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1 Year Anniversary… and it still hurts

1 Year Anniversary… and it still hurts

So it’s been 1 year 1 month 3 weeks and a day since my mother passed away and I can tell you I struggled to write this.  Not because it was emotionally draining but there was so much stuff I wanted to say that it would sound like a disjointed 20 page essay with no clear beginning, ending or theme.   And even though I did not want this to turn into a venting “let’s feel sorry for the dude” or a “bitch fest about no one understanding me.”  from the looks of it.. it might turn out that way so please brace yourselves.

So how do I feel right now ? I feel like I am floating in a lost mixed emotion and mind space that I really can’t explain.

It’s hard to explain because I feel like though I have been trying to do things that would make me feel happy and positive (going on trips, etc) but for some odd reason it also has affected my relationships around me.  I feel like I’m  Jekyll and Hyde.  At work I transform into this happy joyful nurse that strives to make my patient feel good, better and even make them laugh.  It brings them joy…. it brings me joy.  But as soon as I get home reality hits.  I go back to that dark reality that I often try to push out of the way but everything reminds me of my mother.

Since I moved back home with my father our relationship has been good (thankfully.)  I was quite concerned how our relationship would be honestly.  I was scared that we would both lash out each other out of emotional breakdowns and fears and never get the chance to truly take care of each other and build that father son relationship  I felt was not as strong simply because I was closer to my mother.  Thankfully things have been good so far.   I respect his space, he respects mine,we both take care of each other and look out for each other and rarely ever have any arguments (and if we do its towards others not us ha!)  My relationships with my friends and other family members unfortunately have changed.  Some slightly…others drastic.    I now became the “guy who lost his mom to a brain tumour” or the “the nurse friend who lost his mom to cancer.” Or the best… “the nurse friend who works too much and does not have time  for his friends or family to grieve properly.”

Yep… you read that right.  “The nurse friend who works too much and does not have time for his friends or to grieve properly.”

Seems a bit insulting right?  Well some people don’t think so.  I will admit, I have been working a lot and I do use it as way of a coping mechanism (also a great way to clear your debt and bills!)  I don’t drink alcohol, do drugs, or participate in any high risk activity.  Apart from going to the gym, work has sometimes been a way to escape the reality I had to deal with and despite work being  stressful at times, I was able to put on this “front” and act like everything was cool . Unfortunately it made my already limited social life diminish to a tiny speck of dust.

And that’s when people stopped inviting me or asking me out to engagements and events. And that’s when people would stop phoning, texting me asking and seeing if I was ok. And that’s when people figured I was working too much that I did not have time to grieve properly.  This absolutely made me frustrated, exasperated and pissed.  To make matters worse when I was actually free on a weekend or Friday night to do something everyone simply just forgotten about me and either had made other plans or simply were not interested in doing anything because they were  “too tired.”    I even had one friend who recently gotten into a relationship tell me: “Well you’ve been so busy to hangout with your friends and do anything on the weekend so  now I met someone who I can chill with and hang on the weekends.”

Excuse – the – fuck- me ????  I am sorry I did not realize we were a married couple!!!

This, compounded with everything else just started a windmill of mixed emotions, thoughts, anger and depression.  I was a thermostat…. I was warm and bubbly at work but as soon as I got home or who had any interaction with friends who seemed to forget that I existed I became cold, flat, monotone and curt.  And my anger fueled more when I decided to things on my own simply because everyone was too busy for me and then the same friends get upset as to why  I never informed or told them.   It was loose-loose situation and I simply was getting exhausted for trying to explain myself for something that really deserved no explaining…….it was already self explanatory.

So through my entire disjointed rant what I am really trying to say?

Yes I am a nurse but that does not mean I am mean I lack emotion because “I’m trained and taught to do so.”  Yes I work crazy hours to take care of the sick but does not that mean I don’t enjoy  or receive therapeutic conversation and care by family and friends as I do with my patients.   People…. please be mindful.  Keep talking to those who are grieved with the loss of a loved one despite the fact that they might seem  “ok” in your eyes.  And remember this is not about YOU.. it is about them and their loss and trying to support them.  This is not the time for you be like “well they seem to be okay or they seem to be preoccupied with something so let me focus on myself as they don’t have time  for me.” This was not your loved one that died.  That has to be the most selfish inconsiderate thing to think about.  People heal at different stages and a different times of their lives.   People also have different ways on how they cope.  What you might consider a great way of coping may not be what someone else does.  As long as they are not harming themselves and others support them and be there for them instead of ridiculing them and chastising them for not being there…….for you.  Again this is not about you and your feelings, its about them and how they are coping.

Now that I got that off my chest I now have to get ready for work and put on that facade that everything is cool and I am just this happy go lucky guy…but in reality I am as sick as my patients….just emotionally sick.

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Posted by on August 29, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

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Life of a Murse Episode 4: Family Matters

Saturday night.
Pretty much that is all I have to say to sum up my shift. Saturday nights in the ER I have learned to realize can be quite entertaining. In fact so entertaining that there are times where it seemed more entertaining than actually going out to a bar or a club. On one of my many busy crazy Saturday nights, it was the beginning of summer, school was out, people were on vacations and the summer parties started.
This one particular summer party that I was about to learn about was more than just exciting.
In the early part of my shift we got a radioed call from EMS of a stabbing victim. He was a 23 year old male who got into altercation at a large party and ended up getting stabbed once in the chest, as well as a couple of cuts and bruises on his face.
Everyone got prepared.

IV

Sharon turned to me as she gowned up. “Typical kids. Not behaving themselves and doing stupid things.”
I shrugged my shoulders.. “Well it’s summer in the streets, the weather gets hot and people get into trouble.”
“They need to get with the lord and be saved.”
“Uhm…it’s Saturday night…not Sunday.”
“Well by the time we will be done with him it will be Sunday and he needs Jesus.”
I shook my head. “Good grief.”
“Don’t you good grief me. You young people need guidance.”
“We young people? Uhm are you forgetting that I am in my 30s?”
“And you ain’t married with kids yet? What’s wrong with you?”
“Oh lord here we go again.”
“Listen, you need to get yourself a grown woman who goes to church, and appreciates the lord.”
I looked at Sharon with a raised eyebrow. “Are you done yet?”
“No I am not.”
“Well I am.” I said smirking at her.
Our conversation was cut short when the EMS rolled in and brought the patient into one of the resuscitation rooms. Everyone including myself swarmed the patient but in a calm collective order as we tried to assess and treat him. Two uniformed police officers were outside jotting notes.
“I want to beat that asshole up!!” the patient yelled. His hair was disarrayed. His face was bloodied and he obviously had too much to drink. His blood soaked LA Lakers jersey and white t shirt underneath told a story of a typical fight that had gone wrong.
Within minutes two people rushed in the room.
“Oh my god Johnny!” the woman yelled.
One of the nurses stopped her in the midway. “Sorry, mam you are gonna have to give us sometime here.”
“But that’s my baby!” she yelled.
I was putting a blood pressure cuff on the patient as I attempted to peep around the corner to see what the commotion was about.
The ER doctor quickly examined the patient’s chest noticing the deep clean edged puncture wound and immediately asked one of the nurses to grab him a chest tube kit.
“Johnny!” the woman yelled.
The patient, turned to the corner hearing his name. Slurred speech, crying in his drunken state, drooling and incoherent he jumbled the words, “Let her in! Let her in.”
The doctor nodded. “Let her come in.”
The woman and a man walked in and approached Johnny. “Johnny, oh my god! What happened to you? I am so scared for you. I’m worried.”
There was a brief pause, serenity filled the room for a brief second before Johnny’s eyes glistened and uttered his first words to his mother: “Mom, get out of here you fucking bitch!”
Everyone eyes widened.
Johnny’s mother gasped. “Johnny! Why are you swearing at me like that?”
“Get the fuck out here you old haggard bitch! I hate you! You never cared for me!”
I stood there biting my lip looking at the other nurses and staff members who were all somewhat shocked.
The doctor intervened. “Johnny calm down, I don’t want you getting aggravated and making your situation worse than it is.”
“Get this fucking bitch out of here!”
“Boy!” The man yelled beside her. “You don’t talk to your mother like that!”
“Fuck you! You are not my real father!!! You are just another fucking douchebag small dick gold digging asshole who only wants my Mom for her money.”
One of the nurses inadvertently dropped a suture tray.
Sharon glarred at Johnny and then looked at me and muttered under her breath. “Oh no he didn’t”
I looked at her and mumbled. “Oh yes he did.”
“You both were never there for me! None of you !!! Fuck off!!”
The man raised his voice. “Johnny we did our best. We are here in the hospital because we are worried for christ sake.”
“Don’t talk to me you asshole!! Hey mom, do you know that your so called boyfriend here goes downtown and picks up prostitutes? That’s how he gave you fucking herpes!!!”
Everyone froze for a split second.
“Lord father Jesus.” Sharon said to herself quietly as she tried to put an IV in Johnny’s arm.
“I fucking you hate you both!!! I hate you !!!! You bitch and fucking asshoole!! Get the fuck away from me!!! You don’t fucking care!!!”
The doctor intervened. “Ok this is not working, Mom and Dad I am gonna have to ask you to step outside while we treat him.”
The mother stuttered “But…that’s my son I want to…'”
Another nurse intervened. “I think its best right now you both step outside he is really riled up now and we want him to be calm. Once everything is calm and done I will have the doctor talk to you.”
“YOU SLUT! YOU WHORE OF A MOTHER!” Johnny yelled from the curtain.
His mother and father left and sat in a next room perplexed.

I looked at Sharon as we were getting Johnny who was now passed out from his drunken state prepared for a CT scan. “Yeah, wanna remind me again why I should rush off and have kids?
Sharon shook her head and shot me a look.
As we were getting the patient ready and transporting them to CT, we passed another stretcher with blond hair guy with a dirty white T jeans with his baseball hat on backwards.
Johnny immediately noticed him and raised his hand. “Yo Chris what’s up man?”
Chris looked up. “Johnny? What the fuck? What are yo doing here?”
“That asshole stabbed me. I am gonna get that motherfucker! But yo, that party was crazy man!!”
Chris nodded as we continued moving Johnny to CT. “Yeah it was!!”
Sharon shook his head. “You see, how the devil can play games?”
I looked at Sharon. “What now?”
“His friend Chris who said hi is my patient who is being treated for a cocaine overdose he got at this party.”
“Wow, what kinda party was this?”
Sharon shook her head as we both arrived to the CT department. “I don’t know but in 3 hours it will be midnight which means it will be Sunday. These young boys need to repent.”
I shot Sharon another look and shook my head.

“What do you mean you’re moving out?” My mother asked while sipping on her tea.
“Mom I’m moving out.”
“But that makes no sense.”
“Why?”
“I thought once you started working full time you would help pay for the bills around here.”
“Mom….uhm no. I need to move out. I am grown ass man. You know the only reason why I was still at home was because of school. You knew this day would come.”
My mother remained silent.
“Mom I did not go to nursing school for four years to all of a sudden help pay the bills. If you need help I can help you but I don’t have to live here to do that.”
Again she remained silent and continued sipping her tea.
“You’re upset with me aren’t you?”
“You know it’s just your father you and myself? Right?”
“Mom, please stop. We are not gonna further press this anymore. I am moving out.”
“If you loved me you’d stay.”
“Really? You’re really are gonna go there with that?”
My mother rolled her eyes and sipped on her tea.
“Mom, I can’t believe that…..”
“I don’t want to discuss this anymore.”
“But mom…….”
“I don’t want to discuss this anymore. End of discussion. I am upset with you. You are abandoning me and your dad. I do not appreciate that. I am not talking with you.”
“Are you serious right now?”
My mother got up from kitchen table and went upstairs.
I was too exhausted and tired to finish the argument. All I wanted to was shower and go to my bed I needed to move out. I was way too old to be living in the house and the only reason why I was still at home was because of school. I needed my independence once again. No more than 2 hours while I was in my deep sleep, I was awaken by my father.
“So you are just gonna leave us like that? High and dry?”
“Dad I am sleeping, leave me alone.”
“No answer the question.”
“I just came off from a nightshift and I have to be at work again tonight…can you please just let me be?”
“No. You think you are all high and mighty now because you now this big time so called nurse that you can just abandon and leave your own family like that?”
I was too tired to answer him back and did not want to have another argument with him. I was so through.
“Answer me.” my dad persisted.
With fiery that came out of now where I yelled at my dad. “Get out of my room now!”
“Excuse me? Who the hell do you think you are talking to ?”
“DAD I AM TRYING TO SLEEP LEAVE ME ALONE!!!”
“Boy!!! You have no manners!!”
“And you are not respecting my time now. Now please leave!”
My father muttered a couple of words before he shut my bedroom door. For the next four hours, I would not be able to shut my eyes. All I could hear were my parents in my mind yelling why I was abandoning them. Why I had let them down…..again….one more time.

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Posted by on June 24, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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Life of a Murse (Episode 4 coming soon and why it has been delayed for so long)

To those who were reading my blogs and wandered why I have not made a new blog episode in two months, I would like to apologize.

The last couple of months I had to deal with a family medical urgent matter which has now consumed most of my life. I won’t get into the specifics but I have decided to reveal this in the future later blogs of life of a murse just to show how sometimes you have to be a nurse 24 hours a day 7 seven days a week even when you are not at work (those who follow me on instagram and twitter will know what family illness I have been dealing with.)

To those who have given me great feedback, I thank you dearly. For those who have sent me questions and I have taken decades to reply back I apologize (wordpress does not really do a good job in my opinion of notifying when you get new messages or alerts…but that could just be me.)

Though I have not blogged in two months there has been still some crazy exciting and heart felt events that I have experienced which I am excited to share with you all.

Stay tuned!!

Medsoulbrother

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Posted by on May 29, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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Life of a Murse Episode 3: The Lady in White.

IV

The last two years of nursing school were not so bad but the workload was still heavy. Perhaps the most anxious thing was writing the CRNE (Canadian Registered Nurse Exam.) I literally had nightmares of failing the exam (likewise with other fellow students.) While in my last year and juggling two jobs I got a sweet summer job at a hospital close to me working as an extern. For better lack of terms, it was being nursing assistant, and I got to be one in the Emergency Department. At that point this is when I knew I would love nursing. As a nursing assistant I was doing so much and helping the staff. In fact, I was doing stuff that I never got to do in my other clinical settings in school but was only taught in lab. I was putting in Foley catheters, doing ECGs, doing vitals signs, and even helping with doing bloodwork (which was so nerve wrecking at first.) As I was in my final year and continued working as a nursing assistant.(I was working three jobs just so I would not have no school debt) I was encouraged by the educator and the charge nurse to apply for a new grad position in the emergency department. Without hesitation I applied, and I was hired.

One of my first ER shifts was when I was with another nurse in the acute area on a nightshift.
Oh boy.
One of my fondest memories was learning how to start IVs. Doing straight blood draws was not an issue as I learned them quite well when I was an extern. The tricky part came when i had to put in an actual IV. The IVs were quite tricky as you had to make sure you applied pressure so the blood would not spewing all over the place like a bloody crime scene. I said to myself.. nope I am gonna do an IV I don’t care.
Again…..Oh boy.
One night I was working along with my preceptor. It was a Friday night so of course we were getting all the drunks coming in. We had one lady who was dressed in complete white who was here for a problem that to be honest with you I could not remember. All I remember was that she was wearing all white. White blouse, white jacket, white pants and white shoes to match.
Maybe there was a white sale at Sears? Maybe I should have told my mom at the time?
Who the heck knows. Anyhow, the distinct thing I remember about this patient was that she had some form of social issues at home that required to be seen by our crisis worker. The doctor had ordered some blood for work and I told my preceptor that I was going to the blood work.
“And you are putting an IV in her.” she chimed as a reminder.
I closed my eyes for a quick second and kept repeating myself. “Don’t fuck up, don’t fuck up, don’t fuck up. You can do this.. you got this man. You’ve done straight pokes before, you can put an IV, it will be ok.”
Clearly my conscious lied to me.
The patient rolled up her sleeve as I tightened the tourniquet on her arm trying to feel for a vein. I felt a nice fat juicy one right in the centre of her arm. I had all my equipment and blood vials set.
I took a deep breath.
You can do this. You can do this it’s okay you can do this.
Grabbing my 20 gauge IV, I aligned it with her vein and slowly entered. Learning from all the nurses, I would count one to three so the patient would know (for those who had quite apprehensive to needles.)
Immediately I saw blood return to the tip meaning that I had entered the vein.
Great!!! Okay so part 1 was done.. .now I had to remember the rest of the parts. I indistinctly remember to make sure I had placed good pressure over the IV so the blood would not spew out before I attached it to an IV lock.
Ok you are doing good. You got this bro.
The patient then gazed at me with this weird look. “You’re quite good looking you know that?”
I lifted my head surprised by her comment. “Huh??” My fingers immediately released from the IV as I was trying to make sure who she was referring to. I guess you can call me modest but I never considered myself the model GQ type or that attractive so when usually when a woman makes a comment like that either she is intoxicated, high on some kinda of drugs or had a dementia. I forced a smile trying not to be rude but then my eye caught something red on her sleeve.
SHIT!!! I let go of the IV!
I did not even have time to respond as blood started pouring out of her IV like a leaky faucet. The blood started soaking on her white blouse, jacket and her pants.
Fuck my life!
My voice all of a sudden sounded like Grover from Sesame Street. “Uhm, help me here please.” As I turned to my preceptor.
She saw smiled a bit and quickly grabbed a couple of two by twos gauzes. She immediately helped me IV lock the patient but at this point this woman looked like a bloody mess. She look like she was part of a crime scene from criminal minds.
Immediately I began apologizing while we were cleaning up. “I am so sorry about that. ”
Surprisingly the woman did not react or act mad. “It’s ok.”
My preceptor immediately grabbed a patient’s gown and gave it to her to change while we grabbed her white clothes and placed them in a container with hydrogen peroxide.
She turned to me. “And this is why we always tell patients to dress in a gown before they are seen by a doctor.”
I nodded still feeling like shit. “Yeah I got it. ”
“Don’t worry you were okay, you will be a pro at it.”
“But I screwed up. ”
“Trust me, this is so minor compare to other things.”
“Really?”
“Trust me as you work in the ER you will know and you will look back to this and laugh.”
I was not laughing. I just kept thinking how I screwed up.

Later on that week was my actual graduation ceremony. The day I was graduating was such a rewarding time for me. But it was also a time of mixed emotions.
“So, dad are you and mom going to be at my graduation?” I had asked a month ago.
My dad shook his head. “I can’t I am busy.”
“Busy with what?”
“I am going to the racetrack that day for a big race. Sorry.”
“So a bunch of horses galloping around a track is more important than seeing your son cross the graduation stage?”
“I’ve been to your graduation before for your first degree.”
“You really don’t like what I am doing do you?|
My father ignored me and shrugged his shoulders. “All I want to know is what you are going to do after. Do you plan to stay as a nurse are you actually gonna do something better?”
I glared at my father. “I can’t believe this. My father does not want to go my graduation for a degree program that I worked my ass for because it makes him look like a fool in front of his friends.'”
“I am not gonna this discuss with you. ”
“WELL I AM!”
“Don’t you dare raise your voice at me! Have respect for your father!!!”
“Well have respect for me dad!! This is my graduation. Not every parent gets to see their child graduate. Not everyone graduates period. This should be a happy time for me and yet you are making it miserable.”
My dad grabbed his jacket as he headed out the door. “I have other plans. You’re mother is going. She will be there to support you.”
I stared at the half opened door as he started the car and drove off.

 
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Posted by on February 27, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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Life of a Murse Episode 2: Nursing School (the beginning years)

nursing school

“Remember class, you have your assignment that is due next week, your midterm on Friday and your essay the follow week after that. And don’t forget that online assignment that is worth 15% of your mark due at midnight. No exceptions.”
This was your typical nursing class, but multiply this by four or five of your classes and clearly you had no life.
If anyone says to you that nursing school is easy or if you know any nursing students or nurses who said that nursing school was easy for them, let me be the first out of many people to say this to you:
THEY ARE LIARS.
Nursing school perhaps was one of my most intense programs I have taken but I will say that it was also the one that I was most focused on. From first year straight to your final year, your nights are filled with studying and doing assignments and writing essays, and preparing clinicals. The only thing I was spreading in my bed at nights were the pages of my Nursing Potter and Perry Medical Surgical textbook.
Yes it was that bad.
Perhaps my driving force was that I was paying for this all by myself without the financial assistance of my parents, especially my father who still thought of being a nurse was absurd. What he and others failed to understand was that nursing school was like being in the military. You were up early in the morning for either classes or clinicals, and were at home when it was dark. At times you had to help your fellow comrades who were sinking while you watched others die (well in this case fail or drop out the program) on their own accord. Nursing school also made me realize that were some people who were just not fit to be nurses and should be banned from even touching a blood pressure cuff. I use to call these lost poor souls “Grassclippings”. Why?
Because they literally had an IQ of a grassclipping.
My case in point exhibit A: One day in lab, we were practising on how to insert a foley urinary catheter on a mannequin female patient. One student (who thought she was Miss know-it-all) was eager to go first. As she laid out her equipment she failed to notice that the previous person who had used the mannequin had attached the genitalia upside down (don’t ask) so the anus was on top and the urethra and vagina were at the bottom (you’d think that a nursing student, particularly a FEMALE NURSING STUDENT would have noticed this.) She went on her way and when she tried to insert the foley catheter she immediately noticed it was not going in.
Her face reddened.
Myself and the other students (who were quite aware of what had occurred) decided we would just watch her as she made a fool out of herself.
The instructor stopped her. “Uhm, Jane. Ok, stop. Before we continue can you tell me what is wrong with the mannequin’s anatomy?”
Jane stared at it for a couple of seconds. “Nothing.”
“Are you sure?” The instructor said.
Jane paused before she nodded. “Yeah I think it’s fine.”
Inside my head I felt like pushing Jane across the room. Is Jane that blind of her own anatomy that she can’t tell that it’s upside down on the mannequin?
Frustrated, I put my hand up.
“Yes,” the instructor pointed at me.
“Maybe perhaps Jane is having problems because the anatomy is upside down?”
“BINGO!” the instructor said staring at Jane.
Jane still stood there with the catheter in her hand. “But this is suppose to go in the urethra and the urethra is ALWAYS in that area. ”
The instructor scratched her head. “Yes but honey, look at the anatomy. It is upside down. You need to turn the anatomy right side up.”
Jane shook her head. “Well that is dumb. Who would do that? That is so confusing.”
The instructor though trying to remain calm voiced her frustration which obviously came out insulting. “Well maybe perhaps you need to study your own anatomy first before you start playing with others.”
The other students laughed.
Jane still stood there high and mighty as if we were the idiots.
There were other sad pitiful stories that occurred from just pure stupidity throughout nursing school. One student proudly thought that UTI stood for “University of Toronto Institute” instead of urinary tract infection. One student proudly argued with her clinical instructor that Warfarin, an anticoagulant blood thinner was Tylenol (ironically I never saw her ever again after second year…gee go figure.) One student was so grossed out by the site of a patient’s rather large bowel movement that he threw up on the floor beside the patient’s bed and then try to shift the blame onto the patient when the nurse came in inquiring about the mess on the floor.
Then of course there was the infamous “The Wood” incident in one of my lab classes. There was one student who for the life of god could not comprehend the concept of why it was not a good idea to continue washing a gentleman’s penis while he was erect. Now I would understand that if she was younger and not sexually experienced, but this was a woman was married with two children.
Yes…another unfortunate grassclipping.
The instructor cleared her throat. “So, if that ever happens to you class, you simply stop what you are doing, cover him up and tell him you will be back later.”
“So why can’t you just keep washing him ?” asked the married mother of two nursing student.
I was standing beside my friend Melanie and we both gave each other a look.
“Is she for real?” she asked.
I lowered my head down shaking in shame.
The instructor attempted to answer her without insulting her. “Well honey, because that will get him more excited.”
“Oh okay, ” the mother said. “But can’t he just not get himself excited and tell you no? I mean I don’t get it, if he needs to be clean he needs to be clean. I don’t see why you can’t continue washing it. ”
I bit my tongue.
The instructor’s face got slight annoyed. “Honey, if you continue cleaning him you will end up with more of a mess.”
“How? he is getting clean. What more of a mess can he make?”
Melanie gave me the “Pray for her father Jesus” look. I was too busy giving the mother of two that “But you are married with two children?!! Are you that sheltered?!” look.
The instructor, running out of life lines, simply decided to ignore her.
It took a full 5 minutes before the mother of two said “OH I GET IT NOW” when were discussing on wound care dressings.
Jesus take the wheel.

I was in my room studying when my dad opened the door.
I shot him a look. “Yes?”
“Can I talk to you?”
“Go ahead.”
“Listen, I wanted to talk to you about your schooling.”
I rolled my eyes. “What?”
“I just wanted to know what your next path is going to be ? How long is this going to take you?”
“Dad you keep asking me the same questions and I keep giving you the same answers. It is not gonna change.”
My dad remained silent.
“Listen, I know what I am doing and quite frankly I like it. ”
“Is that right?”
“Yes, that is right. My god dad will stop being closed minded?”
My dad turned around shook his left as he went to the door. “I still think you should be a doctor. You are more smarter to be a nurse.” He closed the door.
I stared at my bedroom door with mixed emotions, the silence deafening my concentration.

——-Stay tuned for Episode 3: nursing school.. the final years—

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Posted by on February 17, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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Life of a Murse: Episode 1: Before Nursing School

I never thought that I would be a nurse. Moreover, I never thought I would enjoy being nurse. Without making this sound like an E-Harmony ad, let me just give you the basics. I am a 36 year old guy born in Toronto to Jamaican parents. I grew up in a suburb city called Mississauga (home of the longest running mayor Hazel Mccallion) as an only child which at times I hated but as I grew up,I realized being an only child was not so bad.
I always wanted to be a doctor. The idea of helping those were sick and curing them with medicine always enticed me as kid. While growing up, I would frantically always tell my parents and other family members that I wanted to become a doctor. I use to always read up on medical health books and even at one point (out of boredom) decided to make my own hand written health anatomy book when I was 11 (I never made it past page 3 though.) Throughout high school and even university I aimed to study and become that doctor that everyone including myself wanted to be. I took the necessary classes, achieved the grades necessary to enter university and stayed out of trouble.

Nursing_Textbooks_1

Then reality hit in.
University though was great became more of a huge academically political expense. After being accepted to York University’s Kinesiology program I got bombarded with changes. By the end of my second year, York University went on a 5 month strike that made everyone’s academic year a living hell. At this point, I was fed up and just wanted to work so I took a year off before I went back to finish my degree. Apparently I picked the “wrong time” to take off because when I returned, they had restructured the kinesiology program making some of my previous courses not acceptable. Pissed off and frustrated, I switched majors and completed my degree in Psychology instead which took another two years to complete. Throughout my 20s I worked as a pharmacy technician for a major chain drug store; Shoppers Drug Mart as well I working at other jobs. Still determine to become a doctor, I decided to write the MCAT exam but I did not prepare for it. Instead I thought I would take it as a “practice exam” so I can gain more experience in writing the next one.
That was a complete waste of money and time. (what the hell was I thinking?!!?)
For starters, I did not take organic chemistry and physics throughout university in fear of flunking and lowering my GPA (as I saw it did with other students and friends.) Therefore, I thought I would be “smart” and self teach organic chemistry. It was very challenging. After writing the MCAT exam I knew that I was not ready but I was still determined. I still continued working as a pharmacy technician while working at other health related jobs after I graduated. Still feeling the desire to go to medical school, I decided to do another degree at the University of Toronto by getting into their Bioethics program which in hopes to get into medical school.
Again, another waste of time.
The majority of courses I had to take where philosophy courses which did not excite, or motivate me. Furthermore I found it confusing and perplexing as hell. So again I dropped out and went back to working. As I got closer to my thirties I realized that I needed to change careers and that the money that I was currently making would not be enough to suffice for my future.
And this is where nursing was born.
While at work one day during my day job (I was working two to three jobs at one point just to pay the bills and survive) I was looking at different careers. I became vastly interested in becoming a nursing anaesthesia assistant. It seemed cool, rewarding, and the pay was actually great. The only issue was that the job was not that popular in Canada but I didn’t care, I thought it would be a great job for me to do and being my stubborn self, I was determined. While researching into this career I discovered there were two ways to get into this career: Either by becoming a RT (respiratory therapist)or by becoming an RN (registered nurse). Without hesitation, I immediately applied to the RT program at a local college in my area. I got accepted but got put on a waiting list because so many people had applied which meant I would not start until the following year meaning yet another year wasted.
I was tired of wasting my time.
The other option: nursing. Now I will admit I thought the idea was stupid. Like come on, I am a 6’0, 230lbs guy who looks more like he should work for security than be a nurse! Why would I become a nurse? I mean nurses just change diapers and feed old people right?
“Stop being a male chauvinistic fool!” one pharmacist told me one night while I was at work asking her this same question.
“I am not.”
“Yes you are!!! There are a lot of male nurses out there. And no, being a male nurse does not mean you are gay either. Just stop your stupidity and apply. You will make a great nurse. You have great people skills. Trust me!”
“People skills? Nurses just do orders by doctors, I don’t think there will be that much people skills involved.”
“You are being a fool again. People skills are important. Trust me. When visiting loved ones in the hospital, the nurses who had great bedside manners were the ones I remembered. You my friend are a people person. I also know a number of male nurses as well who are doing great for themselves. Just stop your whining and apply.”
I shrugged my shoulders as I continued counting the lorazepam pills for our inpatient regular customer who sat nervous and anxious in the waiting room. “Yeah I guess you are right. I will look into the application.”
The pharmacist smile. “Great, now hurry up with those pills, Mr. Jackson is giving us that ‘eye'”.
I laughed.

My father dropped his fork. “Nursing? Why do you want do you want to nursing?”
I got up from the kitchen table and grabbed a drink from the fridge. “Because like I said, it will help me get into the career path I want.”
“So you don’t want to be a doctor anymore?” My mother asked inquisitively.
“Mom, by the time I apply to medical school get accepted and go through all the schooling, I will be in my 40s. I don’t have the time or expense for that.”
“I still think you should be a doctor.” My father interrupted.
“Why? Because you told everyone else in our family and friends that I already am?”
“Being a nurse is not professional career. It’s not a real job.”
I rolled my eyes. “I am going to my room. ”
“Well whatever I do I will support you.” My mother said.
I forced a smile. ‘Thanks mom..” I looked past my father as I went to my room.

……………..stay tuned for Episode 2: Nursing School..The Battle Camp!

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Posted by on February 9, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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