this is me now

June 30, 2008

Days in the Hospital

Filed under: jobs,learning,things that happen at the Hospital — by heatherdc @ 1:43 am

Every day starts the same. But that’s where the ordinary stops. From there, it’s anyone’s guess….

I’ve been working in the hospital for about four weeks now, and I can easily say that each day has been dramatically different from the next. It definitely keeps things interesting, keeps me on my toes, and keeps me wondering what will happen next.

For a little update, here are some of the more “exciting” sitings–
(warning::you may be disgusted/scared/entertained/all of the above, or none of the above. just sayin’….)

  • Jaundice. More commonly talked about as a condition that some babies have initially after birth. They are basically “yellow”. I never took that too literally….until I met Freddy*. He was a late admit on Friday, so I brought him a late dinner tray. He’s about 55+ years old, a little over weight, friendly, and staying on the fourth floor. Oh yah, and he’s yellow. Literally yellow. His arms, his face, the ‘whites’ of his eyes. Alllll over, he was a definite yellow.
  • My sister’s first grade teacher. I ran into her in the hall, and she gave me a big ol’ hug. She lives in our neighborhood, so we have seen her off and on throughout the years. When Lauren and  I are together, she can tell us apart. When it’s just me, she always thinks I’m Lauren. I forget this. She talked to me for about 10 minutes, asking about school, life, my plans, blah blah blah. Then, as we’re saying ‘bye’, she smiles and says “Every time I think of you I think of your class and that cute Piggy Opera!”. Yes, they did a piggy opera, and Lauren was Momma-pig. I had a little laugh thinking of Lauren as the Momma-pig, and the fact that I will always be Lauren to people who don’t see us often. Oh well.
  • Tuberculosis. Um, scarryyyyy. I had to put on a huge mask, ‘gown’ and gloves. I went into the room and pretty much held my breath. Which, by the way, is very hard to do while you’re trying to talk. Yup. And also when you are in there for like two minutes. Gaaasp. Good thing I had like Five tests to prove I don’t have it. Geeeeze.
  • Cystic Fibrosis. This life expectancy of somebody with this disease ranges from about 25-30  yrs old. John* is a 20 yr-old with CF, spending way too much of his young life in the hospital. I screened him during my second week, and he just got discharged last Wednesday. I’m in charge of the meals on the fourth floor, and that’s where he stayed. By the end of Day 3 I had his breakfast, lunch, and dinner orders pretty much memorized. Sometimes he got tricky and threw me a curve-ball, sometimes he forgot to order his Cherry cheese-cake and I reminded him. To which he would respond “Whew, can’t believe I almost forgot! Thanks Heather, you saved my night 😉 “. Well, well, I do what I can.
  • “OB orders.” That’s what we call a huuuuge meal. With our system, patients order what they want, when they want. We have a full menu every day. And I gotta say, it’s pretty extensive! We actually get a lot of compliments on the food. Except when people can only have Clear liquids. Anyway–sometimes people order a lot of food, and while we can only serve them one “Entree” (sorry folks, can’t feed the whole fam), they can order as manyyyyy sides/drinks/deserts as they want. And sometimes, they certainly do.When somebody  has just had a baby, they are on the “OB” floor. And let me tell you, those women can EAT! Honestly, I am kind of amazed. I knew pregnant/post-labor women crave and eat loots of different things. But, wow. I love answering the phone and taking their order!… “Grilled chicken salad, with LOTS of Ranch, two iced teas, sugar, apple pie, tomato soup, crackers, french fries, and LOTS of ketchup, a banana, a wheat roll. And can I have some potato soup too? Thanks. Oh, and vanilla pudding, and ummmm, chocolate milk.”  Yes, that looks like a typical lunch/dinner order. Like I said….Wow. 

  • Death. This one was inevitable, but I couldn’t help but hope that I’d never have to actually see it. Or at least not yet, not this summer. We’ve had two or three patients die in the last few weeks, we just get a call basically saying ‘You won’t need an order from room —, because the patient is deceased.” Uh, thanks for the update? It’s just weird. But it’s normal, and it happens. A lot.
    Yesterday, I walked in on it. An older man had just passed, literally minutes before I came to his room. The nurses hadn’t put up a sign yet, the door was open, and…well….I walked in.
    I knew right away. I froze. Turned to the nurse’s desk, opened my mouth, and before I could say anything…..”Yah, he just passed a few minutes ago.” Whoa. I guess there’s a first for everything.

Every day is different. Some go by really fast, some involve some really chatty people, some teach me a lot more than others, and some drag on and on. Every morning there are new patients, and every morning I go see them.  And they make my day.

*Names have been changed, gotta keep the confidentiality. And because, otherwise, I’d be fired. Not good.

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June 27, 2008

The spoiled Haircut-ee

Filed under: haircuts,learning — by heatherdc @ 1:50 am

After some investigating, I found a new Salon here at home that has a good reputation (among the Madre’s friends). In need of a hair cut, I decided to check it out. I will say I was a little apprehensive, as we all know that I loooved (and to remind you…had a little crush on…) the guy who cut my hair at school. But, someday I have to move on. *sigh*

I got there a little bit early, and she took me in right on time. One point for the new girl (sidenote: it’s a little weird having a girl cut your hair after finally getting used to the guy…hmmm). While she washed my hair, she gave me a head massage. Uhhh….10 points! Here I am just trying not to fall asleep before I have to get up and move to a different chair. Soooo relaxing.

I tell her exactly what I want, she gets it. She goes to work. As she does different things, she gives me a little tutorial on why and what it will do for my hair. Kinda weird, nobody has ever explained technique to me. I don’t really care, as long as I don’t look like a chainsaw was taken to my head. But okay, interesting.

Things are generally going well. She did seem like she was kind of rushing it though. The Crush used to allot an hour for every appointment. He usually “cut” for about 30, dried, and then “polished up” for about 10. She cut for about 10-15, and then drops the bomb….

Okay, I’m done with the cut for now, so I’m just going to stick you under the dryer and switch you out with her (other woman, who is currently ‘under the dryer’) and finish up her style really quick! Is that okay?!  Then I’ll finish your style. Alright!

Umm, was any of that a question? Do I get a choice of being shoved into that scary dryer thing?? Nope, I sure don’t. Seriously, those things kinda freak me out. And they make your head reallyyy hot! Not cool. But the next thing I know I’m sitting underneath the heat wave, with my hair slowly drying, flipping through a Glamour magazine.

One question–what is the purpose of making an appointment, when you are just being ‘switched out’ anyway?! Couldn’t I just walk in and say–

Hi I’m here! So, whenever you are ready to dry that person’s hair I’ll just slip right in. Okay?!

Gah. The only good thing was that I was flipping through a Glamour. The new one. Sweeet.

So once my hair is dry and she’s “ready” for me again, I hop back in the chair. She starts to finish drying my hair and using that big curly brush thing (SO scared of those. I always get my hair stuck in the little ones.). She starts styling it, which I do appreciate. When a guy cuts your hair you kind of skip this step, seeing as they don’t really “style”. Or at least, my crush didn’t. But I loved him anyway and my hair somehow always looked like he had styled it. Hmmm, maybe he was sneaky about it and I didn’t even realize he was doing it. Oooh! Never thought about that. Anyway! Mid-styling, her cell phone rings.

And she ANSWERS it.

Okay, I hate when stylists are ‘fitting me in’ along with somebody else. But guess what I hate even more? When they answer their f-ing cell phones. Guess who never did either of these things?? The crush.

Ugh, I am so spoiled.

In the end, my hair looks cute, the “style” is cute, and I did get a little head massage. She was super nice, and easy to talk to (important characteristic. Otherwise I feel very awkward just sitting in silence while somebody is in charge of how I will appear when I walk out….).

I’m totally satisfied, but just a little irritated. And left wondering….will I ever find somebody as wonderful as the Crush?

June 26, 2008

The ones that never get old

Filed under: about me — by heatherdc @ 1:04 am

Some movies I could just watch over and over. And over. I never get sick of them, I always laugh, and might be saying the lines inside my head. They just don’t get old.

My Mom wanted to sit down and watch “Mean Girls” tonight. I will never argue when anybody wants to watch that movie. I looooove it. Never a dull moment. Tina Fey is a comedy, chic, genius. Who comes up with stuff like that??……

Booo, you whore.

I’m a mouse…duh!

Oh my gosh Karen, you can’t just ask people why they’re white.

It’s like I have a fifth sense, or something. My breasts..can always tell when it’s about to rain. Well….they can tell when it’s raining.

Classic.

Have you seen “You’ve Got Mail”? Uhhh, I have watched that movie an unprecedented amount of times. It’s actually a little ridiculous. It is in no way a “classic” story, it’s not inspiring, it’s not heart-breaking, it doesn’t come with any sort of life-lesson (except maybe that we should all be glad that we now have wireless and never have to hear that “dial-up” noise. Everrrr). It’s just it’s own movie. The first of its kind to deal with the aspect of “internet dating”…a little bit ahead of its time. And for whatever reason, I absolutely LOVE it. I seriously know almost every line in every scene–

I love daisies. Don’t you think daisies are the friendliest flower?

(I think this movie is the reason that daisies are my favorite flower. Is that sad? Hmmm.
I really do love daisies. They’re just so cute.)

Starbucks is for people with NO decision-making ability whatsoever, to make six decisions, just to buy one cup of coffee. Tall! Decaf! Cappuccino!

You’ve gotta ‘go to the mattresses’……The Godfather answers all of life’s questions. What should I pack for vacation? ‘Leave the gun, take the cannolli.’ What day of the week is it? ‘Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Weeednesday.”

That could go on for a while, I’ll spare you. Every time I watch those movies I just get happy. And there are many others (Pirates of the Caribbean, My Best Friend’s Wedding, Father of the Bride II, Super Troopers!!….).

Then there’s the Disney Classics. Ugh, don’t get me started. Everyone should have a favorite Disney movie, right? I think so.

Ah, nostalgia.

June 25, 2008

I don’t even have clubs…

Filed under: days off,family,home — by heatherdc @ 1:42 am

Golf clubs. I don’t have them. Why would I use them? Well, I wouldn’t. So instead, I’ll borrow them. Just for today.

My Dad loves to golf-he’s pretty good at it actually, winning a few tournaments here and there. On one of his days “off” you can always find him at the golf course, and if there’s any major tournament going on (Tiger is a cutie, that’s all I know about “major tournaments”) then he’s definitely watching it on TV.

My older brother and younger sister (yup, I’m in the middle) have both started to aquire some….hmm…skills? They go to school together and have hit the course up a few times.

Where does this leave me? It leaves me as the last child, of us three, who hasn’t picked up the sport. I’m the only one who has Never walked an entire golf course. Although, I do feel like I should acknowledge that I have traveled an entire golf course…..in the cart. My sis and I used to go with my dad on Sunday afternoons, just so we could “drive” the cart. Before you have a driver’s license, this was the next best thing!! I got such a kick out of driving those small white things all around. With one universal key that started all of them, it’s a wonder I didn’t just run off with one to have for my own. Nothing was stopping me….if you think about it…..except morals, maybe? Yes, that must’ve been it. Geeze, such a good kid.

Anywayyyy. My Dad and I both have the day off tomorrow…sooo…I have finally agreed to a game. There’s a Par 3 course here, and thats as far as we’re goin’ right now. Don’t want to get too crazy over here. I’m assuming my score will be around..oohh, you know…the 90s….maybe 100s? Yah, that sounds about right.

I’ll keep ya posted on that….

Ehhhhh

June 23, 2008

Running uphill against the wind

Filed under: random,running — by heatherdc @ 10:14 am

Don’t worry, that’s not a metaphor for my life. It’s just what I did this morning

A work day starting at 9 feels like sleeping-in to me. And instead, my body decided to wake up on it’s own at the regular 6:15 a.m. I’ve always had that “internal” alarm clock. Although it’s not flawless (very far from it), it does surprise me sometimes.

Like this morning. When I was awake and alert at an early hour, when I certainly did not have to be. So I took advantage of the extra morning time, and the cooler morning temperatures. I went for a run. I decided to try out a new route, one that was being mapped out in my head as I went. That will either make your run seem  a little bit shorter because of the adventure feeling….or it will make it seem painfully long because you realize “Ehh, this is a lot harder than I expected.”. This morning was somewhere in the middle. But do-able.

Random: We went and saw “Get Smart” last night. Hilarious. Three thumbs up (oooh, take that Ebert)! Seriously, we were all laughing so hard. And I must admit, Mr. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is one good lookin’ fella. I find it kind of hard to take him seriously, because..umm..he was “The Rock”. And now he’s an “actor”. Hmmmm.  Plus, how can you resist anything with Steve Carell (we’re going to forget about “Evan Almighty” here…) ?! Aaand Anne Hathaway. She’s so cute. Yup–good stuff, great movie, good laughs.

For my next three days off-starting tomorrow-I’ve decided my Mom & I have a project….re-doing the Study. It’s awful. Seriously. If I get really into it, I might even take before-and-after pics. We’ll see how that goes. I haven’t had a decorating project in quite some time. Living in a furnished apartment with limited time (and moneyyyy) really puts some restrictions on what you’re able to do.  So instead, I’ll spill my creative juices on our downstairs, and see how it turns out. 😉 And I loooove decorating/rearranging/all that stuff. And it probably means another trip to Target!

June 20, 2008

The homework continues…

Filed under: days off,homework — by heatherdc @ 1:20 am

At the beginning of last month (whooa, how long ago does that feel?! gah) I was handing in my last papers, assignments and tests. I was finishing college, and savoring the sweet sweet feeling of being done.

…….or so I thought…..

Turns out, the homework? It doesn’t stop. Oh, no. Instead, it has taken over my last two days off. Turns out, I’m not even close to being done. Not just yet.

For my internship next year we have ‘summer assignments’.  I knew this.  What I didn’t know? Well, first off I didn’t know one of them is due tomorrow. Or at least I didn’t know this until about three days ago. Surprise! We got a huge packet in the mail a few weeks ago, and I looked over the “Due dates” at least three times. I was making sure that I was seeing things right….we had one assignment due June 9th, and no more due until July 1st. Wrong. Apparently I was mistaking a “June 20th” for a “July 20th”. Or maybe my eyes were only seeing what they wanted to see. It’s a mystery.

Regardless, there is a three-page assignment due tomorrow. Good thing I discovered this on Tuesday, because it required going to the grocery store and recording & comparing prices, searching for “alternatives” to certain things, and a little bit of taste-testing (not the good kind. the kind where you decide which salt substitute tastes even a liiiittle bit like salt. Ehhhh.).  Not exactly the kind of thing you can get done over-night.

So my mom and I spent about half an hour in the grocery store yesterday, doing ‘research’. Then I spent a little time last night, and the majority of today (in spurts, because my attention span for homework post-graduation is apparently umm….non-existent?) working on this assignment.

Gah.

It’s my own fault. I never expected these to be ‘easy’ assignments, that would defeat the purpose of learning from them so that certain situations next year don’t send us into a full panic attack. Some of them are lengthy, and some of them will take me all of about five minutes.  I just didn’t think about how much i wouldn’t want to be doing homework during the summer. But alas, the homework continues…..

June 19, 2008

The Hole in My Closet

Filed under: home,shopping — by heatherdc @ 1:27 am

I currently have, in my possession (on loan from one of my bestest buddies), ALL Six seasons of Sex & the City.

My mom saw the movie and actually liked it (which shocked me a little bit), so I’m making her start from Day 1. So far so good, although I did forget how…umm…risqué?… the first few episodes are. A little awkward for Mom-bonding time, but whatev. All in the name of a fabulous show, right? Right.

Watching the girls shop, and be in fabulous clothes, and strut around in their Manolo’s….just a small reminder of the fact that there is absolutely NO decent shopping to speak of within at least a 100 mile radius of this town. Seriously. You think I’m exaggerating…I am Not. The closest decent malls are at least 3 hours away, and the closest amazing malls are about 6-7 hours. Depending on which direction you go (Denver, Phoenix, Dallas….you know). This is the only problem with the West Coast. Everything is soooo freakin spreeead out. Cities are not within an hour or two of each other, you can’t just hop around on a train and get somewhere as soon as possible. It just doesn’t work like that. Apparently the early settlers decided they had a lot of space to work with, and they might as well take advantage of it. And they did just that.

Anyway! I’m getting side-tracked. I had this sudden urge to go shopping today. I wanted a cute new dress (although Target can sometimes satisfy a bargain-craving…it just doesn’t do the trick every time). I want some fun new summery tops. I want big stores, and lots of choices.

Even watching “What Not to Wear” this morning got to me (yes! I finally figured out what time it comes on here. Oh, math+time zones. Gah).  All those shops and $5,000 to spend and cute cute cute clothes!! TLC-what are you doing to me?! Not fair.

I’ve resorted to some online shopping tonight, which I’m totally in love with. Browsing page after page without moving a muscle. Genius. And clicking ‘Add to My Cart’ over and over….essentially just creating a wishlist that will dissappear as soon as I close the browser and forget about it.    It’s not going to satisfy any of the above “cravings”, but it’ll at least subdue them for now.

June 18, 2008

Self-Control? Oh, that was left at the door.

Filed under: shopping,why I love Target! — by heatherdc @ 1:13 am

So what’s the first thing I do on my day off? Well, besides sleeping in a little bit, and trying to catch “What Not to Wear”….yah, hi different time zone. Oops.

Anyway. Headed to Target….of course! Gah I love that place. I started to make a list of things I needed, to um validate? going. Not that it’s necessary, because I go anyway. But I might as well pick up some things I “need” while I’m there. I eventually came up with “shampoo, running socks, toothpaste, gum”. Yup, those are necessities when you go to Target.

What did I leave with? Hmmm…a lot more than shampoo, socks, toothpaste and gum. That’s for sure.

I think Target and TJ Maxx have something in common. I can’t leave the store without something I had no intention of buying when I walked in. Which can only mean one thing….self control? Oh, apparently that gets left at the door. See yaaaa.

They had bangles on sale for $7. A whole wall of bangles. For $7. Ehhhhh. I only got two, which is pretty impressive I think. You can’t just throw a whole wall of bangles (on sale!!) at me. Yessss. I heart bangles. Sneaky sneaky, Target.

And you know what else was on sale? Shorts, swimsuits, tanks, and sun dresses. I managed to escape without a swimsuit, most likely because I was in my gym-clothes and I hate trying things on. Much less when I’m wearing a beater and a sports bra. Not cute. I did try on some shorts, because that’s easy. And I bought them, because…um, they’re cute. I also bought an LBD (Little Black Dress), because you can never have too many of those. Although I didn’t try it on, see above reason, sooo that might be a “return”. We’ll see. I have to try both on with cute shoes that would look better than running shoes, obviously. This is the true test, is it not? 😉

I didn’t even look in the shoe department. That’s counts for something!

So Target-you fight dirty. You know my weakness. And I love you, oh so much, for it.

June 17, 2008

My Weekend

Filed under: Summer times,what to do with time OFF — by heatherdc @ 2:20 am

After working Friday & Saturday, then having Sunday off (yay! Celebrate Dad!), and then working today….I Finally have “my” weekend. Oh, goooood stuff!.

Yes, I realize that Tuesday is not your typical “let’s go out and get drinks and be hungover all day tomorrow just to do it again!!” weekend day. But for now, it’s my weekend day. Along with Wednesday, followed by Thursday. That’s right, in the middle of your typical work week, I get a nice loong break. Granted, I’ll be slavin’ away again while most are enjoying the above-mentioned Friday night. But I’m not thinking about that right now.

Instead–I’m thinking of a trip to Target, a few good afternoon runs, finding a new book to read (any suggestions???), and coming up with a dinner menu because I looove to cook at night.  I also want to find a good recipe for an Apple Cake with cream cheese frosting. Random, I know. But how good does that sound?! Mmmm. Plus, I could use a change from the Cookies’n’Cream ice-cream thats taken over my desert choice. Dangerously tasty, especially with a drizzle of chocolate syrup. Yummmm.

June 16, 2008

Oh, I’m on a Roll….

Filed under: books books books,summer reading — by heatherdc @ 1:29 am

Two books in two weeks. You could say I’ve been a bit of a bookworm lately. Just a bit.

Before I had even finished my last book, my Mom had made her usual trip to the Library and picked up a new one for me. Usually after one of her “picks” I’ll choose something for myself, because every once in a while I love the “Shopaholic” or “Something Borrowed” kind of story (by the way, read both of those too. They’re funny/entertaining/chick-books.).

Her next selection for me was the latest Jodi Piccoult book….and if you’ve ever read a book by Jodi, you’ll read the next one in a heartbeat. As soon as I finished the last book, I picked this one right up. It was about 11 p.m., I wanted to read a few chapters before I went to sleep to see what it was about.

The thing is, with Jodi’s books, you usually can’t just read “a few” chapters. Well… I can’t. Almost immediately you are hooked, whether you like it or not. And you have to know what happens. And you can’t stand to not know. So, despite the fact that I had to be awake at 5:45 a.m. for work, I kept turning the pages until about one in the morning. Uhh, oops.

I read in the morning before work, on my breaks at work, and as soon as I got home from work. I read in the car on the way to the mall, and I read out on the deck enjoying the sunset after dinner. This one was hard to read before I fell asleep, as there are some….well…”things” that stuck with me well after the book was closed and the lights were off. Not that this stopped me, but just a little warning.

All of the books I’ve read by Jodi P. have involved a somewhat controversial issue, a trial in court, and a little love twist.  You would think they become somewhat repetitive in this sense–I thought that for a little while too.  I thought I’d get sick of reading about lawyers battling it out, and wondering whether or not I really should feel sorry for the “criminal’ as well as the victim, and marveling at how each character can really take a hold on you.  I thought there were only so many webs you could weave from a common core.

The first 30+ pages are graphic, stomach-wrenching and have you thinking you already know where this will go. I thought this one might be too hard to read. I didn’t know if I was up for it, but I also knew I wouldn’t be able to just not finish it.

Needless to say, my opinion was quick to change. She did her research (as always), she told the story through many points of view (as always), and I was hooked (…..as always).

Change of Heart

by Jodi Piccoult

It’s the story of…

Shay Bourne-an inmate on death row for a double murder.
June Nealon-the victim of the double murder and mother of a young girl.
Father Michael-the priest, spiritual advisor, etc.
Maggie Bloom-an attorney, and a self-conscious 20-something.
Lucius DeFresne-an innate also convicted of murder and an AIDS sufferer.

…and how they all affect one another’s lives, stories, and possible deaths.

And it comes highly recommended by yours truly.

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