Turning Japanese?


Blood, Death, Mayhem

Finally, a day off from work. The sickness, blood, death and mayhem I experience daily at my job is enough to bring even the brightest spirit down.
Strange place, nursing homes are. While I'm there working, I'm able to get through it without letting the madness sink in. It's only when I get home and have time to reflect that I realize what's really going on around me. I'm surrounded by people who are sick and dying. Hardly anyone at a nursing home is considered to be in tip-top shape, ya know? It's easy to become jaded. Seeing an old man in a diaper and a bib eating pureed meat is old hat. Picking up a woman's breast to get it in a bra is routine. The past 3 days in the nursing home have been far less "normal."
Every time I turn around someone is getting more sick, dying, bleeding everywhere. And I keep hearing from my boss, "It's not in the budget to have more help on this shift." The budget? Who fucking cares? It's 11:30 and I'm still trying to get the 8:00 meds passed. I can't finish because:
This is my life. And I don't give a flying fuck about a budget. I just want to be able to do my job well. I can't have 5 minutes of peace in that place! It takes me at least 30 minutes just to get outside for a smoke because every time I start to sneak off there's people all around me fussing: "Laine, I need ---" and "Laine come here" "Laine help me" "Laine" Laine" "Laine" "Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!" That last one was me. I ask why it's always me, why can't anyone ask someone besides me for help or whatever? "Because you're always willing and able, Laine. Because you are a teamplayer. Because you are skilled, qualified and efficiant." They really know how to schmooz, those CNAs do.
All day long, I'm caring and compassionate. It's something I pride myself on. Anyone can end up in a nursing home, and as a nurse in one my job goes far beyond providing adequate medical care. These old folks need a bit of TLC. Unfortunately for David, most of my TLC is used up after 12 hours. By the time I get home, I'm tired and frustrated and sick of being nice. And he's not, under any circumstances, allowed to complain about his work to me. He rarely does, because of this conversation we had just yesterday:
David: I had to work almost 2 hours late because Janet accidentally deleted my pricing files and I had to do it all over again. It really sucked and I hate her.
Me: Oh, yeah, and I did CPR today. He died and I had to call his sister and tell her.
David: Ok, you're right. My job is awesome.

I shouldn't be so insensitive. All jobs suck most of the time, and we all have the right to vent. It's just that the stakes are much higher in my line of work. So what if David had to re-price a buttload of hottubs? No one died.
This is the point when I have to remember all the really great things about my job. When a resident's family member hugs me and thanks me for taking good care of her Daddy, my day is better.
I am really needing a couple days off, and they came none too soon. Now that it's all out of me and I'm home in my pink bathrobe and slippers, all is well again.
I even made pancakes.