Tuesday, December 25, 2012

If I can't go to Texas, then I want to move to Alberta!!!!

So my best friend - whom I've known for 30+yrs (ever since she was born) - just broke up with her boyfriend (sad I know but not the point) - and so I called to console her (as any good friend would do!) and was asking details and such and then I asked her about whether she would move to be closer to her mom & brothers (all moved from our hometown to the Alberta oil sands), which she said she would (kinda figured she would).

And then we got to talking about how long and such.... she said til she pays off her debt and can afford a good down payment for a house. Ok, that sounds logical right? I asked her if she was going to work in her own field (social worker) and she told me that she probably would but if she couldn't find work then she would take whatever was available, again logical! Then she told me that the ppl there generally earn approx. $30 PER HOUR, without having a specialization or a bacelors+ degree! Hell, her brother who only has a highschool education makes 70,000 per year! ok WOW!

Then I asked her what RPN's make, if her brother knew anyone..... he said they average 100,000 + per year!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

OK, now I'm moving to Alberta!!!! I have LOTS of debt and could totally use a down payment!!!! Now if only I could convince hubby to move to somewhere cold for a couple of years!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

"Stop all vital signs"

So last week or so one of the on-call Dr's had to swing by our unit for one reason or another and I commented on an order I had gotten by another doc...

"stop all vital signs".... well I made the comment that it was the first time that I had seen this and I was surprised. Then he told me about a couple of nurses that he had run into that obviously had NO common sense.

When I saw this order I rationalized that it had to do with taking the pt's vital signs and that we no longer had to take them every shift as we have to do with our other pt's. However, when this doc had written a similar order previously, the nurse commented to the doc "ok, how do you propose I stop all this patient's vital signs?"

He also told me about another time when he wrote an order -

doc - give fleet enema standing order daily

stupid nurse THREE days later to ordering doc - ok doc, do I still need to give these enemas standing???? WOW is all I have to say!!!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The one lie nurses will tell

We've had a string of deaths on the unit, majority of them are our DNR's and palliative pt's and surprisingly I'm still a virgin (meaning none of these ppl have died while they're in my care) and tonight when I went to work I found out that one of my pt's I had Saturday night had passed.

I was surprised and when the nurse who had the pt came onto shift I asked about the details. While talking with him we talked about how he informed the family. Another nurse was in the room when I brought this up and gave this piece of advice...

If a family member wants to know if anyone was there when they died, tell them YES - EVEN IF THAT MEANS YOU HAVE TO LIE!!! NEVER EVER tell them that they died alone. Hell, make up a story if you want to, but never tell them they died alone... it's like the #1 fear that family members have when their family member's in the hospital.

Well sure enough, we had a sudden death on our unit tonight.... and what ONE question did that family member have?! Yep, "did he die alone". Thankfully we could answer this one truthfully because she had like 4-5 nurses around her when she took her last breath.

Moral of the story - ALWAYS tell a family member that someone was there when they took their last breath, never leave them with guilt that they couldn't be there when they died. At least the family will take comfort in knowing that at least SOMEONE was around, even if that isn't the truth.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

The business of being born

Today I watched the documentary "The business of being born" and it's something that I feel strongly about... I don't necessarily think that every woman should have a home birth - but I certainly think that less intervention during labor and birth should be done.

Birth is a natural process IMO - and though I believe in a woman's choice to pain control - I also believe that birth takes time and as shown in this documentary, many hospitals don't give women the time it takes to have a baby.

I know that in this day and age, we want immediate results and as such this has affected how labor and delivery occurs. What is too often seen is a pt getting pitocin or being brought back for a c-section, which isn't always necessary. That's not to say that c-sections aren't required for some circumstances, but I often think that these are being done too often because establishments (hospital policies, doctors, etc) are saying that it's unsafe for a woman to be in labor without changing on a regular basis.

I postulate this - approx. 20-30 yrs ago - my mother's generation, how likely was it to hear that women had labor that existed for DAYS???!!! And this was alright with physicians!!! I think that a page from yesteryear should be brought back.

It's ALRIGHT to let women labor, and to deliver without interventions like vaccums and pitocin augmentation. There is a time and place for these things but it shouldn't be a majority like it is currently.

I think that doctors and hospitals are too concerned that they're going to be sued by patients if they let women labor for too long and if something should happen for mom or baby, then law suites will occur. Nothing will change unless the patients share responsibility and stop suing doctors for things like this.... become informed, take responsibility for your own labor and take the position that if you want to labor for longer than an institutions' policy, then sign off that you're taking responsibility for this and should anything happen, then you can't sue unless malpractice occurs.

Doubt anything will ever change tho, it's sad, it would reduce c-section rates.

Withdrawing care & comfort care measures

I've spoken about this before, but we see it ALOT on our unit. Because we have many stroke patients come through our unit, it really gets to me that ppl don't know how to bring up this subject.

Why is it so hard to talk to ppl about death and dying and being realistic. Why hold out hope that your family member/patient will pull through to just be a burden on the system and the family?! IMO, if God wills this person to live, they will but don't put in a NG/G/Peg tube to prolong the life of ppl. I think it's a pointless to prolong these lives.

There's one family I dealt with who their father had a stroke several years back, he lived for 3 yrs with complications before finally dying. Because of this, their mother indicated verbally (of course not in writing!) that should anything like that befall her, to make her a DNR and let her die! Well go figure, same happens to her and this family makes her a full code!!! Then when she stabilizes, the family is FINALLY persuaded to make her a DNR BUT they want to put in a G-tube.... STUPID!!!! UGH But of course I have to keep my opinions to myself and respect the decisions of this family. After a month or so, the only thng she had done was open her eyes. Not much of a life right?! Another pt we've dealt with is semi-comotose and they put a g-tube in her. It's soooo frustrating.

On the other side of this coin, we've had several where the family decided to withdraw care other than comfort care measures and these people have passed peacefully without having to suffer from bed sores, infections,etc. I relish those times.

I have also dealt with a family who had their loved one come in with pneumonia, possible TB and the person is elderly and cognitively intact and doesn't want to eat or drink. What's going to be their decision???? I think that if ppl can make decisions before they lose their minds, let them do what they want! Provide comfort care measures and end of life support and allow them to pass they way they want to!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

I FINALLY finished my exams for a years worth

So I'm officially one step closer to attaining my RN license! I finished all four of my challenge exams.

Next step - NCLEX-PN.... trying to get to write it is half the battle though, frig the obstacles they're making me jump through just to sit and write a friggin exam is rediculous!!!

On a side note - the weather has hit us from Hurricane Sandy - though it's a good storm, I don't see why ppl are freaking out about it. It's a STORM not and I repeat NOT a hurricane here in Ontario Canada!!! Now if I lived on the coast I may be a bit more worried, but I don't so it's all good!!!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Tumefactive MS (multiple sclerosis)

In our hospital we deal with a lot of WEIRD/uncommon diseases. One of the weird ones I've encountered is tumefactive MS. I hadn't ever heard of this and I had to do some research on this. I also spoke with one of our neurologists. Especially considering my aunt has MS and when they started treatment for my patient, it was completely different than the normal.

I'll give you some background cuz how this pt came to us is unusual.... the pt is a new mom, still a teenager (therefore should have gone to paediatrics, but didn't) and when she was brought to the hospital it was because her family thought she had post partum depression (PPD).... she was sleeping like 20 hrs a day and had stopped taking care of herself and her baby. The crazy thing is that she had been like this for 2+ WEEKS before they brought her to the hospital!!! Her BF admitted that he had been oblivious to what was going on with her and the only reason they brought her to the hospital was because she had gone crazy on her BF's head when he tried to push her into having a shower.

Now, I will at least give the physician's at our hospital a kudos because when they received her, they gave her a head CT - but after they put her on a form 1 (involuntary psych hold for 72 hrs for assessment) and gave her the diagnosis of "psychosis" - which even after a definitive diagnosis still follows her throughout her stay at the hospital, and IMO is ridiculous!

When they did the CT scan they found FIVE lesions on her brain - HOLY CRAZY BAT MAN!!! Because of this all he brain was swollen and put all together caused a massive decrease in her LOC and mental capabilities.

When she came to our unit, I asked her our person, place, and time questions but made it more personal, this is how it went...

me: "can you tell me what month we're in..."
her: "it's June"
my thoughts - ok we're only off by 4 months LOL
me: "ok, what day is it..."
her: "the 27th"
my thoughts - yep we sure are off like 3 weeks!
me: "well then, what year are we in..."
her: "1994"
me.... trying VERY hard not to giggle at her.... we're only off like 18 yrs....

I looked at her mom and said, "isn't that her birthday?" Ya sure is....

When I asked her about what gender her baby was, she told me that she had had a boy

that's when I knew she was in deep trouble because there isn't ANY mother that would screw up the gender of their child unless there's something major going on!

When they started treatment for her, they started her on solu medrol (aka prednisone - aka steroid)but no meds that decrease the demyelinization that occurs with MS... that's when I asked the neurologist why they did this....

I guess the difference between regular MS and this kind is that it's a fast acting MS and causes lesions to occur in the brain and therefore the solumedrol will decrease this.... the freakiness of this condition is that it attacks fast and mimics a lot of other neuro conditions and is often mis diagnosed as a brain tumor which is dealt with differently and could lead to the patient's demise.

Even 4 days on a high level of this steroid there wasn't much change in her neurological status until they doubled the dose... now she's a spit fire and soon will need to have rehab to try to gain what this condition has robbed her of. Patient's like these make me wish that I could follow them along because it's soooo interesting.

Friday, October 5, 2012

3 down, 1 to go

Did my third exam today. Every exam I've done I keep getting less and less percentage.

My second exam I got 87%, this time I got 82%... but everything I've read online indicates that these last few are the hard ones. I mean, this most recent exam had 21 chapters on everything nursing care for adults.... it was craziness!!! Also, there were some questions that weren't even in the damn book, go figure!

Next week I do my final exam - nursing care for the pediatric population... should be interesting, there's 23 chapters for that course!!!

I head off to work this weekend, should be interesting. I hope I get a few select ppl for my pts, I've established a good therapeutic relationship with a couple and enjoy taking care of them.

The other week I was taking care of a dementia pt who because of his illness is now aggressive with the nurses. He pinches, bites, scratches, hits.... and then later cries about it. It's not something that he can control. TOTALLY SUCKS FOR ALL!!! The other day it took THREE of us to make sure that no one got hurt.... and he STILL managed to sucker punch one of my co workers. Geeze, work hazard or what?!!!!

Friday, September 21, 2012

The damn 1%

I did my first exam for school... only took me a year! Well sorta, I did manage to do all the readings for 4 courses, only now getting around to doing the exams.

My first exam was OB - and I came out of it with 97%.... YAY for me. The only downfall is that I missed the A+ by a blasted 1%!!!

So now I`m psyched to do the other 3 exams, 2 next week.... hope I can keep this up so then I`ll have a super high GPA when I eventually go for my NP or bite the bullet and go for med school....

Tomorrow I`m day shift - UGH!!!! I`m just thankful that my two dayshifts are on the weekend so I don`t have to worry about tests and LOTS of Dr orders!!!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Girls night out

So about once a month (we'd probably do it more often but the other gals are too busy!) go out together and hang out. We've been doing it almost 2 years now. It all started because of a mom's group for our city that we all belong to. Each of us have at least one kid, my daughter is the youngest at 3 1/2 years and my GF Eva has the oldest, twins who are 7 (possibly 8) and the other 3 girls have kids in between those ages. None of us have kids that are the same age, which I think is amusing.

It's TONS of fun to hang out with these gals because NONE of us have the same career - Eva is a real estate agent, Nat works for Siemens as a money person (her role is confusing to say the least!), Maya is an assistant manager at a 4/5 star hotel in the big city, Shelley is a social worker and then you have me, the nurse. So ya, it's interesting when we all get together because you don't have anyone who has a similar job and therefore you don't have anyone making cliques or anything like that.

So whenever we get together, we usually start out with dinner at 7:30-8:00 and usually close the restaurant - midnightish.... but for the 2 years that we've been getting together, not ONE person has approached us with leaving, they usually leave us alone til we're ready to leave or we notice that they're waiting by their door, wanting to close the restaurant. LOL

So ya, I'm just a weeee bit excited to get together with my friends and catch up

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

What is society coming to?!

On our unit we have this patient who is super obese, like so far she has a bariatric bed and wheelchair! It doesn't help that this girlfell down stairs and can't move anything besides her head.

She's sooooo fat she takes 3-4 nurses to change her position!

She's soooo fat that even with that many nurses, 3 nurses on the unit are off work because they hurt their backs trying to change her position!

I know that society now a days is fatter than they have ever been, but is this the sign of what we're going to have to deal with everyday??? God help us and our backs!

Monday, September 10, 2012

I'm coming home

I came home today. It was SUPER sad to leave my son and my mom. I loved having the two weeks away but as always, it was nice to come home. The two weeks FLEW by (doesn't it always?!)

Tomorrow I'm back at the grind. I have to get back into super study mode. I'm set to do my exam for sunday. I have to work Thurs, Fri, Sat evenings. It's always interesting to see the unit after quite a bit of time off because there's hardly anyone there that was when you went off. You start back at the beginning.

Speaking of beginning, I am starting there again with my work outs. I'm going back to the gym starting tomorrow. As soon as hubby gets back from work, then I'll leave to go to the gym. I need to loose some of this weight that I have that's not very healthy. Ahhhhhh to have goals!!!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Home with Family

I've been away for almost 2 weeks. I've come to my hometown to hang with family and see my kiddo. I LOVED going out to the cottage and being able to fully relax, to go swimming, having a campfire and just being able to be with family and good friends.

I have been too relaxed, I haven't done much studying.... and when I get back home on Monday I have to begin testing out on my courses. First up is Nursing care for the childbearing family, and the other one is Mental health aspects of nursing practice. I have to study more for the OB one cuz let me tell you, there is a LOT of stuff covered in that course!!!

One of the good things about coming back is that I get to travel thru Michigan (in the US).... and get to do a TON of shopping!!! YAY SHOPPING!!! When I go back home I have to stop and shop again, I'm trying to find a nursing outfit that I like... I found the bottoms but the top I HAD found was sold by the time I got back to the store. AND my credit card was cancelled by the company I got it from because they thought there was fraudulent activity, ya it was me trying to use it on my vacation!!!! GRRRR Thankfully I have a back up CC cuz I would seriously be up a creek without a paddle!!!

My brother & SIL are pregnant right now - approx. 34 weeks. I'm so excited for them, they've had difficulty getting pregnant. They've been trying for 3 yrs now so it's nice to see that they're going to have a child. This sunday my mom's throwing a baby shower for them. My mom bought them a travel system (stroller & car seat together) that cost sooooo much money!!! When I was preggo with my daughter, she bought me one as well and a whole whack load of baby supplies. She didn't buy the other stuff for them so I hope that they don't complain. The reason why she didn't buy the other stuff was because my travel system cost half of what theirs does. Oh what ppl would assume when they don't know the details!!! Oh well, we shall see.

My bestie and I have been able to hang a whole bunch - LOVE HER! and last night we went to her mommie's house to grab some stuff out of her garden... so tonite I'm having fresh carrots and beets from their garden. OOOOOO I cannot wait, it's going to be so yummy! Maybe I'll have to get a few pictures to post for next time.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Am I losing my touch with humanity?

Lately on our unit we've had an increase in the amount of deaths. Now I understand that eveyone has to die, heck we don't live in the age of the bible/torah/quran and live to be 800 yrs+

That being said, we've also had people on our unit who are DNR (do not resuscitate) who I can't help myself in thinking that many of these people I would rather see die... but only because IMO they are suffering.

The last shift I worked was one such case - I had a patient who's not very old - I'd say youngish, on TPN (since like 2001/02), was severely emaciated, had several comorbidities and had been in and out of units (whenever he gets readmitted he gets put back on our unit for some reason - totally unrelated to the fact that our unit is for neuro pts) for like a year+.

During this last admittance, he suddenly started vomitting blood EVERYWHERE and had to have an emergency scope to have varices in his stomach banded/cauterized. When he returned back to us, he required like 6-10 units of blood, plasma, IV fluids, etc...

To see him, he was CLEARLY suffering - and I'm thankful that he passed because you could see that not only was he suffering, but so was his family.

Another pt we've had on our unit is an older patient who is also a DNR, tho has late stage dementia. She's been on our unit for several months I think and recently became a DNR, the family was in denial about her condition for so long. This woman moans CONSTANTLY, is completely delirious and is VERY difficult to take care of, emotionally and psychologically because there's nothing that we can do to settle her. Even super strong anti psychotics don't touch her. She's REALLY difficult to feed or get her to drink and therefore she's starving herself. At least with the DNR in place, we don't have to give her a feeding tube. I'm hoping that she's passed, her family is having such a hard time seeing her waste away, physically and psychologically. They cry almost every time they come to visit but know that a DNR is the best thing to do. Thank goodness!!!

We have another lady on our unit who's on restraints because she has a neuro disorder that causes these involuntary movements. Now, in our province, no LTC (long term care) facility will take a pt with restraints, and therefore must stay with us in the hospital. This family, tho will not make her a DNR. I don't understand why, or maybe the Dr hasn't talked/pushed the family into making her a DNR. It's not like this lady's condition is going to improve, it'll only get worse! It's a terminal disorder. And I certainly don't want to be pushing down on this lady's chest when the time comes that her brain is going to deteriorate to the point where she stops breathing and I have to call a code on her, because she isn't a DNR. SOOO frustrating. I am surprised tho that this family comes to the hospital DAILY - for lunch or for dinner and personally feed her. It astonishes me because you think that that would eventually fade.

My question to you folk out there.... have you ever thought about delaying calling a code on someone who should VERY obviously SHOULD be a code????

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Family & School

So I know that I don't talk about school that often, it's just that I haven't been really motivated to get much of it done. Doing school work from a distance is tricky with ADHD, however, I've managed to get 4 courses read and notes done, now it's time to challenge exam them.

On Sunday, my daughter and I head up to my hometown to spend some time with family and darling son. I'm looking forward to it but also dreading it a bit. I've run into some drama which has made me dread going up....

My son will be 11 in November, the court agreement indicates that I get him for the summer. This year, though, his father manipulated him (IMO) and had him indicate to me that he only wanted to spend 4 weeks (out of 10) with me. I was hurt but I allowed this to occur. Especially considering his father said that I was abusing him (my son) by indicating that his decision hurt my feelings and that I didn't want it to occur.

I made plans to go to my hometown in like April, not that I told my son or his father any of this (non of their business IMO) for the end of August, because I was going to surprise kiddo with the trip to hang with Nana & Papa while he was still with me - but that got taken away from me.

Now under the court agreement, I'm supposed to get him for the entire time that I'm in my hometown but instead I have to give my son to his asshole father for 3 days - there's so much more drama besides this but whatever. I always have to give up time, it's frustrating and hurtful.

Another thing has to do with my bestie and my mom, if either came to my area, it would be expected that I take time off from my job in order to spend time with them, but the same thing isn't being done when I go to my hometown.

My bestie, I can sympathize with (even though it saddens me) because her job doesn't have enough nurses to accomodate her getting time off unless it's vacation (and even then she still has to fight them to have it), but with my mom there's really no reason.

She works at a grocery store and there's TONS of younger and less senior ppl under her that she can tell them she wants a couple of days off. It's not like my parents are hurting for money or anything. I even told my mom that it felt like I had to pay her to stay off from her work. My mom takes 4 wks of vacation during the summer - 2 wks to go to HER bestie's cottage and then 2 wks for all of her friends to go to HER cottage.... and I figured that I would come during the last half of her vacation so that I can see her friends and mom and then another week where her and I can hang out, without having her have to go to work. But this isn't the case. This has been this way my ENTIRE life, why would I expect anything different to happen? She told me like 2 months ago, that if I were to go up to my hometown, that she would take time off to spend with me... and then when I tell her that that's what I would like her to do, she tells me no way.

When I called her and cried because it was hurting my feelings so much, she FINALLY said that she would try to see what she could do.... I guess we'll see when I go up on Sunday.

I'm about to start my nursing courses for my pre-req to get into the program - I'm looking forward to going and spending some leisurely time, swimming and studying cuz when I return, I have to challenge four courses -
* Nursing care for the childbearing family
* Nursing care for the adult
* Nursing care for the child and family
* Nursing care for mental health (something like that)

While I'll be studying these, I also figure that I'll be studying to take my NCLEX-PN since I also have to take this when I return (probably at the end of September, beginning of October) seeing that I'm trying to get my license in Michigan in case we decide to move to the states.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Death & Dying - what I learned

I was working the other week, and one of my co workers had a patient who had been going downhill. It was such a sad story - the husband and wife came to Canada from out east to visit their children and the husband had a stroke and the wife forced her husband to come to my hospital. He of course was admitted. Now of course when ppl go on holiday they don't (always) think to get health insurance so now that they're at my hospital, there's no way to pay for the care and so the hospital goes after the children's ability to pay.

During grand rounds I learn that this person has been going through cycles since coming to the hospital - that his doctor had been trying to make him healthy enough so that he could get on a plane to go back to his parent country. Unfortunately, he would get well for about a week and then would start to spike a temperature and would have to be held up and begin a round of antibiotics, and that would be the cycle. It was like EVERY time he was well enough to get a clean enough bill of health as is required by airlines to allow sick ppl onto their airplanes, he would spike another temp and wouldn't be able to go back.

The shift I worked, I was told by the nurse taking care of him that he wasn't doing well, his BP was REALLY poor but his O2 was alright, but that he didn't look good. Thankfully the family had made him DNR so at least if things went awry we wouldn't have to pound on this poor patient's chest to revive him and keep him alive for longer than he needs to be.

The nurse came out and explained that she thought he would die during that particular shift and felt that there wasn't anything that could be done to alleviate any suffering. She called the on-call doc, who just happened to be one of my favorite docs and he ordered some dilaudid for him and some scopolamine as this med dries up secretions and the "death rattle" is less so the family isn't as upset by it.

The doc agreed that he was in the final throes of dying and that it wouldn't be long before he died. I was talking to the doctor and a couple of the other nurses when the wife comes out to the nursing station speaking Hindi - a language that not enough of us speak but we did have a couple of ppl on at that time and we pulled one of them (the male of the two) to translate as the wife was trying to speak to the doctor and pull him back into the patient room. Now when we pulled the male nurse to translate the face he was making was hilarious and it was almost as though he had NO idea why we were grabbing him and it was hilarious so I laughed.

I found out when the doc came back to the station was that her husband had just breathed his last breath and was coming out to indicate this.

I felt soooooooooooo bad that one of the last things that this woman may remember will be laughing when her pain was excrutiating. I am not someone who enjoys seeing another person in pain. I wish I coudl have spoken the language with enough fluency to apologize for any pain that I may have inadvertently causing her.

Morale of the story - get health insurance whenever you travel, you never know what's going to happen and you really do need to be covered. And never laugh at ANY point in time if someone is dying on your unit, because it may be perceived in another manner in which you meant it. ESPECIALLY if someone speaks another language. They have NO idea why you're laughing, and nothing is funny when your loved one is dying.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Some people you just want to punch in the face!

Last Saturday we were asleep in our beds - all EIGHT of us in the house.

My MIL woke up at approx 4am to get a drink of water in the kitchen, my son woke up at approx. 7am. My husband woke up at approx. 9am and about a 1/2 hr later wanted to play on the PS3, when he realized that the PS3 wasn't below our mounted TV. Thinking that possibly my BIL took it upstairs he went upstairs to look for it. No luck, and he came back downstairs to see if anything else was missing to find out that we were ROBBED!!!

Sometime between the hrs of 0400 and 0700 someone came into the house and stole:

hubby's wallet
1 laptop
2 cell phones
1 PS3
1 Iphone touch
1 army rucksack FULL with army clothing
1 army sleeping bag
and the cords attached to our mounted TV

Now we had data lost from my cellphone and computer since it wasn't backed up.

To say I was pissed was an understatement! And it was all my BIL's fault - he left the front door open!!! And no one in the house was willing to blame him. UGH, I hate that guy!!! When the police came to the house and fingerprinted, they indicated that since there was sooo many ppl in the house, that it was impossible to get a viable fingerprint. So there was no hope at that time that any of our stuff would be recovered.

On monday hubby and I went to get some of his cards replaced. When we got back to the house, we got a call from the police who said that they recovered a few items - my laptop, my cellphone and the PS3 and the cords associated with these items as well as the ones for the TV and the army items.

When hubby was speaking to the police, I squealed in joy! I almost cried I was soooo happy some of the stuff was returned. Especially the ones that had data associated with it.

I have video on my cell phone of little tyke learning her ABC's and when we went camping 2 wks ago little tyke played with the campground dog and I got video of her playing fetch with it and later that day the doggy got run over by a boat trailer and it snapped it's leg so badly that she had to be put euthanized. Therefore it was the last video that the owner has of the dog and I hadn't had a chance to upload it to the computer and back it up so I was really upset about it all.

Thankfully when we got it back everything was still there. The robber hadn't wrecked any of our things or reformatted anything. ALLAH AQBAR (GOD IS GREAT!!!).

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Let me be a nurse, I'm not crippled - just in pain

My back still isn't better. X-ray showed that I don't have a disc herniation, just a sprain. And while that's goodish news, it doesn't mean that I'm in any less pain. I've been on modified for about 3 weeks, and it's completely boring! Up to this point they won't let me do ANYTHING nursing related - hell not even vital signs! It's ridiculous and is driving me crazy. On friday I went and spoke with the oc-health person I've been dealing with so that we can get a plan in play that will tag me back into the nursing ring.

How do I know if I can do all my regular duties if they won't let me do any of them?! Thankfully the oc-health lady helped me out and today my physician signed off on the tiered/staged plan to get me back to work. Unfortunately, it's according to my schedule at work which every second week I'm off for 7-10 days (which is great if I didn't need the money and the ability to pick up extra shifts) which means that I don't go back to working full duty and the ability to pick up more shifts until Aug 10th.

On another note, my son told me today that he only wants to come and visit for 4 weeks this summer. It's crap and I'm pissed off about it. My feelings are hurt about it all. It sucks that my hometown and everyone there is being chosen over me and the ppl down here. My heart aches cuz I know that I got screwed in the court system and there wasn't anything that I could do about it at the time because I didn't have the finances to take A-hole to court about this all, and in the end I paid for it. It sucks, sucks, sucks!!! I want to cry and cry but it's not going to make the situation any better. UGH!!!!

The in-laws here went house looking last week and found the perfect house - it's 4 bedrooms upstairs and then an apartment with 2 bedrooms in the basement. And while hubby, kiddos and I will be confined to the basement again, at least I will see the light of day in there because the set up is that of an apartment and I will no longer have to share a room with the kids! How glorious is that?! Unfortunately, it's contingent on the selling of the current house which means we have been UBER busy getting rid of the clutter and junk around the house and having it staged. Which is easier said than done when you have a 3 yr old running around. The other crappy part is that it doesn't keep clean seeing that the 3 yr old thinks she can make messes everywhere (not that I expected anything less but still aggravating none the less) and lastly, the showings of this house are driving me crazy because we can't be in the house when there are agents or potential buyers in the house which = we must vacate to SOMEWHERE for the HOURS that it takes.

This weekend we had to be out of the house for 8hrs on Saturday and 9hrs on Sunday. Goodness that's a long time to be somewhere else, especially if you don't have close family around that you can just "drop" in on seeing as some of these hours were made as a last minute thing. Same thing happened today as well. I really do hope this house sells quickly so that we can get back to our regular duties!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Oh my back doc, what are we going to do?!

So about a month back I was turning an obese pt by myself, ya I know, stupid, but the ppl I was working with were also super busy so there wasn't anyone I could really ask for assisstance. When I turned this pt, I hear a pop in my back but nothing hurt so I just went along my merry little way. Give it a couple of days and yeppers by back started to hurt. Well just before we went to Cuba I couldn't take the pain anymore and went to a chiropractor. He helped decrease my pain so at least I could function and I followed it up with a massaage, and did this at least once a week until last week when I got sick with a sinus cold and a chest infection. Well just when the sinus and chest starts to look like I'm out of the clear, my back kicks up in over gear.

I went to my Dr who says that I need an x-ray (chiropractor thinks I have a L5/S1 disc herniation) so I went and did that yesterday and follow up next Tuesday and in the meantime I'm hitting the couch and muscle relaxants hard. Part of me hopes it is cuz then there's a legitimate reason my back hurts so much and the other part hopes it isn't cuz that would suck hard!

Guess we'll see on Tuesday.

Monday, May 28, 2012

On-call medicine jerk

One of my previous posts indicated I had a run in with a doctor so here's the post that explains it...

It was on a weekend and so the reg doctors mainly were covered by other non regular doctors. We also had an admit from another hospital with whom the covering doctor accepted. Unfortunately he's not used to the policies and procedures of accepting other pt's from other hospitals and as such, this pt was due to arrive during the evening shift.

Now, these doctors get off at 1800hrs and after that we're expected to call the on-call medicine for orders. And this particular doctor swung by our unit before heading out. As such, I asked him about this particular pt and whether he was going to write orders before he left. He stated that since he didn't get a chance to assess the pt with his own eyes and hands, that he didn't feel comfortable writing orders... ok, fair enough. And off he went to spend the evening with his family.

The pt arrived after 1800 of course with a PICC line and a few other things going on. When the pt arrived I called the on-call medicine doctor for orders. I explained the situation and was told that he would NOT write orders for this pt and that I had to contact the covering doctor that accepted the pt. In response, I told the doctor that it was HIS responsibility NOT the covering doctor as it was after 1800hrs. Well that of course did not go over well. He got REALLY snotty with me, full of attitude and told me that I had to page the covering doctor and have him RETURN to the unit to write orders!!! I told him that I would not do that as it was HIS responsibility to write the admission orders, so this doctor said that HE would page the covering doctor and speak with him. OK, that's YOUR porogative (exactly what I told him) and 2 min later the covering doctor called me to say that he was going to come back to the unit to write the orders.

I could NOT believe that he would come back!!! IMO it just goes to show you the type of person and doctor that he is! Seriously wish that he was a more frequent doctor on our unit. And I don't believe that this doctor is used to writing admission orders as he asked for guidance and of course I offered. Tho several hours later, when I was putting together the admission package and making sure that everything was put into place, I realized that diet orders were forgotten.

As such, I had to again call the on-call doc - to get an order for an IV fluid as it was better to leave this head injury pt NPO unit speech pathologist could do a swallowing assessment on this pt. But when I asked for it, I was told that I had to AGAIN page the covering doc since "he didn't finish his admission orders". Of course I said that I wouldn't do it, and that I was only asking for a simple IV order, D5W or 2/3 & 1/3 just until morning when the covering doc would be back. He of course wasn't talking respectfully to me and when you disrespect me, don't expect me to be the kindest back. In the end he again said that he would speak to the covering doc again. My response, "that's your choice", "I'll be here".

Again the covering doc called and told me "if you need ANYTHING else for this pt, regardless of what time, just have me paged. Don't call the on-call doc for anything regarding this pt, I'll do it." and gave me orders for my IV and said that he would come in the AM to see if anything else needs to be done.

I followed up this event by emailing a couple of people above me and was told that the covering doc should have written orders before the pt arrived based on information in the admission packet we get from the other hospital.

NOW, I don't know of ANY doctors/nurse practitioners/dieticians/heck even nurses, who would write ADMISSION orders without setting eyes or hands on a pt. I understand on-call docs do this sort of thing all the time without setting eyes or hands on pt's, tho they are only writing orders for the interim til the regular doc can do something about the issue (as in a PRN analgesic order for a pt in pain), not writing admission orders. And they ask questions about why the order is req and any applicable information. And normally the on-call doc will swing by the unit when they're not busy so that they can write in the pt's chart and do the whole eyes/hands on assessment, and talk with the pt normally.

When I spoke with the chief doctor in charge of the other doctors (he's a reg doc on our unit), I was informed that I was correct in my thinking that it's the on-call responsibility to write the orders should the pt come to us after 1800hrs. I also sent an email and the response I got from my charge nurse was that no, the covering doc should have written orders. Such conflicting info!!! Was told that the doc was wrong with how he spoke to me but that's about it. The covering doc emailed me later and indicated that the jerk on-call doc apologized to him but did I get an apology for the way he spoke to me?! NOT A CHANCE!!! UGH!

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Vacation was interesting

So we went to Club Bucanero just outside of Santiago de Cuba. The surrounding area was spectacular, there's moutain ranges all surrounding the resort and on the one side is the ocean. And let me tell you, the ocean was always RIGHT next to us, it was BEAUTIFUL. The resort boasts about having EVERY room having an ocean view, except ours because we were right in front of the tennis court (that they didn't even have equipment for!)

What wasn't beautiful about this place was the food!!! Now, we don't expect much as we recognize that it's cuba, and this island is notorious for having bland food but even the quality of food prepared was TERRIBLE. Since we went last year to cuba, we were prepared for awful food and we brought a bag of our own spices and I also brought aunt jemima pancake mix and real maple syrup. The food was SOOOOOOOO bad that I had to make pancakes for lunch or dinner FOUR times while we were there because the food was inedible or majority of it was pork. Even the fruit that they had was mostly inedible. One of their saving graces was that they had freshly prepared bread and fresh churned butter, available at every meal.

We knew ahead of time that there wasn't much of a beach, but that there was excellent snorkeling there. And for the week that we were there, we only went snorkeling once, and even then, I was too busy talking to the friends that we made to actually do any snorkeling - hubby did tho and enjoyed it immensely. The pool that they had was nice tho, enjoyed it!

What we really enjoyed was renting the moped and going into the city. We got lost a couple of times but it was fun to try to figure out the city and where we needed to go. Heck, we even found a zoo!!!! And it wasn't even that bad to boot. They had a lot of monkeys and one had even had a baby recently and it was ADORABLE!!!. I need to learn how to put video on here and I would show you how adorable the baby monkey was. SOOOOOOOOO cute. One day we also went to the other direction and found us the acquarium and got to pet dolphins - unfortunately due to money issues they don't have fish everyday and only do dolphin swims on fridays and hubby and I got into a fight that day and I didn't want to hang with him so I didn't get a chance to swim with them. But I'm still happy I got to see them up close and touch them (a dream of mine). The pictures are in the other computer so I'll have to post them later.

Although we enjoyed the vacation, the food really ruined it, we wouldn't go back there because of it but I'm still glad that we experienced it.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Alot to post about

I do have several posts I want to do... one has to do with our vacation, second one has to do with little tyke turning 3 and the last one has to do with an event that happened at work between one of my favorite Drs and an on-call Dr. So stay turned, if I have time I may get them all done back to back.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Vacation here we come!!!!

Today is the day that hubby and I go on vacation.... SOLO - sans children or family or anyone that knows us and I CANNOT WAIT!!!

Where are we going you ask.....

Unfortunately our beach won't look THAT nice, but that's ok... it's only a short distance away.

Where we're going is here....

Here's a pic of the front entrance of the resort...

The name of oour resort is Club Bucanero. It's a 3.5 star rated place. We're brining our own spices, ketchup, mayo, and peanut butter since these are in short supply there. And according to trip advisor they don't taste like what we expect them to.

And this is what I plan on doing while I'm there... sipping on some fresh coconut juice and sitting under some sun.

Last year we went to Cuba as well, but I didn't get to love me some sun because I was taking Accutane - a med for acne that makes one photosensitive and I BURNED unless I had a LAYER of visible sunscreen (60 SPF btw) on my skin. It was soooo bad that I had water blisters and my skin peeled from my shoulders all the way down to my fingers. This year I'm hoping to lay under the sun (still with SPF 60 on me, don't want melanoma thank you very much!) or swim in the pool or snorkel in front of our resort and love me some coral reef.

Hoping to meet some nice people while we're away like we did last year - Tina & Bonnie. I also want to do some adventuring, we're going to rent two mopeds for a couple of days (maybe even a week) and explore the near by city (25ish km) which is the 2nd largest city in Cuba, it's called Santiago de Cuba. We're supposed to lift off at 1530hrs and hubby said that he'll bring us somewhere for lunch before we go. OH I'M SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO EXCITED (as if you couldn't tell!)

I'll try to post some pics when I return. Hope everyone has a great week while I'm off enjoying myself some sun and warm water.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Back to normal and hitting it hard - so hard I cried

So I'm back at work, back to my usual schedule. This week I started off with 6 shifts in a row. Monday and Tuesday were day shifts and the other 4 are evenings. And let me tell you something, I HATE DAY SHIFTS!!!!!!!!!!!! Especially Mondays!

So ya, monday mornings suck!!! I knew it would totally suck but I wasn't prepared for the suckiness of my shift! I had a trach pt who was due for a barrium swallow test, to check and see if she was swallowing properly and to see what thickness the fluid had to be to prevent aspiration. And in our hospital at least, ALL trach pt's MUST be accompanied by a nurse for the ENTIRE procedure/test. So I ended up being off the floor for 2 1/2 hrs - which put me behind like CRAAAAAAAAZY. I came back to the unit to find out that the nurse that I gave report to had done NOTHING for my other pt's. So when I get back I'm running around like a chicken with it's head cut off. While I was gone one of my other pt's went for a liver biopsy and when she came back (just before I returned) and had to have vital signs done like she was a surgical pt (so Q30 min X4 then Q1hr X2 and so on) and of course the nurse hadn't done VS for her so I had to do that one. The nurse hadn't done my meds while I was gone either so I had to get those done, and answer the call bells that were continuously going off. My trach pt also had diarrhea so I was CONSTANTLY going in there. I just couldn't catch a break, and was getting NO help from my colleagues. I also didn't have my break so when things settle down a sec (at 1400hrs), I spoke with my two other nurses who were relieving each other for breaks, just to find out that neither of those two while I was gone went for a break - which they really should have! So here I am expected to NOT have a break... not a fat chance in hell let me tell ya!

So I finally got a hold of my charge nurse to explain things and she told me to try to find another nurse on the floor to relieve me... so of course THAT took more time... to find out that there wasn't a nurse who could cover me! By the time I had all that information and I talked to the charge nurse it was 15 min later (because I had to track down all the other nurses) who said that she would cover my patients so that I could go for break. Later I find out she gave my patients to one of the girls who wouldn't cover me (the two nurses in my area who didn't do their breaks while I was gone) and they didn't do ANYTHING for my pts while I was gone. Hell I didn't even sit down my entire shift except while on break, I didn't even get ANY charting done!

Therefore when I handed my pt load to the next nurse at 1530hrs she acted like I did NOTHING all day and just slacked off which is complete bullshit. The good thing is at least the charge nurse had my back and knew what my day was like. But the nurse's attitude totally affected me and when I was done my shift I had to stay and do my charting for the entire shift since I didn't get to and it took me TWO hours to get that all done because of all the crap I had to chart about. I started to cry while doing my shift because I was completely overwhelmed by the suckiness of my shift and the way the nurse treated me like I hadn't done anything and was leaving it all for her. Thankfully I talked to the charge nurse to explain what happened and she calmed me down, letting me know that I had done my best with what I had to deal with that shift.

The next day was better but still craziness and my evening shifts I have a completely different set of pts but they're just as demanding and draining..... ah the life of a nurse!!!

Friday, April 6, 2012

Hi Hoe Hi Hoe, It's off to work I go

Tomorrow is the first day that I'm due back at work. It's about 75% back to normal. I'm still having the dizzy spells but rarely now and I've stopped having the shaking spells, thankfully. I still have a cough but I will live. So tomorrow I find out if I can be a nurse again.

You never realize how much you value health until you're sick, and boy do I miss being healthy! I miss going to work though. Being sick has certainly put a dent in my finances, I've been out of work for like 3 weeks now. I don't work full time and therefore do not get sick pay - rather a bummers for me! I'll survive, bummers it has to be on savings considering we don't have a whole lot at the moment!

I guess even if I'm not feeling the best tomorrow I'll have to suck it up and go anyways. Especially since I have a vacation that I want to go on and can't if we don't have the money for it! Pray that I can make it through, I don't want to have to come home sick cuz then my co workers have to work short - the hospital won't replace a nurse if it's in the middle of a shift, only if it's like before an hour after the shift starts.

So Hi Hoe Hi Hoe, It's off to work I go....

Monday, April 2, 2012

A thing of beauty!!!

I'm slowly getting better. Yesterday hubby and I took the little tyke to the hairdressers and had her hair chopped off into a bob - I think it perfectly suits her.... and makes it so that right now she cannot suck on her hair (disgusting coping habit that she has) which is a GREAT thing!!! Here's a pic of the beauty...

She is absolutely beautiful! Sometimes I wonder how I ever made such a beautiful little girl. I hope that this haircut will stop her from sucking on her hair and now JUST her thumb, guess we'll see though. I love her to bits and pieces regardless.

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Trying to recover

I've been home for a day now and while it's nice to be home, it's exactly what I thought it would be like... where the family thinks that just because I'm no longer in the hospital, it equals not sick, thereby all better.

I will make it crystal clear that that is NOT how things are! I'm dizzy all the time, which in turn makes me nauseous. It really sucks, and knocks me on my butt when it happens. I get all diaphoretic and feel like I could just pass out and fall on my head.

Last week my MIL got hurt at work - something fell on her and it hurt her back and neck. Now, I'm not one to say that you aren't in pain since pain is subjective - we all deal with it in our own way. But today she had the nerve to tell me that because she manages to do things around the house and she's "sick", then by that logic, so should I be. WTH!!!! It's like comparing apples to oranges...

I honestly feel like I shouldn't be at home right now - I don't feel well. I feel like I'm going through withdrawls or something. I don't know if this is a SE of the prednisone since I've never been on it before but I know that I'm certainly not well enough to go back to work and therefore not well enough to do work around this house - not enough that anyone around here would take notice of anyways.

I really wish hubby had a job in his field so that we could move out - I'm absolutely fed up of the treatment that I receive living here. UGH!!!!

I need to get better quick so that I can go back to work so that I can save some money so that I can finish school faster and get a house of my own!!!!!!!!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Discharge papers received

So by the power received by the doctor in my hospital, I have been told to go home... tomorrow that is. Dizziness in crazy intensity is occuring - new symptom for me... but Dr doesn't really care.

I'm being put on prednisone to hopefully help alleviate or cure the symptoms I'm experiencing. The Dr consulted the neurologist on what to do for me - I think I've stumped them with what's going on with me. Hell, I'm stumped so why shouldn't they be?!

I'm not exactly looking forward to going home - I don't quite feel ready for it. My body feels "off" and still not back to normal and therefore I don't feel ready to leave here. Especially to take care of little tyke.

I had my first shower in like 5 days, I know ewwww gross right.... well I assure you, if I could stand upright for longer than a bathroom pee break, I would be having one!!! Almost fell over today when I was heading back to my room I was sooooo dizzy. But hey, that doesn't seem to matter to anyone until I actually FALL. Ridiculous really. Felt good to have a shower, at least I look like a proper human being now, and I don't stink at least (not that I did before, thank goodness for the invention of anti perspirant and toothpaste!).

The ONLY thing I'm looking forward to is that I can see my family - my hubby and my baby girl. Even though my little tyke is a handful (being almost 3 will do that!), I miss her dearly and love her to bits and pieces. Hubby seems to have actually missed my absence. Tho I suppose when the caregiver of the little one leaves, that makes more responsibility for him right?! So I don't really blame him for missing me :P Even tho I say that, I know that he misses me because he loves me - as I love him. He's my rock... just wish he would have spent more time with me while I've been in hospital - I've been really lonely considering he's spent VERY little time being with me. A couple of dinners here and there is about all. It hurts my feelings but what can I do? And I know that one might say that he has the responsibility of taking care of little tyke... well considering we live with his family, that's not necessarily a requirement since he can ask them to watch her while he comes to me. He has brought her with him a couple of times - I know that little tyke certainly misses me. When she's seen me, I still had the IV and so she was quite apprehensive about touching me cause I had a "boo boo".... VERY sweet and VERY innocent.

I also miss my own bed - tho I do like the electric aspect to the hospital bed - quite convenient at times!!! Certainly makes one more lazy when getting out of bed!

Long story short - I leave tomorrow AM, I'll know more about follow up then. I know that the Dr is giving me at least til Tuesday to recuperate and should I need more time then I have to see my family Dr. I guess that will have to do, it's not like they're giving me another choice in the matter!

I need to be fixed

Well I'm still in the hospital.... it's been 6 days now, and still no end in sight. I've been attached to an IV for 3 days now, KCL 20mmol NS @100mL/hr, being that my potassium was low (probably because they put so much NS through me - like 3000mL), and they wanted to give me as much fluid as possible.

As I mentioned in my previous post - the belief was that it was either meningitis or encephalitis. Well it turns out that it's neither. At least that's according to my LP, CT and subequent MRI. All of them turned out to be normal. Well technically my LP had a cell count of 4 but anything below 6 is normal. So who knows.

The neurologist believes that I have a viral migraine - that I had a virus that "bugged" my brain and the migraine was the end result. Or that I had meningitis but since I took so long to go to the hospital and see someone and find out what was wrong. The problem is is that it doesn't want to go away. It's pretty bad that I can't be upright any longer than a bathroom break without the migraine hitting me like a sack of bricks. Holy shit does it hurt!

Also, the MRP (most responsible physician) for me took the morphine away 2 days ago - she believed that I was possibly getting a rebound headache from the morphine. So pain was to be my constant companion. At least I had Toradol - until the next MRP took THAT away, with the belief that it wasn't helping so why take it. Ya, nice thought UNTIL I experienced the migraine without it... normally when I'm laying flat I can manage the migraine... well without the Toradol, it was like I was sitting or standing upright. The pain SUCKED!!!! I still don't have the Toradol, but I'm being given Motrin - it only JUST barely takes the edge off. Not really though, but trying the positive thinking.

This morning a new symptom - dizziness.... while laying flat!!! And it wasn't like I was turning my head, getting up, or doing anything AT ALL... I was laying down doing NOTHING!!!

So now I have no idea what's causing this. It sucks! I miss being at home with my family, I miss my husband and my daughter... and I know that they miss me as well.

About the dizziness, the MRP asked to have my VS taken again - they haven't changed from my original set this AM so it's not like it's from HTN or hyptension. I don't know what could have happened to cause this symptom but it's not going away - at least not yet. The MRP still hasn't come to see me since the original visit, maybe she's looking into talking to the neurologist to find out what COULD be causing it.

I guess time will tell. Hopefully I get off the IV - I've heard that my potassium is back to normal and the fluids don't seem to be improving my migraine situation. Guess we'll see about that as well.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

eenie meenie minie moe

So I ended up at the hospital afterall... turns out I have the symptoms associated with meningitis or encephalitis - but which one is it... hence the title.

By the time I was fed up with meds not helping my pain, I hightailed it to the hospital. Though by then my fever had broke, or was in the process of breaking thanks to tylenol and motrin being used interchangably throughout the day, when I was FINALLY triaged it was 37.8. So when I finally saw a Dr, this is what occured.

First I had blood work done and my urine sample taken. They wanted to see if I had a chest infection or something else.

Then I had a chest x-ray done, that was clear.

Had a head CT done, that was clear.

Blood work and urine sample came back clear.

Lastly I had a lumbar puncture (PAINFUL btw, helped take my mind off the migraine - thankfully I had just received some morphine before the LP so it wasn't quite as bad but DEFINATELY hurt!).... but even THAT came back clear.

So ya, Dr doesn't know what's going on with me. My symptoms are consistent with the two - I did have a high fever before, that's now gone but the migraine and positional issues still remain. As do nausea and vomitting as well as photophobia.

I'm out of the hospital for the moment - was in since thurs evening. Pretty much the Dr wants me to go to my workplace now and be admitted there because the other hospital in my city doesn't have an MRI machine and neurologists only work at the sister hospital and there's a waitlist to see them. At least if I go to my hospital, there's both there at hand.

I'm on SR morphine - not really helping - trying to remain as supine as possible. Pretty sure I'm heading to my hospital in the AM. I would go now but I just want to sleep in my OWN bed, just once. Unless this migraine goes away tonight, tho that's highly unlikely since it's lasted for 6 days now.... sooooo frustrating.

Hopefully one of the neurologists at my hospital can actually help. Here's hoping anyways!!!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Meningitis (in the back of my head) or just a migraine?

The last couple of days have been difficult to get through. I went to the Dr's yesterday to get a sick note as I called in sick last week - still not 100% but enough to go back. I'm fighting a throat infection thingy, with a bit of a cough and I feel it's going into my left ear - when the Dr looked in my ear, she said it was clear. She did, however, say that my throat was reddened.

So I went to work yesterday and developed a headache while at work - took some Motrin around 1900 hrs and went on my merry way - working/fighting through the pain. The Motrin didn't get rid of the headache but at least took the edge off so that I could still focus on what I needed to do. Being in the DRY DRY hospital didn't help my throat either, was coughing quite a bit, think it might have irritated it more and also could have increased my ICP, not helping the headache situation.

By the time I came home the headache was starting to increase again, so I took some more Motrin and my other nightime pills and climbed into bed (approx. 0030 hrs). When I woke up, HOLY BATMAN was my head killing me! I felt sick, sick, sick. I took some motrin and stayed in my bed, figuring that I just needed some more rest or something. But a couple of hours later I felt like I was febrile. Checked my temp, and sure enough I'm sitting at 40.1 C - remember that I had already taken Motrin... So I take some tylenol headache - which has ES tylenol AND caffeine... should have helped my fever AND my headache BUT IT DIDN'T help ONE BIT! Didn't even really touch the pain.

Two hours later I couldn't take the pain anymore so I went back to the Dr. She checked my temp - yep still had a 38.0 temp. Because I'm allergic to codeine, demerol, and percocet, there wasn't a whole lot she could wanted to do about giving me something to relieve the pain... but she gave me a migraine medication.

When I went to pick up this med - for EIGHT doses, it cost me $147.47!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! HOLY EXPENSIVE! I almost crapped my pants! But honestly, I would have paid anything to make the headache go away.

The first dose didn't do a thing for the pain, two hours later I took the second dose (and now I can't have anymore for 24 hrs!) and it took another 3 hours for ANY pain relief. On a scale of 1-10, I'd put it at a 6ish... but the pain gets worse when I sit up or stand up. SUCKY! Which on that scale is like an 11 when higher than a supine position.

I hope I get better quick cuz I don't want to have to go to the hospital, I am at one enough because of my job, I know how things roll there and things take FOREVER to get done!!!!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Febrile children Oh NO!

Went to bed last night and checked on the kids before getting in myself - to find out that my eldest - kiddo had a temp. I KNEW he did, just by touching him. When I finally found a thermometer (don't know where they all went, we own like 8 of them!) and checked his temp, it was 102.9 F (39.1 C) - poor kid felt like crud. Said he had a headache and his legs were hurting and he just felt crummy. Gave him some tylenol and tucked him back into bed.

Gave him tylenol and tucked him in for the night. Thankfully in the AM it was normal again. I was also thankfully that he wasn't feeling nauseous since he has a SUPER finicky/sensitive stomach and vomits VERY easily.

When he was young, I couldn't force him to eat because if I did he would vomit it all up and then I would be further away from my goal than I would have been if I had let him stop eating when he wanted to.

I also know that when kiddo says "mom, I don't feel so good" I need to find him a container to vomit in IMMEDIATELY or else it's going all over me or right in front of him, and that could mean on the floor or all over the car! Such was the last time I did drop off for visitation.

He has hockey tomorrow, hope he's feeling all together better. I hate seeing the kids sick.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Steven Johnson Syndrome

I don't know about those who read the blog, but this is something that I have seen several times. When I first learned about it, I thought it was a rare occurance. However, we have someone on our unit who I SWEAR has it! Not that he's been diagnosed with it - doctors just think of it as a toxicity to one of the meds that he WAS on. That being said, when I started to peruse the internet about it, I learned that it IS indeed a side effect of one of the medications the pt was on.... dilantin. Prior to my perusing, I was under the impression that those who experience this VERY PAINFUL condition, that it's mainly due to a reaction to antibiotics or NSAIDs.

When I found this I had an "a ha" moment. I honestly don't think that the doctors on our unit managed this pt's condition well because he wasn't diagnosed with this.

This is the sort of things that the pt was experiencing....

Now his appearance wasn't as severe as the flank picture, and his oral mucosa wasn't this severe - but you can see how bad it can actually get. It can LITERALLY affect EVERY part of your body - and it's just like a SUPER SEVERE sunburn, and therefore you see blisters, weeping skin, peeling, etc. And they treat this condition as they would burns - preserving the airway because sloughing can occur in/on ANY part of the GI system - from the mouth to the anus, and the respiratory system as swelling can occur and these two things can compromise the airway. It's something that should be monitored closely.

Our poor patient blew up like a balloon, he was soooo sick. And because of restraints, blisters tended to form right under those and were so painful for him. Unfortunately he needed the restraints so you often felt bad having to go into his room to do personal care because you would have to fiddle with the restraints and turn him from side to side. VERY painful.

So be cognizant of seeing something like this and that it can become WAAAAY worse in a VERY short period of time. I wish that I was around when our guy was acutely ill because I think that he would have gotten the care he deserved. But I think that if the doctors had never seen anyone diagnosed with it previously, it's hard to connect the dots and come up with the correct diagnosis and therefore the correct treatment. I just wanted to share this so that anyone who reads this blog, will know that this is possible. My patient had this occur because he was on Dilantin - for seizures, but the docs didn't recognize his symptoms as SJS but treated it like it was an adverse effect - ya it SURE was but they certainly didn't treat it as SJS. Poor guy either way.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Manager's should leave well enough alone!

I'm an RPN (LVN/LPN for those US ppl) and at my hospital we get to practice to FULL scope - which means that we can do ANYTHING an RN can, minus take care of unstable patients.

So on one of my evening shifts I had the privlege of carrying 5 pt's - one where the family is over bearing and there looks like there's going to be legal action taken against the hospital as the family feels that the hospital has caused their mother's stroke (for another post); one pt that is a total care, but she turns really well, and she's a diabetic which means glucose testing and insulin; another pt is independent and only requires 1800 meds. Then I was supposed to get TWO admissions! Now one is enough but two REALLY sucks! And this I knew was going to be the case as soon as I started my shift. CRAP, CRAP, CRAP!!! At least that's what I said in my head.

The ONLY saving grace was that one of the new grad RPN's was going to be shadowing me for 4 hrs. GREAT! And good thing I had her or else I would have been screwed!!! Before the newest patient came up, I took report on the second patient. This is the report for patient number one...

Female in with confusion NYD (not yet diagnosed) and diarrhea. But she was in FOUR POINT RESTRAINT!!! Ok flag number one! Ok, on with report.... aggressive with staff and that's why she has the restraints on. She's on 40% oxygen by mask.... flag number two!! Then I get given her VS - temp normal, pulse in the 90's (okies... sorta), BP normal, O2 of 96% on said oxygen.... but flag number three and probably most worrisome was that her respirations were 40!!!! Yeah this doesn't sound normal... I was told that pt was stable and that there was a referral for a Dr - one that I've mentioned before I had to call in the middle of the night (refer back to my post about my pt with seizures and a back compression fracture). Another issue I had while I took report was that this pt was a diabetic, NPO but only on NS (normal saline) TKVO (to keep vein open)... which didn't make ANY sense because you would think that critically thinking that this pt would become dehydrated since she had diarrhea, was NPO and was a diabetic... ok whatever, I'll bring it up with our MRP (most responsible physician) who would be responsible for this pt - and get her started on D5W at 50cc/hr or something like that. At least that way you are addressing the dehydration possibility AND the diabetic sugar levels.

WELL, when this lady came to our unit, she looked and more importantly SOUNDED terrible!!! I don't know if any of you have ever heard of the "death rattle"... the sound that the chest makes when a person is close to death and aren't swallowing their saliva and these secretions go into the chest and make it sound all congested.... well that's what this lady sounded like. It was crazy - and all of us nurses were like, "why is this patient even coming to our unit, she should be going to ICU"....

The porter, RPN shadow girl and I transferred this patient onto our unit bed and away we went with our assessments. I had the other RPN take the respirations and I would get her BP, pulse and O2 sats.... Again BP was fine, pulse was elevated and O2 sat was 80%!!!!!!!!!!!!! And that was on 40% Oxygen - 8L per minute... MRP was on the unit and I went and grabbed her and had our unit clerk page support (part of our code blue team - which in essense is like me calling a silent code blue) - put the patient in high fowlers and went to grab ventolin and atrovent as well as suctioning equipment. RPN gave us a 40 resp rate and I gave her the suctioning equipment while I set up the breathing treatment. While she was on 100% O2 - during the breathing treatment - her level stayed above 92% - but once we put her back on the 40% she would bounce between 67%-94% sats... the 67% happened often because she was also having periods of apnea and would only breath once you verbally stimulated her.

Once she was stabilized a bit - where she was sitting above 80% sats for more than 5 minutes - I spoke with my UL (unit leader) about what this patient looked like clinically. She asked me whether I wanted someone else to take over. I told her no - that although she was unstable, she was stably unstable and that I felt that I was supported by many people on the unit. I had the MRP there, that if things changed that I have SEVERAL RN's on the unit that could take over, and that support was already paged and I knew what threshold to initiate calling a code. I also indicated that since I had the other RPN, I could stay with this stable patient in a closer fashion than is normal, for our unit.

Therefore I kept this patient... Thankfully I had the other nurse, who then took the initiative to take the blood sugars on the other people, as well as this new pt... and give meds, while I was caring for this new patient pretty much on a 1:1 basis.

About an hour later support came and assessed the patient and then got the other referring doctor to come see the patient and made the decision to put this patient in the ICU - all the while we are ALL in agreement that this patient should NEVER have come to our unit! The support nurse thankfully found a spot in the ICU and put that stuff all in place - without having to go through many hoops that would generally have had to occur and instead it was going to be a trade off. When this patient went to ICU, that I in turn would get an ICU patient back to me (one that was ready to be D/C'd from ICU though). By the time that that happened, I had this patient for almost 3 hours... it was craziness!!!! My lady patient was so unstable that we sent her, not by stretcher, by left her in our bed and wheeled her down the hallway to ICU. With me in tow, ensuring that she breathed.

It was funny bringing her to the ICU because when I gave the nurse taking over, report, she asked me if I would ever consider working in ICU... when I told her yes, she told me to apply for a job. I had to tell her I had to wait another year and a half until I finish my RN, and then maybe I would. I think that this shocked her. LOL

Thankfully I didn't end up getting ICU guy, even though I took report, because I was told that he was quite a handful (had him my next shift and yes he was!!!). Just as I transferred my lady to the ICU, I got my second admit, who although not unstable, was still pretty sick. She was septic and the poor lady had chronic liver cirrhosis and her belly was BIGGER than a lady at 9 mos pregnant - and anyone who reads this and has been to that point - you can totally empathize with her.... sooooooo uncomfortable!!! And her poor legs looked like tree trunks they were sooooo edematous.

Much to my surprise, half way through my shift, when my RPN pal went home, another nurse on my unit helped me by unloading one of my patients - which was UNBELIEVABLY helpful!!! When she did that, she lightened up my load tremendously and allowed me to focus on the unstable patient, but still touch base with my other patients since they were all in the same area and the patient she took was in a TOTALLY different part of unit. Bless her heart!!!

Such a crazy shift! Hope I don't have one of those for a long, long, long time to come! I guess it serves me right since I've had such quiet, easy going shifts before this... I just had a feeling that it was the calm before the storm, and WHAT a storm it was! But I guess it made for a fast and interesting shift and an interesting story for here.

Also - this is being investigated because if the nurse had done her assessments thoroughly, she would have noticed the respiratory distress, should have realized that this patient was NOT suitable for my medical unit, and SHOULD have contacted the physician to indicate this. ALSO, IF the manager of the ER hadn't gotten involved and MADE the nurse call my unit to send this patient to MY unit, the patient could have been given enough time to be assessed by the referred doctor and wouldn't have been sent to my unit in the first place (IMO!). Interesting all the way around!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

The Business of being born

Today I watched the documentary "The business of being born" and it's something that I feel strongly about... I don't necessarily think that every woman should have a home birth - but I certainly think that less intervention during labor and birth should be done.

Birth is a natural process IMO - and though I believe in a woman's choice to pain control - I also believe that birth takes time and as shown in this documentary, many hospitals don't give women the time it takes to have a baby. I agree with the documentary that hospitals have time lines, and if laboring women don't stick to them, interventions occur.

I know that in this day and age, we want immediate results and as such this has affected how labor and delivery occurs. What is too often seen is a pt getting pitocin or being brought back for a c-section, which isn't always necessary. That's not to say that c-sections aren't required for some circumstances, but I often think that these are being done too often because establishments (hospital policies, doctors, etc) are saying that it's unsafe for a woman to be in labor without change on a regular basis (cervix dilation, baby dropping into pelvis, etc).

I postulate this - approx. 20-30 yrs ago - my mother's generation, how likely was it to hear that women had labor that existed for DAYS???!!! And this was alright with physicians!!! I think that a page from yesteryear should be brought back. That's not to say that babies should be let to go a month without delivery - as my mother did with me!

It's ALRIGHT to let women labor, and to deliver without interventions like vaccums and pitocin augmentation. There is a time and place for these things but it shouldn't be a majority like it is currently.

I also think that doctors need to move over and give space to midwives. Physicians have a place in labor and delivery but they don't provide the same kind of care that midwives do, plain and simple. How many OB's do you know that stay the entire length of a woman's labor AND deliver them??? Probably less than 5% if there were stats done on this! Physicians mainly come in to provide interventions, whether that be epidurals, breaking of the water, etc and at the VERY end, just prior to crowning and simply deliver the baby (on most occasions).

I have had two children - with my son I used an OB. At that time, there were NO midwives in my city (that I knew of anyways), and I'm thankful that I had an OB because my water was meconium stained, we had difficulty with pushing (managed it without vaccum OR forceps) which caused oxygen issues with my son and I required an episiotomy in order to help get him out fast enough. His APGAR scores at birth was 3!!! At one minute it was 5, and at five minutes it was 7! Pathetic really! He required resuscitation. Little did I know (at that time, I learned this later) that a code pink was called for my son!

For my daughter, I used a midwife. I LOOOOOOVEDDDDDD the entire experience.... UNTIL I developed PIH (Pregnancy Induced Hypertension) and was on the verge of developing HELLP which is a DANGEROUS form of preeclampsia. I was hospitalized for 5 days for close monitorring and almost delivered my daughter at 30 weeks. YEEKS! (For those interested in reading all about my crazy whirlwind pregnancy I have another blog for that - just ask and I'll give you the site). Now because this happened, I lost the ability to use JUST a midwife - instead, my midwife and OB developed a relationship - for MY benefit where I could go for appointments with my midwife unless there were issues, and my OB was simply her back up. That worked for a couple of weeks until things changed on the home front and we decided that we were going to move south - figuring that we were going to move there eventually and that's where all the NICU (neonatal intensive care unit) level III & IV were found - because I was told the likelihood of me making it to full term were NIL (HA, little did they know!!!).

I think OB's rrreeeeeaaaaalllllllyyyyyy should ONLY be used for higher risk or complicated pregnancies. There is a shortage of OB's and I think that they should be utilized in the best possible way - NOT for low risk pregnancies. Keep them for the people who actually DO need them. Thus in turn, utilize the available resources out there - MIDWIVES!!! They go to school for a reason, and it's not for a short period either.

Something funny the little tyke said...

So lately my darling daughter has been cursing, like a truck driver, or a sailor. Either one is a fitting description. And she will do it at the ODDEST times! And it has us giggling up a storm.... which doesn't help to curb it but seeing it from such a cutie is difficult to stifle oneself from laughing.

Take this evening for instance....

I was sitting on the couch, and I've been trying to potty train the dear darling for the past week. Some success I might add. And today happened to be a trying day as far as peeing on the potty goes. So when she had told me that she had peed NOT on the toilet but in her pull up I told her (in no uncertain terms) that she HAD to go sit on the potty.

And WHAT is the responsible from my not even three year old???..... "that's BULLSHIT mommy"

OMG!!!! I couldn't believe she had said it (she's only said it once before - cuz it's not something she hears of much). And the fact that she had said it in a manner that would totally apply to this situation. Oh yeah, the whole room of ppl started giggling as mommy tried to be stern (with not much luck) and mutter "little tyke that's not nice, we don't say those things and you HAVE to still sit on the potty" and of course I included the "mommy" look for good measure and off she went to sit on the potty.

WOW - what am I going to do with this one?!

More on her growing antics another day tho! I shall leave you with a couple of pics of her....

She was telling me that she was going to go "bye bye" - in her PJ's with sandles on and it was snowing outside - oh and it was like 11pm at night!!!! YA NO!

My little sassy girl - quite the diva she is... hope it's not indicative of what I should expect in 10+ yrs!

Monday, February 20, 2012

I need to live somewhere else!!!

Living in this house is starting to make me depressed. Can you believe that I actually escape TO the gym???!!!! I thought that THAT would never happen but alas it does! I wish I could have tonight but unfortunately, today is "family day" for those of you Canadians - "President's day" for those American folk who read this blog, and with that comes early closure times or not open at all.... and my gym closed aat 3pm today. And of course when I wanted to escape, it was after that time.

The next best thing... a bubble bath, BY MYSELF!!!! I locked myself in my in-law's bathroom for an hour and a half and caught up on Pan Am and just enjoyed the quietness. The awesome thing about their bath tub is that it has jets... which is UBER fun with a bit of bubble bath.... INSTANT bubbles. And when the bubbles get too high, you turn off the jets for a bit and the bubbles go down. When they get a little too low, turn the jets back on and voila bubbles again!

Now of COURSE hubby tried to come into the bathroom.... which I wouldn't let him - he'd just interfere with my serenity. Then came little tyke- who OF COURSE insisted that SHE needed a bath. And I mean, who could blame her. So I let her in after listening to her bang on the door and whine for about three minutes. She LOVES baths now so it was fun watching her enjoy the bubbles. Of course hubby could hear that I let the billa (nickname for her) into the bathroom so he had to come and bug us. It was fun while it lasted and seemed to poop out the little tyke .and once bathtime was done I put lotion on her (with her help and insistence of course) and pajamas then off to bed she went.... without much of a fight either I might add!!!

Sometimes I just hate being in such a small house with sooo many ppl in here. It's cramped and we don't have a viable living area for just us. It sucks!!! It makes me frustrated and angry and depressed many times. It also sucks that when stuff happens around this house that I am not included in ANY of the communications because it's done in Urdu and I certainly don't understand enough of it. Of course none of his family (incl. hubby anymore) takes this into account because they're selfish (IMO) and could care less that I don't understand.

Many times I wish that I could fast forward a year and a half and be in Texas already!!! I want to be finished school, I want my RN degree to be completed and I want my OWN house with hubby SOMEWHERE ELSE!!!!!!!!!!!! Where it's JUST US (and kids of course).

I know this is probably not the lightest of posts but there it is... my REAL life!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

My dinner BLEW UP!!!!

Last night when I was at work, I brought my dinner with me. My MIL had made palau - a rice dish with chicken. VERY yummy. Was VERY VERY much looking forward to eating it. So when I went on break I put my dish in the microwave, as I've done a million times!

I put it in for TWO minutes, and when the microwave said ONE second, I heard it go KABOOM. When I opened the microwave I saw this.....................

OH MY GOODNESS!!! I could barely imagine it so I took a picture - cause WHO would actually BELIEVE that this happened?!

Thankfully the cafeteria was still open, UNFORTUNATELY I ONLY had my credit card available and at the cafeteria you HAVE to buy $10 or more in order to be able to even USE it!!! Crappy part is that I'm on a diet and so it's not like I can buy pop, or chips or dessert.... they have unhealthy stuff there. So I had to buy two soups (delicious tho- butternut squash) and two vitamin waters (at $3 each which SUCKS!). I had my dinner and then went back to work.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Need my own house!

Don't know if I explained this before but we have a multi generational home. This means that there is 8 people in this house!!!

This picture pretty much shows how I feel about being in this house.... squished!!!

Now if we all actually ate at the dinner table - we would probably look like this....

I can't wait til I'm done my RN degree and we move to Texas!!!! Bring on a GIANT home, where only the husband and I with the kids live. Oh to dream of the peace and quiet!!!

I suppose it wouldn't be too too bad if we had a living room and a den or seomthing where hubby and I could escape the drama that ALWAYS ensues in this house!!!

My husband was born in Pakistan and therefore the majority of talk in this house is Urdu - the main language in Pakistan. So just imagine yourself surrounded by people who don't speak the same language talking at the same time, or as my MIL does - raise her voice, talk REALLY fast and often yells. UGGGGGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHH I just want some peace and quiet!!!

THAT is why I can't wait to have a big house alllllll to ourselves!!! For now, we're just biding our time.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

The "types" of doctors we have

At our hospital, we use hospitalists. They're considered MRP's or Most Responsible Physician. Frankly, I could do without several of them! Let me tell you of a couple of the ones I dislike....

Dr. A - Anything us nurses have any concerns or issues to bring up to her, she directs us to her "board" where she wants us to write them down - 3/4 of the times she doesn't even deal with the issues. She's rude and rather abrupt and does NOT come off as caring or sympathetic. VERY poor bed side manner. ANY time you need to get a urine specimen, she will ALWAYS refuse a request for an in & out. Difficult to get to speak to families.

Dr. B - Type of doctor who comes into the unit, deals with VERY little, doesn't check in with his patients and if you don't catch him while he's ON the unit, he's next to impossible to get a hold of via telephone or pages. Patients and families feel out of loop in terms of communication and doesn't tend to get a hold of families to answer questions.

Dr. C - Thinks that she's superior to nurses simply because she's a doctor (not unusual) and ANY suggestions in care go unheeded, even if it IS in the best interest of the patient. Patients and nurses alike feel that she speaks AT them.

A couple of the ones that I DO like...

Dr. D - Handsome and approachable. Too bad he and I are both married. LOL. He will actually takes nurses' suggestions, even if he thinks that it won't help (ie. lactobacillus acidophilus for a pt with C-diff). Is on the ball in terms of patient care. Spends HOURS on our unit to make sure that his patients are spoken to as well as families.

Dr. E - Just like Dr. D - is wonderful and approachable. You can tell that he cares about the well being of his patients. Will listen to nurses and implement suggestions from nurses. Is the "guru" in the physician's group - not the oldest of the doctors but nurses and doctors alike speak about him and his care, as well as his approach (in excellent terms). The running joke is that he's the ONLY doctor who orders flushes for his foleys (that works AWESOME btw at reducing the days that a patient has a UTI, and reduces the chance that a person will need CBI [continuous bladder irrigation]).

Dr. F - The ONLY female doctor that I like. She tries to talk to every nurse and seems to have a genuine interest in those that take care of her patients. She will ask for input from the nurses on the care of her patients and whether they think that her patients need anything. If you put something on her "board" you can rest assured that she WILL deal with it. ALWAYS sees her patients. ALWAYS returns pages and phone calls promptly. Is just a lovely person and doctor. She's the type of doctor that you WISH you have if you have to be admitted to a hospital.

Dr. G - wrote about him yesterday. I think that he'll be a good doctor but we'll see for sure in the upcoming weeks and months.

I have a story for you about Dr. A - I'll try to write about it later tonite or tomorrow.

A new doc - interesting one too!!!

I hurt all over from my personal training session today. My trainer's name is Megan - and man does she know how to make me hurt! I guess that's a good thing, I suppose it means that I'll build up muscle and trim down the fat. Now to just see the big changes!!!

On a different note... we got a new doctor to our unit/hospital. I like him! I like that he's down to earth, that he's willing to ask a nurse what they think about a treatment plan, that he's not afraid to ask questions when he's unsure about something, that he's a fellow muslim (though you would NEVER know that since he has a GERMAN last name... like SERIOUS german last name!). When I was talking to him, I found out that he was born in Pakistan and was adopted by a german couple - when I asked if he was christian/catholic or muslim (>95% of the population of Pakistan is muslim so the odds are good that he would be as well) and he indicated that He was muslim, and when I asked what his parents were, he indicated that they were also muslim. INTERESTING!!! I wasn't quite prepared for that one, but like I said, he is a VERY interesting person.

I'll try to write another story tomrorow... an interesting one about a doctor actually doing what is good for the patient, even if they aren't the MRP (Most Responsible Physician/GP).

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

A bit off the grid I know

I know I've been off the grid for a bit - sorry about that, it's not that I have been working (much), but rather studying my ass off and working a bit of my ass off (haha).

The little tyke went to England for 12 days, she just got back last friday, and of course I had to work all weekend - and not for lack of trying to trade out of it either! So I saw my little girl very little for the past 3 weeks-ish.

While she was away, I signed up for a gym membership. It's about time that I lose this extra weight. When I had the kiddo 10 yrs ago, I went from being 130 lbs to 198 lbs. It took me about a year and a half to get down to 160 lbs-ish and I felt pretty good. Then I had all that crap with school and the teacher and gained a bunch and then went on anti depressants and gained to the point that I weighed 210 lbs. I said to myself "screw this crap, the anti depressants aren't really helping cuz I'm depressed that I weigh so much." And I was even exercising daily AND watching when and what I was eating, and I was STILL gaining weight! So I went off the anti depressants an lost 30 lbs in a month and a half!

I had married my hubby at this point and we decided that we were going to start trying to have a baby. So I wanted to lose as much as I could before getting pregnant and I got down to 175 lbs when we found out that I was pregnant with the little tyke. I gained 35 while I was pregnant, which I thought wasn't too bad but could have done better. Now I weigh 193 lbs and figure that no time like the present to do something MORE about my weight. I convinced hubby that going to the gym is the best choice for me and he was okay with me getting a personal trainer. Having the little tyke away in England was like the perfect time to start because I could go to the gym at any point, not mattering if there was someone to watch her. ALSO, the gym that I go to has 4 days that they're open 24 hrs/day which is perfect for me as I get the desire to exercise later at night, sometimes as late as 2am! I know, I'm a weird one but I just go with it.

So I've had 2 times with the personal trainer now and she's focusing on getting my abd muscles stronger and my arms, since I told her that I do leg strength weights on the days that I don't have the trainer. And HOLY CRAP did my arms KILL after she's done with me. Last week I had one session with the trainer and I had to work the next day, WOW was it hard to do my job!!!! Sometimes it felt like my arms weighed a million pounds and it was just an effort to even lift my arms, let alone push, pull, or lift a patient! It's been 3 weeks (as of yesterday) since I've started, and although I've gained a pound, I can see a change in my body already. My tummy has gone down a little bit and my butt is tightening a smidge, and my boobs have gotten smaller (SUCH a shame I tell ya!!!).