God. I don’t even know where to begin.
I had a doctor’s appointment today. I spent most of the morning feeling sick and fighting off feelings of nausea. I wanted to have fasting blood work done during my appointment, so I hadn’t eaten since 9 the night before. When you’re used to eating breakfast at 3 am waking up at six and still not being able to eat sucks. I had a headache from not drinking enough water the night before, which is another story I might come back to.
I wanted to print off my paperwork for school so I could take care of that while I was in town for the appointment. That took forever… FOOOORRRRREEEEEVVVVVER. Not even joking. I had two cigarettes, packed everything I needed to which was another five minutes roughly, went to the gas station to fill up the car, came back and still had to wait for the final pages to finish printing before it was done… It was only 19 pages. Not impressed. Not even remotely.
So… since I waited for that I was late to my appointment and labeled as a no-show. The receptionist said I might have to reschedule.
Me: Please, don’t do this to me Universe. Take whatever karma you need to, just please let me be seen today.
The receptionist made a few calls and after a couple of minutes which felt like an eternity, I was told I could be seen. There were a few cancelations and they could work me into the schedule.
My blood pressure was a little elevated. 150/90, but I’ll take it. It’s better than what it used to be and with how icky I was feeling and the normal anxiety of being at a doctor’s office, I’m not overly worried about it.
I got to talk to the doctor about my coughing. Since the antihistamines I’m taking are working to relieve my symptoms, she doesn’t feel doing blood work to find out what I’m specifically allergic to would be worth my money. Since I’m stressing over how to pay for an LPN program, I’m sort of on board with the whole “not spending money” thing. I’ll just get to have fun saying I’m allergic to Nebraska when anyone asks.
I have another appointment on the 13th to get my birth control replaced. In the meantime, I have to reach out to my previous ob-gyn and have them send over my medical records to see if I need a pap done since I don’t remember the last time that happened. If I’m due then they’ll add it into the appointment on the 13th. If not we’ll have a better time frame for when I need to schedule that, which never would be ok in my book.
I also was prescribed a cream to help with a rash that I’ve had for a while. I don’t think I’ve ever written about it. I mean… it’s sort of gross to talk about medical stuff sometimes, but it’s a fact of life. I’ve had this red, annoying area around my neck. I was prescribed a cream for it before, back when I was dating Warren #2, and it went away. It eventually came back though and nothing that I was prescribed afterward really worked. We’ll see if this prescription does anything or not. I didn’t want to drive back into town today when I got the call that I could pick up the cream. I’ll most likely go in after work tomorrow to get it.
Once I was done talking to the doctor I was shown to the lab area where I got my blood work done. Since I have to go back in a few weeks, I’m picking up the paper I needed for my work insurance premiums then rather than having to make a special trip just for that.
Overall, my new doctor was extremely helpful and concerned about my well being. We touched on the topic of my smoking and the sadness I struggle with due to my grief. She said if I ever needed anything to reach out to her and wanted me to know she was there to help me.
After I was completely done with my appointment I made a beeline to Arby’s and had lunch. Zero fucks given. I had a protein shake in the car with me, and a baggie of grapes and neither of those things were working to quell the nauseous feeling of my stomach. The small sip of the shake I had almost didn’t stay down, and the grapes were too sweet for how empty my stomach was.
The thought of an actual sandwich, mentally, felt better. I was hoping it would help with most of the headache issue, too, since by then I had already had two litters of water.
Lunch seemed to work. I started feeling better the more I ate. I made sure to eat slowly, so it took me a while to eat the whole sandwich, but that was ok. I started filling out my paperwork for school while I was eating. Ox also called me while he was on his lunch break so we got to chat for a bit.
When I was done eating I went over to the Southeast Community College campus and signed up for their CNA classes. More on that later. The big takeaway at the moment is that the class I originally wanted to take down in Beatrice is going to be canceled because there are not enough people signed up. So instead I’m going to be doing a different one which will be offered in Lincoln and have me completing the course December 4th. It’s paid for already, thanks to my credit card that I’ll never be able to get rid of, but it’s a step down the road I have finally made a decision to travel down.
Those two things, the doctor’s appointment and class registration, where the main things I wanted to get done, and I did them. With that taken care of, I came back home, took headache meds, ate my breakfast container of roast which I had to forgo earlier, then crawled back into bed to sleep, hoping I would feel more like myself when I woke up.
When I did wake up I was disoriented at first. I thought I had overslept for work, which was confusing because Ox wasn’t next to me and I didn’t think he would leave for work without making sure I was up as well, especially because I would have already been ridiculously late at the point. The more I struggled to understand what the hell was going on, the more I remembered that I had taken a nap and that it was still my day off and it was cloudy outside which is why it didn’t look as late in the day as it was.
I remembered I had felt like crap the whole morning and took a few minutes to figure out my status post-nap. I felt better. Sort of groggy, but the headache seemed to be gone and I didn’t feel sick anymore. Woo!
I had a cheese stick as my snack then got to work in the kitchen. I prepped a lot of the stuff I needed for dinner since I had said the night before I would cook dinner. I made Ox’s lunch for tomorrow. I made sure my water filter was full and that the dishwasher was unloaded and the sink was empty of dirty dishes. It was pretty relaxing to mindlessly do things. Cleaning and prepping food is easy for me at this point and not having to do hardcore problem solving after such a crummy morning was nice.
Ox called when he was on his way home. He agreed to pick up the broccoli I needed for dinner along with some of the groceries I originally was going to add to the weekend shopping list. It felt very homey and domestic. I don’t remember ever having someone able or willing to get groceries for me. Warren #1 was always either broke or didn’t remember when I asked. Zane never had a car so I was the only one able to do the shopping. Warren #2 didn’t shop unless it was with me… I usually went with Mother Earth and Josh when we shopped for the house…
Yeah… I don’t remember a point of time where it was something stable and consistent within the relationship. It’s a foreign feeling, but one I like. I’m not the only one doing things. I have a partner who helps. We help each other.
I cooked stir fry again using crab this time. I liked it, though Papa Ox said he liked the chicken I used last time better. The kitchen is already clean and everything is ready for tomorrow morning, so there’s nothing chore wise left for me to do, and that pretty much brings me to the end of the day today.
Yesterday, Wednesday, ended up being way different than normal. Tuesday evening around 5:30 pm I got a text message from my FA asking if I would cover a shift in South Omaha Wednesday morning. Roughly 4 am to 4 pm.
I didn’t know how to answer at first. I mean… who’s going to cover my shift in Beatrice? Am I going to be able to get a hotel room Tuesday night or do I have to drive up Wednesday morning, meaning I would have to wake up at 2 am? Am I closing the water room?
I got answers to all my questions. Someone from Cap City would cover my clinic and I would go up to Omaha and help them out. No closing the water room. I would most likely leave before 4, but it would depend on census. They would cover a hotel if I got one, it would depend on if any of the hotels had rooms.
I agreed to work the shift. If I couldn’t get a hotel I would wake up early and drive. My main concern was making sure my own clinic wasn’t screwed by me taking the shift.
So yeah… Tuesday night I drove up to Omaha and spent the night in a hotel room by myself where I had a hard time falling asleep and staying asleep. Even though I liked the solitude, I didn’t like that I wasn’t near Ox on such short notice.
The shift wasn’t bad, though. I got to see one of my favorite RNs and I got to see two of the techs that I really like. I got to meet a lot of new patients while seeing some that I already knew. I got a lot of compliments.
Patient: You did really well. Thank you.
Me: Thank you so much. And you are most welcome. : )
I don’t get a lot of compliments or words of encouragement from the patients at my clinic anymore. I’ve seen them three times a week for the past six months or so now. It’s pretty routine. They feel safe with me. I know their accesses. There is one who always says, “Very good,” once I have him started on his treatment. He’s the one I infiltrated. Still my only infiltration. I still get to spread his blanket out for him every time, and he’s even asked for me specifically when other RNs are working the floor so my FA can do FA stuff.
It’s a warm fuzzy feeling any time I receive praise. And it’s another moment where the Universe makes me pause and realize how far I’ve come in such a short amount of time.
Me: Good morning. I’m Jen. I’m a tech down at the Beatrice clinic but I was told that your clinic needed some extra help today, so I came to hang out with you guys. Is it ok if we go ahead and get your standing blood pressure and temperature?
Everyone was super nice and from the comments I received, everyone was comfortable with me and satisfied with the care I provided.
I got out around 3ish, which put me home around 4. I got to game for a bit before Ox got home, but I was pretty dead and tired. I was running around in circles farming flax for my weaver since that was about all I had in me to give mentally.
When Ox got home we went to the gym. I wasn’t all that jazzed about going. I’m glad we went, though. I rowed for a bit and stretched afterward. When we got home I cooked burger for my dinner and gamed a bit more before going to sleep. It was hard falling asleep next to him which might have contributed to the ickiness of this morning. Two nights of not sleeping well. Lame. : /
While we were in bed I realized I had taken off my mom’s ring at the gym since I didn’t want it to get messed up while I was rowing. I hadn’t put it back on before we left and it wasn’t until we were holding hands in bed that I realized I had forgotten it.
Me: Oh my god. I forgot my ring.
Without even questioning, Ox got up and started getting dressed. He drove us back to the gym where I hurriedly walked inside, resisting the urge to run frantically to where I had been, imagining all sorts of horrible scenarios where I would never get my ring back ever again.
It was right where I had taken it off, sitting next to the seat of the rowing machine, untouched.
Ox didn’t have to go with me. He didn’t, and doesn’t, have to be the amazing and supportive person he is, but he is and the more we’re together the more I appreciate him and am grateful that he’s in my life.
So that was Wednesday leading into Thursday.
Tuesday was pretty awesome and where most of the headway in my life took place.
It started with Ox and I having our morning cigarette together. I had breakfast. I had a fairly slow morning before I got ready to go to the gym at 10 am. I had a decent workout with my trainer. I’m down another pound, which puts me at 15 total since I’ve started working with him. He said once I reach the 20-pound mark I get a free t-shirt. I don’t know why that gives me more motivation than what I’ve had in the past, but it does.
It also makes me realize that I’m close to being close to 60 pounds lighter than when I first started. Five pounds away from that number.
While we were talking, my trainer asked what I had planned for the week. While I had been at home that morning I had started applying for the LPN program only to realize I didn’t know if they wanted me to enroll as an undeclared student since I needed to do the prerequisites for the program first or if there was a special way they wanted me to enroll. I had sent an email to the LPN admissions specialist, but at the time I hadn’t gotten an email back from her.
I told my trainer that since I was in the area I was thinking about going and talking to admissions in person and to get a feel for where the college was located and how the campus was set up. He said he would text his wife and see if she had any free time to meet with me since she’s the chair for the LPN program.
Left Brain: … What…
Right Brain: Oh god! Oh god! Oh god!
I knew his wife worked IN the LPN program… I didn’t know she was IN CHARGE of the LPN program. Pardon me while I have a mild anxiety attack over meeting with the head honcho.
While I was in the middle of stretching out after rowing for about 20 minutes after my workout, trying not to think about this potential impromptu meeting, my trainer came up to me.
Him: I got you an appointment. It’s at 12:30.
Him: Yep. Today.
Me: *More freaking out internally*
I so did not feel ready for a meeting. None of my questions were written down. What was I going to do? I didn’t want to interrupt her day. I didn’t want to waste her time.
I thanked my trainer multiple times for arranging the appointment. I even had time to kill after I had showered and was done with the gym. I stopped by the Walmart in Beatrice to return some dryer sheets since I had gotten the wrong scent and still made it over to the campus early. I sat and formulated my questions and got an idea for what I wanted to accomplish from the meeting, and with notebook in hand, since I always have a notebook with me, I headed inside for my meeting with the head of the LPN program.
There wasn’t a waiting area. I figured out where the room I needed to be at was and sort of poke my head around the door frame, unsure of what to do. I was super early but the door was open and there wasn’t a receptionist.
Mrs. LPN saw me and welcomed me in warmly. I told her I appreciated her taking time out of her day to meet with me and that I knew I was early. If she needed me to wait until later I could.
Mrs. LPN: No, no. You’re fine. Come on in.
We discussed what I was interested in doing. By then I had gotten a reply from the admissions specialist informing me that courses were changing and that I should check back in with her in September once the transition was figured out. That left me with more questions than answers, and luckily Mrs. LPN knew everything about the transition and gave me all of the information I needed for my next steps.
There’s going to be a full-time program starting in April with a part-time program starting next fall. Regardless of which program I do, I need to be a CNA with a Nebraska license. The prerequisites listed on the website currently are going to be included in the upcoming program, so I don’t have to take them beforehand, though if I do, it would put me ahead of the game. She also said if I know my goal is to eventually go into the RN program, there are other classes I could take which would correlate with that particular path that, again, would put me slightly ahead.
Unlike my brother’s LPN to RN program, there is no waiting period between bridging from LPN to RN. As soon as I obtain my license I could begin taking classes for the RN program.
So my next action step was to register for the CNA classes, which I got accomplished today. Go me. Since the CNA program is listed as continuing education and not an actual degree, I don’t have to be registered with the college to take the courses. No transcripts, to transfer credits… just sign up and pay and your good.
If I go through the process of actually registering before October, I can begin taking official classes in January for the LPN / RN thing I want to do. I’m not sure how to go about the program itself, though. My next hurdle will be figuring out how to financially afford classes. Paying for one or two might be doable. Paying for the whole program is going to be harder, especially if I go down to part-time hours at work and focus on school full time. I’m not sure how I want to go about it yet. I’m not sure how the clinic is going to change in the next few months.
The tech who shadowed is going through training at the moment. Once she’s through in the next couple of months we’ll be able to get a traveling nurse for a contracted length of time, which will allow our clinic to open six days a week again. So, things are going to change, I’m just not sure how, or specifically when, and even if I did, there’s a lot of time between now and when the full-time classes start, so really anything could happen.
While I know this obstacle is on the horizon, I’m going to focus on this first task first. I can’t get into the program at all without completing my CNA. And I guess this is a lesson learned. I’ve already taken a nursing assistant course back when I was in Florida. I never went through and took the test to become certified, though, so I can’t “challenge” the test and prove that I still know what I’m doing because I never proved I knew what I was going to begin with.
Part of not testing was anxiety over taking the test itself. Part of it was struggling with accomplishing things and being “successful” after mom’s death. Part of it was getting the job with DaVita and not needing to become a CNA anymore to increase my employability. My certification in phlebotomy falls into the same boat in that regard.
Looking back at it, it would have saved me $500 to go ahead and get certified. I guess this is a moment where I eat my words. I try to live with a “If you’re going to do something, do it right the first time so you don’t have to redo it later, ” mentality.
Well… here I am, redoing it… because I didn’t fully follow through the first time. I think I did well for where I was at during that point in my life. I’m pretty sure it’s going to make this course easier. I’m not worried about the lecture portions being online. I actually prefer that because it means I don’t have to spend eight hours of my day off in a classroom listening to things I already know. I can go through the work at my own pace and only have to worry about showing up for the clinic portions of the class, which since I know how to do all of the procedures, I might be able to leave class a bit early once I’ve demonstrated I can do them. I’m not sure, but there are options. And being employed in the health field, my instructor might be willing to work with me.
Getting out of class at 9 pm would mean I don’t get home until around 9:30 which means, most likely, not going to bed until 10 or later when I have to be awake at 3 am the following morning. It would only be for two months, but it’s still going to suck if that’s my time frame.
So I have that going on. Officially becoming a CNA so I can start work on LPN.
Work this past Monday was… work. Monday sort of sucked even though it was a smooth day. I was beat up by the time I got home and I don’t really remember much else about it.
The weekend was nice. Ox built the counter for the space to the right of the stove in the kitchen. I got to help draw the lines on the wood so it could be cut. I got to help hold the boards still so he could use the saw. We went to different stores looking at kitchen organization stuff. We got lunch together while we were out.
There wasn’t anything that I 100% liked, though, so at the moment the kitchen is still a bit disorganized. Ideally, we would get rid of the cabinets that are there and get new ones which would allow us to hang the pots and skillets, but that means potentially redoing the drywall, which may lead to having to put in new insulation…
Yeah… It might be a bigger project than any of us realized, but… It seems silly to spend money on a temporary option when all of the work mentioned is going to have to be done down the road. It feels like a waste, not only of time but also of money.
So I’m not sure what’s going to happen in that regard. We have the kids starting tomorrow evening through the holiday. I’ve agreed to play the role of Bookkeeper for Stuffed Fables all weekend if each day we put in two hours of work on the addition. Nothing further has been said about that proposal, but I’m pretty sure it will win out since the kids really enjoyed the game last time they were here.
And with that, I’m pretty sure I’m caught up for the most part. I didn’t mean to go so long in between posts, but that’s how it played out this past week. I’m looking forward to seeing my patients tomorrow. I’m looking forward to it being the weekend, too. And in the not so distant future, towards the end of September, I’ll have classes to look forward to as well.