December 2014

by Sarah on December 19, 2014

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Oh December, how interesting you have been! A lot has been going on in my household. Jay and I were gearing up for the holidays the first weekend of December when we got word that my grandfather was rushed to the hospital with high blood pressure.

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Due to my parents hosting a house warming/ holiday party (oh my parents moved too!) my mom asked us to stop by the emergency room on our way up to Baltimore to get a read on the situation. Little did we know that the interaction with my grandfather would be his last conversation.

In the emergency room, my grandfather looked fairly good, he was showing signs of a stroke but was responsive enough to tell us that he didn’t like my mom’s (his daughters) new house. We also ended our conversation talking about travel and his favorite destination: Turkey! He looked tired and dozed off so we checked in with the doctor and nurse. We learned there was nothing we could really do right now and that he was in good hands until my mom stopped by that evening.

That evening and the next two days he continued a downward spiral and never regained consciousness. At 94, two days before his 73rd wedding anniversary, my grandfather, Opa, passed on. While sad, we all know that he has gone on to a better and happier place.

Once my family had said our goodbyes, Jay and I returned to NOVA. The one thing about death is once all the funeral is over and all the family goes home, you are still mourning but also struggling to return to normalcy.

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It seemed strange, but without being part of the real world for a good 5 days, I decided to join my girlfriends for the 12 Bars of Christmas (the motto: “I believe… I’ll have another beer”). I started with the idea of just one bar and then stayed for quite a few bars. While strange to be out celebrating with friends so close to a family death, it also felt very normalizing.

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My other adventure in December… golf! For work, I was asked to join a task force focusing on the millennial generation and golf. As a non-golfer, I have a very important task at hand: Learn the game of golf and reflect on how to get other non-golfers into the game. With a new set of starter clubs and 6 golf lessons, I am starting to feel like a golfer! I have also learned a lot which I plan to detail in a series of posts in the near future.

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Finally, work! This week I also had the opportunity to participate in my first professional conference since college. Overall it was a very positive experience where I not only learned a lot about the e-learning landscape but also made a few new friends along the way! The best part about participating in a technology conference is all the fun new gadgets. It is interesting (but also scary) how far technology has come. One of my favorite tools they used were beacons. Beacons track conference traffic through attendees smart phones. This conference used the system anonymously just tracking those who had the app and turned on their Bluetooth. Beacons can also be used to track individuals to record data like who you visit and CEUs. Pretty cool right?

Next month continues to be a little chaotic with work travel, friend visits and my first golf tournament! But as the year winds down I hope to refocus to this space as an outlet for all the fun and crazy things currently happening in my life. Stay Tuned!

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