Wednesday, July 30, 2008
Yep. Its true.
Today we had a presentation with Dr. Robert Gallo who is a co-discoverer of HIV and is currently the Director of the Institute of Human Virology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. He went over the basics of the virus and explained what they were doing to find a vaccination to rid the population of this retrovirus.
When it came time for questions, I had one.
"I was a veterinary assistant for a few years, and it was common for me to vaccinate cats for Feline Aids and Feline Leukemia. What is the difference in the virus, and why is it that we are able to vaccinate felines already, but not humans?"
Actually, the way I asked it made me sound SO much smarter, especially because Dr. Gallo understood me. The above quote was created for all you blog stalkers, put into layman's terms for your sake :). This is how it was really stated:
"Why are we able to vaccinate for FIV and FELK but not HIV? What is the difference in the virus?" I totally sound like I know what Im talking about, right?!
Anyway, after being taken aback with my obvious intelligence, Dr. Gallo responded in a way that humbled me back to my high-school diploma status. This is my interpretation:
"Well, they have created an envelope...bla...bla...TRK...ABC to kill off the RXp2 of the virus acting as a IPRT that sends alerts to the TRC cells..."
Yeah, a totally different language. I nodded my head and "followed along."
Then, he turned to the other scientists that were touring with him, they proceeded to speak in "Smart" and then Dr. Gallo turned back to me and said:
"Well, I hadn't thought of that before. That's something I would like to experiment with. Thank you."
The audience turned to me, recognizing that I may have just input some small but life changing idea into this genius's mind.
Then I laughed and asked, "Well, do I get credit if something happens?" Everyone laughed and Dr. Gallo told me I could get 90% of the credit. Then he asked me to see him afterward to talk more.
I don't remember the rest of the meeting because I had other thoughts in mind.
"Is he going to ask me to work with him?"
"Am I a savior?"
"Can I change my title to Superhero?"
After the conference his Scientist buddies approached me and spoke to me more about my knowledge in the feline viral studies (very limited, I promise). I even proved a scientist wrong who tried to tell me there was no vaccine for FIV.
"Yes, there is."
Bald scientist says, "She's right. There is one."
Don't try and deny me of my kitty knowledge dude.
Anyway, Dr. Gallo just came up to me, shook my hand and thanked me for my input. Well, Dr. Gallo, if you do find a cure for the HIV, I hope that your Nobel Peace Prize speech starts off with "I met this engaging woman at a presentation I had at the Gates Foundation..."
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
First off, they have two wonderful mission statements.
"To whom much is given, much is expected."
"All lives - no matter where they are being led - have equal value."
Both of these are things that I believe, and that the gospel teaches. Isn't it so great that a company feels the same way?!
Secondly, they are so great to their employee's! There are free lunches, so far everyday, they pay for my bus pass and parking and just check out my view! Although the city doesn't look as great when its rainy, its such a cool thing to look out my window and see the Space Needle. I am so thankful for this job, and I hope it lasts! I am also thankful for the people that helped me land this awesome position with such a great team. The Dillon/Campbell family has always been there to employ me! Thanks!
Monday, July 28, 2008
Friday, July 25, 2008
I am on fertility treatments now, but mostly just to get my hormones to where they want them before I start getting really serious about getting pregnant. I am on day 8, and I am feeling good. A lot of people I talked to who are taking these drugs complained about moodiness and lethargy. I feel neither which makes me think that they will have to up the dose since my progesterone is so low.
So, I have a blood test in 2 weeks that will determine where we go from here. I am pretty excited to be on the treatments, but I do not want to get my hopes up since they have been nothing but crumbled for the past year.
I also started my new job! More to come on that. I need to take some pictures :)
Sunday, July 20, 2008
Thanks Kelsey and Kellen for another fun filled night!
Saturday, July 19, 2008
I have severe light sensitivity and I have been really warm all morning. I dont have much of an appetitebut luckily I was able to hold down a small ice cream and a light cinnamon roll. My mind is really distant and I have this odd pinching sensation in my hands. I wont go into detail about the bowel issues, but Ill tell ya, it ain't pretty.Maybe I have Mono? Or there might be something in the water?I went to the Doctor
and they recommended I take a nice, refreshing baththen sit back, relax and watch a comedy.They also prescribed some herbal remedies that seem to be helping.I am starting to feel much better now, but Im still a little light in the head, so I think Ill wait to come in until tomorrow.
For the record, this is the FIRST time I have ever played hookie! I was so nervous to do it, but it was so much fun to be with Matt on a mini-vacation. I did wake up pretty crampy, but once the drugs kicked in, I was not about to go into work. Plus, last week I quit my job at VOLT. So what are they going to do, fire me 3 days before my last day? Putting in my 2 weeks was such a hard decision to make, but I feel very good about it.
I have been offered a great position at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in Seattle. I am so excited to start, and I cant believe how perfect everything has been working out in this situation. I am not a person of change, but this is definitely a welcomed one.
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Friday, July 11, 2008
Tuesday, July 08, 2008
and OUCH. (owwche Charl-ay!)
Have you ever felt bee stings on your insides? Well I have! Luckily though, the numbness kicked in quick and I didn't feel much pain for the rest of the procedure. The hardest part for me was when the Dr. said it was imperative that I sit still. No coughing, sniffing laughing or adjusting or he might fry something worth keeping. I was already pretty shaky from the previous pain, but it was quick enough that I did fine.
The cauterizing was a joy as well. I could feel the heat and the vibrations and see the smoke that was being suctioned out. It was a very weird thing to witness, and I pray that I will never have to go through this again.
The Dr. says that by the look of things, I should be clear of all the abnormal cells and dysplasia. The results wont come back for a while, but he sounded very optimistic about everything.
He thinks that we could start trying again within the next few months, which is VERY different from what the nurse told me at the last appointment.
However, last month I tricked myself into thinking that waiting was a good idea, and I am still feeling the pain of the procedure enough that giving birth, doesn't sound all that exciting right now!!
So, even though its great news, it really hasn't struck me as such yet. I know that my baby fever will come back soon, but for now I am enjoying my cooked guts just the way they are :)