Bright, cheerful, and hard to exterminate|
[Most Recent Entries]
Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in
[ << Previous 20 ]
[ << Previous 20 ]
|Sunday, December 25th, 2011|
|Tuesday, January 25th, 2011|
|Random thoughts to share
I have recently seen the Coen Brother’s adaptation of the novel True Grit
. This movie is amazing. If you have not seen it, I recommend you do so as soon as you possibly can. Every character is interesting and complex. The story is full of unanticipated twists. The dialogue is sharp. The ending is perfect.
DO NOT GIVE THIS ONE A MISS.
In other news, I am still settling into my new job. It is a strange place I work in. My patients are relatively healthy from a physical standpoint, but some of them are very ill from a mental perspective.
One gentleman constantly lives with the belief that everyone is talking about him behind his back and that any day he will be picked up and carted off to prison. No amount of reassurance will convince him that these things are not true.
Another patient usually does well but recently experienced an episode of extreme agitation in which he was observed to curse and swear at an empty chair. Two doses of Ativan (a relative of Valium) later, he was still pacing the halls.
One of the patients I feel more hopeful for has explained that he is constantly hearing voices, but his current medications allow him to distinguish between what is real and what is not. He considers this to be an incredible improvement, even though he wishes he did not hear any voices at all.
Since I started two of our patients were transferred to a higher level of security and two have been transferred to a lower level of security. So some of our patients are getting better, but others still need a lot of structure and supervision to remain safe.
I am in the uncomfortable position of wanting to do more than I really can because I still don’t know as much as I need to know. I would like to be learning at a faster pace than I currently am at, but the nurse who is training me is a somewhat low-energy person. And it takes more energy to teach someone how to do a job than it does to just do it yourself. So I sometimes will look around and discover that while I have been plugging away at some repetitive task that I learned in my first week, my teacher has wandered off to do something else that I still haven’t learned. It can be frustrating, but I am trying not to let it get to me. Someday I am certain I will look back on this time and wish I had appreciated it more.
But all in all, I love having a job. It’s not a perfect fit for me, but it is a wonderful feeling to get up and do something meaningful every morning. And getting the paycheck is fun too. Current Mood: calm
|Friday, December 3rd, 2010|
|The first thing I need for my apartment...
So, Mom and I looked around for an apartment near my new place of employment. (Hee! I love that I am THIS close to being employed!) We found several, but one stood out as better than the rest. I have paid the security deposit and first month's rent on an apartment that is nice, not exorbitantly expensive, and cat-friendly.
Not that I would remove any of our cats from their/our home. That would be unfair to them. All three of our cats enjoy living in a neighborhood in the suburbs where they can be indoor/outdoor cats without risk of being run over. Asking them to live in an apartment where they cannot go outside would not make sense.
Clearly, the answer is to get a NEW cat that won't have any pre-conceived notions of what living in a house vs. an apartment is like.
We went to the Humane Society and found a lovely, orange, five-year-old male cat with a lovely purr and a mellow temperament. He will henceforth be known as Julius.
I have no bed, no furniture, and my job won't start for another week and two days, but I have a cat
for my new apartment. Who says I don't know how to prioritize? Current Mood: accomplished
|Thursday, November 25th, 2010|
To all of us who celebrate Thanksgiving, I hope you have a happy one. To all of us who don't...
Nyah, nyah! We get a national holiday that's all about eating ourselves into a diabetic coma, and you don't!
Off to chop up some more vegetables! (It's the only part of food preparation I'm allowed to participate in. I'll be part of the cleanup crew though. Heh.) Current Mood: silly
|Thursday, November 18th, 2010|
|Finally! Some GOOD news!
Way back in early October, I took a little drive up to Salem for a job interview. Oregon State Hospital--our beloved mental institution which will forever be associated with Ken Kesey, Jack Nicholson, and a Cuckoo's Nest--has been building a new wing for its antiquated facility and is looking for
new hires for staffing. I don't have any experience as a psychiatric nurse, but I don't have any experience with any OTHER kind of nursing either. (This is the curse of being a new nurse. It all looks so interesting and so intimidating.) So I figured, what the heck?
I interviewed. Three people sat with me at a table and asked me pre-fabricated, formula-based questions designed to make the interviewee reassess how much she really, really wants to be employed in an institution that provides care for the criminally insane.
Of course, the other choice is to continue to be an unemployed nurse whose hard-won skills are slowly deteriorating due to lack of use.
It might have been a wee bit stressful. I have suppressed the experience to the point where it's difficult for me to say with any certainty.
After the interview, I was told that I would be contacted by mail in 4-6 weeks after the interview to let me know their decision. So I waited.
Four weeks passed. Nothing.
Six weeks passed. Still nothing.
Today, I got a letter in the mail from the Oregon Department of Human Services.
I GOT THE JOB!!!
I will start orientation on December 13. I will begin working the day shift on the forensic unit. So, basically, if they are criminal and crazy, I’ll get to work with them. Er...yay?
Okay, so maybe I’m a little bit nervous about that, but who cares? I AM EMPLOYED! That’s SUCH a big deal for me. If you know me at all, you know that I have not been happy about my life as a not-quite-real nurse. So even though I'm going up to Salem, even though I may be working with patients who are on the far side of the Very Crazy Bell Curve, and even though I will be getting up in the dark of morning to get to the early shift, I’m dancing on air.
I'll probably begin by staying at a Motel 6, but then I'll look for some cheap apartment to sleep in between shifts. My home will still be in Eugene, where my family lives, so I will be doing some commuting. But since I'm starting in winter, I am going to need to have a place to stay in Salem. It is not cool to miss work because your car spun out on the icy freeway as you were making your hour-long drive in.
Although I am starting on the dayshift in the forensic unit, I may not stay there. This is just where they are orienting me to start with. Since I am being hired against new positions opening in the new facility, they cannot be sure exactly where I will end up once all the positions are sorted out. So there may be a possibility that I will move to evenings (or, god forbid, noc shift) or onto another unit. That will be up in the air for several months. But in the meantime I get to work and develop some skills while they figure out where they want me to be.
This isn't ideal in many ways. But I'm still delighted. I feel like it is an early Christmas gift.
Yay! Current Mood: jubilant
|Saturday, August 15th, 2009|
|The good, the bad, and the funny...
*steps onto livejournal stage and looks around*
Wow, it's been a long time since I got up here.
*taps on lj microphone*
Is this thing on? Can you hear me now? Good...
Well, I've finally done it. After a year of preparatory classes, two years of nursing school, hours of studying, months of internships, and a harrowing national licensure exam, I have finally achieved licensure.
I am officially a licensed Registered Nurse.
*takes her bow with a grin!*
Of course, no great win like this can go completely unanswered by the vagaries of Murphy's Law. It turns out that as soon as the hospital where I work discovers that I am an RN, I will no longer be allowed to work at my current job as a nurse's aide.
Yes, I hope to inspire many wide-eyed youngsters with the promise of my tale: that someday, they, too, will be able to educate themselves right into unemployment.
So I am flinging job applications all over the place, but the economy is hitting hard everywhere, these days. Yes, even in the nursing profession. So far, I have not been contacted for an interview. But I'm not too worried. Something will come up. Eventually. And when it does, it will be more interesting and better paying work than my current job, so that will be fun, too.
Of course, I will probably get the new job just in time for the classes to begin for my Bachelors of Nursing program, which will be a whole new kind of Sturm und Drang. But hey, when life gives you lemons, you take them into your nearest car-dealership and trade them for a more fuel-efficient vehicle, right? Current Mood: accomplished
|Saturday, November 24th, 2007|
Which Discworld Character are you like (with pics)
created with QuizFarm.com
|You scored as The Librarian|
Youâ€™re the Librarian! Once a wizard, now an Orang-utan (due to an unfortunate magical accident), you refuse to be turned back for a few reasons: In this form, itâ€™s easier to reach the shelves and hold more books; having the strength of five men makes people return their books on time; lifeâ€™s great philosophical questions boil down to â€œwhen do I get my next banana?â€¿ You say â€œookâ€¿ but are usually understood well enough.
Gytha (Nanny) Ogg
Commander Samuel Vimes
Esmerelda (Granny) Weatherwax
Lord Havelock Vetinari
Cohen The Barbarian
|Saturday, June 9th, 2007|
I HAVE BEEN ACCEPTED TO NURSING SCHOOL!
The waiting and finger-gnawing is finally over! The hard part is just beginning! Hooray! Current Mood: ecstatic
|Friday, April 13th, 2007|
|Friday, April 6th, 2007|
Jennifer's latest news...
Hello lj readers! It has been a while since I posted, but I have a good excuse. Lots of them, really. Let me tell you what has been going on, recently.( Click here for some rambling informationCollapse ) Current Mood: busy
|Wednesday, February 14th, 2007|
|Saturday, December 9th, 2006|
|Stick a fork in me!
I'm done! I have finished Fall term at school and now am officially on Winter Break. Yes!
My breaks once consisted of having Nothing To Do. I was free from all obligations. I never appreciated them like I should have. Now my breaks consist of ONLY having to work and ferry myself between various engagements with family and friends.
Yet I still feel lucky. Hee!
In other news, the other guy's insurance company has accepted liability. The other insurance company will even pay for a rental car! I will be taking my car in to be fixed on Monday. Poor car...
Hugs all around! Current Mood: accomplished
|Tuesday, November 28th, 2006|
|Snow is bad, bad, BAD.
The good news is that I am fine. And so is the other guy.
The bad news is that my poor car needs an expensive amount of repair work after having been struck by another car on the highway.
It wasn't my fault, but it really wasn't the other guy's fault either. The road just got really slick, really fast, and he lost control of his car and ran into me. Accidents happen.
Accidents totally stink.
So I didn't make it up to Salem. I didn't see my True Love. He hasn't called yet, and I have no way to tell him what's going on. My poor car is hurt, and it will be a few days before the insurance company gets back to me. Bah, humbug.
I know that I am very lucky, but I don't feel lucky at all.
Fortunately, my mom is here to give me a hug.
Jeez, I miss Blake...
*sigh* Current Mood: gloomy
|Monday, September 18th, 2006|
I have just celebrated my day off by watching a preview of the new TV show "Heroes" that I downloaded from the net. It was a legal download. No, really. I got a little promotional card and everything. Okay, you know what? Nevermind.
The show looks like it is going to be really good. Now, I'm not saying that the writers can't still screw things up royally, but the pilot was excellent. Here are some of the things I liked.
The premise: Ordinary people suddenly discovering/realizing they have super-powers. As of the first episode there is NO explanation for this--the characters who are affected are as bewildered as the people who interact with them. They are met with varying levels of receptivity from incredulity to total and unwavering belief. For the moment, this is all still on a very personal level. No news releases or global discussions. No mysterious man in a wheelchair is collecting all of these people up. Of (what appears to be) the eleven regular cast-members, only three have even met each other at this point. This is a very refreshing way to be introduced to the idea of superheroes.
The global attempt: This is television, and in television we have to work within the confines of budget, not to mention safety. So even though this story's premise is that this should be a global event, we shouldn't expect to see any part of this story taking place in--say--Botswana, Iran, or Brazil. However, the writers have still given a nice nod to multinational characters. We see a few scenes in India and MANY scenes in Japan. And for extra fun? The shots in Japan have characters actually speaking in Japanese
! (Is that allowed on television?) Apparently someone in the television world has gotten the memo that Americans are actually interested in seeing things more exotic than a McDonald's commercial.
The multi-ethnicity: Of the eleven regulars, five are white and the rest aren't. There are at least two canonical bi-racial pairings, in that we have a black woman dating a latino man, and a white woman with a bi-racial son. The ethnicities of the non-white characters appear to be as follows, African-American, Latino-American, Indian, and Japanese. Not a bad mix. I'm feeling positive about it. And another thing, these characters are all from different socio-economic groups, from white-trash to extremely middle class to inherited wealth.
The characters: So far, all of these characters are sympathetic, even if you don't really like them. They all have qualities which are admirable and which are kind of pathetic. For me, I find the things that make characters unlikeable more interesting than the things that make them likeable, so I hope the writers keep up with this. So far we have a nurse, an artist, a business woman, a politician, an academic, a call-girl, a prodigy, a highschool student, and a geek. At some point we're going to get a policeman. I don't know what niche the last character will fill, but it should be interesting to find out.
The plotting: We have a LOT of tension in the plot-lines from a number of different angles. There are several unanswered questions (far and beyond the underlying "what's going on?" question) that should take a while to resolve. So far at least four of the major characters live in NYC, so that is probably where this story is going to be told, but it will be interesting to see how the outlying characters get drawn to the big apple.
Here are some things I didn't like:
Supposedly, these people are supposed to be leading ordinary lives, but the only person whose life seemed fairly ordinary was the Japanese character. Everyone else had something distinctly outside the ordinary in their lives. None of these things are inconceivable, but they are still extraordinary, and I feel like it's kind of unfair to be billing these people as average folks leading average lives.
There is a noticeable lack of humor in the writing, so far. One of the characters was humorous, but the rest are all kind of angsty. This isn't a bad thing, per se, but it would be nice if the other characters were able to recognize the absurdity of their situations. Okay, maybe I just miss Joss Whedon. I want some witty banter with my geekness. I want to laugh while I cry.
It's only the pilot and we already have two dead fathers, one absent father, and one father who just may turn out to be evil. I really hope the head writer isn't trying to work out some personal issues on-screen. I also hope that having a dead/absent father isn't going to become some kind of emotional short-hand and/or continuing plot-device that comes up in preference to something original and thoughtful.
But all in all, I thought it was a great show, and I'm dying to see how the cliff-hanger ending (literally!) gets resolved in the next episode. So if you are a geek, if you love super-heroes, or if you just want to see some extended scenes of spoken Japanese, I recommend tuning in for Heroes on Monday, September 25, on NBC.
|Monday, July 3rd, 2006|
|...but I spell it "doughnut."
I thought this was amusing in that it actually describes me pretty well, so I'll post it.
|You Are a Glazed Donut|
Okay, you know that you're plain - and you're cool with that.
You prefer not to let anything distract from your sweetness.
Your appeal is understated yet universal. Everyone dig you.
And in a pinch, you'll probably get eaten.
|Tuesday, April 11th, 2006|
Today our beloved dachshund, Fritz, died of what appears to have been a massive stroke. He was feeling fine and enjoying life right up until the stroke hit, and he died shortly afterwards. He was in no pain and did not suffer.
Fritz originally belonged to my grandmother, but came into our care four years ago after he experienced a spinal cord injury. He recovered from the injury, although he always had a gimpy walk from that point onward. He was a stubborn, pushy, whiney brat with a great sense of humor, an endless desire to snuggle, and a lot of nerve.
He will be missed.
Fritz singing (well, howling) and doing the Dachsund Dinner Dance in an attempt to get us to feed him more promptly. Current Mood: melancholy
Fritz burrowing into a blanket to take a nice, warm nap.
Fritz running up and down the hallway with a treasured squeaky toy, making all the noise he possibly could.
|Sunday, March 12th, 2006|
I was reading a magazine article about working moms and stay-at-home moms, and it's got me wondering:
Gentle readers, did/does your mom have a job in addition to taking care of you? For how long?
For myself, my mom worked up until just before I was born. She took five years off to take care of my younger sister and me (during which she also finished her PhD!), and then she went back to work again. Twenty-five years later, she is still enjoying her profession and has no immediate plans to quit.
What about your moms? Current Mood: curious
|Sunday, January 29th, 2006|
|Hm, it has been a while...
I would like to thank softly_me
for nudging me to post. *hugs you* As your reward, I'll tell you a story from my job...
We now have a little old lady who, when she desires attention (read: constantly) will call out “help! I don’t know where I am or what I’m supposed to be doing. Yoo hoo! Can you tell me what I’m supposed to be doing?”
She will go through this routine throughout EVERY MEAL. It gets really old, really fast. Imagine having to tell a woman to eat her lunch five times in a single minute. She clearly has short-term memory issues, which poses quite the challenge in daily interactions with her.
I’ve ended up developing a routine where, every time she asks for help, I tell her we're eating a meal and ask her to open her mouth. Then I pop in a large bite of food for her to spend a minute or two chewing. This seems to be working. Not only does it quiet her down (a little, anyway), but it also gets her through her meal faster.
For all that she can be a pain in the butt, this lady is also a kick. For one thing, she can play piano. I put her in front of the piano this morning before Bingo, and she just rattled off “Tea for Two,” without any trouble at all. I was impressed. Another thing I like about this lady is that, despite her confusion, she has a good sense of humor. This afternoon, when I asked her what she wanted to drink with lunch, she responded, “a glass of water or a shot of gin, whichever you can get.” *laughter!*
This lady must have been a force to reckon with before she developed Alzheimers. She demands a lot of patience, but I really enjoy working with her. She is becoming one of my favorites. Current Mood: amused
|Saturday, December 17th, 2005|
|I feel oddly gratified, somehow.
You are The Star
Hope, expectation, Bright promises.
The Star is one of the great cards of faith, dreams realised
The Star is a card that looks to the future. It does not predict any immediate or powerful change, but it does predict hope and healing. This card suggests clarity of vision, spiritual insight. And, most importantly, that unexpected help will be coming, with water to quench your thirst, with a guiding light to the future. They might say you're a dreamer, but you're not the only one.
What Tarot Card are You? Current Mood: amused
Take the Test to Find Out.
|Wednesday, December 14th, 2005|