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


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?

Sunday, July 31, 2016

A funny thing happened on the way to the medcart...

The doctor summoned me urgently to the patient's bedside. He pointed to her ileostomy bag and said,

"Please page the ostomy nurse, STAT! It looks like pieces of her intestinal tissue or stoma are sloughing off into the bag!!!"

I whispered in response, "It's watermelon...she had it for breakfast!"

He blushed and said, "Well, don't I feel silly!"

To be fair, the patient had no teeth, so she regularly had pretty big chunks of food in her collection bag!

Then there was the patient who didn't seem to be arousable. Calling his name, gentle shaking/jostling, nothing was working. So I fired up the good, ol' sternal rub and hoped it would work its magic...

nothing. I kept rubbing and rubbing, harder and harder, knowing I was surely hurting him as he was pretty damn hairy.

Without opening his eyes, he suddenly said,

"You're rubbing the wrong spot..."

Alrighty, then! Gotta love the night shift...

Saturday, July 02, 2016

God save me...

from brand-spankin' new residents! This is my first year dealing with this phenomenon, and I don't like it. Having to page someone fifty times before getting a response, having new admissions languishing in their rooms for several hours without orders, trying to parse exactly what the "doctors" are trying to accomplish with the orders they actually place, and trying to explain the most shittiest of discharge summaries to a patient, among many other issues, has wrought havoc on my work the past three days.

On the other hand, they sure are sparky and enthusiastic!

I'm beat. I had two simultaneous discharges and two admissions that showed up within half an hour of each other. Luckily, I work with an amazing team of colleagues! I had a lot of assistance and managed to get everything done that needed to be done.

Of course, I was charting until 2030...

When the old battle-ax of a charge nurse tells you you did a good job, it means something. :)

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

I think I'm going to like working here...

I'm orienting for a new per diem job at a large local family practice clinic, and the first thing I noticed in my MANAGER'S OFFICE was the following:

I think I'll fit right in. :D

Tuesday, June 07, 2016

Nursing Protip

When you're in a patient's bathroom at the end of your shift, emptying the graduated cylinder of its contents, it's a really, really bad idea to exclaim,


even if you glanced in the mirror and got a good look at your end-of-night-shift, slept-on-wet hair, which resembles a coiffure Medusa would envy.

You're likely to hear panicked shouts of "What? WHAT?" coming from both your patient and her sister, and only if you're really lucky will you get laughter in response to your meek, "Oh, sorry. It's just my hair..."

Thursday, June 02, 2016


your pain is over
I fear mine has just begun
rest in peace, dear Ray

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Every breath you take...

I'll be watching you.

To see whether you're actually dead, that is.

I had the honor and privilege of holding a patient's hand while he passed. His family was with him and were bawling. Finally his wife asks, "Is he...dead?"


Eyes open. Pupils fixed. No visible breaths. Palpating his that a pulse?! Shit! Is he or isn't he?!

Where's my stethoscope?! Where it always is, around my neck. Duh. Listening...listening...listening...

You don't know how long a minute really is. You really just don't know...

I hear nothing. Yes, he really is most sincerely dead. I page the doctor and go back to my computer, mentally going over the next steps in this whole process.

About an hour or so later, the charge nurse and I are performing post-mortem care.
P. is trying to grow a pair, because she's always been reluctant to do this very important task on our unit.

As we are carefully washing our deceased patient (and I have it on good authority that I'm NOT WEIRD for talking to the ones who have passed, so there!) I notice a flicker of movement...

P. jumps back with a squawk and I admit, a tiny noise might have escaped my throat.


I belatedly realize that the fancy-schmancy pressure-redistributing mattress doesn't give a flying fuck whether the body that's lying on it is alive or dead, it keeps on with its task of preventing pressure systematically deflating and inflating sections of itself, causing a rippling movement not unlike that of a water bed...incidentally and quite freakishly causing movement to our patient.

P., once she's come down off the ceiling and caught her breath, states, "That's the freakiest thing I've ever seen in my LIFE!"

Oh, may have more experience as a nurse than I, but you ain't seen nuthin' yet!

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Putting me on the spot!

As I was bustling around my patient last night, hooking her up to various IVs, etc., she looked me in the eye and asked," Am I gonna die?"

I fumbled for a moment and then spouted these words of wisdom," Well, we're ALL gonna die, eventually..."

I'm surprised she didn't punch me in the face.