You will see things you never even dreamed of.
Everything else will be a walk in the park.
A Girl in the Curl's Life List
1. NOT HAVE CANCER
2. Remember my amazing mom
3. Remember my amazing Brother
4. get things done
5. make a good transition into the next stage of my life
6. Keep an art journal
7. Stop holding on to the things that clutter my home and my life
8. update everyone on my disappearance :)
9. forget about learning to take better photographs, just take more photos
How I did it: Todd sent an invite, I think, and I added it and since i haven't been on the internet very much lately, I forgot to check back. so when I finally did, I noticed that I missed the date.I really hate this obligation to write how I did something. 43 is putting me off with this and it's probably why I haven't been back as often as I used to be :( Read how I did it…
How I did it: Wel, I was late, so I did it twice--once when I added the goal, and then once when I realized I missed the acutal day, so..the guilt has GOT to be worth, like 17 birthday cakes, I'm guessing. Read how I did it…
How I did it: I didn't have a menorah, but I made do with what I had. A few years ago, I made batches and batches of soap, so I had extra bars laying around. I only had birthday cake candles, so I used those. Read how I did it…
You will see things you never even dreamed of.
Get her DVDs, get her CDs, listen to the morning, noon, and night. Don’t just listen to what she’s saying, listen to WHY she’s saying it…not that one thing leads to another, but WHY it leads to this other thing…then you’ll be in awesome shape for the CCRN.
It was actually a let-down how easy the exam turned out to be. I was expecting it to be much harder.
After my treatments for cancer finished, I was faced with the decision to return to the horrible ICU I was working at (nights!!!) or go back to Columbia to finish the masters. I chose the latter (and lived to regret it)
My year at columbia, doing the didactic part of the degree was heinous. Many nights, I went to sleep at three, woke up at five to cram for an exam at 8 or 9 am. Then I had classes all the way til the evening, when I had barely any time to eat something, take a quick shower, and hit the books til 3 am again. I even had to do this on the weekends to stay afloat.
Well, stay afloat is what I did, but when it came to going off to clincials, I did not feel ready. I approached my “mentor” (who was also the bat-shit crazy director of the program, the professor of three of our classes AND a student working on her own doctoral degree) and told her I didn’t feel ready. We had a disagreement about it, basically with me saying that patient safety was first, and I’d be withdrawing from the program.
I went to lunch with a friend.
I came back from lunch to find that an emergency council had met to kick me and my friend (at lunch) out of the program.
So, I called a lawyer regarding their illegal booting me out of the program. It was settled out of court that I was allowed to withdraw since they booted me out under stupid circumstances.
I packed my shit up and moved back to california.
When I got back, I was so burned out, I couldn’t even think of going back to my old ICU—80 percent of the bitches I worked with would have torn me a new one. So, I took my time to find another job.
In the meantime, three or four local hospitals were laying off nurses left and right, and before I knew it, there were no jobs anywhere that I was competative for. I would interview for job after job, and when they’d ask me about my “year off” they’d pretty much decide that a year away from the bedside (in critical care) was too much, compared to the people also vying for that job whom were fresh off the previous job, maybe with many more years experience.
So, desperate, I started looking everywhere. I ended up taking a job that I thought would only be for 3-6 months, tops, in southern california. But, the job market was so horrible, and SF is so competative (everyone wants to earn the highest wages in the country, so they’re coming from all over the world) that I ended up there for 14 months.
Terrible, depressing, horrible place to work. Non unionized. They floated you indiscriminately outside your specialty (the ER, Med Surg) to save money from calling registry nurses (whom are very expensive hired guns for the day) and basically were putting our licenses on the line should anything happen. Saving money, by risking our licenses and future…in one year that I worked there, I think I got two or three fifteen minute breaks.
I once complained about one of the charge nurses, who did nothing all day long (the other was fantastic and so hard working and made work possible in the most horrible work environment ever) but the manager of the department told me that if I “didn’t like it” I could leave. (those words, exactly) This stellar management skill got her to empty out the whole critical care services, particularly the ER, of competant, willing to work for shit money, experienced nurses. “Oh, if I don’t like it I can leave? well then, to hell with you.” So this is how they were in crisis mode, floating us there to plug the hole in the life raft she had sunken with her bad management skills.
Around February, I got so depressed at my situation, commuting 500 miles to work for less than half the pay I was getting up in SF, and working SIX 12 hour shifts in a row, so that I could drive back home to SF to be with my husband and dog…I hit bottom.
I got mad, and decided that a year from that date, I would be in such a better place, but, to use physics terminology, to break the moment of inertia, you need to exert a bigger force to break the coefficient of static friction.
I enrolled in classes to retake my GRE exam, to give school another try.
I started studying for the CCRN exam, which was additional certification for critical care nurses. Without additional certification, I wasn’t getting anywhere. I was getting interviews, sure, but when they found out the hospital ICU I was in was not a very high acuity, I would never hear back from the interviewer. Adding CCRN after my name now has made all the difference in the world.
So with one year under my belt, and a CCRN, and all the hard work I did (going in to the OR on my day off every time I was able to, to hang out with the OR staff eventually lead to the Director of the OR wanting to train me to work in post op recovery, when no one was able to take call. This added experience led to my current job here in SF, where I work in the recovery room of a trauma 1 hospital.)
So, the effort I had to exert to get back to square one was huge. There was no time for anything but studying for the certification exam, prepping for a better job, learning what I could about recovery, and eventually getting my life back up to where I belong, in San Fran.
And that’s what I’ve been doing for two years that I’ve been out of touch :) I was hitting bottom, and trying to get my head back above the waterline :)
I can’t tell you all how flattered I am that you thought of me during that time. It means a lot to me :)