Sunday, August 26, 2012

Failure, Birthdays, and Sadness

It's been a bit of a rough weekend. I drove to Charlotte yesterday morning to take the Certified Associate in Project Management exam (CAPM) from the Project Management Institute. It's not a requirement for my job, but since it's part of what I'm doing, having the formal recognition of those skills would be nice. It's also an introduction to the larger Project Management Professional (PMP) certification, which I would be eligible for with about another 1000 hours of project experience.

I first took the exam last October, shortly after finishing my MBA program (and the project management elective within that). I failed - a complete shock to me, I was deficient in half of the 12 knowledge areas. I put it aside as I had my WLS coming up in November, and I finally just now got around to studying again to retake the exam. You have a total of three chances to pass the exam in the year after which you first register.

Well, I failed again. I was somewhat surprised, in that the practice tests I was taking were of passing marks - not fantastic, but passing. This time I failed five of the knowledge areas. I don't do failure well, and that I had to drive home nearly 2 hours after doing so didn't improve my mood at all.

Part of the issue, I think, is not so much the hows of project management, but the PMI terminology. Do they call this activity "estimate costs" or "estimate budget" ? Both answers might be on a question, but only one is correct.

I only have until September 12 to retake the exam if I choose to do so (for another $150) without having to pay another registration fee to the PMI. So now I need to quickly decide if I just need to make a mass of flash cards and have at it, or to give up on it. I know the fees previously paid are a sunk cost, but it really irks me to think of spending that much without any results. But I'd be even more pissed if I take it a third time and fail again.

I just don't know what to do quite yet.

Today was also a difficult day, in that it is Baby J's 3rd birthday. The realization that she's been gone longer than she was here now has been tough (she was 15 months old when she was moved). I can only imagine how cute she is now, her smile and laugh are still in such sharp focus. The day brings not the wracking, sobbing pain of the early times, but still a deep, heavy, melancholic sadness. Part of me still wants to write that book, but the other part still hurts so bad when I think of the things that went on, that I'm not sure I should put myself through reliving  it all mentally.

I know that the family that (most likely) ended up adopting her live on the other side of town. It is unlikely that we would run into each other at the grocery store - but the Mall, or Home Depot or some other places would still be possible. I can't help myself from scanning the crowds or looking closer when I see a dark, curly haired toddler. The Man says he watches the customers at his store too - though it would not be a logical place for that family to shop based on where they live. I don't think either of us will ever get over it. Whether we'll have a human (rather than feline) family of our own remains to be seen - I'm trying not to be too hopeful, to avoid additional pain, but I'm not completely ready to give up on the idea, and can only hope that my surgeon will allow me to make the reproductive endocrinologist (RE) consult after my 1 year follow-up appointment. I'm hoping to be at the bottom of their goal range by then, so the weight will have all come off.

For now, I work - I study in my new masters program (did I mention? Accepted at Georgia Southern's MS in Applied Economics program), and I try not to think too hard about it all.

I hate failure.

My Meals

  • 3/4 cup Kashi Go Lean Crunch! Honey Almond Flax
  • 1/3 cup whole milk
  • Dannon Light & Fit raspberry yogurt
  • Sargento Light String Cheese
  • 3 oz NY strip steak
  • 1/3 cup green beans
  • .5 tsp butter
  • salad of 1 cup lettuce, 1/4 cup tomatoes, 3 radishes, 1/2 oz pepitas, 1 tbsp Ken's buttermilk ranch dressing
Water - 40 oz

Daily Totals: 946 calories, 45.8g fat, 88.6g carbohydrates, 29.3g sugars, 54.6g protein

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