Thursday, January 20, 2011

Encouraging signs, and a few more goals.

Boyfriend was told by the doctor to return immediately to the emergency department should he experience any chest pains, and on Tuesday, we were back in the hospital emergency ward.  After a new chest x-ray had been taken we received some good news, however.  Where before there had been 5cm of distance between the lung and the wall of the chest-cavity, the gap had narrowed by several centimetres, meaning that the problem seemed to be resolving itself, slowly but surely.  Knowing that an operating room moves further out of the picture with this news is a huge relief.  The doctor explained to us that sometimes the pain felt from the lung healing itself is quite similar to the pain experienced when the pneumothorax occurs, (but since the pain could always be the result of the one or the other, it's always better to be safe than sorry, so we did the right thing in coming in to have it checked out.)

In other areas of life, I've firmed up a few more of my goals:

--Make the maximum allowable contribution into my Tax Free Savings Account.  For non-Canadians, we are allowed to have a special account that is tax-free.  The money is completely accessible at all times without penalty, but everything that is kept in there, (along with the investment income it earns,) is not taxed.  There is a maximum allowable contribution every year, and what isn't contributed in one year can be carried forward. It's not really a retirement savings product, but it is an attractive complimentary savings-option to Canadians who aren't sure they want all of their savings locked away in a state of lesser liquidity.  I think that making the maximum contribution is the very least I can do for my financial health.

--MOAR CREDENTIALZ PLEEZ?  I'm putting together the dossier to have my previous studies assessed and evaluated for equivalency here in Belgium.  A few programs here have caught my interest enough to warrant my (possibly) willingly placing myself (ugh) back into a red-tape atmosphere.  So I'll cross my fingers and look to the heavens and hope that the Kingdom of Belgium deigns to see some value in my post-secondary art-studies, (while I suspect that they very well may not.)  If I'm worthy, and my French is deemed up to snuff, I might be able to enroll in a Belgian school.  In any case, this year should also see me doing some distance-learning, so I'm pretty sure this goal is a lock.

--Win Something.  This might sound a little odd, but I rarely engage my competitive side.  As a child, I was pretty competitive, and though this garnered awards in both academic and athletic circles, as I've matured I've realized that my competitive nature could be destructive, (I'm far too good at putting too much pressure on myself.)  But... It's been awhile since I've 'thrown my hat in the ring', and I do like a little official validation now and then.  So I've decided to try and win something.  I don't know what yet, but I'm looking around.  If any of YOU have an idea of a competition I could channel my energies into, all competitions, (both the serious and the silly,) will be considered so long as you feel I have a hope in hell of winning, or at least of having a hilarious time trying.  I've got the Eye of the Tiger, and my trophy case in Belgium is empty.  Rrrrr.

(Actually, I don't have a trophy case.  My awards have always lived in a box in the back of the closet.)


Sandra said...

I've been reading for awhile now, but it's my first comment. (Hi! I like your blog!) Does it have to be a competition, or are challenges welcome too?

Jessica said...

Hi Sandra! Thanks for stepping out of the shadows, and thank you not just for the kind words but also for the awesome idea!

As of now, I'm open to both competitions and challenges. Bring 'em on!

Anonymous said...

If your already trying to improve your blog, why not try to get a web-award? I know that'd motivate me.

Jessica said...

Anon, it's a nice idea, but I don't know the first thing about web awards, other than the Bloggies and I certainly don't see myself as having a blog of that sort of calibre. I guess I could look around though and see if there's a "minor leagues" for bloggers.

Laura and Ben said...

Along with everyone else, I like you goal to win a competition. So much more interesting than the usual ones.

Sadly, I don't have any useful ideas for competitions to enter. But, y'know, good luck!

Jessica said...

Thanks! I do have all year to try and win something, so I figure even if I don't find it right away, or even if I lose several times while trying to win something, it'll get me out there looking at doing things I might not normally do :)

Laura said...

Why not a photography contest? Some of your close-up shots are really interesting and it seems there are a ton of online photo-contests.