I'll give credit to those of you who are able to read through all of it, because I have a feeling this will be the longest blog entry I've ever made! LOL! :)
Sunday, May 15
This was a really difficult day for me! It was 6 months to the day since Zorro past away, and I still have difficulties dealing with that, especially during those days, when I tend to think of him more often and more intensely. I had a lot of things to deal with from the previous week as well, so I guess I didn't get anything productive done at all during Sunday, although I need times for thinking, reflecting and personal writing ...
Most things in my life are turning out fantastic now, but I can't help feeling I would have liked to share that with Zorro - because I know he could tell whether I was feeling good or bad. Lots of thoughts regarding Zorro, but I won't get into that now, I might save it for another entry later on.
Here are some old photos of Zorro I found when I was looking through my computer:
Monday was study day full stop!! I had to hand in a report to the OT professor "during Monday night" on my progress on the master's essay. Needless to say I stressed like an idiot the entire day and felt unprepared to the max.
In my defence, I did have a bit of materials to use, but naturally I hadn't started putting the report together ... and I started with that around lunch time! *oops* I realized I had to get some print-outs, and my printer at home is not really working, so I made the quite possible shortest visit to Uni ever! :) I arrived at the library at 12.50, grabbed a computer and got my print-outs, and was out of there again at 1.03! LOL!
I didn't do anything except wrote, wrote and wrote the entire day, and by about 10 p.m. I had almost 8 pages ... Let's just say I don't think I did a great job proof-reading the thing, but at least I sent it in!
Tuesday was an extremely intense day for me ...
We had lectures at 10 with the OT group, and they were having a seminary discussion on a book by W. Brueggemann (Unsettling God). I had really hoped to be able to read through it really quick before the seminar, but there was (obviously!) no chance of that!
I still got a bit out of the seminary discussion and it was quite interesting. I'm happy to see a course such as this, where there is a clear focus on the language, it's possible to do these kinds of things as well.
After the lecture I ended up in the library assisting some of the students with different things regarding the interpretation they were writing.
Once I got to sit down on my own, the anxiety about the SI-ceremony that afternoon hit me like a ton of bricks. I haven't experienced that heavy anxiety in probably several years, and I was really feeling awful. Still, I knew there was no way out of this, and I had no choice but try to do the best I could with it. I was unsure of basically everything: I didn't know how the ceremony would be, I didn't know what would be expected of me (even though I had been assured I would not have to give a 'thank you speech' - which I was more than grateful for!!), and I wasn't even 100% sure of where the ceremony would take place (it was on another University Department, where I've only been a few times, a couple of years ago) ...
I ended up talking a little to my SI supervisor, as I was sitting just outside her room, and eventually we agreed we would walk to the ceremony together, and that helped my anxiety a lot! Just know I would go with someone I knew, wouldn't have to worry about finding the right place etc. helped me a great deal!
We met at 3 o'clock and walked together to the ceremony, and when we entered the auditorium my supervisor exchanged a few words with the man in charge of the whole thing, and she also introduced me. We took our seats and the ceremony started with a few introductory speeches, among those who came was Sven Strömqvist, who is Lund University's Assistant Vice-Chancellor!! After that we heard speeches relating SI (Supplemental Instruction) to not only Universities but also senior high school/college and also how you can use it when you go out to work in the world outside University - and we also heard a speech from two students who have worked within SI and had the opportunity to go to America to attend an SI conference.
After the speeches, it was time for the handing out of Diplomas, and first up were the Honorary Diplomas, which apparently was given to me and three other students. I had no idea how they wanted to do this, and when they said it would be done alphabetically I basically panicked - but I was so lucky, as there was one girl who came before me!! (Not often that happens.)
So anyway ...
We were called down in front of everyone, and got to listen to the nomination text that our supervisors had written when nominating us, and then we got our Diploma and a little present.
And I have to admit, I am proud of the fact that I went through with it, because this was a really big deal for me! The auditorium was in no way crowded, but there were enough people for me to feel really really anxious! But I did it! :)
It was a great relief to be able to get back to my seat and realize that most of it was over for my part, that's for sure.
After the Honorary Diplomas and been handed out, all the mentors who were quitting were given diplomas as well - but a lot of people who had said they'd come didn't show up, so things became a little bit awkward ...
There were snacks and drinks prepared afterwards, but first they wanted everyone who had gotten a diploma to gather near the entrance and we were photographed - and after that we were able to get snacks and talk to the others. Since I was completely shaky after the almost extreme tenseness I found it difficult to talk and be friendly, and I didn't stay long.
But it still felt amazing to have gone through with that day, that's for sure! :)
On Wednesday I had a meeting with the OT professor to discuss the report ... and since I emailed it so late on Monday night and my mind was somewhere else entirely on Tuesday I felt I needed to prepare for the meeting quite a lot. I went to Uni fairly early and printed my report and went over it, quite a number of times. I also met a lot of the OT students working on their interpretations and I also talked a little with my SI supervisor before heading up the professor on the third floor.
The talk we had went really well actually. We started talking "generally" when he suddenly interrupted our conversation, and realized he'd forgotten to congratulate me to the Honorary Diploma!! I didn't even know he knew, and SI feels a little bit like it's own "department" within the University, so I was quite surprised. He ended up giving me SO many lovely comments and compliments I was completely and utterly embarrassed!! I think the peak was when he told me how he had met Sven Strömqvist (the Assistant Vice-Chancellor who attended the SI-ceremony) at a conference earlier during Tuesday morning, and how proud he (the OT professor) had been to tell the Vice-Chancellor that one of his students was one of the recipients of the Honorary Diploma! *yikes!!*
I was (and am!!) SO flattered, but I really don't know what to do with myself when things like that come up, I have no idea what to say and I mostly feel really embarrassed!
We moved on to actually discussing my thesis as well, of course, and I think it was quite a rewarding chat. Most of the energy was done trying to decide what way I'm going to take right now, and that wasn't as easy as it sounds, actually. We had a good discussion, I felt I was able to step up a bit more than I have before, when I have mostly felt I've 'had to' just accept what he says as he knows so much more than me. This time I felt I could question what he said, and really get to the bottom of what was discussed, and that felt really good.
The outcome basically was to go into a few more scholars and their view on the objective I've set for my thesis - and also to get down to the Hebrew text and really start working on the relevant (some of them!) passages there ...
The meeting felt really good, from all kinds of angles, so I was in a really good mood when I was done - and I also met the teacher on the first part of the OT course, so we had a little chat, which was really nice! :)
Thursday was actually sort of slow, as I didn't even have to get to Uni!! I did find out that my Mum would come for a short visit over the weekend, which was such a happy surprise!!! We have been talking about her coming here for a while, but it hasn't really been anything decided and she's been really busy and tired, and I've been really busy and tired. Now she found out that a co-worker and her husband was going to Helsingborg for the weekend, and my Mum could go with them, arriving on Friday night and leaving again Sunday afternoon!
I was really happy to hear that, and tried to get the apartment decent looking during Thursday (things like cleaning and such had been neglected earlier in the week, for obvious reasons!), but I was SO tired, I didn't get as much done as I had planned!
Friday was extremely intense!!!!
I was up at about 5 a.m. and started cleaning ... started doing laundry at 6 and was finished with everything in the apartment around 11. Took a shower and headed for Lund at 12, and had the final 'lecture' at 1. This was basically a summary discussion of the course, at first there was a general discussion and after that Elisabet and I had some SI evaluations to hand out, and the teacher would hand out the general evaluations as well.
We had a really good and constructive discussion regarding the course, the literature etc. when suddenly there was a knock on the door, and our SI-supervisor was there, asking if she could see me for a minute.
It felt a bit silly to just walk out (especially since the tables were arranged in a way that made me walk around the entire room to get out!), but when I got out it turned out that the evaluations we had been given to hand out to the students were 'out-of-date', new ones had just come, so I got them instead.
When I came back into the room, it was completely silent, which felt really strange. And suddenly, when I'm in front of the entire class, the teacher says: "Well, Jessica, now you have to tell us all about what it was like on the ceremony on Tuesday!"
And I more or less wished I could have fell through the floor ... I am genuinely and extremely grateful to have been given this, but I DO NOT like to stand in the centre of attention like that. I think I mostly stuttered something, I knew that some of the students knew I had been given it but not all of them ... and once I'd said something, probably completely incoherent, I got an applause from the entire class! *embarrassed again*
We handed out the evaluations and at 6 p.m. the teacher had a little party at her place for all the students, and the students on another OT course, as well as some other OT-people (both OT post-graduate students - one of them is the one teaching the first half of the OT course - and the OT professor) - and she asked me and Elisabet to help her out fixing food and such!
She had to pick up her children from school first, so Elisabet and I ended up in the library for a while, before meeting the OT teacher and her kids! :)
It was really nice to be able to help her out a little, she's a great lady and such a role model for I think most of the students she comes in contact with - and she's always been fantastic to deal with when it comes to SI, she's really interested and tries to help out as much as she can - and I think it's great to be able to do something outside the Department as well.
We ended up chopping and mixing and such for a few hours before the others showed up - and we had a great time. I really totally and completely feel like I have found my place here, and every time something like this happens, I feel it even more!
With the background I have, it's just beyond description to feel like I fit in so perfectly here ... I feel safe and secure and comfortable, even in situations that before would be extremely anxious, and I feel like people around me like me! Getting that kind of continual acknowledgement, constantly verifying that I do fit in and that people do like me - it's just such an AMAZING feeling!!
I was going to pick up my Mum in Helsingborg, so I had checked and had to leave the party about 20 to 8, in order to get to the train station in Lund and from there to Helsingborg. And that's another thing that is so fantastic about being where I am. Yes, I admit, I would have liked to stay longer, we had a great time, there were funny and interesting conversations, and while I'm not a social butterfly, I am NOT completely quite and tries to be invisible! But I feel SO comfortable in this situation, and so sure of myself and the fact that I will experience this again, that it is okay to leave a little early.
I am a little upset, because when I was getting myself ready a lot of others were starting to prepare to leave as well, and I felt the good-bye to the hostess became very quite and short ... but I'll be seeing her again next week, so I hope I can say a proper thank you then.
Just as I was leaving it turned out two other students had to get to trains/buses at the railway station, and one of the postgraduate students where going that way in her car, so I got a lift as well! :) Really kind!
When I got to the station my Mum called, she had already arrived in Helsingborg, but had to wait for me there ... but I don't think I've ever been so impatient during the train ride before! :) I just wanted to get there QUICK - and meeting my Mum was just FANTASTIC! It was quite a while since we saw each other, especially here! I was visiting my families when the bathroom renovation was going on, but didn't get that much time with my Mum - and during Christmas holidays she was sick a lot ... before that, yeah, she came down here for a quick visit just after Zorro had passed away, but that wasn't exactly a joyride ...
We took the bus home and spent some time talking - I didn't go to sleep until about 1.30 a.m. - so I'd been up and about and active and constantly doing things for about 21 hours! *yikes*
If you've managed to get this far in this extremely long blog entry, I admire you, and I will try to not be too detailed now. My Mum and I have enjoyed ourselves during the weekend, talked a lot, done a few outings and watched a few movies and mostly just enjoyed each other's company! :)
I went with her to Helsingborg this afternoon where she met her co-worker and her husband, and I just now heard she'd gotten home safe and sound!
But SO much of it has been SO fantastic, and I can hardly believe it myself ...
I have a busy week ahead again, but I hope to have some kind of energy when I get home every afternoon to keep the blog up to date, so I don't have to make another really long entry next weekend! :)
And credit to those of you who have made it to the end of this entry! LOL!