Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Does everyone Love their job???

Push yourself to do more and to experience more. Harness your energy to start expanding your dreams. Yes, expand your dreams. Don't accept a life of mediocrity when you hold such infinite potential within the fortress of your mind. Dare to tap into your greatness.  - Robin S. Sharma


This post has been a long time coming. It's not really that amazing but it's basically how I have been feeling the last 6 months.

Everyone always tells you to never stop learning and never stop dreaming. So, that's what led me to ICU, the means to an end to make it to CRNA school. As a PACU nurse I was challenged occasionally. Not always daily, and really it was not always that hard. There is a quote I hear often saying, " PACU is where nurses go to die." Honestly, it's where many go before they retire. You don't deal with the complete uncertainty that the ER brings, you don't keep your critical intense patients for 12 hours like the ICU, and if your patient has to poop you basically just tell them to hold it until they get to the floor or until they get home to their "own" bathroom. (yes, sometimes it doesn't work, but ohhhhhhh many times it does!)  PACU is legit, it is not floor nursing. It is ever changing and always different, it has just enough critical care element to keep you guessing and you have enough autonomy to make quick decisions and really are tested on the strength of your nursing knowledge.  EVERYONE told me don't go, don't leave, you will hate it. But, on and on I went about how I am trying to be SMARTER!

Eff that man.

Smarter and harder go hand in hand. Also, pretty sure the grammar in that sentence is wrong. ICU has been everything everyone told me it would be. If I am being blatantly honest. I really do NOT love it. Maybe I will get there, but really I think I was just a spoiled little RN in my PACU trained life. Most RN's go from ER or ICU to PACU, so they've already gone through the trenches, while I just showed up there fresh faced and doe eyed with complete ignorance of the floor nursing struggle.

Most days I literally think to myself, " What the eff was I thinking?" 

Now, this post is not going to turn into some fluffy, oh but I am loving every moment now. Nope, wiping butts and dealing with patients trying to die every 4 hours has not been my cup of tea.. Lets be real, it's the poop. I just. can't. Oh, and the night shift. (insert eye roll emoji)

I am just trying to see if there is anyone else out there who is in the trenches right now thinking WTF did I do to myself, I had it so cush with my Monday -Friday day shift PACU job. 

We shall see what happens. Sometimes now I really think, man maybe now CRNA is too much.... What is happening to me?? I legit just wanna work my 3 12's, take my kids to the beach, eat acai bowls and hang with my friends listening to Taylor Swift...

Oh wait. I guess that is my life.

I guess the poop will pass....

Or not.



If you wondered how I ended up in the ICU click HERE

Here are some of my PACU besties I miss every day! But, there are some legit awesome smart ass hell nurses in ICU, so that helps for sure. 

Best Nursing Judgement

Nursing for me has always been thought of as a stepping stone, path to lead me to the final stop on my career train. That's why last year I applied to the Nurse Practitioner program at USD and was accepted. I was really excited. But, then the entire summer I was torn between if this was the right decision for me, for us, for forever. 
I guess the back story here is that I always wanted to go to CRNA (Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist) school. I wanted to do anesthesia. But, due to the military obligations with my husband getting into an ICU right out of school was just out of the question. I found myself literally trying to get ANY paying RN position. Out in Okinawa they basically live off Volunteers. I once had a LT ask me if I could just send my kids to daycare more often so that I could work more, for free. Blows my mind.  

Fast track 3 years later and no ICU experience, so I thought hey NP would be super cool too. But then the more I sat and thought about it I just felt like I was letting my former self down, not going after the dream I had originally set out for. So, I backed out of the program 2 weeks before it started. Honestly, it was like I could take a deep breath again. It ended up being the best decision for our family because Alvie decided to get out of the Marines and his job search situation would have been a nightmare with me in school. 

So, I decided I better get it in gear and get to the ICU if I just dropped out of my program. Luckily I worked some magic (more like begged my boss) and off I went on my transfer to ICU. 

And  here. I. am. 

Have I mentioned I love donuts????? 


Sunday, October 8, 2017

Family pictures 2017

Pictures are always complete chaos.
Besides the 24 hours I stressed trying to pick out outfits, which ended up in 50 shades of blue...
It's just crazy trying to get so many people to appear happy, when most are hungry, tired and cranky at 5:30pm on any given day.
But, this year I was pretty suprised! We went with Ann Vestal Photography. She is a newer photographer which I like because they usually devote more time to you, and are much nicer for my budget.
Ian Henry and Stella all showed their personalities in these photos. I love it. At one point we were trying to take photos from above while the three laid in the grass and Ian grabbed Stella and started kissing her!! It was HILARIOUS, which all things Ian are. He must have been in a kissy mood because he also has a great shot looking at Alvie and I kissing and puckering up.
Stella loved keeping the hype up and Henry just didn't want to take a photo without me about 1 foot away from him. Henry also has taken on the role of tiny tyrant so it's fun to watch him try to boss everyone around.
Here are my favorites...


I'm BACK! Well, maybe..

Hello again.
So, I realized after my Dad died that I really was not happy, I was having a hard time after the move, new job, new commute, new friends etc etc. However, it was looking a little dreary on here. So, I decided I would halt all blogging until I felt better.
A few weeks back one of my friends told me her husband had read my blog and said, " He was reading your blog and talked about how you basically have everything you were saying you didn't have in the post!" So, I decided to check out the last thing I wrote.. "I'm Jealous." 
He was TOTALLY right. My life has done a full 180 since then and I am so thankful!
Of coarse there are always the same dilemmas, kids who don't sleep, husbands who don't cook, laundry that doesn't fold itself... But, my overall demeanor is positive and happy again, which I am immensely grateful I was able to get here. Losing a parent is hard, it tries you in ways you never would imagine, but for some reason God has put me through a lot in my life and I guess it's just to make me stronger, or make me extremely well versed in what not to do...
I love you guys, all 5 of you that read my blog. So, Annie and Mickelle... 
Thanks for moving to San Diego, and Thank you to my new neighborhood friends, I would be lost without you all.   Oh, and that hot husband of mine, pretty thankful for him too.
Back to the Chaos.... 

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

I'm Jealous.

Ok, I am just going to say it. 

I am jealous. 

I am jealous of my friends.

I am jealous of my friends who have family that lives close. 

I am jealous of people whose parents are still alive. I'm even more jealous of the ones who choose not to have a relationship with that parent, for whatever reason. 

I am jealous of cheap childcare. In Okinawa I didn't realize how good we had it, prices here are WEEKLY what we paid monthly. 

I am jealous of people who have family that watches their kids, for free. So they actually get to TAKE HOME their paycheck, instead of handing half to social security and the other half to childcare. 

I am jealous of my friends who have brothers and sisters. Who have relationships with them, and especially those who have sisters. 

I am jealous of cousins. Something that my kiddos don't have, and who knows if they ever will. 

I am jealous of work. Those who go to work, and their mind is fully on their work all day. They aren't half thinking about if their kids are safe, or being cared for. They are fully attentive to their patients/workload. 

I am jealous of close commutes, something I used to take for granted. 

I am jealous of my husband. He has great friends, and has activities. 

I am jealous of friendships, I have yet to find someone to really be my friend here. It could be me, or it could just be the timing. But it's lonely to not have a girlfriend close. 

I am jealous of old friendships. Something I really don't have much of anymore. Those friends from highschool.. I'm jealous of the friendships that lasted. (although I know it's my fault I don't have them, I still long for them). 

I am jealous of runners. My hip sucks, mega sucks and I can't run anymore. 

I am jealous of kids.  I love them, I would have more of them. At least one more, but ^^^^ remember that no family thing... and expensive childcare....

I am jealous of stay at home moms. I love my kids, I love my time with them I wish there were more hours in the day. 

I am jealous of those who don't feel this overwhelming jealousy everyday. 

I am jealous. 

I'm working on it. I'm trying to be thankful. But today sucked. Our nanny quit 30 minutes before she was supposed to work. I have just been having a hard time and so tonight I decided that I was going to let myself throw a pity party for about 15 minutes while the kids watch Shimmer and Shine. Because tomorrow it's back to work, back to looking for childcare, back to laundry and lunches and commutes. Back to patients and gas prices and grocery lists. Back to happy kids and thankfulness for the abundance of good things in my life. Because truly, I do have a great life.

But for right now. 

I am jealous. 

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Saying Goodbye

" So long my friend, until we meet again. I'll remember you and all the times that we used to. Sit right here on the edge of this pier (tailgate) and watch the sunset disappear. And Drink a Beer." 

Every night before we left the hospital my dad would ask me, my Aunt Jan, Aunt Cathy or Jennifer what we were going to drink for him. Some nights I laughed off the question and others my Aunts would always say they would drink a beer. 

Last night we did that for him. We grabbed our beer and sent my dad back home. 

In true West Texas fashion the wind was just gusting. We could barely keep our eyes open but we all braved the wind. I could imagine my dad saying, " It's okay, we're making Pat money with this wind, so it's okay." 

In all my life I lived in Las Vegas with my Dad. But no where in this world do I feel my Dad than right here in Hereford Texas. When we would come back for holidays I would always remark how I had never seen my Dad smile, laugh or seem as happy as when he was here. I always wished he would have moved home sooner. But, in the end I am just so glad that he did come back before his time was up. He just adored every inch of this place. He would drive me up and down roads, showing me places he or his friends farmed. Houses he lived in, just memories on top of memories. 

Paul, Jan (his brother and sister), Pat (brother-in-law, but pretty much brother), and BillJack (best friend) came with me and the kiddos to spread his ashes. I know he would have been so happy. He was more close to these 5 people who saw him off than anyone else in this world. I was so happy to hear more stories of these two memorable places to my dad. Reasons as to WHY he wanted to go here. Why it was so meaningful. 
The first was The old Easley feed lot, where my dad grew up with his brother Paul and sister Sue. It now is a different feed yard, the house is long gone but one of the old barns still remained. I know he never was a farmer, but I feel like if my dad would have done life over again maybe he wouldn't have left Hereford. But, he would probably say then he wouldn't have me, so he wouldn't change it.

 Man we all loved him so much. 

 Bill Jack wore his Binions Horseshoe hat. He said the first time he went to Las Vegas my Dad gave him that hat.

The second stop was the old Lookingbill farm. This is where his sisters and brother (Jan, Judy, Cathy and Craig) all grew up. He also said he spend a lot of time there with Grandad Lookingbill. He farmed around that area one summer Billjack said. It was a shame to see what has happened to the place. All the gorgeous trees are gone due to no water and the house has just fallen to pieces. But, I am glad that the places my Dad wanted to be are still there. For him to go, and be there forever. I know the wind carried him away that evening as the sun went down. It spread him all over those farms, just like he wanted.

Not sure what my dad would have thought about Stella making his ashes into a fort, kinda weird and gross.. but she knew full well what she was doing. So hey, he loved his Stella Mae. 

I leave Hereford tomorrow morning and it's such a strange/hard/terrible feeling in the pit of my stomach. Like I'm going to forget, or that I'll never be back. I spent a lot of time here growing up, and spent a lot of time here the last year with my Dad. Moments I will cherish forever. I pray I will be back again. I know I will come to see my family, but it will never be the same. Not now. not ever.

Until I see you again Daddy. Love you.

Miss Kate

Heirlooms, possessions and memories

I had to finally get up and go through the things at my Dad's house. At first it is just too hard. You don't want to look at the items and think that they don't belong to your Dad anymore. But, eventually everyone has to do it. Some sooner than others.

The saddest thing I felt as I looked through them was that all these pictures and papers meant something to him. They meant something to him so much that he kept them for all these years. There were his baby pictures, his mothers baby book, his report cards from when he was in gradeschool. His lettermans jacket and numerous newspaper clippings that either he was in, or someone he knew was.

As you think about them they all have sentimental value. But, do you keep them? Do you add them to your attic so that one day your kids have to go through it all and decide the same thing? I couldn't figure it out. I know with being a military spouse, putting things in an attic isn't as easy as it sounds. So, the best thing I thought was to take pictures of many of the things I would get rid of. This way I can look back. Remember how silly my dad was to keep my halloween costumes from when I was a kid. But it helps me realize how important I was to him. How important his friends and his family were to him.

Here are some of the pictures with some descriptions to just help you, and I remember and get a sense of why something meant so much to him.

 My T-ball ball! 

 He loved John Wayne. When I was growing up my favorite movie was McClintock. He would watch every single John Wayne movie over and over. My dad watched few things. He loved westerns, war movies and sports.

Although he did love Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune. He was so so good at Jeopardy. A few days before he passed we were watching it in his hospital room. Him and Alvie were yelling out answers and much to my surprise Alvie was REALLY good at it. I think my dad was really pleased about that. I am surprisedthey have a lot of similarities although so many differences. I'll always remember Jeopardy as being a favorite.

This article below is more about the war than my dad had ever told me. He didn't like to talk about it obviously. But, he would just tell me that the newer war movies do a really good depiction of what it was like. However, you will never be able to imagine the smell. The smell of rotting bodies and blood and just, war. 

 Senior night! ^^^ Probably the last picture I have of my mom dad and I all together at once. I know, I should have just taken the picture out to snap one lol.
 He was always keeping up with the people from his high school class. He went to EVERY single high school reunion. No matter how busy he was or in what stage of life, he was there. I went to quite a few of them growing up. He went to his 50th this last summer. Pretty cool.
 A note from his best friend. There were tons of notes and cards from BillJack from over the years. He is such an amazing guy and I was so happy he has always been there for my Dad.

 Tons and tons of Hats. But his favorite hats were his Texas Tech, VFW, Saddle n Spurs. Gilliland insurance ( BillJacks insurance company) and of coarse, his Dallas Cowboys hat.
Hard to imagine, but he was really good friends with the Binions. They were good people to my Dad and he worked for them for many many years. He was closest to Jack Binion, however I did receive a call from Brenda paying condolences to the family for our loss. Definitely some history! Brenda told me that my dad used to help them a lot with Ted when he was having a hard time. 

 Every single one of these ties and shirts gives me some type of memory. He was not a spender so he would only get new shirts when I would send him them. Its so sad to watch things like this go.

 This was from my Grandma's funeral. ^^ I thought this was actually pretty wonderful. Maybe lay off the caps tho!

 ^^ Honorary member. I never saw my dad ride a motorcycle. Although I'm sure he did a lot in his day!

 This is one thing I will never forget. My dad left little yellow sticky notes all over the place. There was always things written on them. I must have found a hundred of them. Book titles, places to go eat, recipes. Everything. But this one ^^ is my favorite. It was on his cabinet in Las Vegas right after Stella was born. He must have moved it here and brought it all the way from Vegas. I loved seeing this.

It's sad watching things go. One day they are precious memories and heirlooms to a person. But when that person is gone, the memories aren't the same, the possessions aren't as prized and many times are looked at as junk. I wish there was a way to preserve everything. But, I wasn't able to. I am just so thankful for the amazing memories I am left with.