Sunday, December 31, 2006

Junior*

"Well, I didn't want them knowing all of my business, so I told them it was a tumor."

"Wait, let me get this straight: you told people that our baby was a tumor?"

"Well, technically, yes. But it was a dream!"

I am fairly certain that my subconscious mind directed me to designate the baby in my womb a tumor just so that later in my dream I could say, in my best Arnold imitation, "It's not a tumor."

And just so we can avoid confusion and potentially livid posts, the pregnancy was a dream. I don't have a baby in my tummy... or a tumor.

*This post intentionally titled to be reminiscent of a great Governator flick.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Merry Chirstmas!


Saturated Fat

I realized the other day just how much Central PA was rubbing off on me as I offered John a drink.

"I have chocolate milk, or eggnog, or... Choconog...?" I half said, half asked. (Although, here, since questions are asked with the same intonation of a statement, he probably didn't know that I was questioning the possibility of such a mixture.)

"I was just thinking the same thing!"

So we mixed the two, and like in Genesis, it was good.

Mainly because in Central PA, the more saturated fat something has, the better!

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Lilies and Lavandar and the Consequences of Calm

Grace,

Thank you for an amazing month. I never knew calm could be so good. I thought these would be perfect since they are still blooming like we are.

John

P.S. I like you.

Seeded

"So, are you smart because you are 4 and all 4-year-olds are smart, or are you smart because you are smart?"

"Because I'm smart!"

"And conceited."

"Yep."

I turned to Doctor John and started giggling.

"No!" she hollered from the back seat. "I'm not seeded!"

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Work Sucks!

So, here's the thing.

I am without a job.

Or rather, I have a job if I want one, but not the job that I currently have.

Don't panic, I'll still be a nurse and still be able to pay the bills, but once again I find that things are not as I expected them to be.

I found out today, 10 days off orientation, that my job is going to be changed. They are kicking me out of the float pool. Why? Because I am incompetent? No. Because they are over-staffed and don't need me? No. Because I pissed off the wrong person? No.

Because they realized that they made a big mistake in hiring new grads into the float pool and trying to pay them the new grad rate and not the regular float pool rate and thinking that we would not be throwing a big fuss about the breech of contract and the pathetic pay rate. That's why.

The thing is, management thought they could get float people without having to pay float rate, and if we didn't have a union representing each and every full-time nurse, they probably could. They could have hired us and said "without any experience, you make this." But our contract states that all float pool nurses make a certain rate (almost double what other new grads are making) regardless of how many years of experience they have. So by contract, management is obligated to pay us the float pool rate. And since they don't want to do that, they are kicking us (the new grads) out of float pool.

This sucks, not only on the obvious level (I thought I would be making significantly more money than I will be making!!!) but also because I am going to miss out on some really good stuff! I am going to miss out on the variety of clinical experiences that you get by going to many different areas in the hospital. I am going to miss out on the exposure to various kinds of nursing and management that you see in the float pool. And I am going to miss out on being "outside" or "above" all the nursing "cattiness" that happens on units where many women have to work together day in and day out.

The other thing that sucks is that they are telling me that I have to pick a unit to stay on. I have to choose one of the places where I have oriented to be a permanent member of the unit. 2 of the places are automatically out because I don't care for the nursing that is done in those places. The remaining three are basically surgical (2 units) and medicine. And here's the thing- while I love the residents/doctors in medicine, I HATE that it is basically like working in a nursing home. And while I LOVE the nursing on the surgical units, I despise the residents/attendings because they are so unresponsive and they act so superior.

At this point, I am just mad. I don't think the hospital can legally do what they are trying to do... I don't know if the state of PA or the union is who I should go to, but I think I will go to both. If it turns out that they will kick me out of the float pool, and they can legally do so without any recourse on my part, I will have to make some decisions. And what I might do is try to get into the IMC or ICU, and skip floor nursing altogether. I have until August, 2007, to decide, and anytime after February I can request to move to the ICU, so I might just bide my time and wait for a position.

At any rate, I guess it's not all bad. The one good thing that comes out of this is that I may end up with a day shift position sooner than I expected!

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Verbal Diarrhea and the Consequences of Calm

Those three words
I've said too much
But not enough.

Snow Patrol
Chasing Cars

I'm not sure exactly how it happened. We've been seeing each other for a few weeks, and it's mostly all goodness and niceity, but not quite loveliness and romance yet. As he walked me out to my car, darkness and fog all around, the glow from my living room behind me, and my tummy full of the dinner he had made me, I smiled. I just felt good... right. He hugged me, knowing that I hated leaving Abigail.... and him... to go to work. We talked a few minutes longer, about work and weekend plans, and then as I was getting ready to leave, it happened.

My mind was calm, a rare event these days, and the anticipation/dread of what would happen at work had not yet claimed my thoughts. In fact, I was so calm, I was almost on auto-pilot. I felt the way that I do when I am tucking Abigial in to bed at night: warm, right, relaxed... safe. My guard was down; the hypervigilance long gone. I pulled away from another embrace, and his eyes wandered to my lips. I knew we would kiss, so I leaned towards him. "I love you" I heard my own voice saying.

HOLD UP! Did I just say "I love you?" Crap! As the realization of what I just said, and how he would most certainly interpret those words, filled my conciousness, I paniced. I pulled my hand away from my mouth; it had automatically made it there following the audible gasp I had let out when I heard what I had just said.

"Wait! I don't mean that! I didn't mean to say that! I take it back!" His laughter filled my ears and my cheeks grew warmer. "I have to leave. I have to go. I'm leaving. I can't believe I said that! I didn't mean it!" My hands searched my pockets for my keys, my eyes looking everywhere but at him. He continued to laugh and I scrambled to get into my car. Finally (finally!) I seemed to get my mind and my body in sync enough to get into my car and shut the door. I continued to talk, the volume and panic in my voice escalating.

"What did I just say? Why on earth would I have said that? I didn't mean it! I know I didn't mean it. And now he is going to freak out and not talk to me... or worse... start saying that all the time! It's not true! I don't love him- well, not like that, at least."

The 2 minute drive to work had never seemed shorter (or more dangerous. Note to self- don't drive when I can't think clearly!) I felt my heart in my stomach... and my stomach in my mouth. The night that followed was crazy, espcially when I so much wanted to find the right way to respond to his text messages.

I'm lucky he gets it. He knows that I care about him, and it was the warm, good, calm, happy that was talking, not the "I want to marry you." And he's okay with me taking it back... just like I've come to be okay with his response being laughter. (Can you blame him? I mean, imagine what my face must have looked like when I practically screamed "I take it back!") Overall, I guess that is the best outcome I could hope for.

So, what have we learned?

1) Screen the words BEFORE they come out of your mouth. Grace, I am talking to you! BEFORE they come out, not after!

2) Don't drive when you can't think. It's scary.

3) Calm can be dangerous. Exercise that state with caution.

4) Paniced looks like it should not be the proper spelling for the past tense of panic, but blogger spell check says it is okay, so I guess it is!

Friday, December 15, 2006

Why? Because she said so.

Mandy wrote this about me on her blog.
"Scenarios played in my [Mandy] mind. Constantly. I would be having a conversation but thinking of a million other things. I would have felt guilty but I know my friend has about twenty things going on in her head at the same time. That's why we're friends. We know these things."
I love this girl. Because she gets it.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Flying Solo a.k.a. No Safety Net

Today is my first day of work off orientation. As in, I have no preceptor. As in, I have no one standing over me to keep me from making a ginormous mistake.

And I have a cold.

I hope this works. But until then, I am going to go take a nap so that I can stay awake all night tonight.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

A Taste of Home

So, my parents will be here soon.

Here. As in, in my house. Soon.

I've got to go vacuum.
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