Archive for September, 2010

what am I looking for…..

I started this post a long time ago… back in May somewhere and I have thought about it and re-written it many, many times over in my head.. I’m still not sure it says all I wanted to say… I wrote about my previous relationship…. here and here. Long story short? I was in a long-term relationship with a man who was mentally ill, taking drugs to deal with that and was a compulsive liar… He stole money from me, self-respect, and the ability to trust… Now 2 and a half years later, I finally feel like I have resurfaced and have something to offer a prospective partner…… I’ve been thinking about the fact that I can’t possibly bear another heartbreak of that magnitude…. I’ve also been thinking about what I look for in a man…. Maybe I can avoid the heartbreak by being pickier next time….? Or is that letting him win? By destroying my ability to trust that things are as they seem at face value…..? Many people who know me will tell you, I am quite happy to be open and honest with anyone who asks… Sometimes I can be *too* honest for my own good.. #OverShareFTW…..

What am I looking for….? It’s a loaded question really.. I know.. it’s far too broad a topic.. But I am going to narrow it down… I am looking for fun.. I am still young… and I have too much living life yet to know the answer to that question… But right now… just fun will do.. I’ll deal with all the other “growing up stuff” later… I really don’t have time for much more.. and to be honest not sure my heart can handle the seriousness of it all…..

What am I looking for? I am looking for a partner in crime… I don’t know about mister right… I mean we are all looking for a mister man… a mrs woman or so on to spend some time with… have some fun with right? *some* of us are looking for a mister woman, or a mrs man…. I don’t know.. whatever takes ur fancy….

Anyway.. here; I am gonna lay it all out… A list of sorts….

1. I want to find person who has a passion… It doesn’t matter what the passion is.. As long as it’s not pretentious and it’s legal.. All is ok.. Someone who has a passion and is not afraid to go for what he wants… Just as long as he has a reason to get out of bed each day.. A driving force is good, and having something you care about is important…

2. He needs to have teeth.. I know this is a silly thing….. It’s cosmetic really.. But what it means is a) he is unlikely to be a die-hard collingwood supporter :p and b) he is someone who looks after himself and his health…

3. Someone who is fit and healthy… I don’t mind the odd bit of partying.. But I have worked hard to become healthy and I don’t think it’s too much to ask that a potential guy I spend my life with does the same.. I don’t need a total sports nut, just someone who will get outside for a bike ride or a surf with me in the summer… Someone who will go for a run with me… Don’t get me wrong, I know health isn’t always as easy as all that.. But someone who does his best to look after his health with all the resources he has…

4. Someone who is respectful- I have to say that spirituality is something that we all wrestle with at some point in our lives, and my thoughts and feelings on the topic are just that: MINE. I don’t expect someone else to agree with, or believe in what I believe.. I see no sense in trying to convince other people of what I believe in, but the minute they show any disrespect for my beliefs? SEE. YOU. LATER. That goes double for my family.

5. Someone who cares about me enough to *want* to look after me, but has the sense to step back and let me do things the way I want to… Someone who supports me, but someone who will let me make my mistakes for myself. But will be there to catch me when I fall…. <— is that too much to ask?

6. Self respect. He doesn’t need to be up himself. But someone who is not reliant on me for his self-esteem. Someone who is not reliant on me to bolster him.. I mean, I will be there to support him…. But he needs to be able to search within himself to find his worth.. it’s the age-old adage, if he can’t see anything worth loving in himself, then how the hell am I supposed to find something to love?

There are just a few things really that I want in someone I choose to spend my time with.. I don’t think they’re too much to ask… Are they? I mean.. Don’t I deserve the best? I think asking for someone who matches me in some way, shape or form is not too much to ask… Someone who balances me…. Or am I just dreaming to think I’ll find someone? Even if I *do* find him will I miss out cos I am too scared to trust again…..?

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So placement continues.. Here I am… I am working on the birth unit. And. Loving. Every. Second. Of. It. I am working 7 days a week, working into the ground… I am dog-tired and brain-friend. But I am so happy.. I woke up this morning.. I am happy.. The placement is over.. But it’s bitter-sweet.. I didn’t want it to end, but I am glad for the break…. It just goes to show though that it’s what I am meant to be doing… Even on the worst day I’ve ever had in there…. I know it’s where I wanna be… Of one thing I am sure.. I have not yet had my worst day in there…. Not by far….

Anyway.. on to more pleasant things.. It was a wonderful 2 weeks all the same.. I caught many babies, and I didn’t drop a single one.. As part of the educatings we need to do a certain amount of “witnessed births” before we get hands on.. and even then, when we get hands on, it’s a “double scrub” so there’s another midwife there who has gloves on and has her hands there too.. Just to make sure that everything goes well.. This is all a very good system… There is no set number of double scrubs that one must participate in, it’s a case of when you are deemed safe to practice on your own without someone else’s hands there.. “Baby-steps” if you will…….

So anyway, over the course of this 2 week placement, I finally got to be hands-on and delivered a baby!! There was only one where I put it down as me who solely “caught” the baby.. The other times, the midwives were there as well….. I mean, they are responsible, and often times I am working with a new midwife each day who doesn’t know what I am capable of…And every delivery is different…..

I learnt SO much… And saw amazing woman who screamed at me that they couldn’t do it deliver their babies.. I saw some crazy things.. I saw an undiagnosed pregnancy- A woman who didn’t know she was pregnant until she came into the ED with abdominal pain, and was told she was in labour.

I saw a couple of caesarian sections, I saw women who just got on with it…. And I am ashamed to say I learnt from seeing a few times, what NOT to do/say as a staff member.. A lot of the time, you’re a fly on the wall in someone else’s workplace….. And if rude/inappropriate staff members do nothing else at least students like me can take away from the experience and realise that that is what NOT to do….

I’m afraid this blog is not full of wishy-washy lovely heart-warming moments… Cos I learnt a lot.. and it’s usually when you witness mistakes that you learn I am afraid… I mean, that’s mostly my mantra in life… I don’t make mistakes, I learn better ways of doing things through a process of elimination…..

We did have one case of a woman who came in before she was in labour, and we gave her some pain meds and sent her home.. Nothing wrong with this scenario… I mean, it’s proven that women labour better at home.. A normal labour, is better done at home.. As long as Mum is well, bubs is well.. Why do they need to be in hospital…? She was incredibly anxious… And started refusing to leave, demanding an induction, demanding a caesarian. No medical professional in their right mind would agree to that course of action if it was not indicated for. An intervention in pregnancy or labour should only take place if the benefits to the mother/baby *far* outweigh the risks associated with said procedure. If everyone is well, leave well enough alone…

As far as we could tell, bubs was good, Mum was hyper-anxious but physically well. So we gave her meds to help with the pain and sent her home.. This happened over a couple of days.. and she was not in labour. All of her observations and tests remained within normal limits….

But some of the staff started to get quite exasperated with her and were saying things about her.. They were saying how she was a princess, a winger, a sook. I tended to think she was hyper-anxious and something just didn’t sit right…. I mean, yes I was a little annoyed as well.. I mean, she was taking up time from other patients who needed it as well…. As a health care worker you recognise these things… But as I said, something didn’t sit right… I was wondering… And I was thinking.. there was something mental behind all this… My instincts are usually pretty good, but I couldn’t nut this out…

Eventually when she did come in, in established labour… Everything was progressing well.. But she was still hyper-anxious.. Strange, especially considering this was her second baby.. I mean, most first-time mothers will be anxious.. But as I said.. this was something else… I kept wondering what else was happening.. thinking that surely there was more to this…

It was only then when she was out of the room that her husband told us something that just went: *CLICK*… A close relative in the last couple of months had gone into hospital and her baby had died during the labour… It ended up a stillborn…. So this explains the anxiety…… DUH!! There were a number of staff that day who felt more than a little stupid, and a lot guilty…

It also taught me a valuable lesson.. Never judge a book by it’s cover.. You don’t know what’s going on inside someone’s head and why they are behaving a certain way.. A patient who is being particularly difficult might be doing all they can do to just survive…. It might serve as a white flag to find out more… As a health care worker I don’t need to read minds, but I do need to keep my eyes open for what my patients AREN’T telling me…

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think that patients hide things from health care workers on purpose.. But I do think they are doing all they can to cope.. And one way of doing that is soldiering through….

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Ok.. Gonna write a little post here about what I have been up to of late.. I have neglected my little blog for quite some time now.. And here is why.. I’ve been on placement again.. It’s only been 3 weeks.. But it’s been a tough 3 weeks.. Few things going on in the sidelines to make it even more so….

First week of placement was in Community nursing. It was with a palliative care unit.. I learnt a lot that week.. Before going to placement there in palliative care, I thought the same as most people think… That palliative care means you are dying. That palliative care means that there is no treatment options left for you. And that palliative care gets involved right at the very end to help with making sure there is adequate pain relief, and providing counsel and social support to families, reassuring them etc. Which is all good and well, and is definitely an element to palliative care… But palliative care simply put is nursing a patient and maintaining or optimising their comfort levels in any which way possible. ALL nursing should be done with a palliative care approach. ALL patients should be offered the optimum level of comfort. ALL patients should be offered ways to live pain-free if possible. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think nurses can solve the problems of the world, we can’t. But we can go a long way to translating the mumbo-jumbo and gobbledy gook that doctors sling around in the faces of their patients… I find a lot of patients benefit from a little bit of reassurance and understanding.. From understanding and knowing what is happening or what *could* happen.. Fear is a ghastly beast, and fear of the unknown is all invading.. In waking and sleeping, fear takes no passengers, only prisoners… As a nurse, I like to think I can help by explaining and clarifying things simply for patients so they understand that I am doing *something* I mean, I can’t cure the ailment.. But I can try and make sure situation is best it can be….

Anyway. In the background to a week spent visiting cancer patients in their homes, for co-ordinating care, providing support to worried <insert appropriate title> (daughters/husbands/wives/partners/sons/sons-in-law/daughters-in-law/dear friends/etc), I was dealing with my own worry.. My mother, waiting for some test results that were a little ominous… I found that particularly tough to handle. And the old adage of leaving your worries at the door on the way into work is a little easier said than done on some days moreso than others..

As well as that background information, I was dealing with having to find a new house to live in. My housemate has decided to break the lease so she can move to her parents house while she builds a house.. So I had to make a choice, move house or get someone in.. The little solution I have come up with is convoluted… But it works.. If you ignore a few minor details…. :-/

Anyway.. I got through that week.. It was still fraught with worry, stress and learning. Learning is not always fun.. Sometimes it hurts.. But I find the lessons that hurt the most are the one’s you remember the best…

The next week I started my midwifery rotation at a local public hospital on the birth unit…. Oh teh funs and joys of THERE!!!! LOVING IT!!!!! I am going to write about that in my next post… Cos otherwise it’ll get too long!! :p Don’t worry.. next post shouldn’t be too far behind..

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