Category: Cassandra's Earlier Blogs
I walked home from work today during a gorgeous, sunny southern California morning. Lovely weather. It was a five mile walk, but flat the whole way, so it was easy. Even so, by the time I got to the service center, I was exhausted. The place I'd left my car doesn't do tires (who knew?), so they filled my tire with air and sent me up the street to a good tire shop.
They patched it, and as I was about to pay, the man at the counter said that I ought to get 2 new tires 'soon'. How soon? He said it would all depend, and he didn't feel comfortable saying 'a month' or 'two months' or whatever. I said that they could go ahead and change them out now. So I waited about 40 minutes for the new tires, paid, and went home to get ready for bed. I was so exhausted from my walk, the stress of the drive on Sunday, and the lack of sleep Sunday. Got home, showered, set my alarms for 10:30 pm, and climbed in bed at 1pm.
For the first time in days, I slept like a log - didn't wake up, wasn't restless, nothing. Even had a dream that I remembered, which is a first since I started working nights. When I set my alarm for 9.5 hours of sleep, I didn't think I'd really sleep that long - I figured I'd wake up around 9-9:30. Nope. Even with sleeping for as long as I did, I am still just wiped out, and I think I could have slept another three or four hours.
Anne asked me if I could help her with an errand tomorrow, and I told her that I couldn't because I have to sleep. I could tell she was disappointed, but I have to be very protective of my sleep hours, and I also don't think that she 'gets it' when it comes to working nights and getting enough sleep. I don't know who does get it, come to think of it.... I know that I have dinner plans for tomorrow evening, and that I need to be reasonably well-rested, which means that in order for me to get 8 hours of sleep, I have to be asleep by 10am.
At some point this week or next I need to put my car back into the shop and get some transmission and other work done - it'll be so nice to have it all fixed!
I read something last night that indicated that lack of sleep can mean a 40 % increase in cortisol levels, and that cortisol levels are associated with increased fat around the middle. Great. So now it's even HARDER for me to lose these last 10 pounds. I'm working on it, though, diligently. Easter weekend I may have eaten a few things I shouldn't've, but all in all, I did pretty well. And I'm down three pounds from where I was this time last week. And the study on cortisol reinforces everything else I've read about working nights and not getting enough sleep - basically, I need to take really good care of myself for as long as I'm doing this....
Tonight when I got up I made some eggs with chopped onion and soy cream cheese - yummy. I would have liked to have thrown some spinach in there, too, but I didn't have any. Realized I haven't been to the grocery store in a week and a half, so I'm out of several things. That will be remedied, but probably not until the weekend. I've got fish and salad and a few other things, so I'll make do. I still have a lamb chop for lunch tonight, and salad. Almonds and pumpkin seeds for snacks. Good stuff.
Nothing like a middle of the night, spur of the moment interview for a position three steps above one's current position to wake one up!
Yes, I got pulled into an interview at 3:45 am for the Team Lead position. I think it went pretty well, except that it was so cold in there that I was literally trying not to shake! I hope they don't think that I was shaking due to nerves - I didn't have time to be nervous!
They asked some tough questions, too. I hope I was coherent enough to have responded appropriately. I know I did okay, but I don't feel as good about it as I would have if I'd interviewed at midnight and been more awake....
I should know by next Monday or Tuesday. The nice thing about this is that I really don't care one way or the other if I get it. Yes, it would be terrific to have a bit of a challenge and certainly to have more income coming in, but it is all a means to another end anyway....
When I got home this morning, I saw that my mom had called - both at home and on my cell phone, so I called her back. She's visiting my brother and sister-in-law and my grandfather in Texas this week to celebrate both her birthday and my grandfather's birthday. Apparently it hasn't been the best week for her, and she needed to vent, so I let her. Did manage to get off the phone when I needed to get to bed, which considering my mother is not an easy task. She isn't very good at understanding or respecting people's boundaries, and one way in which she does this is that even if you say "I have to get off the phone now", she'll just ignore the comment and keep talking. I managed to get off the phone about 30 seconds after I said that, so I think she might be learning.... of course, having hung up on her in the past when she hassn't listened might have something to do with that!
Went to sleep after I talked with Mom, and slept really well, but only for about 5 hours. Woke up and tossed and turned for a while, then fell asleep again. When my alarm went off at 6pm, I did NOT want to get out of bed and go to acting class. But I heard a great phrase yesterday that I really like, and I put it on a post-it in my wallet: "The enemy of what we truly want is what we truly want NOW." I truly want to be a full-time working actor. What I wanted THEN was to sleep until I could sleep no more. I got up. Then I tripped over my blanket, scared two cats, cursed my alarm clock and incoherently did what I needed to do to get ready for class. Grabbed a protein powder smoothie with chocolate soymilk for breakfast, grabbed my acting notebook and purse, and headed out the door.
As much as I did NOT want to be in class, I ended up being glad that I went. I worked with my scene partner from last week again tonight, and tonight's scene went much more smoothly than last week's. I don't know if we felt more comfortable with each other, more comfortable with the material, or what, but last week's scene just didn't work very well for us. The pace was off, we didn't connect with each other, etc. This week we had a much better connection, and my coach even said that the relationship seemed intimate and real. We're supposed to memorize and bring back both scenes over the next couple of weeks to see how much more we can bring to them.
We did an improv exercise, too, and my improv skills seem to be increasing - I'm learning to get past the 'censor' in my brain that prevents me from saying things that might be too suggestive or out there - we're supposed to say whatever comes to mind FIRST, and usually I'm looking for a 'better' response. Didn't do that tonight, which was great! I said whatever came to mind, and my improv partner and I went with it. Then we did another improv exercise in which we all wrote down a character name, occupation, 'catch phrase', what the character is afraid of, what they lust after, and a couple other details. Then were each interviewed about the murder of an alien, and someone had to confess to the crime. It was hilarious, and I even managed to pull that one off pretty well, too, again, by saying whatever it was that came to mind first. I played a dentist named "Fred Croft" (Frederica) who was afraid of losing teeth, lusted after loud noises (like the dental drill!) and her catch phrase was "Pearly white teeth make the world go 'round". It was very fun, and some of my classmates are incredible in what they can come up with.
Class often runs late, which it did tonight, but I am making a point of leaving on time so that I can go home for a few minutes before I go to work. So I left right at 11pm, and went home and ate a lamb chop and some salad, prepared my lunch and snacks for work, and headed to the office.
I've got leftover shrimp and artichoke hearts for lunch today, and pumpkin seeds and almonds for snacks. Ginseng tea right now since I seem to have a little bit of a funny feeling in my throat.
Plans for Friday are the same - nap in the morning, babysit in the afternoon, date in the evening. Saturday is errand day and Mike and I will probably catch a movie or something. Easter Sunday Anne and I will go down to my old chapel in San Diego for services, have lunch down there somewhere, and head back home in the early afternoon. She actually kind of upset me earlier today because a few days ago I mentioned to her that I wanted to do something for Easter, but that all my friends are Jewish and I didn't have anyone to celebrate it with. She said that she was thinking about throwing me a small Easter egg hunt, but I nixed that and said that I'd rather she join me in going to my old chapel. She said "Okay, we'll go!" Then tonight she said that she 'accidentally' scheduled herself to do something for an elderly client's cat on Sunday, and what time would we be back? I told her that the earliest would probably be 3 pm, and it would likelly be at least 5pm if we did have lunch or anything after the service. She said she had to make another phone call and she'd call me back. I thought about how I would feel if she didn't go with me, and I felt sad, and realized that it was important to me for her to be with me on Easter. A few minutes later, she called back, and asked me how important it was to me for her to be with me. I'd already thought about the response, so I told her it was important. She said that she'd go, but I could also tell that she wasn't thrilled about going THIS Sunday. I felt kind of miffed since I have been there for her on EVERY holiday, special occasion, difficult moment, etc., and then the one time I ask her to join me for a holiday when I can't be with my family, she wants to back out. And she has done some things that have REALLY tested our friendship and my loyalty, and I've always been there for her.
Now, don't get me wrong - she's been there for me, too, including loaning me her car for 6 weeks when I broke my leg and couldn't drive my standard transmission car, helping me make it to the bathroom when I was violently ill once last year, let me vent about whatever or whoever I need to vent about, etc. But she has always been able to count on me if I say I'm going to do something for her, and although I know that when it REALLY counts I know I can count on her, she's let me down a couple times, and for her to even QUESTION whether or not Easter was important to me hurt. So I have to decide how to talk with her about that and what, specifically, I will say. And I have to be careful about this - Mike says that as alike as Anne and I are (and we are TWINS in many ways), I am the stronger one of us in many, many ways. I've always suspected that was the case, but he confirmed it for me. Anyway, a delicate issue to handle, and I will discuss it with her tomorrow if we can manage a few minutes together.
Not only is there an issue to discuss with Anne, there's also one to discuss with Mike. The other day at work we learned that the night shift Team Lead is moving to days, and so the night shift Team Lead position is available. I was surprised to learn that an employee only has to have been on the project for a month to apply, and since I've been here for just a hair over 2 months, I told Mike Wednesday evening that I was thinking about applying for the position. While it certainly isn't in my long-term career goals, it would be higher pay, more responsibility, and would help me save more money more quickly so that I can QUIT having a full-time job sooner than expected. The hours would be a slight improvement over the midnight to 8:30 am shift, too, and would be from 7:00pm to 4am. Not a huge imporovement, but at least I'd be able to get to sleep by 5am and sleep a little bit while it is still DARK out!
Anyway, I'd mentioned this opportunity to Mike, and his only response was that if I took the position it would preclude us from being able to get together at all in the evenings during the week. At the time, I was puzzled, but couldn't figure out why. But yesterday figured out why: I realized that I got a negative 'don't do it' response from the man who says he 'doesn't want to get emotionally involved with someone because it might interfere with his acting career goals'. And yet here he is telling me not to go for it because it would interfere with HIS social life with me, and yet we're 'just friends'. So we'll be having a little discussion about THAT when I next see HIM....
And I did turn in the application to my Team Lead tonight. : )
Signing off now - have a good weekend, everyone!
I finally got some sleep today - left work, stopped at the Post Office to mail my 2000 IRS return, went to Trader Joe's to get some Gerolsteiner and a few other things (soymilk, almonds, pecans), and was still home by 9:30 am. Showered quickly, and was under the covers with 2 cats on the bed by 10am. Slept straight through until about 20 minutes before my alarm was supposed to go off at 6pm. I always knew that I needed my sleep and enjoyed sleeping, but it never had the paramount importance that it has taken on since I started this night job. Now I know just how much I need every day to function, how little I can get away with if I need to, and how much I long to sleep when I don't sleep enough!
I got up and made myself a soymilk smoothie with protein powder, harmonia deluxe, grapefruit seed extract, and Vitamin C in it. It was really good, and just the right breakfast for me. It feels really good to be eating the right way again - though I am still dreaming of that marble chiffon cake from last night's seder dinner! Mike came by at 6:30pm so we could go to a film in a film festival in Burbank. He'd really enjoyed a movie he saw there the other day, and was hoping that this one would be just as good. We headed out to the theaters, and Mike grabbed something to eat from the Greek place at the fast food court. I was fine since I'd just had my smoothie, and I had some almonds and water in my bag for a snack if I wanted them. We headed into the movie theater, and found our seats. First they showed a film short called "Tea Time" about a soldier on a battlefield who spies a man sitting off to the side of the battlefield sitting next to a teaset and a plate with a pastry on it. He makes his way to the table, steals the pastry, runs back to his bunker, and stuffs the pastry into his mouth. The man to the side of the battlefield takes out a small detonator, pushes the button, and the soldier explodes. Then the man sets out another pastry to wait for his next victim. Okay, in print it SEEMS really stupid, but it was a smartly done little 5 minute film, and was a charming little piece, even if not very believable.
The feature film was called "The Tesseract", and was a film that followed all the individuals involved in a drug transaction from each of their points of view. It was a little confusing to follow since it jumped back and forth in time, and neither Mike nor I was impressed with it. I rated it a 2 on a scale of one to 5. We both thought that it was poorly named, and not tremendously well executed, either. Some of the dialogue was over-the-top emotional, and some of it was just poorly written. I couldn't wait for it to be over!
Got home just before 10pm, and spent some time in the kitchen preparing my lunch and dinner for tonight/tomorrow morning. Put some peeled shrimp and artichoke hearts in a skillet with some mushroom broth and olive oil, some herbes de provence, and salt, and let that simmer for a few minutes. By the time it was done, I was ready for a real meal, so I ate some of it, and put the rest in a container to bring to work. Then I decided that I might want some lamb instead, so I cooked two lamb chops with some curry and salt and put together a salad. Packaged all that up, too, and placed it all in my lunch bag. Did a little bit of work on the computer, watched a little bit of TV, listened to my collague's band's CD (not bad, but not great, either) and changed clothes for work. So I'm all set for food for the day, and tomorrow all I do is sleep before my acting class tomorrow night, which is a very good thing. Didn't make it to the gym tonight - had to make food! Will do some spinning on Friday, though, and will get to the gym on Saturday, definitely.
Friday will be a busy day - Nap in the morning, babysit from 12-7pm, and a date at 8pm with the cute guy from Starbucks from a couple weeks ago. He seems to be a well-raised man - called me today to confirm AND asked me if I was a vegetarian or had any special dietary requirements, AND didn't presume I'd meet him someplace, but asked me where he could pick me up. This is good.
Today was another day that included not nearly enough sleep. I went to my tax guy this morning to do an amendment of my 2000 taxes, and I will be getting a tidy little refund. Yay! We'll do amendments for 2001 and 2002 in a couple of weeks, and I expect nice refunds for both of those years, too! Then I went to the grocery store (two of them, actually) to see if I could find a wheat-free dessert for Passover. Such an animal does exist, but the flourless chocolate cakes I found either 1) didn't SAY they were kosher, or 2) were about 5 times the size I needed to feed seven people (and 5 times the price, too!) Finally went to a local Jewish deli and asked what they had that would be a good dessert for Passover. Got a gorgeous marble chiffon cake covered in chocolate for the bargain basement price of $8.25. SOLD!!! It was more important that it be kosher than it be wheat-free. It was delicious, too.
Got home with my goodies, climbed in bed and tossed and turned for a while, then woke up at 2:30 pm after only 2 1/2 hours of sleep. Worse, I could NOT get back to sleep. My adrenals are shot and every time the air conditioner went into a different cycle I would jump, which made both cats (also on the bed) jump. I gave up around 4pm and started dressing for the seder dinner. Mike arrived, and we headed out towards Anne's grandmother's place.
Dinner itself was comedic - Anne's parents always bicker and banter (they've been divorced for about 30 years) and it's hilarious to watch them in action - a sitcom based on these two would be great entertainment. There are always lots of zingers flying across the table, and tonight was no exception. The added influence of Mike there was interesting, too, and he even took his fair share of zingers from Anne's father. It was fun.
Food-wise, not so great, though. Matzo ball soup, the chiffon cake, macaroons, Passover cookies, matzos, etc. I've got heartburn and am sucking down seltzer water like crazy right now. I ate SO much food, too. Gefilte fish, charoses (not sure if I am spelling that right), chicken, carrots, asparagus, krugel (? totally not sure of the spelling of that - potato dish), wine, strawberries. It was all yummy, and I'm also glad I didn't take any leftovers home with me - although I know Anne did, and I'm sure she would share if I wanted her to. Instead, I brought leftover turkey, shrimp, and greens for lunch, and I have pumpkin seeds and walnuts for snacks. I've got to get rid of this heartburn as quickly as possible, so I've already taken my Deflect and other supplements, and will continue to take them.
I'm supposed to work out with the trainer for the infomercial tomorrow at 3pm - I'm so tired right now, though, that I think that I will cancel for tomorrow and then go to the gym tomorrow evening instead. I just can't go another day without enough sleep. I'm pushing the envelope enough as it is. I did sleep another hour or so after I got home from the seder dinner, but it just isn't enough.