Thursday, January 19, 2017

New Year of 2017!

Some of you may wonder what I've been up to for the past couple months...

Well, not much besides working. Work is getting better, mostly because I decided to stop bitching about problems that I can't fix, and working on either 1) fixing or 2) avoiding the problems I can. I know avoidance doesn't sound good, but sometimes it's okay. For instance, if there is a particular charge nurse that you do not work well with, it is okay to not sign up for her nights. Whether to simply give yourself a break or to not have to worry about being around her, or both. However, things with her are better, still awkward, but slightly better. I think she's trying to be nicer to everyone.

We have four new girls coming onto night shift in the next few months. One was a med/surg nurse for awhile and the others are new grads, I believe. Ummm, is it just me or does this seem like a bad idea? They are already upset about so many "inexperienced" girls being on the staffing sheet, let's add in a bunch of other complete newbies! I'm not saying we shouldn't give these new girls a chance, I'm just nervous that we don't have near enough experience on the night shift. If they are considering me "experienced", then we have a major issue.

I lost my first baby. Not lose as in misplace, I'm talking lose as in the baby went back to be with Jesus. It was a bitter sweet experience because those babies had a very small chance of survival, for how early they were and the start they had. And, if they had survived, their quality of life would have been terrible. I cried. I was holding it together until my ICU nurse turned NICU nurse friend started crying as she asked if I was okay. I kept baby alive for 10 hours, without sitting down/drinking/eating once in that amount of time.

There were constant drip changes, tests, blood gases, vent changes, glucose tests, IV insertions, bagging, and various other cared during that time. These babies, they were twins, fought so hard. The doctor was called constantly throughout the night and finally came in as all cares were maxed out. Doctor came in, for the third time that night, and he asked the parents if they wanted to pull support. We discontinued and capped off IV's and umbilical lines. We removed all wires we could, without putting the baby through more pain, and we gently swaddled them in the most beautiful blankets we could find. Finally, we removed their ET tubes and handed the babies to shocked parents.

Our worlds can change in an instant. In one moment, we can be excited for new babies, and picking out baby clothes, beds, and the like. In the very next breath, mere infants can float straight up to the Good L-rd's open arms.

That was my first night of 4. Following the 4 nights, I hopped on a bus headed to Home Town and visited a hot springs location with my mom. That week was so wonderful. We have 3 nights and 4 days at the hot springs, threw in a massage (my first massage ever), and had tons of time to talk over life while relaxing in the warm water. Yep, I'm gonna start getting more massages regularly. I'm working on self-care lately. I'm attempting to get an exercise plan and a workout buddy, but we'll see how far I get with that.

Well, that's all I've got for now. It's been 2 years since I met exboyfriend, and it's been over a year since I ever saw exfiance (except when he found me at that bar and the Angry Canadian from nursing school told him off for me.

Flashbacks come more in waves like memories would as opposed to the overwhelming drownings I used to live through on a minute by minute basis. These memories haunt me every day, but I am learning to survive and breathe through the waves and ground myself more efficiently.

Life rolls on and I am getting farther and farther from those guys. Man alive, I can't believe we're already about a month into the new year. Time is just flying by now that school is done.

Monday, November 28, 2016


It's been awhile since I've posted, I noticed that today... Sorry about that everyone.

Let's recap over the past several days that I have not been writing about my "facinating" life:

  • I nearly quit after being made fun of and ignored for an entire night at work. Labs were taken down, except for mine... My CBC coagulated and had to be redrawn by day shift because I played RT, and nobody took down my labs even though one nurse took down everyone else's and showed back up to the unit as I was headed down for my measly 3 labs... I attempted to help keep a child from dying and was made fun of TO. MY. FACE. by a nurse who is consistently hateful to all of us new girls and various people around the hospital, as well as an RT who most everyone has a hard time with, seeing as the nights that he is on, we are our own RT's... You can see my shock when I was mocked for turning up oxygen, suctioning, and attempting to straighten the tubing on a vent kid that was desating to the 60's before grabbing her nurse. It was an awful shift. I went home and broke down before sleeping and losing it with my new nurse friends.
  • Work was redeemed the next shift I had because I got not one, but THREE compliment cards and a backpack! The week before I had gotten a coffee cup for being "flexible" and willing to come in on my day off from a last-minute call, for a shift I never signed up for.
  • I worked Thanksgiving, which turned out going really well. Mom came down from Home State and it was so wonderful having her here! She cleaned my kitchen while I was at work. I had tried my hardest to have my house clean by the time she got here, but it simply didn't happen. My Mema housed My dad's two brothers and their families for Thanksgiving. So I got to visit with much of my family and it was absolutely wonderful! I didn't spend as much time with them as I had wanted to, but I was working most of the time they were here. Sometimes being a nurse is a huge inconvenience and slightly painful, because I miss out on some of my favorite opportunities to have precious moments with family, but there are many sacrifices with being a nurse. For now, while I have no children, I will survive the sacrifices. My family knows I'm working hard and Someday, I will have many many favors saved up and hopefully people will be more than willing to help me because I have helped them. This has backfired many times before... it will likely backfire again. Life goes on and I will know I did everything I could, within reason, to 1) keep boundaries and also 2) be a team player.
  • Oh, and I began watching the Gilmore Girls series on Netflix. How have I lived without this show my whole life??? My babysitter used to watch it every afternoon, but I would go upstairs and watch 7th Heaven. What a delightful, hilarious show! I'm so glad Netflix has brought the blessing of Lorlai and Rory to my consciousness. So glad I don't live in the Ivy League and rich people lifestyle. My goodness, I could not do it. 
  • Guys, I got a haircut!!! I look like I'm halfway between Tris and Jennifer Lawrence. I look a little boyish, to be honest, but I also have not worn makeup with the hair yet. I'l test it out and let you know how it goes. Mostly, I like not having to put my hair up and it's nice to blow it dry and have it take less than 30-45 minutes to get it dry to then have to straighten it. Plus, my curl/wave is working with the cut and actually enhances it. I don't even have to straighten my hair if I don't want to.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Full Moon Madness

It's been 2-3 nights since the huge full moon occurred. Regardless, the children in the Big House have not gotten said memo. I only had two babies last night and they were being so naughty!!!

I was running behind all night long and not for lack of trying. One kid takes frickin forever to assess and feed because there are often unforseen complications such as him puking every. single. assessment. because he gets so worked up and upset that he doesn't even make sound when crying and thus provides enough pressure on his stomach to then throw up. *Ugh, buddy, let's talk about this!* This phrase is uttered more times than should be allowed in an attempt to get him to chill out. Surprisingly, he's more cooperative for me than for anyone else. *facepalm*

My other kid was on a vent, but absolutely delightful. He's so sweet and his family is so kind and calm. I adore this family/kid. However, he's getting sick. So, after being late from my first kid taking waaaaaay too long to eat and not having a tube to be able to tube the rest of the feed, I started in on this kid. Shortly after sitting down to begin charting on both little pip-squeaks, the NNP came in and I got informed the kid needed blood cultures taken stat. Which means IV sticks to get a totally sterile sample of blood, besides whatever terrible thing has decided to begin growing in this poor little kid's body. First IV got placed no problem, but no blood return to be able to get for cultures. So on to second IV. Got that, no problem and got blood. Antibiotics started and I'm already late for the first kid's second assessment/feeding.


The whole night ran behind after that. Try as I might, I could not get caught up on charting completely until day shift arrived. I was 10 minutes to clock out so that I could chart everything that happened.

I finally got home, got showered, and dressed into new pj's straight out of the dryer. Called in my puppy to sleep with me for the day and as soon as I laid down and petted her, I realized she was covered in some mysterious, dried, likely-dead-animal's guts type substance. So, at 10 a.m. after a frustrating night-shift, I walked my backyard twice in hopes of finding whatever it is she rolled in. Then proceeded to give her a bath. She was pissed, but hey, I'm not letting her gallivant about in my house and all over my bed in some dead creatures guts. GROSS!

Dog's bath done, another change of pajamas, scrubbing my arms up to my elbows and aromatherapy diffuser turned on, I fell asleep.

I woke up 5 hours later, and 2 hours earlier than I needed to, because of nightmares. Nightmares about work, nightmares about family, nightmares about past events. My subconscious must be trying to tell me something, but I'm not getting overworked. I think it was just a stressful shift, my family all bailed on me (except for mom) in every way possible (Thanksgiving, both rape cases, you name it), and I'm still battling memories of exboyfriend and exfiance. I would have worded the last few sentences differently, I don't normally use rape in such a blunt term when talking about those two assholes and the countless number of times I have been abused at their hands, but I'm in a no-nonsense kind of mood right now.

Tomorrow night is Newbie's Night Out with the other new girls on my unit. I'm so excited I can't even tell you! I've been looking forward to this night, and attempting to plan it for months. I kid you not. So, for it to be so close is a wonderful feeling. I'll let you know how it goes!

Good news about last night's shift is that I have made friends (work friend status) with the respiratory therapists, many of the NNP's, and so many others besides the regular nurses. Plus, I got to have my favorite charge nurse on last night!!! I tell you what, she makes the shift so much better, just by being there. But she listens when I have concerns, she believes my "nursing judgement" which is little more than babysitter judgement at this point, and she helps us out. She agreed to help me out with tonight's assignments and not putting my two kids together until first kid learns to not take so long and second kid starts to feel better. I wish she were charge again tonight... ah well, I'm making friends with people the other "regular" staff has difficulties with. Thing is, they have difficulties with a lot of people, and I think it's because of the "regular" staff, not the others. Ya know what I mean? That's how it rolls with a clique mentality. Meanwhile, I'll be friends with everyone and people on other units have already begun requesting me by name. So I'm good with that.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Suddenly Lonely

I was doing well being here in Small Town. I was beginning to make friends, look forward to things other than work and support group, and I'm even beginning to get my house unpacked. Yes, I have been living in Small Town for about 6 months and I have only unpacked the things that I use...

The closer we get to Thanksgiving, the more I'm missing my Mom. I miss Dad and Brother too, but I'm so close to my Mom. I was going about a week or two without talking to any of my family members, but about a month ago, phone calls to Mom starting coming on nearly every day or two. That's usually about the time I knew it was time to go visit home or have Mom come have lunch with me in College Town.

After calling Dad yesterday and learning that he wasn't able to come down to visit for Thanksgiving, I tried calling Mom but she didn't answer. I called Brother today, twice, but he's still not answering. Seeing as he just got a new girlfriend and his track record for doing family things when he has friends and their families... I'm thinking the odds of him coming down are pretty slim as well.


So, I'm excited for Mom to come down and to also see my other Home State family who are hoping to come down to visit Mema. I hope they get to come down. Somehow, youngest uncle keeps missing family functions with an explanation that he has to work. Mema has recently mentioned that she is not particularly pleased with him at the moment. She also made some comments about exboyfriend that made me think that the rumor has finally reached the family about him getting talked to by the police and probably arrested under sexual assault charges, that were dropped.

I don't know what's going on. Oh the joys of having a family who talks about nothing with the people going through things, but gossip and speculations spread like wildfire. Along with the gossip, comes believing and siding with non-family members, depending on the story that gets told and from whom they hear said tale. Thus resulting in family splitting, rifts, and silent treatments.

The pull for me to find a guy and settle down is not strengthened by current circumstances... if that tells you anything...

Monday, November 14, 2016

Info Blockage

A problem I have run across, and recently discovered the other new girls are experiencing as well, is that there is a lack of communication to the newbies.

Depending on who we talk to, we are given 15 different answers to the same question that we didn't have until someone told us we needed to do something different.

I was called in for 2 extra shifts one week, and they were day shifts. So I missed the night/weekend differential that I would normally get, and I worked an extra day that week. Normally, when we get called in for a shift that was not scheduled, we get an extra $250 for that shift because we came in when we weren't expecting to. I didn't know that until I ran in to night shift nurses that told me to ask about it. I asked about it and was denied the money because somebody in HR decided that I was working my "normal" shifts, just switched times. Okay, when you get called to come in at 0630, in order to be there at 0700, that's called GETTING CALLED IN. That is not a normal shift. Then getting texted at 1130 p.m. that night to come in for another day shift, that was not scheduled, is also not normal. Somewhere, there is a disconnect and I suspect it lies with the charge nurse that called me in for both shifts...

A few days ago, I got called in at 1901 (7:01 p.m., and shortly after the start of the night shift) to come in and go to the pediatrics floor. I got an email saying that I got the $250 for that shift, for some reason.

I emailed our DON, but the way it was explained makes little to no sense and I think HR doesn't understand what happened and all of the charge nurses that we keep having during these situation are charge nurses that don't normally act as charge so they aren't used to the strange problems that occur, like random call-in pay.

Besides this, I learned that I wasn't supposed to get floated the other night when I went to be a patient sitter. I learned this from a few other charge nurses that are normally charge nurses. I didn't even know it was a rule that I'm not supposed to get floated for 6 months!!!

One of the other new girls is struggling with the rules too. We have a little paper you can sign, then sign up for an extra shift or two within a pay period. IF you sign this paper, sign up for the shifts, and get to work all of you scheduled and extra shifts, then you get $400 each of the extra shifts (1-2 per pay period). Score! Right? Thing is, you can work all of your scheduled and extra shifts, but if you are given a low census for even one shift that pay period, the extra money is denied and all of the extra shifts you worked count as regular pay. So, it's a bit of a gamble, but the risk is way lower when we are in summer and there are tons of babies on the unit and everyone is working 3-4 extra shifts a week.

The new girl got told she needed to sign up for these extra pay shifts, without being told the stipulation of how to not get the extra money. She was volun-told to stay home one night (after she had already arrived to work), even though there were other girls who had wanted to stay home and she wanted to work. So, she found out that she does not get her extra money and that all of her extra work days were a waste because they called her off.

A similar charge nurse surfaces amidst all of these troubles, but I don't want to go starting troubles where there were none. I'm not going to fight my aunt on the extra pay days, but I might go ask her if all of us new girls could be given information on all of the rules and extra things that we are supposed to do with our jobs because the information that we are not being told is coming back to bite us all in the ass.

Speaking of which, we have these blood tests that get sent to another lab. When sending the tests, we have to fill out some form with a bunch of info about the kid we are testing. Nobody ever told me that it couldn't be done in blue ink, and could only be written in black ink. We got a mass email and signs up ALL OVER THE UNIT specifying that the form must be written in black and yada, yada, yada. I know people probably don't know it was me, but they might. Everyone knows I'm new, so I'm not too concerned about it. Still, I'm irritated for getting shamed for things that we were never taught.

Whatever, I'm pretty much just rolling with it. I certainly don't get nearly as embarrassed as I used to. This is another unfortunate side effect of being constantly humiliated by exfiance, exboyfriend, and several other people who used to be friends and are now confused as to why I don't talk to them anymore. It's a mystery really.*** (*Heavy sarcasm there*)

Friday, November 11, 2016

Hunger Games and Divergent

The Hunger Games and Divergent series came out during my traumas. For a long time, I couldn't figure out why I was so drawn to these movies, even though they would trigger flashbacks and a series of very difficult days/nights for myself.

Then, as I was watching both sets of movies at home the other day, it occurred to me. In Divergent, she deals with a guy who has a crush on her, then stabbing her in the back. When that doesn't work, he kills himself. She also has to kill one of her friends because he's hunting her and her mom, while in a Sim. I had a few little tie-ins there from my personal life... forget that the movie had names from my personal life built right in.

Throw on top of everything else that this girl struggles with losing friends, fighting against what is considered acceptable and normal, and also then dealing with nightmares/flashbacks/memories/and loss. I see myself in her.

Now, let's look at the Hunger Games. Not as many similarities to my personal life, but the nightmares/flashbacks/memories definitely ring a bell. Move on to the second and third movies and I'm thinking I'm needing ways to fix our government and find freedom from the bullshit that is presently overtaking the country...

These two series of movies have a main thing in common: a girl, about my age, has to deal with the shit in the world around them, largely on their own. They are faced with death, oppression, difficulties, and then the aftermath of shit going horribly wrong. This results in them both developing severe PTSD, but having to fight through it by themselves.

My story is not as intense, but I definitely feel as though I'm somewhere along similar lines.

For now, I draw courage and encouragement from these movies. I know they are largely fiction, but people around the world are fighting similar fights as these girls, and I, everyday. Some of us surrender to the memories and desires to end them ourselves. Some are hurt and possibly killed at the hands of others, either family members, "lovers", or strangers. Still others continue on to wander through each day, not certain what or where we are going. You know what? I haven't been killed, but I've been through situations where he tried to kill me. I have not died, but I have been through situations where I actively tried to die. So, I am left wandering, by very little choice of my own. Truthfully, there is no shame in any of those paths. Sometimes, life sucks so much that I still wish I were dead. Other time, mostly when holding another woman's baby, I am glad to be earth-side, for just that instant.

Plus, Tris' hair in Insurgent is something I aspire to be able to do. I have wanted to cut it as an act of defiance since I broke up with EXfiance. He convinced me to keep my hair long because he liked it long. I almost cut it the very next day after breaking up with him, but my mom convinced me to keep it long for my graduation, then again for my new hospital pictures. Now I am on my own, in a new life, starting over, and I want short hair!!! If I don't do it now, I might never do it. I have had a bob in the past, but I'm wanting a cut similar to Tris and the cut that Jennifer Lawrence got in real life during the Hunger Game's trilogy or just after they had been completed. Y'all know what I'm talking about, right?

I so wish I could drive up to Home State, schedule a hair appointment with mom, and come back to Small Town very different. Maybe even stop by and visit a few college friends while there. Despite wanting to do this, I have a puppy who doesn't make the day-long drive so well, and she sure and hell won't make it twice. Especially seeing as I have to damn near giver her a whole adult dose of benadryl, and wait until about 6 hours into the drive, for the poor girl to finally sleep in the damn car. She won't fall for that trick many more times, she's already skeptical of Nut Rolls and bread now.

So, I'll wait until Mom comes down for Thanksgiving and shake up my style then. Screw Exfiance and Exboyfriend and any other guy that thinks I need to keep my hair long and styled just for them. No. I do what I want, when I want, because I am my own person. I have survived awful things, and I am finally living on my own. I do as I please (within reason).

I'm gonna follow in the footsteps of these lovely ladies and I'm thinking I want a tattoo and several more piercings to go along with the new hair.

Happy... Content... ???... as a Single

For a good chunk of the last decade, I have been wondering what it would be like to be in a relationship, and I had been desiring to be married. Recently, as in the past few days, I have realized that I am coming into my own skin as a single girl.

I went through 2, count them 2, relationships and both were in 2015. Well, there was this "trial run" with Best Friend, but I don't fully count that...

If you have read any of my posts, you would know that most of them are about the grieving process and healing after these terrible "relationships". Along with the struggles of the pieces left after I left my two boyfriends, you may see that I still struggle with the desire to be in a relationship, get married, and somehow find someone to love and have companionship in life.

Lately, however, I have been getting used to my time alone. I have friends at work, family to call when I'm lonely, and my alone time is fairly nice and something I often enjoy in the day or two directly after working.

Nearly a year after finding freedom from the evilness that engulfed my life for nearly a year, I am finding peace from being alone. There are moments where I am a bit lonely, but it is not nearly as difficult as it had been when I first moved to Small Town, away from my friends and family in Home State.

I can often remain happy, or at least content, until I am reminded of the girls who get the opportunity to marry a guy who treats them with respect and waits until marriage to sleep with her. I get sad that my reality is so very different.

Yet, I am grateful that I have strength to move somewhere that is several states away, by MYSELF. I have been through things, and with people, that should have and tried to kill me. I made it out of those things alive. I have a life, by myself, between living with my parents and making a future for myself. I know what it is like to be so very alone that I wander around a store, just to be around people. I also know what it is like to be able to depend on myself to make it in this world, in a world where my generation can't even get their own driver's license at the age of 21 without having their parents present, because their parents have done everything for them for the entirety of their lives. I am brave, and strong, and smart, and a survivor, and despite everything, the L-rd has allowed my heart to remain tender enough to cry with parents over the difficulty of their baby's condition. My heart aches for girls who have had to deal with my ex-boyfriends and the fact that these girls have lived a similar reality. My heart still breaks for people going through any type of tough situation, whether I have been through it or not.

I have learned that pride is something that is okay when done in the right way. I am so very proud and grateful for the way the L-rd has brought me through my traumas and difficult life circumstances. I still get upset and I'm still angry at what was done, but my heart has not hardened and I am presently content with my survival abilities up to this point.

For right now, I am okay being single and I feel that is an important milestone to be able to reach, for me.