Musings of a Night Nurse

My journal for musing about being a night nurse, life and death, life in general and my passion for knitting

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Location: New York, United States

I have been a nurse for 30 years in long term care. Now don't make that face! I believe we need to care for our elderly and they deserve a loving, dignified end of life experience. I am married to the most wonderful man in the world for 18 years. I have no children of my own, but due to my step-sons I have a wonderful 5 year old grandson! I am mom to 2 17 year old cats and a BIG black lab/great dane Buddy (yes he weighs 146 lbs) that is either the dumbest or smartest dog around! LOL

Sunday, January 29, 2006

knitting and life

Hopefully I will get a pic of my FLAK on later today, I have most of the back to the armholes done and am really quite pleased with it if I do say so myself (being as this is my first venture into Aran, to say nothing of the way it is constructed. This is just soooooooo cool! I see all sorts of ways to use this information to actually design my own sweater one day! Yeah Janet, I love you!

I have also joined the knitting olympics (button in the sidebar). I have to cast on during the opening ceremonies on Feb. 10, and have it finished by closing ceremonies February 26. My project will be a baby layette. A good friend is due way to soon for me to procrastinate any longer! I have joined Team USA, and will have that button on later today also.

On a somber note. The wonderful lady that I made a shawl for at Christmas, passed on Friday morning at 6A. I am honored that I was on duty and there to help her and her loving family thru such a difficult time. I have been in long term care for 30 years and yes, I can usually distance myself a bit, it is self-defense if you know what I mean, you can't take all that pain so personally all the time. However, I had to take a break in the back room to get myself together. I did shed tears with the family, and I will be visiting the Funeral Home tomorrow.

To Grace: You touched many lives, and did so with grace and dignity. Fly with angels now Gracie, you will forever live in my heart.

Monday, January 23, 2006

My Rant for today

Ok, it is time for a rant! Back in September I hurt my back at work. A word of caution, always know how strong someone is BEFORE you try to lift a patient with them! Anyway.....I herniated my L4-5 disc. Was out of work for 8 weeks, doing Physical therapy and visiting the comp docs. Now I don't know if the comp law is the same in all states, but here in NY you have to be out of work for 7 consecutive days to begin to collect comp. Ok, that is reasonable.

However, the nursing home I work for is county owned and run and the county is self-insured. hmmm yup, we are beginning to run into problems here. First I had to sign FMLA papers so that they would pay me from my sick bank and annual leave (read vacation here)bank. Was told it would be replaced after comp kicked in. Well......... they had to use ALL of my time BEFORE comp would cut a check. Ok, still not too bad. However! Workmen's comp won't cut the nursing home a check to replace my lost sick and vacation time until after I have a comp hearing! NH told me that can take up to a year. SAY WHAT??????????? So I call the NYS workmens comp number to ask about when I might be getting a hearing.

Hold on are you ready???????????? NYS doesn't even have me on record as having a workmen's comp claim!!!!!!! Ok, my blood pressure shot up, my migraine kicked in, and I headed for the Lortab bottle.

Now mind you, I am STILL in PT, had to take Friday night off due to an exacerbation of the pain due to tripping over the damn bed alarm wires at work Thursday night. Had an appointment with the neurosurgeon on Friday (which by the way took 3 MONTHS to get).

Neurosurgeon says, continue with PT and if there isn't any improvement in the next 3 months, make another appointment and they will do a myelogram.

So basically, I continue to go to PT 3x/week to be put on the rack (read mechanical traction with 100lb pull) and continue the strenghtening exercises. The state comp board sent me paperwork to file my own claim, and here I sit with NO sick time.

Vacation time is put in the bank at the beginning of the year. But HELLO! I work in health care, long term care to be exact. It is the middle of flu season, what the hell do I do if I catch something? Apparently I go to work anyway (which the nursing home thinks everyone should do) and share it with my co-workers and residents. Yes these frail elderly that sure as hell do not need me to add to their health woes.

Ok, end of rant, going to go knit and hope to relax a bit.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Shoulder saddles are done!


Well here they are, you really can't see the stitch definition very well with my camera, but I am kinda pleased with them. I am probably the only one in the KAL using acrylic yarn, but since this is my first try at an Aran sweater, and the whole math thing to get it to custom fit, I was a bit leary. Course NOW I find out that Knitpicks is really reasonable and I could have had wool of the Andes for just about the same price. Oh well, no time to order just now, but I am thinking of shooting off an order and may just reswatch and try it with a really nice yarn. hmmmmmmm but what color????????? LOL I sure hope I haven't gotten in over my head here!

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

close up of buttons

 Posted by Picasa

one baby sweater done!

ok, here is the sweater I made for my 1 year old niece. above you will see the close up of the lady bug buttons Posted by Picasa

Monday, January 09, 2006

grrrrrr

well I have tried 3 times to put a pic on here of my finished baby sweater, but so far no go! hmmmmm maybe I should stop and try again tomorrow, when I am not on pain meds for my herniated disc. Yeah typical nurse's back and it really stinks!

Sunday, January 08, 2006

I finally took the plunge!

Ok, so I needed a place to put my knitting and life thoughts. I used to do a graphics website, but really didn't want to get into all that again.....so I finally started a blog. No more excuses, I got a new digital camera for Christmas, so I guess now I will have to download to my computer and put some pics here of my knitting madness! Now don't get excited I am sooooo a newby at knitting, but I really enjoy it, and it gives me a way to relax after a hectic night at work.

Of course I am sure that work related content will show up here! Some funny, some sad, some tragic. Ok here is my first rant!

It is absolutely criminal the way our elderly are treated, by society, family, and people in general. Enough of that rant for now, it will come back in the future!

My FO in knitting include 6 easy shawls I made for my CNA's at work for Christmas, and 1 shawl for an absolutely wonderful lady I care for that has terminal cancer. Prayers and good thoughts went into each stitch of these.

UFO's I have 3 count them 3 baby sweaters that either need 1 more sleeve done or just to be sewn together. Will take pics after they are together. I have done about 10 dishcloths. I belong to a monthly dishcloth KAL that you can find here http://groups.yahoo.com/group/monthlydishcloths/

We have lots of fun!

I am also learning to knit socks! with double points, LOL it looks like a really scary weapon on all those needles, after I get that down, I will attempt to learn using 2 circs and the magic loop method.

Lord help me, I also joined FLAK which is a "follow the leader Aron KAL" Yes I have done sweaters but this will be my first Aran, and I actually get to "design" my own. I am swatching my fingers off right now to get the right gauge so I can custom fit it to ME! LOL Pictures of that will follow also.


Course I have to figure out how to put pics on here, as well as buttons for my KAL's. oh well there is no hurry right? Knitting and blogging are supposed to be calming. Can I have an AMEN?