Tuesday, December 29, 2020

I'm working on the little guy's quilt today in my freshly painted sewing room.  I have a wall that I can put my squares up on to look at patterns which helps me a lot.  It's not a fancy quilt but I love it, especially the cowboys on the horses.  It will come together very quickly which is nice because there is another quilt, more complicated that I want to get started on for my "adopted" granddaughter.

The sun is shining and I'll take Heidi for a walk later to get our fresh air and exercise.  The chickadees are flitting about the birdfeeders and I saw a woodpecker out there is morning too.  

I want to learn how to let go of my need to control things because it causes me so much grief.  I know why I like to control things, less anxiety in theory but of course that's not really true, it just causes more anxiety when things  don't go as planned.  

I guess I keep trying and keep learning.  Fortunately the universe in much more patient than I am and provides me with endless opportunities to learn how to give up control, if only I would.

Sunday, December 27, 2020

I took Heidi out for a nice walk yesterday.  There is a spot on the trail that is very slippery and very steep.  I wear a long coat and now I just sit down on my coat, pull up my legs and slide down the hill on my back like a turtle, laughing all the way.  It's so much fun.  At the bottom Heidi checks me out to make sure I'm okay and then we carry on with our walk.

When I got home from work on Christmas Eve there was an email waiting for me from the manager of Katie's home.  The government had announced that people living along could visit one family on Christmas day.  Technically Katie lives alone and so we were allowed to bring her home for a visit.  

It was so nice to see her.  She was confused that we didn't go to the mall or the horse barns but she enjoyed seeing us and got to visit with her sister on a video chat.  Katie had lunch, opened her presents and then signed that she wanted to go home.  Not a long visit but a visit just the same.  On the way home we stopped at the dog park so she could watch the dogs from the car.  

I just finished reading a book by Glennon Doyle, "Untamed".  I quite enjoyed it.  At first she seemed quite entitled but as I read further she pulled me in.  It was her take on religion and god that won me over eventually.  She seems quite brave in print but I wonder if she is like that in real life with her loved ones.  I'm much braver when I write than when I talk.  Writing helps me sort things out while talking often leaves me tangled up in words.

I had a meltdown at work last week, not being able to see Katie, not being able to control things (the root of all my problems), fatigue from caring for the little guy and work.  I made it halfway through my shift and then left after I snapped at a coworker.  I apologized to her and she accepted my apology.  We're all tired and snappish right now.  It's been a long year.

My manager and I talked and she wondered if I even wanted to continue nursing.  I wonder at times too but I also don't want to be pushed out the door.  My manager said to me that it seems I am in her office every month telling her I'm done which didn't seem accurate.  So I talked to a young coworker and she disagreed with our manager.  I have complained and have been done a few times but not every month. 

The nurses in our department get very little support and have to deal with a bully of a medical director on a daily basis.  It is widely known that this man is a bully who bullies nurses, techs and others docs.  Nothing is done.  Three docs have left because of this director and we are short of docs because of him and still nothing is done.  I am tired of this.  I guess I need to deal with this.  Conflict makes me feel queasy.  I hate it and it brings up memories of my father angry and yelling and I feel like a small child again.  Except I'm not a child anymore.  I am a difficult, opinionated, kind, compassionate, hard working woman with a dark sense of humor who is deeply loyal.  And I can do hard things.

Sunday, December 20, 2020

I took the little guy for a very short walk yesterday.  By the time I got all of our winter stuff on and yelled at the dogs a few times because they wanted to come too, I was exhausted.  Being outside was nice though.

I took the dogs for a walk this afternoon.  It was warm and sunny which was nice.  Fresh air and sunshine.

And someone had decorated the trees on the path.  I baked gingerbread scones all day to give as gifts to my coworkers tomorrow which I'm glad I did but I am tired.

I told Gracie today that if the little guy is exposed to COVID again we can't take care of him.  She looked irritated with me but I'm not doing that again just because her family doesn't care about the restrictions.

I'm tired of doing the heavy lifting because other people are just doing as they please.  

Mostly I'm just tired.  And I miss my Katie.


Thursday, December 17, 2020

The little guy is with us again for five days while his mama works evenings.  He loves building towers with his poppa and then knocking them over.

I'm finally feeling more myself again which is nice.  I enjoyed work this week and of course my patients are wonderful.  I love making them laugh.  

I even broke the rules and hugged a patient and his wife on Monday.  He's doing poorly, his cancer is progressing and it breaks my heart.  I often see his wife because she works at the hardware store and I go there a lot.  Her heart is breaking too, watching her husband decline.  He's even stopped working which I gather for him is a big deal.  So both were hugged, fuck the rules.  Sometimes they need to be broken.

I'm off today which gives me a chance to catch up on housework.  Yay.  The older I get, the less I like it.  I was thinking about my mum the other day and how I wished I had spent more time with her, writing down her life story but instead I was always busy and now she's gone and the busy work still remains because it never ends.  The house can always wait to be cleaned but my mum will never be back.

I texted with my cousin in Florida for a long time on Monday night.  Her surgery went well and the mass was benign.  I'm going to visit her next winter if things go well.  She's the only cousin younger than me and I love her like a sister.  

It's supposed to warm up a little and I will try to take the dogs for a walk today.  Between the cold, the ice, the dark and the fall, I haven't been walking except at work.  Today I feel like slug.

My son has been mostly leaving me along although he did text this week to see if he could come over and take photos with his son, or have us come to their house.  We're in a lockdown.  There is no visiting, no mingling of households and he is not welcome in our home any longer but all of those things mean nothing to him.  He wants a Christmas photo.  

He says he's changed.  His wife says he's changed.  We'll see.  It will take him years to win back my trust and I'm pretty sure he'll go off the rails again before that.  Mostly I just want to protect my grandson from his influence, lies and manipulations.  

Christmas creeps nearer and as always I will be thankful when it's over.  I love the tree, I love buying presents and I love the baking but the actual day is always a huge disappointment for me so I'm glad when it's over.  Christmas does not meet expectations and I think I have movies and TV to thank for that.  Although there is one holiday movie that comes close to real life;  it's about Thanksgiving, not Christmas, but it's more realistic but even in this film the family is closer and more loving than my own family.  

Home For The Holidays

Sunday, December 13, 2020

I got the Christmas tree up yesterday which I like.  It adds light to the long, dark nights.

 And I love this little mouse who was sadly decapitated by the cat a few years ago.  Fortunately emergency surgery reattached his head and the scarf hides the suture line.

Yesterday I made gingerbread scones which were delicious.

Today I made Portuguese doughnuts which taste more like crullers and they're tasty as well.  I ate too many of them.

I'm bored.  The weather has turned and it's too damned cold to go for a walk, so I bake.  Could be worse, I could gamble or snort cocaine.  

Right now a trip to the grocery store is about as exciting as it gets.  

Friday, December 11, 2020

Gracie's been having a hard time again.  Work is getting to her and she doesn't have much in the way of coping skills other than drinking or weed or whatever else she takes from time to time, ativan I'm guessing.

She's working at a homeless shelter and one of her clients died of an overdose today.  Everyday, somebody there overdoses but today it was a woman whom she talks to on a regular basis.  This woman was about the same age as Gracie.  This woman died, sitting at a table with her back against the wall, with people around her, nobody noticing that she had stopped breathing until it was too late.

They tried to resuscitate her but they weren't successful.  The paramedics took her out of the shelter in a body bag and it was the first time Gracie had ever seen a dead body.  Gracie was crying as she told me this.  I told her it wasn't her fault but I worry that Gracie will take it on, that she will carry it and that she won't know how to deal with this death.

People die.  I remember some of the codes I've been involved in and it's always horrific.  There is blood and garbage on the floor.  People are yelling and ribs are being broken with each compression.  It's awful and I hate them.  The first code that I saw was stopped after about thirty minutes but the patient continued to have agonal breaths after she was pronounced dead.  She was my patient and had only been admitted two days previous but she also had metastatic breast cancer that had never been treated.  It was a violent death and I remember it still thirty years later. 

I imagine the attempted resuscitation that Gracie witnessed today was equally violent and shocking.  I'll have to talk to her tomorrow to see what kind of debriefing they had, if any.  I think I'll tell her that I carry these people with me still and that it's okay to grieve their deaths, I did what I could for my patients and she did what she could.  I always say a prayer for my patient's soul.  I don't know if that makes any difference but it helps me to believe that the divine will now care for this person's soul.  

I hope that the shelter has some process in place for both clients and staff to deal with these deaths, to help everyone cope with the deaths.  For me, I always try to just stay with my patients, to find a way to give comfort.  But a code is not a normal death, it is an interference and regardless of the outcome, it doesn't feel good.  

I also hope that Gracie doesn't spiral down again because of this.  It's Christmas, it's a pandemic and it's death.  I wish I knew how to help her to be more resilient but there are days I can hardly get through.  I have the big guy who helps me build resilience, I guess we'll try to be there for her because if she does better, the little guy does better as well.

Wednesday, December 9, 2020

 My locker at work, masks and cookies.  What else does a person need to get through a pandemic?

I'm back to work this week but sore and tired still.  I can actually chew food again which is wonderful.  This morning I stopped at a bakery on the way home from dropping the big guy off at work and bought a gingerbread scone and an orange, cranberry brioche and ate them both.  My teeth fit together again!

Our Premier has put the whole Province back into lockdown which is a good thing because COVID numbers and deaths were rising rapidly and as predicted, the hospitals are overwhelmed.  No Christmas suppers which I'm okay with.  Not being able to see Miss Katie over Christmas will be awful though.  I've spent every Christmas day with her for the past twenty-eight years.  I imagine I will be weepy and we'll both survive.  

Katie had a meltdown the other day because she wanted her caregiver to drive to McDonalds and get some food.  The caregiver didn't have a vehicle so was unable.  Katie was hitting herself and crying.  She eventually took all of her clothes off and peed on the floor.  If only she had some way of letting people know how she really felt.  

The little guy remains with us most of the time.  He's been off since I fell and hurt myself.  Yesterday I slipped on some ice and yelled and he burst into tears.  Poor little guy.  He finally had a good night sleep last night, which was good for all of us, for the first time in a week.  I wonder if he's been having nightmares.

I've been doing some reading about 20 month old toddlers and talking to some young nurses at work about their kids around the same age.  It's been forever since I had a young toddler so it was good to refresh my memory.  He's pushing all our buttons lately, figuratively and literally, trying to see where the boundaries are for his behavior.  He's a smart little bugger but not as easy going as he once was.  This morning he actually cried when we dropped him off at daycare because he didn't want to let go of his poppa.  

Life continues on.  The sun is shining this morning and there was a woodpecker at the suet feeder. The days are short and the shadows are long.  The solstice will be here soon which I'm thankful for.  

Friday, December 4, 2020

I've done very little today.  Made supper already but I'm still in my jammies.  I was feeling sorry for myself and feeling very sore.  My jaw still doesn't work right and I still can't really chew.  I called a girlfriend which helped.  We talked for a long time and then I watched a movie called "The Secret, Dare To Dream" which is based on the book The Secret from all those years ago.  I just looked it up;  it was released in 2006.

I remember reading it at the time and it gave me hope.  I was in an awful marriage and the book gave me hope which is never a bad thing.  In 2008 my husband and I went to Hawaii for a vacation by ourselves for a week.  I wrote up a list of things I wanted in a partner and I buried it in the sand in Hawaii.  I asked the universe for what I wanted because I already knew I couldn't stay with my husband.

I wanted a tall man with blue eyes and gray hair.  I wanted him to be kind and funny and smart.  I don't remember what else I wrote but in 2011 I met the big guy.  He's a good man and I love him very much and I'm so thankful we met and married.

I remember other things I wanted.  To be hugged on a regular basis.  To walk dogs.  To read books.  It wasn't anything big but hugs was at the top of my list.  My ex didn't like hugging.  I need to be touched.

So the movie was nice.  Not great, quite predictable and slow but I still enjoyed it, sitting here by myself.  

The big guy will be home in a couple of hours, with the little guy.  Tomorrow we have to take the little guy to visit his father who has been his usual dick self.  I try not to let it bother me and sometimes I succeed.  The big guy worries I will crumble but I'm tougher than I appear to be.  I've made it this far in life without crumbling.  I may fall down, I know, but I get back up.  Slightly bruised and battered but still back up.

Thursday, December 3, 2020

My week is getting better.  My chin doesn't hurt but my neck and all the other bruises still hurt.  I found one on top of my head this morning when I had my shower.  My little finger still hurts but it's getting better too.  I don't know how people cope with large bones that have been broken, like the femur.  I was a mess with a little bone in my finger broken.  I asked the doc to make me look pretty when he stitched me up, obviously that didn't happen:)

I was home with the little guy when I fell.  He almost fell off the chair and I was rushing to catch him when my foot caught on his highchair.  He was fine and didn't fall, but I did.  The big guy wasn't home because he had gone to the pharmacy to pick up a prescription for our neighbor who had put her back out and couldn't move off the floor.  Her three kids took excellent care of her and her husband is back home now to take care of her.  

I called the big guy, he raced home and took me to emergency where I waited.  Everyone was so nice, the nurses, doctors and x-ray techs.  I even got a tetanus booster while I was there.

I didn't break my jaw but I sure smashed it hard.  I have been eating things that don't require chewing like ramen noodles, kraft dinner, yogurt and creme brulee.  Today I managed to chew a pancake, so progress.

COVID numbers continue to soar here thanks to our hapless premier.  Instead of imposing further restrictions on us, he has asked the Red Cross for field hospitals.  WTF!  He has been told over and over and over that COVID could overwhelm our healthcare system, which he would like privatize, but he didn't listen or didn't believe or didn't care.  And here we are.  Job done.

The little guy has a couple more nights with us and then his mama is off again.  When she works evenings she doesn't get to see him at all.  There is a COVID outbreak where she works and I worry about her.

I leave you with a lesson on mRNA vaccines.  Just click on the link below.


Wednesday, December 2, 2020

I tripped yesterday, in the kitchen, but I broke the fall with my face, on a chair.  Ended up in emergency where I got stitches to my chin and a splint for my little finger.  I'm covered in bruises and scared the shit out of both my grandson and my husband.  I feel ninety years old but I'll heal.  My teeth still don't seem to match up very well but that will probably get better with time.  I'm so thankful it wasn't worse.

Off work again until next week.