Never Forget to Say "I Love You"
December 1, 2007
I bitch about my job sometimes. I bitch because it's boring, stressful, it makes my body hurt and I am underappreciated. However, today I cannot bitch. Infact, I am grateful for my job today because it taught me something very valuable: it taught me about how important it is to say "I love you."
Upon arrival to work, I was told of a particular patient who was admitted over the previous night.
Sandy (as I will call her) was a 27 year old girl who had drug overdosed. She had checked herself in at the security desk with the intention of going to the ER. Unfortunately, she never made it there. She was found on the bathroom floor in full arrest. They were able to successfully revive her and get her up to our ICU station where she arrested 3 more times during then night. By 7:29am, she had died.
Pam, who was her nurse (an amazing nurse and someone I am proud to call my very close friend and mentor) asked me to assist in cleaning up Sandy's body and getting her ready for family to visit. I have helped with this process countless times. Most of the patients that have passed away on our station have been older people. For some reason it seems much more natural to deal with an old person who has died. I was certainly not prepared for what I walked into. There in the bed was this young woman, just one year younger than me. You could tell she was pretty but you could also tell she lived a hard life. She had only passed away 15 minutes earlier but it looked like she had been gone for hours. As we proceeded to clean her up, I noticed track marks up and down her arms. Her nails had been chewed down to almost nothing (a classic sign of heroin use) and they were dirty.
My heart went out to this poor girl. From talking to Pam, I learned that she had been in and out of drug treatment for years and had been living on the streets. I also learned that she had a seven year old son. I fought back tears and prayed quietly as I ran a warm wash cloth over her skin. I prayed that she found peace, that she was no longer suffering and that God would take her home.
When we finished, I went and found Sandy's mother who was tearful and beside herself with grief.
I lead her to Sandy's room where she let out a mournful cry upon entering it. I couldn't help but wonder what was going through her mind at that very moment as she sat next to her daughter's body, holding her hand. Did she think of that day held Sandy in her arms for the first time? The first time she laid eyes on that little baby girl, kissing her softly on top of her sweet head and dreaming of all the wonderful possibilities the future held for her. Did she remember Sandy's proud first steps, the first time she uttered the word "mommy," or the nervous excitement of her first day of school? Did she ever imagine that the last time she said good bye to her daughter, it would happened like this?
Sandy's mother made a comment that I will never forget. She turned to her brother-in-law and said, "Next time you talk to your kids, tell them you love them. The last time I talked to Sandy I didn't tell her I loved her and I wish I had."
This is the lesson I learned: life is so short. We can't predict what is going to happen from moment to moment. That is why it is so important to live in the present moment, to appreciate what beauty is around us at this very minute in time. We are not promised a tomorrow, so that is why it is so important to let those you care about know that you love them. I think I am going to take a few minutes to call that person I have been thinking about for the last week. I am going to send a "thinking of you" card to my mom and dad. I am going to tell all my friends and family that I love them with all my heart. I hope you will take time to do something like that too.
A Shitty Situation
August 6, 2006
One time, a few years ago, I was pulled over for having my music bumping too loud...yah, I was bumpin Brittney Spears. True story, seriously. The only reason I bring up this humiliating fact is in hopes of making the following seem less horrifying.
I was at work a few days ago, going about my business of nursing assisting when one of the patients put on their call light. I went in and was informed that he needed to use the commode. (Commode: A portable toilet type thing in which wastes are collected in a bucket under the seat) I happily helped the man to the commode and left him to do his business. I let his nurse know that she should check on him in a few minutes to see if he is finished.
A few minutes passed and I just happened to be passing by that particular patients room. As I walked by, the nurse appeared in the door way with a half-mortified, half-amused look on her face. When I asked her what was wrong, she replied, "There was no bucket under the commode." I clasped my hands over my mortified face as the image of that man sitting like an island in the middle of a pool of his own runny do-do, materialized in my mind.
I peeked at the nurse from behind my hands and told her she had to be joking. Unfortunately she was not. The next five thousand words to leave my mouth we some form of either "Oh my God! or I am SO SORRY!" Naturally, I offered to clean up my own mess but the sweetheart housekeeper, Geri wouldnt let me! So I walked away feeling like a total moron for having ruined that poor patients day and his slippers too!
Jury Duty aka Smeary Doodie!
May 16, 2006
It was a lovely April afternoon. The sun was shining, birds were singing and I was in a cheerful mood. I skipped up the front steps to my apartment building as a butterfly landed on my shoulder (Not really, but it makes the story more dramatic). I smiled and giggled as it fluttered away. I stepped inside the building and approached my mail box. I gathered my mail out and began thumbing though it. Money! Woo-hoo, I love pay day. A congratulations card for getting into nursing school from my mom. How thoughtful! Then, an evelope with Dakota County as the return address. Hmm...what could this be? I ripped open the envelope and pulled out its contents. As I read the bold red letters across the top of the page, a gray cloud suddenly formed over my head and it began to rain- much like the ones you see in cartoons. "Jury Summons" was what it read.
Now, I know that Jury Duty is a poopie thing that nobody really likes to do. Its a pain in the ass. Little did I know exactly how much it would be until this morning at 8:15am. I arrived in Judicial Center in Hastings right on time, to a room full of other less than excited looking people. We all kinda stared at each other blankly, some of us with our eyes half closed and drooling a little. And that was pretty much how the day went. Everyonce in a while, they would update us on how many cases were settling and how many there were left to be heard. As the noon hour approached, I was so bored that I wanted to rip off my own arm and swing it around over my head, just to have something else to do. Well by 2:30, all the cases were settled and we were dismissed. The exciting news is that my jury term lasts 2 weeks, so I may just get to do it all over again next week since I wasn't selected for a jury today. I have a question: Why does the call to civic duty have to be such a frickin' snore-fest? Damn, the least they could have done was buy us a keg or something. Then again, that would probably reduce our $20 per day compensation rate down to like $8. God Bless America!
When "Shaking It" Goes Wrong
March 14, 2006
As most of you know, one of my favorite pastimes is dancing. I prefer it to walking and if I could dance from place to place without looking like a complete moron, I would totally do it. So, you can imagine my sheer delight and glee when I discovered Yoga Booty Ballet. Yes, it is an actual workout program that is based in dance. I love it so much, it is a total blast. It is like having a dance party in my living room while getting a great workout! What could be better, right?
Not only do I have fun doing Yoga Booty Ballet, it has taught me some cool new moves. Today I was picking up my living room when the super dancible Nelly song, "Ride With Me" came on the radio. Naturally, I was inspired to try out some of my new moves. So I cut loose and started shaking it like never before. My arms were waving, my booty was shakin and in my mind I was the hottest new music video star. Well, I must have gotten a little bit too into it because when I stopped, I noticed this throbbing pain in my back. As the day has gone by, it has only gotten worse. Now I am laying on a heating pad hoping I didn't do any serious damage. Shit, I didn't know cuttin' a rug could be so dangerous. So, consider yourself forewarned and think of me next time you get the urge to groove. Then after thinking of me, laugh and get your ass movin'! As soon as I can stand up straight again, that is exactly what I'll be doing!
December 12, 2005
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Drunk With Power Tools
December 8, 2005
As of right now, I have been awake for over 39 hours. Gosh, it has been a really long time since I've pulled an all-nighter...does this mean I'm getting old? Maybe it is proof that I am still young... Actually, I am really impressed that I am in a fairly good mood and have not yet hit the floor. Normally I am like a two year old when I have not gotten enough sleep: cranky, emotional and clingy. I should really get some sort of award for this...it would be a stupid award for doing a stupid thing but I still want one! LOL
After Anatomy our class last night, my friend Andy and I decided to hang out. We picked up some pizza, a shit load of Killians and went to work on his house. This is the point where I was introduced to an incredible piece of mechanical wonder: The Dremmel.
It is a marvelous tool that does everything from cutting metal, grinding stone to polishing stuff. My job was to grind/cut off nails sticking out of the wall. I strapped on my sexy protective eyewear and went to town. My excitement grew as millions sparks jumped through the air like a fourth of July sparker. Then I took that handy little tool over to a corner in the kitchen where I proceeded to dislodge the bottom of left over wanescoating from tiling grout which was holding it securely to the floor. It wasn't too long before I proudly freed the pieces of wood. Andy was really happy about that. It was amazing, with each passing beer my skill seemed to improve to the point where I was brave enough to try mudding holes in the wall. It took me a while to get the hang of it but it wasn't long before I was really into it. So much so that I had mud in my hair, on my face and all over my clothes...I guess it didn't help that Andy thought it was cute to fling it at me!
So, in the last 39 hours I have learned new house fixing skills, CPR, gone to school, watched 2 movies, got in a couple wrestling matches (all of which I pretty much let Andy win), was sober, then drunk, then sober again. I got a facial, got my oil changed and went grocery shopping. Overall, I'd say it has been a very fun and productive binge on conciousness. But as much fun as it has been, I miss my bed and look forward to spending lots of quality time with it tonight.
November 30, 2005
If you are a man or for some reason want to be, I apologize in advance for this blog. I have one burning question: what is it about having a penis that diminishes brain capacity by 75 percent? Now don't get me wrong, I am a HUGE fan of penises. They are incredilby fun and enjoyble. However, often times the person they are attached to leaves a lot to be desired.
I'd love to know why a some men find it a great idea to give me the total cold shoulder after a few ejoyable encounters. Did I ever ask them for a fucking ring, commitment or even another date? Nope. Did I ask them to "define us" or demand to know where I thought things were going between us? Never. Yet, with no explaination, they decided to flick me from their finger like a crusty old booger. Nice. What a bunch of sweethearts.
This example is just the tip of a huge iceburg; an iceburg that would send the Titanic running away, scraming for its mommy while crying like a terrified little bitch. Do I unknowingly wear a flashing neon sign on my boobs that says, "Please Fuck With My Head, I Love It"? Or, is a sweet message like, "I'm a Stupid, Gullable Moron" written across my forehead? If so, I'd like to correct those misconsceptions: I hate my head being fucked with (unless I give prior approval) and I can spot a player, liar and phony son-of-a-no-good-bitch from less than half a mile away. Experience is the best teacher I've ever had.
"Come out of the Bitter Barn and play in the hay!" That is what everyone says to me. My reply is: "Who the hell wants to play with someone who is crabby and covered with cow shit?" The barn has not been kind to me.But, will I get over all this? Yes. Will I be my upbeat, positive self again? Of course. I just need to be annoyed and irritated tonight so that I can get through the bullshit and end up on the other side where things are much better. I learned something in Anatomy class that has stuck with me: when broken bones are rehealed, they actually become stronger than they originally were. I like to think of myself like that. Sure, I hurt like hell intially but I heal stronger than I was before. Damn, I keep getting better and better. Hey boys, can you handle me? I dare you to try!
Flashing the FedEx Guy
July 21, 2005
The weather has been just nasty hot lately and my apartment has been smoldering with hellish temperatures. On days like that, I tend to wander about my apartment wearing nothing more than my bra and undies. Most people who visit me on hot days, know to expect to see me in my undies. (Just ask my sister and her roommate, they are my neighbors.) Unfortunately, that habit bit me in the butt today.
I was doing things around my hot apartment, getting ready for my friend Julie to come over. I was pretty much all ready to go except for being dressed. My mom and I were chatting on the phone when I heard a knock at the door. I figured it was Julie, so I told my mom to hold on while I let her in. I unlocked the door, opened it and instead of seeing my friend Julie, there was a FedEx man standing there! I froze in horror as he stared wide eyed at me in my bra and undies.I yelled, "YOU'RE NOT JULIE!" as I slammed the door shut. (I can just imagine him wondering who the hell Julie is and why she'd be going to a naked girl's house!)
I quickly told my mom what just happened and she was laughing at me as I hung up with her. I stood there with my head spinning as I tried to figure out what to do next. Certainly, I couldn't just NOT go back to the door. Afterall, he did see me...damn near all of me! So I decided to to suck it up, put on my robe and get it over with.
I went back to the door and took a deep breath before opening it. And there was the poor guy, just standing there looking very confused. "Sorry about that." I said sheepishly, "I guess you'll have something to tell the guys back at work." I chuckled and he kinda smiled. Then he said, "I'm assuming that you are Stefany." I hated to admit that I was infact, Stefany...I nodded, looked down and muttered, "mmm hmm." So I signed my name on the line, thanked him and shut the door as quickly as possible.
On the bright side, I was wearing cute bra and undies that matched instead of my old "laundry day" underware. Everyone I have told about this story says, "That is something that would only happen to you, Stef." And you know what? They are right!
July 15, 2005
It is a very good thing that my parents did not name me "Grace." All of my life, I have been an incurable klutz. Falling down is my specialty. (It is amazing I am actually still alive after 5 years of competitive gymnastics!) I've managed to make an ass of myself by falling down in a variety of different styles and settings. My latest show was about two weeks ago at an art fair with a friend.
After finding a parking spot, we walked a couple of blocks to the fair. It had been raining just before we arrived at the fair, so the ground was still wet. For some reason, my friend thought it would be a good idea to walk down this steep grassy hill instead of taking the stairs (which were only about 10 yards away). He had no problem darting down the hill. I looked down the hill as I smelled the very distinctive scent of disaster looming. Against my better judgement, I carefully made my way down the wet, grassy hill. I said to my friend, "Just watch, I am totally going to fall!" Then he replied, "No, you won't fall." I didn't take more than a few more steps when I felt my feet slip out from under me and landed flat on my ass. I just laid there, feeling moderately embarrassed. "Oh well, shit happens." I said to myself as I chuckled and stood back up.
For a moment, I considered taking off my shoes to prevent another fall but decided against it thinking, "What are the odds of actually falling again?" I quickly found out the odds were against me because I after two more steps, I once again found myself on my back, feet in the air and sliding down the hill with my shirt riding up by back. My friend was at the bottom of the hill laughing his ass off. There were also people passing by laughing at me after seeing me fall for a second time. I was also laughing so hard that I knew that if I stood up again I'd definately fall, so I scooted the rest of the way down the hill on my butt until I could find flat ground.
Any normal person would be absoultely mortified but I really wasn't. Maybe it is because the feeling of self-humiliation is so damn familiar to me. In fact, I usually get a mental picture of what I must have looked like during my fall and it cracks me up. Remembering those times always brings a smile to my face when I'm having a crappy day. I figure it is a very positive thing to be able to laugh at myself... it is never a good thing to take yourself too seriously.