Sunday, October 30, 2011

Flu Shot

This past week on Tuesday I gave my first IM injection on a real live person!  Actually it was a flu shot clinic, and I gave 6 injections total. 


What a scary time it was for me but after the first one down, the rest were downhill. 


Vivid Dream Details

Isn’t it funny that you can dream in such vivid details??
A few nights ago I had a really wonderful dream that had me literally crying when I woke up.  You see my grandpa past away a few years ago and he and my grandma helped renovate their summer cabin into their primary home once they retired.  With the help of my uncle and a few years of hard work they completed the project and it was a beautiful home.  My grandparents had a lot of pride in their home, and we grandchildren had MANY memories collected of the cabin.
My dream started off with me showing up at the dock inspecting how the new owners were taking care of my grandpa’s skilled artistry.  I was noticing small details like how the styrofoam protected blocks were connected to the dock to prevent the boat from scraping its wood.  As I moved up the walkway to the back of the house I could see small differences in what the new owners had done differently and wanted to let them know how to correct or fix them.  I let myself into the house and waited in the front room overlooking the lake, tall pine, and maple trees.  When the family got home I started explaining who I was and why I was in their house.  Then I tried to politely explain to the family that they could fix their house and make it look better if they just took my advice to get it back to the way my grandpa had it.  I don’t know why it was so important to preserve this home the way my grandpa had it, but it was.
Then out of the corner of my eye the screen door opened and my grandpa walked in and had a twinkle in his eye and bright refreshing smile on his face (like only my grandpa could) and took a seat on the couch.  The family just vanished away from us, as I sat down on the floor at his feet and just looked up at him in awe and was overjoyed to be seeing him.  I told him how much I loved and missed him.  I felt like a child again, when there weren’t any grown-up problems or responsibilities to deal with, and I was just excited to be there.
My grandpa told me that I shouldn’t have been so hard on the family who was trying to make this house their home.  He quoted a Bible verse about there being a time to build and a time to tear down (Ecclesiastes 3:3) and that I should have grace on this family. 

Then I woke up literally crying and wiping the tears from my eyes.  I’m not sure how to take this dream.  After I had woken up completely I looked up the passage this verse comes from and this is what it says:

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

A Time for Everything

 1 There is a time for everything,
   and a season for every activity under the heavens:
 2 a time to be born and a time to die,
   a time to plant and a time to uproot,
 3 a time to kill and a time to heal,
   a time to tear down and a time to build,
 4 a time to weep and a time to laugh,
   a time to mourn and a time to dance,
 5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
   a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
 6 a time to search and a time to give up,
   a time to keep and a time to throw away,
 7 a time to tear and a time to mend,
   a time to be silent and a time to speak,
 8 a time to love and a time to hate,
   a time for war and a time for peace.

I called my mom on my way in to school that morning and through my tears again I explained the dream to her.  She suggested it was the enemy trying to make me feel guilty for being in school and not to listen to him.  That I’m doing the best I can and need to continue with school and the sacrifices I’m making.  Ugh, either way I’m glad I got to see my grandpa again.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Think Twice Before You Say What's On Your Mind

Last night I was working my eight hour shift at the hospital and my co-worker, grabs me by my arm and practically drags me into one of the charting rooms.  She has red eyes and tells me that one of her female patients she was taking care of, mistook her by accident as expecting…as in pregnant…as in looks big in the waist line such as looking pregnant. 

OH MY goodness people! 

My co-worker does not in the least bit look pregnant at all!  She was merely wearing a long-sleeve shirt (it is Wisconsin and cold outside already) under her scrub top and the pants she wore looked bunchy in that part of the waist because of the drawstring. 


She was so upset that she must have cried about it.  I tried to calm her down saying things like “of course you don’t look pregnant”, and “I’m sure it’s just the patient’s anesthetic”, and “YOU DON’T LOOK BIG”!
But it was hard to change her mind, she kept standing there holding her tummy and sticking it out asking “do I look that fat”?  PLEASEEE!  I reassured her again that she looked beautiful and not pregnant or fat.


Please, for the greater good of all womankind, be graceful and wise (knowing that if the tables were turned, think of how it would make you feel if the opposite were said about you) before you ask a woman if they’re pregnant or expecting.  This is the most ignorant comment anyone could make to a woman who isn’t pregnant.  This is hurtful and hard to recover from especially, if like my friend, you’re trying to lose weight.  Please especially keep in mind people like me who are trying to get their work done in a timely manner, have to now put on their counselor hat and help build up their co-workers self esteem that has clearly taken a beating.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Fluid and Electrolytes Confusion

Three words had me in such turmoil this past week I can only begin to tell you about.
Those three words are FLUID AND ELECTROLYTES.  For any nursing student or nurse for that matter I’m sure we can all agree this is a difficult concept to learn.  This past week every day after class I spent until around 9pm at school studying the topic of fluid and electrolytes, including acid/bases and ABG’s with my strong close-knit study group.  Very few students in our class don’t seem to get concepts easily and I am one of these people.  I tallied up the amount of hours spent on these concepts and in all it came out being 16-18 hours.  That equals less time with my hubby and kids that I spent working through these units.

We were advised by one of our instructors that we should focus a good amount of our study time on the fluid and electrolytes because she would put more of those questions on the test.  So I didn’t spend as much time on tissue, burns, stomas/ostomies, enemas, or PICC lines. 

After finishing the exam for these units the 52 question exam only had two fluid/electrolyte questions.  WHAT???  Holy poop what was my instructor meaning that a good amount should be focused on this area if there were only going to be two questions?  How disappointing after adding up the amount of questions I got wrong.  I still passed the exam but barely.  Not only did she lead us astray in that area but she also made a point to mention to us not to bother bringing our calculators because since our med. Calc. exam was the week prior we weren’t expected to do any of those kinds of problems on this exam.  Sure enough we had two med. Calc. problems on this exam. 

I’m all for the idea of making us well educated on a broad amount of topics but if you, the instructor, tell us, the students, to focus on a certain area there darn well better be more than two measly questions! 

So after collecting myself and writing out a lengthy email to said instructor yesterday after class I asked my hubby to edit it for me so I could send it off as soon as I could.  Unfortunately because I had to work yesterday she probably won’t see my email until Monday, but I hope my complaint isn’t the only one in her inbox.

Does anyone out there have any helpful hints regarding fluid and electrolytes, acid/bases, and ABG’s?  I would take any and all help offered seeing as though these concepts are still foggy for me even after the 16 hours of study.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Chicken, Potatoes, and Muffins

A few weeks ago I decided that I would make a big helping of food on Sunday nights, so the family can eat their share throughout the week and always have a warm meal.  This has been especially successful in helping my hubby cook less especially when I'm not home.
This week's big meal was shake 'n bake chicken with oven roasted potatoes and for dessert...chocolate chip and cinnamon muffins.  Yum!


Awesome all-in-one muffin mix

just add water


and pour

finished product

cinnamon in Halloween paper liners

Disheartened But Not Discouraged

This semester I have seen a big difference regarding having more time to complete school work with less time working.  This has a lot to do with my hubby’s new promotion at work (thanks babe) which has taken my hours per week down from 24 to 14.  I can’t help but get my school work done earlier than usual and having time to pick up my house more often.  Unlike last semester I wasn’t a student who tooted their horn when completing assignments early because it didn’t happen much for me.  I was usually getting the assignments in on time but working quickly the night before they were due. 
I don’t mean to rub the fact that I’m ahead of the game this semester with my assignments in my co-students’ faces but I truly am happy and joyful to be on top of due dates.  Recently though I’ve decided to stop letting my closest school friends know when I’ve completed an assignment early because I’m not getting the reaction I expect.  There’s no true happiness coming from my co-students I guess because they wish they were done with their assignments too as I did last semester.
Either way dear readers I’ll divulge what is expected of me this week and what I’ve accomplished so far.
Monday 10/17
Tuesday 10/18
Wednesday 10/19
Thursday 10/20
Saturday 10/22
Sunday 10/23
Practice skills for tomorrow’s check off
Skills check off; wound care, IV, and donning sterile gloving
Medication worksheet due before class
Ethics survey due, Annotated Bibliography due, Blog posting due
Humongous EXAM for (7) credit class.
Work at hospital from 1430-2230
Work at clinic 0900-1500
Work on odds and ends of school work and spending time with the family
Go to church, watch football with family and finish up anything I missed

So far I’ve finished my blog posting, ethics survey, medication worksheet, and just have to edit my bib.  Tonight and tomorrow I’m going to work on reading over my power point slides so I’m ready to prove what I know regarding wounds and IV maintenance for my check offs on Tuesday.  This leaves me Tuesday night, Wednesday night, and Thursday night plenty of time to study for Friday’s HUGE exam.  Sometimes I don’t know what I would do without my to-do list so I can visually see what I have to do and what I have done.  I just wish my co-students were as excited about my new found time and organization skills as I am.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

My First Poke

My first poke was with a butterfly needle on my hubby tonight.  He was such a great sport.  He said my technique was a little rusty, but my only other practice was previously on a dummy arm. 

I'm just surprised I got flashback.  Woo hoo!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Medication Calculation

Hello Y'all guess what???  I passed my med. calc. test on the first try!  WOO HOO!  Super easier than I prepared for, which makes me extremely happy and blessed that I wasn't one of the students who failed.  Thank you Lord!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Wound Care, Wound Sample, and IV Practice

Last week's skills lab included wound care, swabbing a wound to collect a sample, and IV insertion.

The only thing I practiced while at school was IV insertion and I used a butterfly needle. My first two attempts were unsuccessful but my last one rocked! I was able to get flashback on the dummy's vein. I just wish I'll be able to practice this skill on a live person. I know seniors who haven't gotten to start an IV on any patients yet. Maybe during one of my shifts at the hospital I'll be able to find a way to try out my new skill...

I promptly went home and practiced the other two skills on my hubby and kids. First I drew an oval on their sides representing a wound and took out my wound care kit and went to town step-by-step of what I learned to put a dressing on their "wounds".

I think I did well but forgot a few steps after re-reading my list of things to do. More practice is the only way to get past that. My official check-off lab will be next week for these new skills I've learned.

Tuesday will be a gigantic exam in my public health class, so I better get back to hitting the books.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Shingle Party Complete

Picture from the view outside my living room window. don't you just love fall colors

Last weekend we completed our fall project this year of reshingling our house and garage.  I know I asked you all your opinions on what color shingles I should pick to complement my house color and shutters.  While I kept all the suggestions in mind, my hubby and I decided price beat out looks and so I'm happy to announce that we chose a dark brown that looks simply beautiful.

Thanks to everyone that was involved.  We wouldn't have been able to get the whole job done without lots of help from my hubby's friends.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

New Shoes

Disclaimer – Timberland PRO gave a free pair of Renova shoes for reviewing purposes.

When I first started nursing school I bought two pair of shoes the first one (New Balance all white) for clinical, and the second one was (Reebok Zig-Techs) for all wear/jogging.  As it turned out the New Balance shoes were horrible, I could barely stand on my feet for the first 3 hours of my clinical.  So I switched to my Zigs which were very comfortable but not something I wanted to wear at the hospital so I was on the hunt to find the perfect work/clinical/hospital shoe. 

After I got my CNA job on a surgical floor the “norm” was to buy those plastic type/durable shoes filled with holes known as Crocs for practical spillage reasons.  It didn’t take long to realize Crocs made my feet hot and sweaty, and my back painful after an 8 hour or 12 hour shift.  Quickly I changed my mind and went back to my Zigs.

On my most recent adventure I was nearly ready to buy a pair of Dankos that retailed at $120 and I nearly pulled the trigger but decided against it.  After trying them on in the store my feet hurt within minutes so I said forget it.  I settled on a pair of Nursemates slip-on shoes that were comfortable around the house but quickly became just the opposite after a few hours on the floor.  None of the supposed nursing shoes were working out for me, so guess what I went back to…you guessed right my Zigs.

A few weeks ago I was approached by Timberland, yea you know the company that makes the hard work boots, to try a free pair of their new shoes made especially for the health care field called Timberland PRO Renova.  I have to say at first I was skeptical because my record had been 0/4 but I kept an open mind and tried them anyway. 

Wowwie-wow-wow did they not only stand the test of a couple 12 hour shifts but they far exceeded my expectations with comfort and style.  The shoes are a pristine white slip-on shoe with a little heel but the comfort was amazingly supportive through my long shifts at the hospital.  Here’s what their website had to say about the shoes:  The Timberland PRO® RenovaTM series is care for the caregiver. Combining Anti-Fatigue Technology with stylish design, it delivers on the healthcare industry's unique needs and helps women stay on their feet all day long.   Did you read that readers…anti-fatigue technology could that even be possible?  Well I’m here to say yes, yes it does.  Also if I had bought these in the store, Timberland has a 30-day comfort guarantee that states: If during the first thirty (30) days following your purchase you believe your Timberland PRO® RenovaTM series footwear is not more comfortable than other brands you have worn, return them and Timberland will refund the purchase price of the footwear to you, no questions asked, provided you still have your dated receipt of purchase.
What a great incentive to go out and try a pair of your own right?  You can view the entire collection at the following website for yourself.

Now I can go back to wearing my Zigs for what they were meant for everyday/jogging wear.