Monday, December 22, 2008

Stress and itching

I’m itching to buggery. I don’t think this is helped by the fact that I’m wearing linen blend pants. It’s all my own fault really, I haven’t been moisturising properly. I always pay if I don’t keep that up. I have really dry skin that needs a good moisturisation to keep my body from completely itching from head to foot. It’s worse when I’m stressed, and when I’m busy.
At the moment, I have a lot to be stressed about. My thesis, while it continues along and seems to be proceeding okay, needs to be finished by a certain date so I can make that move to Sweden. I have a job lined up, yay!, starting on the 1st of March. I need my thesis to be completed, signed off on, printed and submitted before we leave, hopefully in the last week of February. This, in and of itself, is pretty stressful. But you add to the top of that, we’re moving in a week. We’ve got to be out of the current house by the end of the year. We’re having our final inspection on the 30th (wish us luck) and we need to pack everything up and move out. We’re moving in with my best friend of some 26 or so years, NB. She’s been my friend since I was two years old. We went to the same primary school and then separated to go to different high schools, but remained friends. We hardly ever see each other anymore, but the bonds of best friendhood have been maintained. So, she has graciously offered the boy and myself a place to stay between leaving this house and moving OS. So it’s back to share house living for a little while for us. We visited the house last night, on the walk back from the parentals. So the boy has now seen his new house for the first time. I think we’ll settle in well there, though it apparently gets hot in our bedroom, which for me is always known as Natalie’s room, after NB’s older sister. We’ll see how bad the heat is and if necessary sleep a few nights at the parentals, in their newly installed ‘evaporative cooling’ house.
In any case, everything we own has to be packed up and moved, either with us to the new house, clothes and DVDs I’d say, or put into storage at my parents house, or sold. I’m bringing my gardening endeavours with me, which continue to impress me with their proliferative nature (can you tell I’ve been writing about proliferation of cells etc in my thesis recently?).
Oh yeah, so onto the third thing that is stressing me, though perhaps to a lesser extent. We’re moving to Sweden! In about 2 months! And I have to organise a visa that has the right name on it, which I think should be my married name, though I intend to work under my maiden name for publication purposes etc. I still am waiting for my new passport to be sent to me, I hope it arrives before we move. We need to try and find somewhere to live in our new city. This is apparently going to be really difficult as the Swedish system of flat rental is interesting and complicated and the city we’re moving to, Gothenburg, is really tight, rentally speaking, at the moment. But I’m sure something will work out, it’s going to have to. We just have so much to organise, in particular what to take with us, flights to get us there, and all sorts of things to do with paperwork and the like. I’m trying not to stress about it, but it’s hard. I like to be organised and know what I’m doing.
The fourth and final thing that has been stressing me, and last week was the catalyst for a very shit day, is that my grandfather has been diagnosed with bowel cancer. He’s been having difficulties with that end of his food tube for a while. It was going to be ‘fixed’ last week and when they went in, they found cancer. He’s starting radiation therapy next week and has been told that it’s treatable. But he’s yet to see an oncologist, so I wonder a little about that. We’ll have to wait and see.
I can understand the process of cancer formation, and that, as you get older, it’s almost one of life’s inevitablities. But I want my grandfather to be well, to not be suffering with pain (as he is at the moment) and to continue to have a happy existence with my grandmother and their lovely dog, Monty. But there’s not much I can do about that. So I will have to wait, hope for the best and hope that he uses the pain medication properly so he doesn’t have to suffer pain and discomfort. It will be good to see him, and Oma, on Wednesday, for our traditional German Xmas. This year it’s at my parent’s house.

So, it’s been a stressful couple of weeks for me. I’m hopeful that, with the move over, we can relax a bit more and get back on an even keel. The boy has been delightful in helping me maintain my sanity and I cannot explain how much that means. He’s just delightful.

Back to the salt mines, ie my thesis writing. I wish that writing it was as easy and flowy as writing this blog post (that has been composed in the basement of the biomedical library at Melbourne Uni while on a mental break from working), but alas, no such thing is true.


Princess Kate said...

Know that I feel your pain darling... I feel your pain. Like I said the other day, Excel spreadsheets help a lot - because you can cut and paste items to do into the right order. e.g. 1. get passport 2. ring passport people and scream abuse when they get your name wrong 3. collect corrected passport 4. send off for visa 5. bang head against wall repeatedly... etc.

Sorry to hear about your grandfather *hugs* They may not be shitting you about the treatable thing - my uncle had bowel cancer treated a couple of years ago, and he is in his mid sixties; and my dad has had precancerous polyps on his bowel treated successfully. So has my aunt (I am not genetically related to her). So keep your fingers crossed, but I think you can believe them for the moment.

When it all gets too much just remember that it will be worth it once you are on the plane to Sweden. That worked for me.

Postgraduate Associate said...

Did you get in touch with Adele about Swedish apartments? Umea University sorted everything out for her and Rhys. They just had to turn up. Maybe Gothenburg is different?