drive motorways very much as there aren't that many in my area of Yorkshire, so the M25 was a pleasant challenge, and not the giant car park I was expecting.

I did some GP out of hours shadowing in November, getting adopted by an ECP who later gave me the option of shadowing her alone during a normal week (but that's an entire post to itself...). I looked in countless ears, eyes and throats, and even at a 28 year old male's haemorrhoids (poor bloke) just for the benefit of gaining patient centred experience. I don't regret giving up my weekend for it though.

December gave the end of the first semester at my new university, more work shadowing in my own time, and lots and lots of homework.

I returned home to work at the leisure centre again, and had a lovely family christmas, with only a few arguments.

I also got my first appraisal from my tutors, and apart from being told I'm a little too gobby, all was good. I have no idea what they were talking about with regards to the 'gobby' thing, but I guess it's my northern-ness in a southern city. I'm sure I can cope.

Stuff that happened but I can't remember when

· Graduation from my Masters. Nice ceremony, much more fun than my BSc, and with better robes this time and a better speaker.

· A little operation under a general anaesthetic (I was absolutely bricking it before they put me under, and I demanded EMLA for my hands before they cannulated me!)

· Seeing my first dead body, then my second, and then my first 'preserved' one at university. Fresh is best!

· Meeting someone at this university who reads my blog and having a coffee and lunch. That was slightly odd to say the least. (please don’t comment on this post)

· Realising that a couple of people have rumbled me….

Music of my year - my most played songs from the month they were added to iTunes. These songs still illicit strong feelings and memories of the time I got them...

January - Ai no corrida - Uniting Nations
When the sun goes down - Arctic Monkeys

February - No tomorrow - Orson
Sugar, we're going down - Fall Out Boy
Sewn - The Feeling

March - I write sins, not tragedies - Panic! At The Disco

April - NHS Song - Amateur Transplants
Naive - The Kooks

May - Steady as she goes - The Raconteurs
Blackbird - The Beatles
Feeling good - Muse

June - I wish I was a punk rocker (with flowers in my hair) - Sandi Thom
Let me go - 3 doors down
Country girl - Primal Scream

July - Hips don't lie - Shakira
Iris - Goo Goo Dolls
Valerie - The Zutons

August - I don't feel like dancing - The Scissor Sisters (also prominent in Sept)
Starlight - Muse

September - LDN - Lily Allen
Chelsea Dagger - The Fratellis

October - Love it when you call - The Feeling
Call me when you're sober - Evanescence
Wecome to the black parade - My Chemical Romance

November - Jenny don't be hasty - Paolo Nutini
Rehab - Amy Winehouse

December - Rewind - Paolo Nutini
Wind it up - Gwen Stefani

05 January 2007

Review of 2006 - July to September

July meant dissertation in and bound, viva and the final results of my masters degree. I found out that I'd passed an exam I'd been waiting on results of (due to the lecturers strike), meaning that I'd passed every exam I'd taken on my MSc (better than I did on my BSc - and with higher marks). It all depended on my ability to write a few thousand words and perform well at my oral exam (viva).

The book went in and I was a free woman for 2 weeks. I went home, and I helped with a conference back at university (for babysitting around sixty 17 year olds who were staying in the halls of residence.) earning myself a very easy £300.

The viva could have gone better, as I was examined by a senior expert in the subject I had done my research. This was all going to be fine until he opened my book and I saw all of the pencil marks across the pages. I also managed to misquote him verbally from a paper I'd referenced in my research. Oops!
July also gave us results day for MSc and I did less crying than I anticipated. I think I always wanted to pass and go on and do medicine, but when it actually came down to receiving the results (meaning that I'd made my conditions) I felt a kind of numb. After phoning my family, the next people I phoned were Lennie and Renal while sitting on the wall outside the lecture theatre in the rain. I used over £15 of calling credit on texts and phone calls that day, and still came home sober at 2AM. Sadly everyone who'd come out with me came home drunk as a skunk, but I had a prior arrangement the following day.
It took until September to sink in....
In July I also took the official HSE First Aid at Work course and became a 'qualified first aider' (although I nearly failed the assessment, so I wouldn't advise having an accident near me).
July also meant back to the homeland, the family and the chav infested leisure centre.
August gave more work and the official confirmation of my medical school place through UCAS.
I had plenty of opportunities to practice my new found first aid skills at work, as many small children seem to have accidents while I'm around.
No holiday for me this year - I'm too skint.
September brought the start of medical school and relocation to a new place. It took until this point for it to settle in. Freshers week was fun, for what I can remember of it. And yes, I did mingle with the 18 year olds.
The start of learning new skills on a more practical based course has been fun so far and September started with re-learning BLS (basic life support) for hospital based work.

01 January 2007

Review of 2006 - April to June

April brought auxiliary nurse training through a very impressive nursing agency (who I genuinely enjoyed working for) and the opportunity to gain more patient centered experience. I stopped observing at this point to concentrate more on my Masters degree and earn more money. I was still working 3 shifts a week in my bar, covering the students in my halls of residence and working care shifts so I didn't need the extra hours.

As the Easter holidays loomed I got sick to the high teeth of my masters, and with an unconditional offer to a paramedic course, I seriously contemplated quitting my degree. I was stuck at university alone, as I didn't get an Easter holiday from my studies and was bogged down in dissertation with no university structure to keep me going.

May saw me making the most difficult decision of my life to date. I had 2 unconditional paramedical studies places and a conditional medical school place (I had to pass my MSc).The way the UCAS system works, you have to pick a firm place and an insurance place for if you don't make the grades on the first offer. Although for obvious reasons you can't put an insurance place after an unconditional offer (as there are no grades to miss out on), meaning that if I put the paramedic place first, I would have to abandon medicine completely. I decided to put the medical place as a firm choice and choose Sheffield Hallam as an insurance. It was a decision that I really agonised over for a long time prior to May, and a decision I'm yet to be convinced off.
I was also still desperately doing my dissertation, although procrastinating greatly!

June obviously wasn't all that interesting as I can't remember doing anything other than my dissertation. I know I did a mixture of agency shifts in hospitals, 'care' homes and individual's homes.

Personally I prefer doing one-on-one care work in the person's own home. I find it easier to give a better level of care and to maintain a level to which I would expect my family members to be treated. As has been raised elsewhere, it's too easy to pass the buck when you work in a care home or hospital. I worked in a local hospital as a bank auxiliary to 'special' for a patient. This meant that my sole responsibility was meant to be just the one patient who had extra needs but was on a general medical ward and the nurses couldn't cope without an extra pair of hands. This would have all been fine and good had they not abused my role to change every incontinence pad on the ward. Now I'm very amenable and will do my job (usually) without question (as long as I'm getting paid), but I found it incredibly infuriating to be the only one running around like a blue arsed fly while every other nurse on the ward was sat gossiping at the nurses station. You ask me to chase the wandering patient I'm meant o be 'special-ing' down the corridor, that's fine. But the reason he's wandering down the corridor is because I can't do what I'm meant to be doing. Ok, rant over.

I hated working in care homes, and as a result I asked the agency to not offer me work in them.