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:: 2014 1 October :: 2.25 pm

Just haunting old haunts.

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:: 2013 17 February :: 1.20 am

Yesterday was exhausting and I just woke up from a recovery nap. I went to the hospital I was at last semester and shadowed my former clinical instructor from 7 a.m. to a little after 5 p.m. It wasn't my intention to be there past noon, but the nurses were good about letting me practice, which made it harder to refuse their requests for tedious things like vitals and glucose checks. If anything, it's safe to say that I'm "independent" on recording blood sugars.

My instructor has offered to let anyone from our second semester group come in for more experience. I guess I'm the first one to contact her about it. It probably wasn't the best decision since I still have my normal clinical responsibilities for maternity and pediatrics (plus two exams next week), but yesterday was my first free Saturday after the EKG final. Also, I miss the atmosphere of a med-surg unit. The hospitals I'm at now are excellent (especially the children's hospital), but my rotations to labor and delivery and the triage unit were not ideal, except for one C-section. I feel very in the way at times.

Most of the day was spent administering meds, which is not something I miss. Giving meds and charting aren't just time sucks--they're soul sucks. But I really do need to review the early stuff--medication administration, IV therapy, oxygenation. Patho. Pharm. Assessment.

Overall, I still think it was worth showing up. I got to start an IV on an older female patient. Another nurse showed me how to collect a urine specimen from the Foley tubing. Gave a few insulin shots, too. On the less glamorous side, I helped a CNA do peri care for a heavyset man with some kind of throat cancer. He had a large bowel movement. The stools were black and tarry. It was rough work trying to turn him and get him as clean as possible, but he was extremely relieved and grateful when we were done. I dunno. Sometimes I wish I'd started as a CNA. I understand why some RNs and students think aide work isn't a respectful use of their time, but if the patient isn't a jerk, I get fulfillment knowing I helped someone out like that.

My instructor is still a character. She likes to teach and tell stories. She can be prickly, though. I couldn't get away with some of the things she says. In the morning I noticed she drew flowers on the whiteboards in patients' rooms. A few had drawings of California poppies, the state flower. She said they're one of her favorite little flowers. They grow on the side of the road, but for some reason she couldn't get them to grow in her garden. One patient received a yellow coneflower drawing, which I mistook for a sunflower.

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:: 2013 3 February :: 6.25 pm

Bit by the writing bug
Most of what I do is based on the assumption that I know myself and how I think. But that isn't right. It can't be right, because I haven't kept a journal in years. Not even an Internet diary, or whatever you call it. And if I don't write, I don't know myself.

I feel like I've been asleep. Like I just woke up and noticed that five years have passed. I lived through them in dream-time, which makes everything slow and unreal in your head. Filtered somehow, like a film reel. You don't realize how fast things go until they're behind you. I can see quick cuts of scenes: sleeping on the floor, people-watching on the trolley, sobbing when I got accepted to nursing school. Night labs. Clinicals. A wedding.

I don't know how to think anymore. I probably couldn't gather enough thoughts to whisper into my coffee mug in the morning. But I'd like to start writing again. I've got a blank journal and a pen. Need to find time, though.

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