Sunday, April 7, 2013

In a Nutshell

Yeah, I got rejected. Everywhere. It sucks. It's the worst. It's awful. It resulted in a few mopey weeks, a couple of days where I cried inconsolably, a couple days where I'm not sure I showered, and a few days where I got up, then went right back to bed. And now, I'm on track to try it all again next year. Yaaaaay (sense the meek tone of defeated encouragement).

First step: GRE. Again. To be competitive, I need to place in the 99th percentile for Verbal, and the 100th percentile for writing (you read that right: Mother F'in 99th percentile! I have to be smarter than 99 percent of the people who take the damn test; and write better than 100 percent of them). No sweat, right? Don't worry, I only have to do better than 65% of them on math. Shockingly, reading comp is proving to be the biggest challenge to this goal, followed narrowly by (not surprisingly) math. Ugh, math. What else is there to say about math, other than ugh?

In other news, there's news regarding Collin and his doctor's appointments, which I'm sure you're all abreast of, by this point. Suffice it to say, we are learning to navigate the wacky world that is mental health, and we are learning to be advocates for our child. We are learning to come armed to every appointment, not only with questions, but with the right questions, because we've done our homework. This is a big, scary thing to jump into, but it'll all work out, in the end. And, we're learning that they could tell us that Collin has an extra brain, or will develop a third eye, it wouldn't make a difference in the world; hearing that your kid needs more, is more and wants more, or is "special," (or any other way someone wants to describe it), seemed to only make me want to protect him, mama-bear style.

Oh, and tattoos hurt. Not that this would come as a shock to the general population, but just as point of interest, they really do. And, since I withstood the pain for two hours, on what is noted to be the most painful spot on the body, for nearly two hours, I currently hold the crown for family badass, in our house. No, it's not visible. Yes, it's big. No, I didn't cry, whimper or move (thankfully! It would've ruined it!). Yes, it looks great, but it's still healing, so pictures look awful. It's peeling, scabbing, swollen  and flaky in some spots.

And no, this wasn't a spur of the moment decision. I'd been telling Bryon I wanted this for years now, and we decided it would be a perfect graduation present. That's right, graduation present (remember that event, almost a year ago?). I knew what I wanted, sketched out an idea, and gathered information. I spent a lot of time researching artists, studios and reviews in the area to find someone who would not only do a great job in general, but a great job on the style and image that I wanted. Some artists are really good at cartoons, some are really good at flags, etc. I had an idea of what I was looking for. Then, I met with the artist to ask him if he could draw something I wanted. Since he was such a great artist, and so sought after, I had to wait six months (six months!!) for an appointment. Alas, I finally got it done this week. So, there was plenty of time to back out (and forfeit the deposit, of course!).

Anyway, it's done. Collin loves it, despite telling me for the past six months that he'd hate it. I love it. Bryon loves it. Now, it's just a matter of time, waiting for it to stop hurting. It feels like a sunburn that someone just scratched, and where it crosses my ribcage, it feels like someone punched me. It's been a few days, and it gets progressively better each day, but I'm impatient for it to heal. Overall, I've been pleased with the process, despite being really nervous to walk into a tattoo shop (I mean, seriously--I often don't like getting my hair cut because I don't feel like I "fit into" a salon; I couldn't imagine fitting into a tattoo shop!), and ask for someone to jab me with a vibrating needle for hours on end.

The "procedure" was as quick as can be expected for the area being covered, and because I chose such a consummate professional, I think it went even faster. It took about two hours and it's about 8 inches long, by about 2 inches wide. There is lettering and it's full color. The outline and lettering were the most painful, but after that, he could use a numbing agent on many spots, which made it almost painless for many areas. Note that I said "almost" painless. When there was no numbing agent, it hurt like hell and I'm glad it was done when it was, because I was reaching my pain threshold. At this point, it looks to be healing nicely, but I may have to go back and get one small area touched up; it's difficult to tell if the ink needs to be corrected, or if it's just blood at the surface of my skin that is marring the color that's there.

Like I said, it's not healed, so there is some light scabbing, peeling and discoloration that makes it look not so great. In my imagination, you walked out of the shop and the area is red, but it looks "normal" the next day. Not so much: it looks and feels like shit. For the first day, it actually felt like someone had taped a cardboard cutout of the design to my skin because it was so crusty and hard. It was amazing to me that the whole thing just didn't peel of like a fake tattoo. It's a little unnerving that each time I wash it now (2-4x a day), itty bitty flecks of skin and scab fall off, and they are brightly colored bits of skin, tinted with ink. It's a strange feeling to see your scabs suddenly dyed blue white. Crazy.

I guess you'll just have to be patient if you want to see what it looks like. Or, maybe not. Maybe it'll be my little secret.

Anyway, that's all the news there is to print for us lately.