Friday, August 18, 2017

Is it nerdy of me...

to be a little stoked when I'm introduced to patients and family member as "the Night Nurse?"

In my head I'm thinking, "Fuck, yeah! I'm the NIGHT NURSE, bitches! Superheroes come to ME for help!"

*ahem*

I said good-bye to a long-time patient of ours this morning. We'll see her again for in-patient chemo in a few weeks, but her discharge has been a long time coming, and she's understandably really excited about leaving the hospital.

She wasn't part of my assignment the past week or so, but when I found out last night that she was leaving in the morning, I made a point to go see her before I went home.

I almost cried when she hugged me and thanked me for "being the light in [her] nights."

*sniff*

This is why I'm a nurse. I can get past all the bullshit with charting eating up all our time, and "patient satisfaction" being the be-all, end-all of healthcare, as long as I can help my patients and their family members and make a positive impact on their experience in the hospital.


Saturday, June 24, 2017

This and That

So, it's been awhile.

I quit my per diem job at the primary care clinic. My boss refused to accept my resignation, and still texts me, asking if I can do a few hours here or there.

Uh, no.

While I loved my co-workers there, I HATED the job. It was hours of tedium interspersed with moments of utter terror. Telephone triage is not for wimps! I never really felt that I got the hang of it, triage protocol book at hand or not.

Plus all the emails from the patients to the doctors, which had to go through the nurses first. Ugh.

People are fucking stupid. I've known this for quite some time, but read a few hundred patient emails and you'll feel it at a visceral level. I'm frequently amazed that humanity has survived as long as it has.

ANYWAY. Enough about that. My faith in humanity is frequently restored by my amazing inpatients.

I ran into the sister of one of my former (and likely future) patients when Thing 1 and I were shopping at a local Big Box store. I heard, "CHRISTINA!!!" and turned around to be tackle-hugged by a familiar lady. She squeezed me so hard and asked, "Do you know what a difference you made during my sister's last admission? We're so grateful to you!"

Well, I'm not ashamed to admit I got a bit teary-eyed (or maybe more than a bit...)
Enough so that Thing 1 muttered sotto voce, "Mom, get it together!"

Heh.

I'm allowed these moments, dammit!

The most amazing thing about this is that the sister happens to be a very experienced nurse, so praise coming from her...well!

In other news, I have some advice:

It behooves one to perhaps not make comments, even sarcastically or due to frustration, that imply that if one's aged, chronically ill mother had only fallen and BROKEN HER HIP, maybe her insurance company would have coughed up the cash for a bed in a rehab or skilled nursing facility by now...
Yeah, that gets you a visit from Adult Protective Services right quick!

This morning, right before shift change, I was holding a graduated cylinder for my patient to empty her colostomy into, when she, well, missed. Just a little bit. The contents splashed onto my hand and the floor.

"Oh, SHIT!" my patient whisper-shouted.

"LITERALLY!" I replied.

I made her laugh!

And this, children, is why we wear gloves.


Wednesday, April 19, 2017

People are fucking disgusting...

(here was an AMAZING rant about a situation at work, but I found it impossible not to add in enough details that someone could potentially identify the patient, so I deleted it.)



Fucking motherfuckers. Pieces of shit.  (this was the end of the post).

Anyway, sorry about how click-bait-y this seems.

I've been really busy trying to finish my chemo certification. I mean, I took the class, passed the exam, and have my chemo card, but I have to get "signed off" on all different types of chemo (three times each, no less), in order to be officially certified and stuff.

Seeing as I work exclusively night shift, it has been understandably difficult. Therefore I've been sacrificing quite a few days off to go in during the day to do some chemo.

Fun times.

We're also currently seriously short-staffed on my unit, so I've been working a lot of overtime shifts. Tired. That's what I am!

For some reason, social media just isn't floating my boat recently, I have no idea why.

And I have the advent of my (dear God, PLEASE) soon-to-be-a-college-graduate daughter to look forward to, as she will be moving back home until she finds a job that nets enough that she can support herself.

Three grown women in a tiny, two-bedroom apartment...what could possibly go wrong?

Wait, don't answer that. I've already gamed out every scenario in my head!

Anyway, life's busy, there's never enough time in a day to do everything that needs to be done, etc., etc.

Basically just like every other sap out there on the planet!

Well, if you're still out there, reading my wittle blog, thanks! I'll try to make more of an effort to post more frequently than every few months (oy!).

See you on the flip side.

Monday, January 30, 2017

Generally, yes.

I had a confused patient in his 90s as part of my assignment the other night. When I had a bit of downtime, I sat with him to reorient him and keep him from pulling out his IV (AGAIN!).

We were chit-chatting about nothing in particular when he suddenly reached over and began stroking my wrist while staring at me intently and murmuring, "Do you like affection...?"

As I jerked back in surprise and sputtered a response about inappropriate behavior and professionalism, what was running through my mind was,

"NOT FROM YOU, MOTHERFUCKER!"

I called over our young, MALE nursing assistant to take over sitting and wasted no time sharing the story over a laugh with my colleagues.

A few minutes later, while checking my phone, I saw I had received a text message from one of my fellow nurses. I thought it was odd, because she was standing right there! Why would she be sending me a text when she could talk to me...?

Then I saw what she had texted...and busted out laughing.

Well played, Meg. Well played.

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Patient Education

Patient education is a huge and very important part of nursing.

I had to teach each of my patients something last night.

No, you're not a "wimp" for being in pain after having MAJOR abdominal surgery. Yes, it's okay to have the ordered pain medication, that's what it's for. Yes, the nausea and dry-heaving you're suffering from could absolutely be caused by the pain, and yes, I can give you something for that, too.

And NO, you're not being a "bother". It's my job. :)

No, you can't smoke e-cigarettes in the hospital. Yes, I could smell it when I walked into the room. No, it doesn't matter how tiny the cig is, it has to go. No, I'm not mad at you. Yes, you can absolutely have a nicotine patch, and I'll go ask the doc to order one for you ASAP.

You're welcome. :)

NO, YOU CANNOT HAWK UP LOOGIES AND SPIT THEM ON THE FLOOR NEXT TO YOUR BED. Yes, I slipped in your phlegm and almost fell on my ass. Or hit my head. Yes, I'm gagging as I'm cleaning your nasty-ass sputum from the tread of my sneaker. No, I 'll never let you know how disgusted I am. Yes, I will point out the tissue box that's RIGHT THERE. And the trash can that's also RIGHT THERE, and ask you to use both in the future. No, I will not ask you if you do the same thing in your own home, because yes, I can control myself. Unlike you.

Let me get you some apple juice. You're welcome.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

ZOMG!!

Happy TEN YEAR Blogiversary to meeeeeeeeee!

That's like a BILLION years in meatspace.

:D

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Blogorado!

As always, I had the absolute BEST TIME EVAR at Blogorado this year.

Thanks so much to the FarmFamily (Farmmom, Farmgirl, FarmDad) for being exemplary hosts.

The food was exquisite and plentiful, the booze copious, and the conversation raunchy as fuck.

We blew up a papier-mache heart (lovingly and laboriously made by PhlegmFatale, who couldn't make it out to Colorado this year, boo!), filled with confetti and pom-poms, and covered with sequins and glitter, in honor of  our dear friend, Gay_Cynic, who passed away over Memorial Day Weekend this year. We miss you!

I shot up a good bunch of my ammo, as I want to get really comfortable with my CZ82. One of my magazines developed a burr which needs to be filed or ground away (grinded?), so I was unable to use it. I really should just stock up on magazines, anyway.

I also adopted an adorable, bottle-fed kitten and brought him home with me! I'll have to share pics of Calcifer once I get them off my phone.

And you haven't lived until you've played a game of Bards Dispense Profanity with the Atomic Nerds, Tam, ZerCool, EvylRobot (and his son), and Barron! Jeebus, I frequently laughed so hard I almost peed myself!

Every year, before it's even over, I look forward to the next year, when we all gather again. It's wonderful to spend time with one's tribe.

To all who were there (you know who you are, and I've reached my max linky-love level, dammit!), as always, it was spectacular to spend time with y'all, and to the new-to-me folks, it was lovely to meet you...see y'all next year!


*tap tap* Is this thing on?

Wow, it's been quite some time since I posted. Sheesh.

I think Facebook is becoming the slow death of blogging. Though I do filter and censor myself a lot on the Book of Face. On my blog is the only place I can just spew out whatever crazy shit crosses my mind.

For example, I had to tell a patient to simmer down and let us do our jobs. Without going into too much detail, she knew she was sick and called 911 and was brought to our ED and then admitted.

After which she proceeded to bitch and complain about EVERYthing.

"Why do you have to put the bed alarm on...I feel like I'm in a nursing home!"
"ANOTHER blood draw? I feel like a pin cushion!" (These are just a few, and you have to understand that once you went into her room, you ended up being in there for at least half an hour, if not longer. She was like a psychic vampire, draining me of my will to live.)

She battled with us over every intervention, procedure, medication...you name it and she either refused or required half and hour of education or cajoling...sometimes repeatedly about the same issue!

I totally understand that nobody wants to be in the hospital. We try to make every patient's stay as pleasant and hassle-free as we can, but it's not a hotel or resort!

After I explained for at least the fifth time why we needed to have the bed alarm on, at least at night, and why she needed to call for assistance before getting out of bed, etc., she said she had had enough, that she didn't want to be there, and she was going to leave in the morning, no matter what.

I looked at her and said, "Ms. White, YOU were the one who called 911 and came to the hospital, because you knew you were sick and that it was very serious. LET US DO OUR JOBS. The way you feel right now, the condition you're in...do you really think you're ok to take care of yourself at home?"

She replied, "That's not fair!"

You're in your sixties, and you're only figuring this out now?!

No, I didn't say anything to that effect to her! Even though I really wanted to...

Anyway, this post totally turned out different than I expected. Sorry about that...but that means I can blog more, yay!

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Not really appropriate.

My pod partner, after assisting me with incontinence care and linen change for my new patient, asked me,

"So, what's her diagnosis?"

My reply?

"She's old as fuck."

I'm going to hell for that.

Friday, August 05, 2016

Actually...appropriate!

I felt a little uncomfortable at the chemotherapy education session at the hospital last week. I mean, it WAS my day off, so if I wanted to wear denim shorts and my Deadpool t-shirt, why not? I was also rocking my blinged-out skull and crossbone earrings.

When I arrived in the conference room and saw the other attendees, I had to hide a wince. Most were wearing business casual clothing. The others were in scrubs because they were coming off shift.

I felt like I stood out like a sore thumb. Then, as we progressed through the presentation, I came to a realization. Chemotherapy is poison. So my awesome earrings were totally appropriate. And Deadpool? Man, he became a super...hero (?) because he was dying of cancer and desperate for a cure! How perfect was my t-shirt after all!

So I stopped worrying about it and absorbed all the info. Besides, who cares what other people think, right?