Archive for May, 2015

My Journey with weight

May 21, 2015

I have never been obese. It’s just been a steady gain since I hit my 40s. Now that I’ve begin my 60s, I’ve finally made a turnaround — toward health.

It’s not mostly about weight, really, it’s about health. So this is a good beginning. I am eating lighter, focus on healthy salads, have sworn OFF fast food drive-ins! I drink more water, have meat and veggies at night, eat nuts fruit and yogurt when I am hungry for a snack, and have started to exercise.

Now that I’m 61, I find that I cannot walk. My knees have failed me. In my 40s, I started running regularly. Got up to my goal of running 2 miles without stopping, and quit. Now, 20 years later, especially my left knee can just go *out* at any point, without doing anything strenuous. This has happened twice. The first time, doctors didn’t believe I hadn’t fallen or done anything strenuous. I said, no, I was just walking. So, what do you do when you can’t walk??

I’ve started stretching, leg lifts, AND yoga. I can hardly do anything right now. But that is also not important. The important thing is to DO, regularly, consistently, religiously. So that’s what I am doing, and I actually work up a sweat.

Three yrs ago I had a complete hysterectomy. It was very freeing, best thing I ever did. Doctor’s office called a few weeks ago and said a few years back, I had an irregular pap test and could I schedule another one? I asked, “Do you think I’m going to get ovarian cancer?” It was pretty funny.

However, now, 3 years later, I feel that my insides have shifted, on their own, towards the front, and I have lost my waistline. This is very disconcerting, and a new thing, hence the exercise to work on my abs, and we shall see.

I am also going to start walking, again, very gently, and see if my knee pops out again. If it does, then I know, I really can no longer walk. In any case, it’s not going to be fast walking. I will be happy if I can walk a mile, slowly.

This is a beginning chronicle of my journey with weight, just so I can check back in and see how it went. I won’t post weight here, but will post any weight loss. So far, nothing. 🙂


I want to tell you

May 21, 2015

I want to tell you

I want to tell you that you are loved,

I want to tell you to love yourself,

Whatever happened was not your fault,

But the fault of life itself.

Things happen.

You make plans,

Life gets in the way.

This does not mean

That you stop caring,

Or trusting, or connecting,

Or giving, or loving.

But you cannot love

In this condition,

Because your anger fills the room,

And you are afraid to really connect,


You did that once,

You gave it all,

Never looking in the rear view mirror,

Take a second look,

There are many lives

That are better for your being there,

But you cannot see through all the pain,

— the moat around your castle,

You are loved, right now,

In this very moment,

And there is one

To whom you are the world.

Your healing begins

When you see yourself

As your friends see you tonight,

A person of worth,

A person of caring,

A person loved in his own right,

One whose humor lightens their day,

One whose hands take THEIR pain away,

A bit at a time,

As much as you are able,

Because that is what you are trained to do,

It is you

Who are valued,

As a person, a friend,

As a nurse at a bedside,

And a daddy for life,

Make a turn

toward healing yourself,

Be a friend to yourself this night.

             — cfblack   05-18-2015

Jobs I have held

May 13, 2015

Roller rink hat check girl, checked coats, handed out skates, on roller skates, age 15 on 69th St., near Germantown, PA.

Mister Donut

Panky’s restaurant, worked a day and got fired

Ponderosa Steakhouse

Student help at Ball State University library

King’s Food Host

Waffle House

Purdue Libraries clerk, various levels

Purdue Libraries periodicals clerk and binding clerk – 15 years

Stay-at-home mom, 11 years

Adjunct, Ivy Tech Community College of Indiana

Adjunct, IUPUI

Student graduate student instructor, Purdue University

Part-time CVS cashier & clerk

Visiting full-time instructor, IPFW, 1 year

Adjunct, Butler University

Adjunct, Piedmont Technical College, online + in-person

Adjunct, Salem International University, online instructor

Assistant Professor of Sociology, Newberry College

+  online asst. professor, Newberry College

Associate Professor of Criminal Justice, Morris College


May 10, 2015

I have an A.D.D. brain. Not the same as ADHD. Sometimes they go together but not in my case.

This is a controversial and sometimes debated subject, as to whether or not it is a chemical or physical “brain difference”. But I can tell you it exists. Here are some things I’ve learned:

  • I park my car in a similar spot in every parking lot. When I go to ALDIs, I know it will be in one certain row. This is because I tend to forget where I parked it, especially if my thoughts were focused on some issue as I parked & went into the store.
  • Being at a noisy party will drive me insane. Sitting in a bar having a conversation w/ the person next to me while loud music is blaring is impossible for me. This is because all the noises come at me all at once and there is no way to “tune out” any of it. I can listen to the music, but don’t talk to me.
  • Chairperson at a meeting is not the job for me. Looking at an agenda with 20 items on it and trying to pick & choose which are the most important to go over at this particular meeting is, well, my worst nightmare, especially when there are people waiting for me to make a decision. It ALL feels important to me!
  • Everything has its place, such as my keys in my purse or my debit card in the one slot where it belongs. If I forget this, they could be anywhere. If I make an exception even one time, the game is lost. I have no clue where I put it. I have lost at least 3-4 debit cards that I set on the back of the car while pumping gas and DROVE AWAY with it still there. One time my husband & I went back to the car wash we just went through (after pumping gas) & found it—  wet.

That being said, What am I good at? I am good at assessing “the whole picture” of a situation. I get a sense of what is going on in a room…….. and I’m usually right. My intuition is keen and I’ve learned to trust it. I can see the forest, sometimes not the trees.

How this comes across in teaching: I sometimes appear scatter-brained. But in reality, I know exactly where I’m going and where I’m taking the class in this discussion. I sit and ponder over each student & get a sense of who they are, why they are acting the way they are, and what they need. But if 5 students want to see my immediately after class, I can’t think.

I need space. I need not to be rushed or pushed. One on one, I am excellent. With qualitative research, I am excellent. I know where to take an interview, and I can analyze a ton of information and connect all the dots. Because everything is connected, in my brain. I get a general sense of what they meant when they said _________. I see the whole group and what they have in common, & where they differ. Leading a focus group discussion would not be the easiest thing for me. Taking notes I am fine; and analyzing all their comments afterward, seeing the links and patterns, is where I would excel.

Mother’s Day

May 8, 2015

Here it comes again, that day

when I never knew what to buy,

because nothing was ever

the right gift,

no matter how I tried,

I stood in front of all the cards,

picked them up one by one,

set them down again,

because the verses were never us,

They never expressed my feelings,

never said it my own way,

and even now………

I just don’t know what to say.

I would be remiss

to not thank you

for the gift of life you gave,

but in the end,

I do believe

the debt was paid.

It’s not that I am bitter,

but I just cannot relate

to the teary-eyed messages

all over Facebook, on this day,

In the end,

I am happy,

for the times that were the best,

In the end,

I saw your strength,

and acceptance,

I have no regrets,

because life is what we make it,

but I tire of this day

and this tradition.

cfblack 05-09-2015


May 1, 2015

I embrace my mediocrity.

We can’t all be superhuman teachers

who fly around the room to get students’ attention,

have exciting assignments that move like a video,

and teach you nuclear physics.

I do the best I can

with creative power points,

a few interactive games,

and questions.

This is not Dead Poet’s Society.

I am not Robin Williams,

I will not stand on chairs,

reciting Shakespeare,

inspire you to write a masterpiece.

But I know my field,

challenge you to think outside the box,

and I give you my entire heart.

Put that in your student evaluation.