Some Life Lessons I learned from Working

Hello Everyone!

Hope you had a great last week! During the month of July, I am reminded that this month couple years ago, I became certified as a Histotechnologist

I had started working after college and had been given a few months to take the test. I was super nervous and anxious! I recall saying that I did not feel great and one of the pathologists had chuckled and said you are anxious about the test! I still went to the E.R. that was around the corner to be checked out and I was told everything was fine.

I took the test and missed it by a couple of points! I was so nervous, anxiety cost me a few points. I took the test again and the rest is history. This month, a few years later, I celebrate having been certified!😁

Here are some lessons I learned that have helped me and I hope that by sharing them, you would pick up a few things too!

  1. The grass is not always greener on the other side. I have family in Nigeria and I remember when my brother and I came to the U.S it was because of strikes at schools and at the work places. I know people who still work in Nigeria and the payment is late and very low. I am grateful to be able to work and the opportunity to earn money for what I do. Grow where you are planted

  2. Encourage others and be positive. If you have a colleague who does a great job, tell them. You might make their day! Just like a yawn is contagious- do you recall the commercial on TV about people yawning ? You at home starts to yawn too. Encouragement and being positive are contagious- share it

  3. Say Thank you

  4. Do not burn bridges- you would be surprised whom you might have to call for help or to give you that reference you might need when you leave one job for another

  5. Respect yourself and others. I recall how difficult it was to call my colleagues who were older than me by their first names. Coming from Nigeria, we were taught you call people older than you by their job titles or by Uncle/ Aunty (I think most countries colonized by the British do this 🤔-not sure). It took me a long time to call some of my older work colleagues by their first names. So, my American friends, do not take offense if some of your International colleagues take a while to call you by your first name.

  6. Nothing is permanent. I recall that to be certified one used to have to turn in blocks, slides and more. However, today everything is electronic and on the computer and the stains ordered are different too. Being Flexible keeps one learning new things and improves our resumes.

  7. Be Humble. I learned a lot by being humble. I learned from everyone. I learned about having a 401k, saving money and more.

And pray! God can make things possible when we ask Him 👍

You can find me on Instagram and on Twitter and email me at theizorapodcast@gmail.com. Next month, I am celebrating our wedding Anniversary. What would you want to hear about it?

Have a great week and I will catch you on the next episode.

God bless,

Ezanya

Doing Things Well & Excellently

This week, I had a conversation with a loved one that challenged my actions. I was reminded to do things excellently and by doing that it meant doing one thing at a time well.

Are you that person that starts something and rarely finish?

Do you have projects that never end? Are you that person who offers to bake, make a quilt, a scarf or jewelry for a gift and do not finish it? If so, keep listening and if not, share the podcast 😉

Do you often find yourself apologizing for not finishing what you started?

Guys, this is all ME!

What does this have to do with excellence?

Excellence according to the dictionary means the quality of being outstanding or extremely good. Starting things and not finishing it is not excellence. To me it is a collection of clutter and a spot for “sacred items” that I tell my husband not to move or touch. I tell myself, I will finish these things and end up not finishing them.

As a parent excellence is important because I am showing my kid it is important to do one thing at a time and do it well and then move on to something else.

To apply excellence to what I have been talking about the past couple of months- potty training- I had to buckle down to make sure my son got it right. The benefits of doing this is that my kid grows up to be the kid who is confident, when he is invited to stuff he will not be afraid or worried about kids teasing him for still wearing a diaper or pull up and so much more.

What else do I need to add to being excellent?

-The road to excellence is not easy. Potty training cost me many hours of sleep. There were moments, I would confess I told my kid; Dude, you are wearing a pull up, pee in your pull up! That was not being excellent, I had to make sure that when he said he wanted to go, I went with him. I did not complain or gripe or grumble but encourage him in this phase, even if it meant carrying him back to bed because he was tired 😄 As a parent, this was my role to help him.

-Every good thing takes time and practice. “Practice isn’t the thing you do once you are good. It is the thing you do that makes you good”- Malcolm Gladwell. As a histotechnologist, how did I get here, what does it take to be a histotechnologist? I did not wake up one morning and became one, I learnt from the best, from my mistakes and more. When I had to embed, I did not just throw a piece of tissue into the embedding mold! I had to take into account what the pathologist assistant (PA) had sectioned and I had to place it in a way that when it was sectioned, the pathologist would see what part of the tissue they were looking for.

-Excellence is also about keeping my word. It is not fun to keep apologizing- though there is nothing wrong with saying sorry. But think of it this way, your word is your bond! If you say you would do something, do it. The more I do it, the better I get at it.

I talked about my love or desire to sew. I go to Joann Fabric and I am in Fabric heaven. The more I sew, or complete the gifts I promised, the better I become and my next project is much improved.

Just like my baking of banana bread has improved from the first time I made it with my best friend (y’all it had tasted like soap and we threw it away) and now I can make it and be proud to offer my banana bread. I follow a recipe and can almost tell when the recipe is off.

At the end of this conversation with my loved one, I decided:

  1. I am going to finish that baby blanket that was supposed to have been done in December of 2018

  2. I am going to finish that baby quilt…. yes… that was supposed to have been done in August of 2014

  3. That goal of beginning to prep from couch to 5k and possibly doing a mini marathon, will be the next thing… My dears, keep me accountable here!

I need you to help me- if you have run before and have tips do share with me please. Find me on Instagram or Twitter and email me too at theizorapodcast@gmail.com

Are you one of the people I had mentioned earlier?

What will you do excellently? Let me know

Have a great week,

Always,

Ezanya

Mom Guilt/ Working Mom Guilt

Mom Guilt, that feeling of being inadequate as a mom, guilty and unable to enjoy this season of life

Hi Everyone, welcome to the podcast. My name is Ezanya and I am a mom, work full time and podcast.

I had started out thinking that I would call this episode: Firing doubts and becoming Captain Marvel if you are into Marvel Cinematic Universe or Wonder Woman if you are a DC comics gal.. but guys, these two heroines are single and have no kids (in the movies I have seen)

So with no offense to anyone, how about becoming Elastigirl? She had kids, curves, and was flexible. She also dealt with bad guys! Watch the movie Incredibles 1&2 if you want to know the character I am talking about!

This past month, I celebrated my sons’ birthday and I was thinking of how different it was from the previous year and the things I dealt with that surface on and off. Mom guilt was one of them. Some examples

I am going to bake my son’s birthday cake because I can, we will not eat out, I will cook everything my family eats, I will sew my son’s play clothes, I will braid my own hair, etc. I will do all of these goals even as I work full time. And when I do none of these I feel like a terrible mom because I did not achieve these goals.

Regarding my sons birthday cake, see the pics I attached.

My son was super excited about his cake, it did not matter to him what I concocted. I learnt a big lesson from the smiles I saw on his face when the cake was done. Regarding to not eating out, I am thankful we have food. My mom has worked all my life and I have never heard her complain, she was guilty for working, she had to work or we would starve.

How I deal with this:

  1. Pray! Yes, that is my answer to everything :) I try to find answers and peace with God especially when words fail me! I ask God to send me the right solution to my problem and He does. One of my favorite Bible verses is Philipians 4:6-7

  2. Join a group. I am in the working mom group on Reddit & Facebook. It helps me to see that certain questions that I have people also have them and the answers that others give, help me look at things with a different lens

  3. Talk to someone you trust. I have called my mom, friends who are older, who have been parents a lot longer than I have been and we have talked, shared about life and I have been encouraged

  4. Listen to Podcasts. I love Rachel Hollis’ Rise podcast and Mimi G’s Business SHET and they both talk about some issues that women face and more.

  5. And when all these fails, seek a medical professional’s help

So, here is what I will leave you with: You my dear, will survive! I did and you will.

I am attaching Gloria Gaynor’s hit song and anytime Mom Guilt comes around, tell it, to:

Just turn around now
'Cause you're not welcome anymore- Gloria Gaynor

Have a great week my dears, until the next episode,

God bless

Ezanya

First icing attempt
pre-decorating son's 2nd birthday cake
Decorated 2yr cake
Chocolate cake
O blowing out his candle

The Young & The Sleepless

The Young & The Sleepless; The Older and the Sleep Deprived!

Do you recall or still watch the TV show, The Young & The Restless, this episode is not about the show, that has been going on since 1973… Not at all. In this episode, I am going to talk about sleep and why you and I need it.

I recall the Fairy Tale called Sleeping Beauty. There are many versions but the one we all know is the one she is cursed by an evil/angry fairy to die but one good fairy instead blesses her with a hundred year old sleep- or nap as I will call it for she will be awakened at the end of that 100 years with the kiss from a prince.

My dears, can you imagine being asleep for hundred years! I digress…

Do you recall when you were in college or in your teens and you would stay up to watch a movie, study for a test all night and then take a shower, eat (or not) have coffee and go to class or your test the next couple of hours? Can you do that now? How much sleep do you need and how do you know the number you chose is what you need?

I recall staying up when I was in college and had to study for my physics test. I stayed late in the Morris Library, and then came back to study in my room. I might have slept for 2 hours and then went to take the test. I aced the test but I was tired for the remainder of the week. I did not drink coffee then as I do now :)

What have you heard about sleep?

I have heard things like

- “Sleep is overrated”

-”You can sleep when you die”

-”You can catch up on sleep” (which is not true)

-”You need 8 hours of sleep”

And more.

When I had my baby; mommy-mode kicked in and for the first couple of weeks, I learnt that my body could function on little bursts of sleep like 3 hours. I also learnt my hubby needed more sleep than I did. (Did that happen to you too?) I did try to sleep when my baby slept but when my husband went back to work, I decided to do things around the house and the things I did not finish he helped when he came back.

When I went back to work after maternity leave, I knew that I needed to amplify my sleep quantity and quality. I watched how much coffee I drank because I was nursing and I did not want my baby to be awake due to caffeine. I would drink it early in the day when he was at daycare and not drink coffee past noon.

I switched jobs and started working the night shift so I could spend more time with my family and I would say this was not a good decision for me. By this time, the baby was weaned off and I was not nursing any more. I relied heavily on coffee and it did not help that Starbucks was on the first floor while I worked on the second floor. My commute to work was 45 minutes to work on a good day and coming back during rush hour could be an hour and half at best to 3 hours before I got home.

Coffee did not help guys. My body was TIRED!

I recall one time that I fell asleep driving home on the wheel at a red light. I woke up and the red light just turned green, that was when I decided to do something about this sleep deprivation situation.

Yes, it is touted that we need 8 hours of sleep but if I sleep more, I feel miserable. I wake up without the alarm (like my grandma lol) and that for me tells me I had got the amount of sleep that I need. You need to find the right amount for yourself by talking to your healthcare provider. You might need to do a sleep study if you are tired all the time and might need to get a BiPaP.

Why do we need more sleep?

Here is a video on YouTube about why you need it and there are more videos to check out there too. The video is from a professor of Neuroscience, Matthew Walker.

I will share some of my reasons to sleep more in the hopes that it helps you.

  1. You need sleep for your health! I have gained more weight and have been unable to keep it off because of my poor eating choices and my heavy reliance on sugary goods to stay awake. Sleeping more lately, has helped my cravings for sweets

  2. Sleeping more is for my safety and that of others. I work as a Histotechnician and we cut tissue, stain slides and do a lot other things (ask me if you need to know). If I am sleep deprived, the chances of cutting my finger on the microtome, spilling chemicals and or making errors increases. I put myself, my colleagues, patients in danger

  3. I spend more money. Yes! I buy more snacks (empty calories), buy books on Google and join memberships for discounts (hello Audible!) and spend my money at Starbucks. I do love to read so my books from Google and Audible are re-accessible so I can go back to them.

So, can you sleep more?

Yes, you can because I have begun to. I did change my work schedule and I do not work nights anymore. For an article with tips to help you sleep better, check this out

-Exercise has helped and I noticed that the days I workout or walk for a few minutes, my sleep is good.

-Turn off your phones and TV too :)

-And I also ask God for help. In Psalm 127:2 it says “It is vain for you to rise up early, To sit up late, To eat the bread of sorrows; For so He gives His beloved sleep. And when I ask God, He has come through for me.

What is your story about sleep? Do share.

See you at the next episode.

Have a great week!

Ezanya

Other listening links

Happy 4th of July!

Did you know that, July 4th 1776, the colonies adopted the Declaration of Independence from the United Kingdom? Today, we celebrate Independence Day on the 4th of July!

If you have watched Pirates of The Caribbean (yes, it is imagination or someone’s creation) you see a glimpse of the British Military and it’s Naval Supremacy. That is why they were able to colonize some African and Asian Nations back in the day!

Imagine that a small group of migrants who moved to the Americas decide to declare their independence at whatever the cost so that they and their children can be free…

I am very much American, and very much Nigerian and I am not ignorant of what is going on in this country-the division based on politics, the issue at the borders, the flag and more. I choose though, to pray first before I speak… And the podcast is not for politics but I would address issues that I feel I necessary.

“We are all strangers in a strange land, longing for home, but not quite knowing what/ where home is” - Madeleine L’Engle

I agree with her and would say, we are all strangers on earth. We leave one place, city, state, country to better ourselves, our children and yet when we get there we complain.

On this day, I say, put your worries and differences aside and celebrate! Yes, if you are living in the U.S, are an American listening overseas, I say today we:

-Celebrate that we have the ability to love whomever we want

-Celebrate the ability to speak freely and not fear being hunted down for what you say. That one can speak out against the government, anyone, and not be afraid that the military or police or people would be sent to you or your family and that would be the last time you will be seen.

-Fly the American Flag proudly which allows you to be proud of the color of your skin, your sexuality, yourself, faith to believe.

Be thankful you are in one of the most beautiful nations on earth.

Happy 4th of July,

Happy Independence Day and be safe!

Ezanya