Wednesday, June 30, 2004

My Schedule:

1. Spanish 4 (Kraweic)
2. AP US History (Newmark)
3. AP Biology (Hames)
4. Adv. Math (Mahoney)
5. 20th Century Topics (Greenwalt)
6. AP Eng. III (Chalifoux)
This is subject to change, as I fear that all but my math class will be intensely reading-heavy, and I do not think that so much reading will be doable this year. Probably switch AP Eng for Adv. Eng, though Dr. Busonik thinks I should stay in AP. I really don't know what to do. I almost need to take Topics this year, because I'd like to take Psychology and AP Euro next year, and I don't think all three are good together, and highly unlikely on one schedule. Math obviously stays. Bio, I want to stay b/c I want to be a doctor and I've heard from a biology teacher that it's a pretty important course to take. APUSH---I don't know. Just always figured I'd take it. Spanish four seems the likely antecedent to Spanish 3, though I feel unready for the literature portion of the language I love so much. Maybe another year in Spanish III??? Yeah, I know that sounds bad, but .....oh I don't know. Advice and help in the chatterbox or by way of AIM is much appreciated. Seeing that it's past midnight, and I babysit from 10-4:45pm, and then work at the theatre (on opening day of Spiderman 2) from 5pm until 11pm or midnight, I should PROBABLY rest.

Sunday, June 27, 2004


Apparently, everyone has their schedule for next year, except for me. *tear* Did I like get kicked out of RCHS and not informed about it? Or did I just miss the memo that says "If your name is Lindsay W. then you will not be receiving your schedule. Oh well, sucks for you."? Oh well. This week has been a happy and sad week. I miss Chile, and in fact, I think they call this feeling "homesick," but . . .can I really be homesick for a country I only visited for 10 days? The truth is that the entire country grew on me in a way that I cannot even describe. It is full of breath-taking scenery, spectacular views, and unspeakable beauty in nature. It's when I want to use the line (from Lonestar's song) "brushed by the hand of God." I mean, I may be a little bit cookey(sp?) because I've never been out of the States before (except when I went to Toronto at age 8 months, but somehow I doubt that counts), and I think I was just so amazed that there exists something beyond the comfort, and borders of my home. The one effect Chile didn't have on me, that I think it might have had on other people is a sense of how impovershed the world truly is. You see people everywhere who barely have a roof, who haven't seen a doctor in their lives, and who are living off of whatever they can find. (I know what you're happens in America too, but you know what!?!?!? These people don't have an option. They can't pull themselves out of this state.) I know, I sound like some old-fangled, preachy person now, but I really realized how much I HAVE TO make a difference in the world. I have vowed not to spend any money, even if it means giving up having a car, and to go back next year. I have to figure out how to help these people. I also became more enraged with the US government while visiting Chile. Apparently, we helped the military coup of Chile overthrow a communist leader, whom everyone in Chile loved, who had stabilized the economy and government, and was doing great things for the country. And you know what!?!?! This man vowed not to leave his palace alive, and it is still unknown whether or not he killed hiimself or was murdered. And would you like to know what kind of government we allowed to be installed???? (I didn't think so, but I'm going to tell you anyway). They installed a military dictatorship, where the military police would cut off your hair if they decided it was too long, and do other insane things. I'm sorry, as unpatriotic as this may sound, but I have no desire to be associated with a country who takes part in any such actions. So there. I'm done ranting. Here's a good site of Chile photos, taken by Carolyn. It's not finished yet, just the beginning. (and there are plenty more stories to tell from work and from Chile.... just wait!) In spanish, peligro=caution/danger and gringos=tourists, especially of the US species!

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

Chile's Emergency Room!

As most of you know, I went to Chile for 10 days recently. I enjoyed ever second of my time there, and I can't wait to go back, which I hopefully can. The entire country is made up of a rich culture, a mix of complete hopelessness and despair and yet so much unspeakable and indescribable beauty. I will post about the things we did down there later, but I need to post about the most "exciting" part of the entire trip.

It's 10pm, and the hosteria (hotel) we are staying at is hosting a convention for a university in Santiago. (The hotel is located in the middle of nowhere, about twenty minutes from any sort of true civilization...) Anyway, the convention had scheduled some folk dancers to come and perform, so being the "gringos" that we are, we decided to impose and watch too! It was awesome. Then they were like, "Quieren bailar?" My entire group thought I should go, so I went up on the make-shift stage and began to dance the Cueco. It was so much fun, but it only lasted about 45 seconds. When I was finished, whether from exhaustion and stress during the trip, or breathlessness from the dance lesson or sheer excitement (or a combination), I began to have an asthma attack. Paola, one of the directors, along with an American from NY who was attending the convention, helped calm me down after about ten minutes, and I was able to return to my room, and finish packing for our departure the next evening. Carolyn and I are upstairs talking, and suddenly I feel the asthma beginning to act up again. Roberto, the other director, was on our hallway, and stuck his head in the door. "You ok?" I nodded, but he didn't believe me and remained in our room, to see if I could calm down. I couldn't. He called Paola and Mr. Slattery and they all crowded around me on the floor of our room. Paola was coaching me in breathing, and Mr. Slattery was holding my hand, while Roberto rubbed my back. For forty five minutes, I continued to breathe at a rate that I cannot even describe. As I found out later, I was also in the middle of my first panic attack, mostly from the fear of passing out and ceasing to breathe, and of being thousands of miles away from home. They finally called a cab to take us to the nearest hospital (approx. 20 min. away). Mr. Slattery, Paola, Roberto and I climbed into the taxi, and my hands and face had gone completely numb. Even my eyelids were so numb that I couldn't hold my eyes open. When we arrived at the emergency room, the doctors and paramedics spoke in rapid Spanish, not that I could focus on anything long enough to listen anyway. They took my blood pressure twice, for a reason I will never know. Then took my oxygen level with that little finger thing, and said that I would soon pass out because I wasn't getting enough oxygen. They then put an O2 mask on me, but unfortunately, the oxygen was coming in at such a rapid rate compared to what I had been breathing in for the last two hours, that I began choking on air. The doctor began to get frustrated because I couldn't calm down. So they gave me a shot of some kind of relaxant in the vein of my right arm, but not before I fought against it. Roberto finally held my arm down, while Mr Slattery let me squeeze the living daylights out of his hand. I was crying and gasping for air, and scared out of my mind, thousands of miles from home. (dude, I was in a third world country's hospital. Who knows what the heck they were putting into my blood stream!?) Then they switched the oxygen they were giving me to some type of steam, which freaked me out, and I panicked even further.
I settled down a few minutes later. I was okay, and then they came in and told us that there had been a car accident, and that they needed this room. I was moved to another room. Paola, Roberto and Mr. Slattery did their best to get me settled onto the stiff hospital bed in a room that was divided by a curtain. My first reaction, between quick gasps for air, "Don't I get more oxygen?" The answer was no. Weird, I thought, but whatever. I could only have one person with me in the room, so Mr. Slattery stayed with me. I was okay, and he was calming me down even more. Then he started joking with me about opening the curtain to see if the guy in the bed on the other side wanted to be my pololo (boyfriend). The goal was for the joke for me to relax. Instead, I began wheezing and coughing and gasping again. My entire body became tingly with numbness, from my head, ears and eyelids to my toes, and I regret to say I cried in front of Mr. Slattery because I was so terrified. I was in a friggin' third world country, and far away from home. My breathing became very irratic, and I panicked again, sending me into yet another serious panic attack. But there was a problem. All the doctors were too busy with the car accident, so for more than a half hour, Mr. Slattery and I tried to keep me from passing out and attempted to slow my breathing. Finally the doctor returned, and put another injection in the vein of my left arm, and gave me more of the steam stuff. I think I blacked out then because I don't remember anything until I woke up and saw Mr. Slattery and Paola talking. Exhausted, I put my head back down and went back to sleep. The next time I woke up, they told me the doctor had cleared me to go back to the hotel, but as I tried to climb off the hospital bed, I found I couldn't walk because I was too dizzy. Long story short, I was fine after a while. I had another panic attack on the plane from Santiago to Atlanta, but Mr. Slattery took care of me, and stayed with me so I wouldn't be too scared. I had a third and hopefully final panic attack last night at my house right after dinner. The paramedics came and calmed me down, but not before my body had gone numb. I've been to the doctor, and I am completely healthy, just apparently really anxious and stressed about something and therefore panicked, maybe from being far away from home, and then from being scared of passing out once I was home....who knows...