Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Sometimes my sister makes me want to shoot myself in the head.

Monday, March 14, 2011

we can rule the world

I am finally done with the OT course!! Well, actually I finished it in December and I'm happy to say that I did much better than expected. Thank you, NUS, for drilling into me the skills for writing case studies. At least all those sleepless nights and last-minute churning trained me well.

Anyway, for my loyal readers, you may have recalled that I mentioned a mentorship program for the graduate nurses. So far, it's turning out to be a very good thing indeed. The chats I have with my mentor may seem superficial to some, but I try hard to learn something from each session. Needless to say, my mentor is quite wonderful, insightful and smart. She gives me hope that I might one day find something to my liking in this sometimes dreary profession. I really should take full advantage of the relationship I have with her to venture out of my comfort zone cos I'm not going to be in this honeymoon phase forever.

I've started my emergency on-call thingamajig as well. My first week was the CNY week which turned out a lot better than expected but I think I'm going to give away at least my weekend calls as soon as possible cos really, who wants to get called back when you're having a nice dinner? It was a little scary at first but it's getting better. Although as I admitted to one of the consultants the other day, I'm not quite keen on doing calls despite the extra money.

Talking about my mentor giving me hope, the same consultant also gave me some encouraging advice regarding the future of Endoscopy nurses. He mentioned that there aren't that many trained Endoscopy nurses in the world and that in time to come, we may actually be in high demand. No wonder he seemed a little taken aback when I said that I may not have much in the way of career advancement in my chosen area because it's so specialised.

All in all, life at the moment seems like a ship that hasn't reached its final destination but is just cruising along until it find a port it likes. But at least I'm gonna go on holiday soon!


Sunday, December 12, 2010

don't shoot me, Santa

My basic peri-operative course is nearly coming to an end but these last two weeks will be the worst. Each day in the OT is agony; I'm literally counting down the days till the 24th, which is when my blasted course will end and all my assignments handed in. I still have to make up one day though cos I took an MC. It's so not fair, I'm bloody entitled to 14 days of MC, aren't I? They should have a leeway of one to two days of sick leave! It's easy for the other staff to make up the days cos they're all from DSOT or MOT but I have to leave my department one person short when I make up the day.

I don't know why I'm putting so much pressure on myself to do well. It's not like in school where it's a must to get good grades so you'll get a better job. I guess it's because some people are aware of where I'm from and I feel like I have something to prove. Especially after one of the Senior Staff Nurses was telling everyone within earshot about how I'm on the path to becoming an Assistant Director of Nursing and whatnot. Even the surgeon was looking curiously at me! In my mind, I was mentally screaming at her to "Shut the hell up, you stupid woman!" I was seething after that because as much as it's a good thing to have a degree and all, I'm afraid that people will have pre-conceived notions of me, which I definitely don't want, especially in an industry where most people graduate with a diploma.

I start my Orthopaedics posting tomorrow and then the week after is my stint in O&G. I'm absolutely terrified of Ortho surgeons, thanks to all the horror stories I've heard. Every day I hope and pray that I escape unscathed. It doesn't help that I know very little about bones and the lecturer for that module was quite shitty. I'm of the opinion that she gave very little consideration to the fact that I was the only non-OT-trained staff in the course. It's a mean thing to say but probably her mind was on what eyeshadow would match her outfit the next morning. No doubt she's very knowledgeable or she wouldn't be where she is but she simply sucks at teaching.

I hate the fact that I was thrown into the OT with a steep learning curve to tackle. Although, I must admit, if the course was any longer, I think I'll have a mental breakdown. I know it's the terrible outlook that I have that's probably causing me half my misery and I try to have positive thinking to start the day off but it's hard. However, I chose to attend this and I will get through it. I keep reminding myself that I've faced worse and that another two weeks is but a minute in my life. It's just that I think that putting myself through the postings of the different disciplines is completely unnecessary and a waste of resources because the very basics of what I learnt in the course is sufficient for my department.

But if it gets me an extra $50 in my paycheck every month, then what the heck. I mean, this hell has to come to an end some time right?

Saturday, October 09, 2010

Sister is releasing the Leave Request book for next year on Monday but I'm going for the OT course! *wails* Even though she says it's not on a first-come-first-serve basis, I still feel a bit bad for putting my name when I already see 3 people scheduling for that week. Normally, the exact dates I take my annual leave (AL) wouldn't matter but this time, I have big plans: I intend to be in either England or America for the release of Deathly Hallows Part 2!! Ideally, I would like to be there for the premiere when all the stars attend (I might see JK Rowling herself!) but I don't know when that is. Halimah says it's usually a week before but I hope not cos I probably won't be there on 8th July. Thus, timing is crucial and I'm going to just repress whatever consideration I have for other people and just book it for when I want it.

I'm gangsta like that.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

house of cards in a hurricane

I felt the urge to blog so here I am, giving the small to non-existent population of readers an unnecessary update on my life.

Work has been going okay though I feel that my brain cells are rotting because I'm forgetting everything I learnt in 3 years of very expensive tuition. However, there aren't many opportunities for critical thinking at work or it could be that I just haven't noticed any. More likely it's the latter; I'm not exactly the sharpest tool in the box. I am happy to report, though, that my cannulation success rate has improved drastically from when I first started. I was hopeless back then cos even the easy veins would bump on me! And it dawned on me that the technique they taught was more difficult to execute than the one I'm using now, which is probably unorthodox but it gets the job done so whatever. I even managed to cannulate a renal patient's vein and theirs are known to be notoriously small. *pats self on the back*

NUH has also come up with a mentor programme to "further develop our potential". I'm really glad that NUH has an interest in us and takes the effort to set up such an initiative, making me glad I chose this hospital but sometimes I'm just so lazy to do all the required nonsense. Then I get annoyed with myself for thinking this way cos I do realise what an incredible opportunity I have to be successful and there's actually going to be Yoda-esque figure to guide me and explore the limits of what I can achieve. That's more than what I could ever ask for and here I am, throwing it all away, despite all that's happened. Currently, my biggest dilemma is choosing a mentor because I don't have a clear goal in mind. I wish I could get my act together already.

What's making my little head worry even more is the fact that I'm going down to the operating theatre soon to learn how to create and maintain a sterile environment. I'm not looking forward to it because I detest the OT. I don't like the staff and I don't really like the elitist culture that I perceive they have. It doesn't help that the surgeons and nurses tend to scold a lot and I haven't developed an elephant-like skin to withstand all that. My solution is to suck up more to the surgical team. It's something that I despise doing but I see it as a necessary evil to avoid more embarrassment in the theatre. I really should change my outlook on this and see it as a fresh start, instead of worrying about my potential mistakes. Positive thinking is half the battle won, right? Plus passing the course will give me a slight increase in salary :)

As for my colleagues, let's just say that I don't get along with all of them. Even the ones I thought I was okay with, I found out that they've been badmouthing me behind my back. Like, whut? And how in the world do you work with someone who always has a black face and doesn't talk to you? It makes the day so unpleasant. Granted her work is almost flawless but that doesn't give her the right to be such a bitch when a mistake is made. It makes me all the more want to catch her in her mistake and, if I had the guts, to tell her "Hey you make errors too so can you not be so hard on other people?" I don't know why I'm so afraid to let her know what I really think, maybe it's the fact that I hate confrontations. Oh well, I'm not going to stay there forever anyway but I have to stop people from bullying me too much and I think I'm just not going to say anything to people who irritate me.

So in a nutshell, aside from my holiday in Greece which was a good escape, my life is just so-so.

Friday, April 30, 2010

hocus pocus

I think I am downright cursed.

I feel like almost every time something big happens, I am involved. The frustrating part is, most of the time it is NOT MY FAULT. But I guess what Nicole says is also right: I'm sure other people make mistakes too but it's probably not known. I can definitely testify to that for I've seen it with my own (myopic) eyes and heard it with my own ears. Don't get me wrong though, I haven't killed a patient neither have I come close to doing so. These incidents are more PR-related, fortunately.

And I'm wondering if the reason I'm making so many blunders is the fact that I'm new to the job or am I just careless? I've come to the conclusion that it's a combination of factors. I've only been 9 months into the workforce and yes, sometimes I don't think before acting, not really carelessness per se.

I'm getting a case of "What the hell am I doing with my life?" -itis again. Can I really see myself doing this for the next 10 years? At the rate it's going, it's a definite No.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

my job is, unfortunately, just that.

Reading previous entries on the woes of my academic life and the horrors I went through during attachments made me think about where I am now and whether or not I am happy.

I guess I'm satisfied that I managed to land a job in the health care sector that gives me sort-of regular hours and public holidays off plus overtime pay. It's not the ideal starting point though, because Endoscopy is rather specialised but at least I'm not that afraid of going to work. You see, one of my very biggest fears is harming a patient. One time, I was so scared that I couldn't sleep well for two nights. Then I had giddiness on the second morning, and the doctor gave me lorazepam, an anti-anxiety drug, to help me calm my nerves and to sleep better.

The other fear is disappointing myself and my parents. In one entry I said I was terrified of what my father would say if I didn't become a nurse in the end cos I was this close to throwing in the towel. I realise that I didn't have to be because all he cares about is whether I'm doing fine. Thank you God, for giving me such wonderful parents.

Lastly, the nursing higher-ups met up with me shortly after I joined NUH to discuss my decision of going straight to a centre instead of starting out in the wards. I haven't told very many people this, and I'm quite sure even after posting, only like two more will know :) in a nutshell, they weren't too happy about it because I wasn't going to get enough general experience and go through the suffering that all new nursing graduates go through. I tried explaining that taking care of 8-12 patients just didn't work for me and shift hours were tiring. I needed the regular hours in order to function properly and of course, I wanted my work-life balance. They told me to reconsider my decision and I did, but in the end I refused their offer to let me go to the ward. My Transition to Practice posting sealed that deal for me, I was utterly miserable and depressed for the entire one month. They asked what was my plan for the next five years and I told them that I wanted to go into the managerial side and that was it. I think they were a little disappointed with my answer cos I'm sure they expected a typical response like "Be the Director of Nursing!" but sorry, I'm not an ambitious person. As long as I have food on the table and adequate savings for the parentals, I'm good.

As Kelly once told me, "Don't care what other people say. Just do what you want to do." She's absolutely right, it's MY life and mine to screw up. Yes Endoscopy is narrow and maybe I won't learn as much, but who says that I want to be a nurse forever anyway? I never was one to stay in something for too long.

And so, I guess I'm happy-ish. For now.