Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Happy Anniversary - 5 Years!

Wow, I can't believe this blog has been running for 5 years! Quite amazing!
This entry will be sort of a good bye entry though, as I have explained earlier I am moving my main blog and will be writing a Swedish blog, along with a Swedish website - I have launched them both today.

I could never delete this blog, so it will still be here, and if I should feel like it at some point, I might make an entry or two - but like I said, I will mostly focus on my Swedish sites now.

I just have to make a note, that on these five years we have reached 36 573 visitors! Unbelievable! And THANK YOU!


För er som läser svenska, kommer här adresserna till min nya hemsida och min nya blogg.
Hemsidan, *jessica alm online * finner ni här: http://www.jessica-alm.se
Bloggen, som också den heter Another Day - Another Destiny, finner ni här: http://jessica-alm.blogspot.com
Hoppas vi ses där!

Sunday, 11 September 2011


I do apologize for the lack of entries in the blog lately ... Things are extremely intense in my life right now - and I feel more and more that I'm making the right decision in moving to a new blog in Swedish only. I simply don't have the energy to try to explain everything that goes on in my life in a foreign language right now - and therefore I also don't quite feel up to blogging. It feels like I'm not doing it properly when I can't really write about what goes on and what's on my mind ...

Just thought I'd make an entry letting you know I'm still alive though - even though certain days I hardly feel alive at all ...
I still hope, with everything that is going on now, I will be able to release the new website and blog on September 20 - and I am fairly sure I can promise more regular and proper blog updates there.

At the moment I'm trying to write my thesis, attend meetings and seminars, attend lectures for the course where I'm mentor as well as leading mentor meetings - and I'm also planning a trip to the summerhouse, and it looks like some pretty major will happen in my life later this fall, but it's still a bit of a secret! ;)
I am, needless to say, keeping very busy - and it's making me very tired ...
For now, you'll have to make good with this update....

Thursday, 1 September 2011

Intense But Good!

Whoa, this semester sure has started off in an intense way, that's for sure!
Still, it's probably the best start of a semester I've had in a great long while, so I'm not complaining about the intensity! :)

Where do I start?
Monday morning was the introduction to the Bible Studies course where I am mentor, so I was going to give them a little information regarding the mentor activity and invite them to the first meeting. Obviously I have done this before (though on another course) and I do know what to say, but I'm still very nervous and anxious about these things, so I didn't sleep much and was up before dawn trying to prepare myself as best I could.

Everything worked smoothly, I had a moment to tell the teacher I wanted a few minutes and it was fine with her - but it was a large group, they were between 25 and 30 students ... On the Hebrew course they usually start out around 15 and end up being 10 ... sort of! :) But I have to say that I don't think my anxiety increased because it was a larger group, and I guess that is a good thing! I think it is the fact that I'm standing up in front of people with all attention directed at me that is the problem, not whether it's six or twelve or fifty people.

So anyway, a lot of information first, from the student counsellor, from the NT teacher and from the OT teacher - and then it was my turn! I think it went okay, pretty good ... I do know I tend to talk WAY to fast (because of the anxiety!), I find it very hard to slow down - and that's a bad thing ... but I think I got the information out that I needed, I got eye contact with a lot of the students etc. so it felt pretty good! :)
We had a bit more of a "usual lecture" toward the end and we were done around ten.

I was pretty exhausted afterwards and didn't quite know how to pass the time, but I ended up reading a few articles for my thesis and I think I at least understood some of it! Points for effort? :)

At 2 p.m. I was meeting with the professor, and it ended up being a pretty good meeting! I felt I knew a bit more about the subject than when I met him last, I had an idea on how to proceed and he approved it - so it was basically a question of detailing what needed to be done and what perspective to take on things. However ...
However, it turns out I'm going to have TONS to do now, I have to send him in a rough draft on September 25, and I have A LOT to do until then! And that does make me a bit nervous, I can't help that! Still, I enjoy doing it and I have the mentor activity to not get too caught up in stressing over my writing - and again, I REALLY have found my place, I love being around the Department and around the people there, so I just simply have to make sure I work as hard as I can during these weeks and hopefully I have accomplished something! :)

Tuesday was really NOT a good day, so I'm just going to not say anything about that - and instead move on to yesterday, Wednesday.

Basic plan was lectures 8-10, first mentor meeting 10-11 and sort of an introductory meeting for students taken (some) advanced level courses and/or writing advanced level essays at 1.
For various reasons (Tuesday was NOT a good day!) I had not been able to prepare much at all during Tuesday, so again I was up at the crack of dawn, trying to get a structure for the first mentor meeting. At first it felt impossible, but I finally managed to work something out, that I also hopefully will be able to use on other meetings, and I left for Uni around 7.
When I got there I was going to fix the coffee and stuff for the mentor meeting, and met another mentor there, who was doing the same thing! :)
She was almost done and when she left, the NT teacher showed up. I know who he is, we say Hello, but I haven't really talked to him, and since I'm going to be mentor on the NT-part as well, I thought this would be a good opportunity to break the ice. We started talking and really hit it off, which was great. He was very curious about how things had been during the first lecture, how I felt about the mentor activity on the course ... so we ended up talking for quite a while. Until I realized that it was 8.12 - and the lecture started at 8.15! Yikes!
I rushed up to the lecture and got there just in time - very interesting lecture, the teacher is fantastic! During the break I went back and got the coffee and things done, and the other half of the lecture was aimed more at getting the students talking and discussing, which I think is great!

We were done at 10 and I called out that we'd have the mentor meeting in the adjoining room. I went there with all my stuff and then went back to see if people would be coming or not! And they did! :) I think we ended up being 11 students, which felt like a pretty good turnout actually, even though I am used to smaller groups!
I gave some basic information and we spent the meeting basically just talking. They got to introduce themselves and we talked about the course and the lectures and the literature ... I have a lot of feelings about the meeting myself, but I don't think this is the place to air them actually.
Still, it felt like a good meeting, as an introduction, and I think and hope I will see these students on the other meetings as well.

I tried to read a bit for my thesis during my break, but it was really slow and I had a bit of a headache. I did manage to organize a mentor meeting schedule to go up on the notice board (which I should have done Monday *oops*), and then I met E, who joined me as mentor last year - she was going to the advanced level introduction-thingy too. We ended up talking and more and more students joined me, a lot of them people I haven't seen in a great long while, so it was really nice catching up with them again.

The introduction-thing was ... I don't know ... I think it's GOOD, really, they are organizing writing-support-groups for students, where you can discuss your writing, comment on texts etc., and they have just general meetings for advanced level students where they try to invite people to talk about different things and so on ... and I know that is really great, but I kind of feel out-of-it. I know a few of the students, sure, but since my studies have been made complicated for oh-so-many reasons, I don't feel like I belong in a group like this - I have taken the same courses they have, or in the same order, I am the only one writing in my subject, which is pretty small and specialized, so I'm not sure how many constructive comments I can get on it ...
I will try to attend, if nothing else to show my general interest in the Department, in a way, but I don't feel very enthusiastic about it ...

I was going to take a train home around 2.45 - only to find out there had been an electrical failure and all train traffic was stopped for a while. My usual trip home (on the train) is 15 minutes ... yesterday it took me 1½ hours ... yay! Not!

I'm exhausted today, and I probably won't go to Uni, but I still need to get things done, so I'm hoping I can work on that during the day! :)

Oh yeah, I just have to say THANK YOU to all my visitors, we have hit 36,000 now, since September 20, 2006!!
I'm very happy we reached that since this blog will (almost) stop on September 20! :)
Thanks again!

Saturday, 27 August 2011

Intense start!

Feels like this semester sure got off with a bang ... I'm not complaining though, I love being where I am in my life right now, but when a lot of stuff happens at the same time, I tend to be a little nervous about how to cope with everything!

First things first, at the beginning of last week I found I will be able to work as a mentor again, during the first half of this semester! :) It won't the Hebrew course I've been working on before, but a course in Bible Studies, so first there is five weeks Old Testament studies, then five weeks New Testament studies.
We didn't know if were going to have a mentor at all on this course, and it was talks about having a part-time mentor on it (so I had figured that IF I would get it, I'd probably get to have about 4-5 mentor meetings during the entire course) - but when I got the email from my supervisor, it turns out I can have 10 (!) meetings! Cool! (And a little bit scary ...)

During the week, I think I have tried to do a "set-up" for at least the beginning of the semester, so even though I guess it hasn't been that busy, it feels like it, since I know what is to come! :)
I emailed the two Bible Studies-teachers, the OT teacher is the same as on the Hebrew course, I know her and very much enjoy working with her - I "sort of" know the NT teacher too, but I emailed him and properly introduced myself, and we'll be having a meeting about a week before his course starts.
I met the OT teacher on Thursday, and while I had been a bit nervous about working as a mentor since this would be a "new" course for me (I took it myself about 3½ years ago), most of my nervousness went away with that meeting. I became really inspired and motivated and I really hope I can do a good job as a mentor on this course as well!

After that meeting, we had a lunch meeting with all the mentors as the Department and our supervisors, signed contracts etc. It was a nice meeting and we also got lists of the students that probably will take the courses where we are mentors - and I have 28 names on my list! Yikes! The Hebrew group usually ends up being 12-14, so say 6-7 on mentor meetings! :)
Will be a bit of challenge to see how large the mentor group will be on this course!

I also emailed the OT professor as I need to talk to him about my master's thesis, see that I'm going in the right direction with that ...

So next week WILL be busy:
Monday morning, introduction to the Bibles Study course, where I need to introduce myself and the mentor activity (hopefully things will work out with schedules too, I made one last week, but I still haven't heard back from the lady who'd make sure we had a room to be in!).
On Monday afternoon I'm meeting with the professor, so I feel I should have something to say to him as well, which takes some preparations.

Nothing planned on Tuesday except for studies and I have to have a talk to the building supervisor where I live about a few things that aren't working properly.

Wednesday morning, it's Bible Studies lectures and straight after that, the first mentor meeting ... So that takes some preparation too, and of course I'm hoping it will be okay, with a decent turnout.
Right after lunch I have to "registration roll call" (or whatever you're supposed to call it) - basically it's students taking Advanced Level courses (sort of) and writing Advanced Level essays that needs to be registered - and these events are always SO messy ... so I can't say that I'm looking forward to that either, to be honest.

Thursday, no plans apart from my own studies, but on Friday it's time for the first Bible Studies seminar, and after that I'm having lunch with a friend ...

And I might have forgotten a few things ... *phew*

This ended up being quite a long entry, but I would like to finish off by saying a bit more about my upcoming internet project(s).
I have been getting a few comments regarding the fact that I will be switching from English to Swedish with the release of my new website and blog - and I have also started going more Swedish on Facebook. I have mixed feelings about this, but I have thought about it a lot.
I don't want to loose touch with my non-Swedish speaking friends, obviously, but I do find it very difficult to write in English these days.

When I started this blog, it was mostly focused on how I coped with everyday situations - I was coming back from sick leave, still had lots of anxiety and social phobia problems, and I found it almost easier to write in English, as I felt I almost "detached" myself a bit from my situation by writing in English and explaining things in more general terms.
Things have changed quite a bit for me during these past few years. I still struggle with anxiety from time to time, but right now my life is centred very much around the University, around my education, my situation there and all that that involves - and that makes it difficult to write in English.
I am not at all familiar with University and education terminology meaning I have to look up a lot of words when I'm writing a blog entry or updating my status on Facebook. Almost all the time I feel that I'm not getting a proper translation, meaning I constantly feel a need to explain and clarify what I mean - and to be honest, I'm not comfortable with that.
I also feel that my Swedish speaking friends some times miss out, because I am describing a situation they are very familiar with, but due to my translating it into English and they translating it back to Swedish, they sometimes don't get what I mean ...

Like I said, I don't want to loose touch with my friends, but I feel like that kind of contact might be held through Facebook messages and/or emails.

I have made my decision regarding this, and naturally I hope you all respect that. With this entry I just wanted to let you know that I'm not doing this on a whim, I have thought a lot about this and I have my reasons for it.
And you will be able to stay here with me at least until September 20 - and I am NOT deleting this blog - so there might be some English entries in the future as well! You'll never know! :)

Monday, 22 August 2011

Internet project!

I really should have made this entry yesterday, but 'better late than never', right? :)

I've been thinking about this new internet project for a while now, and finally the wheels are in motion. I am creating a brand new website, mostly a basic website about me, my interests and thoughts on various things, but I'm hoping to expand on that.
For instance; my 'The Flying Doctors'-website has basically been put on hold for years, and I am hoping to be able to release it under this new website I'm creating.

One thing about this website: It will be in Swedish.
Most likely, I will also create a blog connected to the site, which will also be in Swedish, and which will more or less replace this one.
The reason for this is the fact that I have lost contact with most of my non-Swedish-speaking friends and I'm not getting much general response from friends outside of Sweden these days - and therefore, an English website or an English blog seems superfluous ...

None of this is absolutely determined yet, and I might be convinced to change my mind - if I get enough response from people who would no longer be able to follow me (on website or blog) if I go all Swedish! :)

I am on Facebook, for my English-speaking friends, even though I'm considering going "more Swedish" there as well.
Basically, my reasons are these:
At the point where I'm at in life, I find it difficult to write everything in English. Most of my life at the moment centres around my education, my University studies and what goes on there, and I find it difficult to always explain our education system, our various courses, finding appropriate terminology for everything etc.
Add to this the fact that I feel like most of my readers and followers are Swedish friends.

But please, feel free to leave your comments and thoughts on what I have written here, whoever you are reading this blog - and I will certainly read your comments and take them into consideration.

This blog will turn 5 years old on September 20, and at the moment, I am thinking of releasing my new website and blog on that same date! :)
I will not delete this blog, and I might make an occasional entry here after September 20 as well - I won't abandon this blog as it has been a record of some very intense years in my life! :)

Again, feel free to leave your comments on this entry!

Sunday, 21 August 2011

Difficult Week

This week has been rather difficult for me ... there are a lot of things going on in my head right now, and trying to sort them out and at the same time get my "practical life" working, it's not just easy ...

I have been struggling and even though I can't say I have been doing really well, I think I have seen some minor improvements as the week went by, and I guess that is a good thing and something to keep working on.

I've been doing a lot of photo projects lately, ordering tons of photos, marked them and put in albums but also computer related photo projects like digital scrapbooking. It's a lot of fun and it helps me relax a bit, which I think I need at times! :)

I'm having a lot of thoughts on a future (quite large) internet project, I will think some more and hopefully get back with an entry on that later today!

Monday, 15 August 2011

9 months. Loved Always. Missed Forever.

I can't quite grasp the fact that it's been nine months since I said goodbye to Zorro and walked out of the pet clinic alone ... I know they say grieving takes time, and I am living through that now, but I am amazed at how crystal clear all my thoughts and memories of Zorro are.
I'm not complaining, quite the opposite!! Right after he died I was SO scared that the memory of him would eventually fade away, and I am realizing that is not the case.
But sometimes I'm almost frightened at how intense the memories are ... mostly when I go to bed at night. Since I got back home after the summer I haven't been sleeping well, and every night when I turn the lights out, no matter how tired I am, I am thrown into some virtual reality or a huge 360 degrees movie theatre where I'm seeing Zorro ... and not just seeing him, I can see every detail of his fur, I can see his teeth, I see the black little spot he had in his eye and the green insurance marker they stapled his ear with. I can hear him in surround sound, and I feel his body against mine, I feel his soft fur on my hands, I feel his tongue licking my face, I feel his paws on my shoulders when we were hugging.

It is difficult to deal with the grief when the memories of Zorro are still so vivid and alive - and yet, like I said, I wouldn't have it any other way.

I always knew we had a strong bond between us. Already when my Mum had both Zorro and his brother Zimba, I always got along better with Zorro, for some reason. And the bond between us has only grown stronger and stronger over the 10½ years we got together. I knew we had something special between us, and I think I tried to value the time we had and tried not to waste it - but it's just now, after he's passed away, that I'm realizing just how strong the bond between us was.
We always had each other, and in a way we were quite alike. I am a very private person, and while I have become more outgoing lately, there are certain things I cannot share with ANYONE ... but in a way I shared them with Zorro (of course, I didn't outright talk to him about them but we still shared them in a way). And Zorro was very social and outgoing and loved having people around him ... but he never relaxed in anyone's lap but mine, and he never ever purred with anyone except with me.
So when it was rough for one, or both, of us, we had this; "It's us against the world"-thing, and I don't think I quite realized that until after he was gone ...

While the grief sometimes is knocking me to my knees (both figuratively and literally speaking!), I still hope the memory of Zorro will always be as alive and as clear in my mind as it is right now. I feel like I owe him that.

R.I.P. My Love.
Zorro - 5 July 1997 ~ 15 November 2010
Loved Always.
Missed Forever.

Sunday, 14 August 2011

Settling In Difficulties

As usual when I've been away for the summer (well, almost anyway) I find it difficult to get back into my life. I know it's like that every year but it still bothers me a lot - actually more now than before as I have some plans for the future and I would like to start putting things into action.
I apologize for the vagueness but I'm still not sure what will happen so I don't want to divulge too much, just in case I won't reach the goals I'm setting for myself. I will however get back to this in the future, IF things seem to be going in the right direction. :)

I'm hoping to get started with a more active part of my life tomorrow, which includes this and that - I'm hoping I'll be able to go Uni and get started on my master's thesis again. I probably have to email the professor in about two weeks and it would definitely be good to feel I have gotten a fair bit of work done before then.
There are also a number of things I want/need/shall do and fix now, that has been set aside over the summer, so hopefully I can discipline myself enough to really get it done!

I am also thinking about an internet project now, but I will get back to you on that later on. I think I'm going to need my friends and blog followers point of views and ideas for this, so stay tuned! :)

Friday, 12 August 2011

Summer 2011

Finally it's time for a general update on the summer of 2011, so I can get started on this autumn later on.

Like I said in my previous entry, I have to say that overall this summer has been a really good one! There are a number of reasons for that, I think, but as they are very personal both to me and to people close to me, I won't say anymore. After all, the important thing is that the summer has been pretty good.
The most difficult part has of course been coping with the first summer without Zorro! As I wrote here earlier, the first time I got to the summerhouse without him I basically collapsed, and it has been a lot of more difficult to handle than I had expected.
Even though it was quite an ordeal for Zorro to travel to the summerhouse, I think he really liked it there, and he came to really fit in there. It was wonderful seeing him being able to be outside (as I only have a small balcony where I live) and even though I had him on a leash, it was really long so he could move around a lot!
I also at times feel very much alone when I am visiting my Dad's family. After all, they are a family and while they are all for including me, fact is: I'm not a part of their family, not in that "intimate" way anyway. And I really don't want to be either, to be honest ... I want to be able to visit them and spend time with them and enjoy their company, but I am a grown woman and at the moment, I am my own family. Earlier, Zorro was my family. It was him and me, and when things got really intense we always had each other, at nights and early in the mornings, we could really spend quality time together - and now I have had to deal with the intensity all on my own ...

It has been great spending time with my sisters again - they grow a lot and I have to say that it feels good to see them play well together. That does take a bit of the pressure off their big sister (LOL!) and it's great that they have such a good relationship. Sure, they argue at times and then it can get pretty bad, but mostly, they get on great together - and they grow SO fast!!

Finishing off with a few photos from the summer.
First some nature photos:

And some of my gorgeous sisters:

One day we went to a rather large zoo, which was a lot of fun and we got to see some beautiful animals.

The girls got to go pony riding and that was a BIG HIT, let me tell you! Don't they look great?

Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Back For Good!

I came back home yesterday and it feels fantastic to be back home again. I have to say that this summer has been better than a lot of other summers and it was difficult to say good bye to everyone yesterday morning, even though I at the same time feel thrilled to be back where I am supposed to be again! :)

I know I have a difficult autumn ahead of me now, where a lot of things has to be done, a lot of things has to fall into place and I have to take on a lot of challenges, but I'm still very much looking forward to getting stuck into it, and hopefully I will be able to work hard and make things work as good as possible.

I also hope I can get this blog back to what it used to be, in the "good old days"! :) I do like the blog and I don't like the fact that so much time passes between updates and also the irregularity of my entries! I would like to see entries on a daily basis, but I guess I'd better play it safe and not give any guarantees! :)
I will try to - as usual! :) - make a few 'come-back-entries' now, both on things having happened during the summer, but also on what lies ahead, and then we'll just have to take it from there.

I hope you all had a great summer!!