Monday, December 17, 2018

vent.

It was a beautiful day today.  I'm trying to tamp down my apprehensions about going to the hospital tomorrow.  I have very strong feelings (v.s.f.) of not wanting to step into the hospital ever again - but I can't quite tell if it's because of my seasonal blues or because I really hate the hospital.  I absolutely knew this part of the year would come (when it's cold/dark outside, when I feel like I should know more, but I'm still clueless a lot of the time and just like - omg, the patients are so, so needy), so it's not a complete surprise to me that I don't want to go to work tomorrow but, man, I just don't wanna.  I want to take two weeks off and spend it all under my warm, warm covers. 

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I'm 10,000 times thankful I never became a doctor because I think the training would have killed me. 

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Last week, I had a patient who was crying - like bawling.  For two days.  A young, male patient.  Called me every 15 minutes crying.  My boss found me somewhere and said - your patient in room 9?  he's crying, can you look into it?  I'm like - I know he's crying.  I've been in there 17 times and it's only 9:30 am.  We consulted with the hospitalist, we consulted with pain management.  I got him up to the highest pain control possible on our unit and he still cried.  I had to send him down for a procedure and I got a call from the PACU nurse who was like - he's crying all the time!  I'm like - I know.  I'm sorry.  She replied - he says he's in pain, there is never pain in the PACU, I have fentanyl.  I'm like, yeah, I don't get it either.  Mid-way through the 2nd day, he calmed down and apologized to me and gave me a hug as I was leaning over taking his blood pressure and said that he was sorry for calling all the time and thanked me for taking care of him.  Then, 45 min later, he was crying again.  When I ended my shift and said good night, he apologized again and said I'll be better tomorrow, and I said - I'm not coming back tomorrow.

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I had another two-day patient who was pissed that he had a tube down his nose to suction out his stomach (which was clogged with green goo).  I got an order to pull it out mid-day, so I gently took it out and said - there you go!  you must be happy now!  Apparently this statement pissed him off and he complained to the charge nurse that I had attitude and she made me (well, suggested - she did this in a very nice tone to me) apologize to him.  Which I did (begrudgingly) and then promptly he switched over to hitting on me for 1.5 shifts.

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I had two gyn post-surgical patients right next door to each other.  One a rather simple case, the other complex.  The surgeon for the simple case scolded me for not ambulating her patient in the morning and scolded me that the patient didn't ambulate the night before (even though I couldn't have possibly ambulated the patient on night shift since I didn't work the night shift).  And then three hours later hunted me down again to scold me yet again.  I didn't go into the gory details that the night nurse had 7 patients last night, I had the crying patient in the morning and my nursing assistant seemed to have gone missing and I had told the simple patient during the morning that she had to get up and walk.  The complex patient, I was in contact with the surgeon and the resident all day coordinating results and procedures and it was lovely and mutual respectful-ness and all that jazz (even though, actually, because it was complex, it was stressful too).  I was left feeling incredulous that on the same day - one surgeon thinks I'm a lame shit and the other surgeon is like - you are amazing!  I love working with you.  (Both patients were perfectly lovely).  Of course, I focus only on the one who scolded me.  Gah. 

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I feel better now that I've written it down.

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Oh, also the blood bank people yelled at me. 

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I take the scoldings so much more personally now that it's winter.

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Usually I think I take Ning and Noah out on walks, but today, they definitely took me on a walk.  I needed a reason to find myself out in the beautiful sunshine getting some Vitamin D. 

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holiday blues.

I'm tired and my regular seasonal blues are back.  I don't know why it surprises me every year, but it does.  You'd figure after 46 years of feeling blue in Dec/Jan/Feb (I'm sure I was blue as a three month old infant, lol) I would remember that it always happens and to give myself some grace, but I always end up semi-berating myself for not enjoying the holiday season like a normal person.  Hahaha.  I go through the same cyclical thing: I have a strong desire to stay in bed all day which I indulge on the days I can indulge, then I make myself do something and then I feel better and I remind myself that doing something always makes one feel better and then somehow I find myself tucked back into bed squirreled away under the covers again.  Then I ask myself what do you have to be blue about because, really, I'm #blessed and then I make myself feel bad for feeling bad.  Anyways, I'm fine.  Fine. I just really really want the days to get longer and the weather to not be rainy.

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My parents took Edda and me out for lunch on Saturday afternoon.  It was pleasant.  My mother ordered the mussels as usual.  We hashed out some end of life issues which, honestly, surprised me - both in the sense that we talked about it and also in the sense that they answered some questions differently than I would have guessed they would have answered. 

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Jeremy called me frantically Saturday night from the cabin campout because he thought he booked 15 flights on the wrong date.  He is planning the scout trip to Philmont next summer and he thought he had booked the return trip a day early.  I'm like - crap, I can't make him feel bad about this because no good will come from more bad feelings so I said (calmly) - don't worry, we'll just rebook them all and cover the change fees.  Even though, O.M.G.  All the change fees!!!  But then he texted back 4 hours, oh, I take that back, I think the flights are fine. 

Jeremy and Vince had total control over the food (which is what they desire at all scout events, but sadly, hardly ever have total control) at the campout which resulted in a delicious fajita dinner. 

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Mostly it was Vince planning the menu and cooking.  That boy loves to cook.

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Yesterday, the thing I made myself do was to finally put up the lights on the tree.  The tree has been standing in the corner naked since Thanksgiving weekend when Vince gallantly decided to put up the tree, but ran out of steam to actually decorate it.  So it was a little sad - a little Charlie Brown Christmas special looking.  But Eliana loves Christmas, so we turned on a spotify Xmas playlist and went through all the lights and ornaments which included little trinkets that Eliana first got us when she met us almost 10 years ago.  Very nice. 

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While we were putting on the lights, the boys came home from the campout bringing all the extra food.  So hot dog all around for lunch.  xoxo.

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Friday, December 14, 2018

campout.

The boys are gone this weekend on a cabin campout.  Vince seems excited about it, Jeremy is less so.  It's going to be rainy and cold so I'm not sure what is going to go on at the campout beyond epic long games of Magic and Cards Against Humanity and Jeremy wishing that he was at home.  At least there will be cooking.  I think Jeremy and Vince are in charge, so there will be actual cooking instead of instant noodles.  Jeremy even packed our toaster oven.

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I asked for a subscription to the New Yorker for Christmas.  I know, a pretentious gift, but I'm having trouble these days reading things longer than a tweet/meme/youtube video.  Novels seem to be incredibly insurmountable.  I'm trying to bridge the two by going to long form essays. 

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I am still struggling with my nursing side gig.  I'm on the other side of working 4 out of the last 6 days.  Not terrible, but still not great.  By the last day, in the late afternoon, I could tell I was losing control of my composure.  I basically went around the unit at 5pm and made all of my coworkers give me a hug. 

Sunday, December 9, 2018

Orienteering, Sunday night dinner.

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Vince and I went orienteering today.  It was cold, but it was a good running day - temps in the low 30s.  Vince ran the intermediate course (Orange) and I ran the course I should run for my age which is the 2nd longest advanced course (Green).  Vince and I both covered about 5 miles.   I tried to not get my feet wet.  When it's warm, I don't mind splashing through streams, but in the winter, I don't want to be cold/wet for so long.  I'm not in terrific running shape (nor am I in good navigation shape - one needs practice and I'm not practicing weekly), but it's really nice to be outside exerting oneself in the woods.  I really would love to be out in the woods at least once a week, it reminds me that I am a living, breathing being and need time away from the built and connected world. When I pick up a little speed in the woods, it feels good - grateful that my body works well enough to weave through the trees with the leaves crunching under my feet.  Unlike running on the roads, I'm always compensating for uneven footing balancing and rebalancing with each step.  With the nursing gig, I tried for a while (maybe 6 weeks?) to keep up my routine of running workouts (1 long run a week and 1 speed workout), but I just couldn't sustain it.  Being in good running shape makes the woods running exhilarating.  It's even better when I'm in good navigation shape too. The hospital gig is physically and mentally draining, that I feel like I can't spare the extra energy to running hard on my off days which I miss.  I'm still running most days I'm not at the hospital, but I'm trying to figure out how to get the workouts back.  Will I be too physically overextended?  I think I could do it if I could sleep 9 hours a night.  I'd have to go to bed at 8:45 every night - which is basically impossible - I'd be the first person asleep in the house.  As for Vince, he missed a control, but he didn't give up, he completed his course - a good thing.  He even said that he kind of enjoyed it.

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The orienteering was near my parents' house, so we stopped by for a quick minute to visit them.  Dad was in the basement building it out.  Mom was napping.  We invited them to Sunday night dinner.

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Sunday night dinner with the family.  Joan passed away early Friday morning.  I hadn't talked to Christine & family since we visited on Thursday morning, so we all caught up and gave hugs all around.   We lit candles for the last night of Hanukkah and we sang happy birthday to Eric.

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This week is going to be challenging, my shifts are close together so I'm going to be tired, but I have 4 days off in a row soon, so I'll keep that on my mind until I see you on the other side.

Sleep.

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You know, actually getting 8 hours of sleep is difficult.  But when you get it, it feels great.  Actually, 8.5 is the best.  mmmm. 

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Friday, December 7, 2018

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Love.

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Went to see Joan and Christine this morning, this time with Jeremy.  Dropped Jeremy off at the train station and drove to see my parents.  My mom is still hobbling around on one good leg and one bad leg.  Snuggled in bed with her and took a nap.  I love naps.  I think my hobby is napping.  Is that such a thing?  Went home, worked a bit, went for a run.  Helped Vince with homework which was kind of a fail.  Jeremy is trying now.  It's a compare/contrast paper and Vince (like his father) has very complicated ideas which require a high degree of writing skill to pull off.  Like using one of the contrasting differences to help prove that they are actually a similar thing.  I'm like - can you just pick obvious similarities and differences and write a simple paper?  I'm no fun really.  Edda agrees.

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