Wednesday, November 4, 2015

What have you been up to for the past year?

Hi.  Where have I been?  I am around.  Just working a full time job as a clinic nurse and mommy.  Lack of free time means no time for myself to blog... that is ok.  Life is more important than the internet.

So since my last update I have been working in Ophthalmology as an advise nurse.  Working in the clinic is different from hospital.  I miss the patient care, crazy patients, my bond with my cancer patients, the RRT/codes.  I don't miss the stress.  Working in the clinic is a different kind of stress.  Call volume is high.  Sometimes it seems like there are no appointments.  It can be stressful trying to figure out what eye problem a patient may have and which provider it should go to: Optometry or Ophthalmology.  Eye anatomy is complex and most people who have an eye/vision problem don't take it lightly and want to be seen ASAP.

There are 3 RNs that work in Ophthalmology.  We book appointments for 3 clinics and sometimes book for neighbor islands.  Couple months after I started, my nurse supervisor retired, one of the RN left, then the former charge nurse got promoted to supervisor.  It got so busy and hectic I felt like it was just me working because the new supervisor was busy doing other department tasks.  I don't know how I made it work, but I did.  I became a stronger, better nurse because I had to learn fast to keep up with calls.  If I was slow, we would get complaints.  If I was not on it and did not follow up with patients, we would get complaints. I did not want any complaints.  It's a good thing I am a fast typer.  I had to learn to listen and type at the same time and move on to the next call.  Sometimes I could take 50-90 calls in a day!

After my former charge nurse got promoted, she started training me to become charge nurse.  We hired 3 other RN and since I am the senior of the department by default I became charge.  It is a new role for me.  I feel like a crazy women juggling with knives and fire. I am still learning.  My biggest headache about this job is reassigning staff assignment.  We are short handed by 2 Ophthalmologist, 1 LPN and 1 ophthalmic assistant.  It is nice to have 3 new RN, I can use them doing procedures or in clinic, but that would mean they are not on the phones.  They are trying their best to keep up.  I am just grateful they are flexible. 

This job is stressful but it works for me now.  I have a normal day shift life and I can spend more time with my family.  Is this the job I will stay till I retire?  I am not sure.  I still think about going back to school and finishing my Master's to become a Clinical Nurse Specialist.  I started before I got pregnant, but I had a hard time juggling night shift work and the online class.  I guess I was not too motivated.  Now with a baby not sure if I could do it... I guess this is not the right time for school.  I would rather focus on my family.  I have a little girl to raise and she is my reason I decided to get a day shift job.

Monday, September 22, 2014

5 years of service

My last week of work and I got my 5 years of service plaque and pin

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

New Nursing Job

Today I made it official.  I decided to leave my part-time night shift oncology nursing job and take on a new job as a full time day shift clinic nurse.  I will be doing advise nursing in the ophthalmology clinic.

Making this decision was very difficult.  I love working in oncology.  I learned a lot and I love the people I work with.  It has been very emotionally draining to be at work.  Working with really really sick and dying patients was taking a toll on me.  Plus the lack of sleep from working nights.  I wanted to have a normal life.

When my sister who is my sitter for my baby decided to take a full time job, I decided maybe it is time to make the change too.  To be honest I was not sure what I was getting into.  I know I wanted to have a day shift job, but I want sure if I wanted to leave my unit.  I applied to a handful of positions.  I had a callback for 4!!!

I interviewed for 3 positions: clinic, care coordinator/case manager, nurse reviewer.  I finally told my boss about my applications.  She was disappointed to hear I was considering to leave.  I was thinking of staying and waiting for a day shift on my unit to open, but realize I did not want to continue giving chemo and deal with stress and drama.  My biggest reason to leave was for me.  I was thinking about when I was pregnant and how high my blood pressure was from the stress of work and  nights.  I have a family now and if I want to be around for them and have more babies I need to stop working here!!!

I received an offer for all 3 positions.  I was torn to which one I should get!!!  I also got a call back to interview for the breast cancer care coordinator.    I decided not to interview at this time.  I examined the pro and cons of each jobs and decided it would be better to take the clinic job.  I would rather deal with traffic because it is farther away from home so that I can I can be on day shift, Monday to Friday, some Saturday on, holidays off, same pay and protected by nursing labor contract with full time benefits for medical dental vacation and sick pay.

It is bittersweet to leave however I am looking forward to the change.  I am looking forward to the new opportunity.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Great Aloha Run 2014

This is my 2nd time doing the Great Aloha Run (GAR).  First time was 2013 (read more here).  I tried to do a running schedule to run at least 3x a week, but being a new mom, working night shif is tough. At least I tried!!!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

How does a mommy balance it all?

How do you balance taking care of a baby, cleaning, cooking, working and above all save money?  I work part-time so I work 3-4 days which mean I get 3-4 days off.  My days off goes by so fast.  I need to figure out how you mommies do it.

Looking back at my grandma and mommy, it is definitely hard to balance it all.  My mom worked 3 jobs one point of her life to put my sister and I in preschool.  My mom would work full time her day job, part time evening shift and on the weekend.  My mom or dad would drop us off to school.  After school we went to after school program then my mom would pick us up and drop us off at my grandparent's house so she could go to her evening job.  I spent a lot of time at my grandparent's house with my cousins.  I was lucky to have a great grandma who cooked a home cook Filipino meal every night.  My dad would then pick us up from our grandparent's house to go home.  On the weekend when my mom was not working her full time job she spent it doing laundry, cleaning.  If she cook it was a big pot that could last a couple days.  As children, my sister and I had to help do chores around the house since our parents were so busy.  We were good kids...

Me and my sister were talking about how this and I am trying to figure out solutions to making life easier.

1.  Cleaning schedule.  On my days off instead of spending all day cleaning I will break up tasks during the week so that I am still able to go out and hang out.

Clean Bottle and dishes
Wipe down kitchen and table surfaces
Sweep kitchen and carpet

Days off
Day 1: Laundry and bathroom 

Day 2: vacuum, mop, dust, doors and light switch

*Once a month 
Clean out fridge
Sanitize Trash can
Organize mail and receipts 
Ac and dryer vents 

*Once a year clean
January: Organize personal files
organize cabinets, drawers, closets
Blinds and Curtains 
Light fixtures 
Stains off Carpet 
hard to reach 
Windows and outdoor
Toss expired medicine and foods
December: Donate clothes 

2. Budgeting.  The hardest thing to do, but since I got a new car and after my tax return is done I can pay off some bills and figure out how to free up some unnecessary spending.

3.  Meal planning, freezer and slow cooker meals.

4.  Continue to work out... haha hope I can.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

New family car

I am so happy I was able to trade in my BMW for a 2014 Rav4.  I am super happy with this trade.  It is spacious and a perfect family car!!!  I love the color, the interior and backup camera!!!

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Lets do it again, the GAR

So I signed up for the Great Aloha Run.  I'm a little nervous since I'm a new mom and wondering how I will schedule runs/exercise, chores, breastfeeding, pumping and now work.  It has been a challenge trying to juggle the new life changes.

My goals for this GAR
1. run in the morning before my BF goes to work and while my sister is here babysitting baby
2. walk daily with dogs and baby or with my sister and the babies
3. when not walking try to do exercise video, Jillian Micheal's 30 day shed

Before I gave birth, I weight about 185 pounds.  I am now 166-169 pounds.  I need a little push, so hopefully I can get down to my pre-pregnancy weight of 159-164.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas

This week we have decided to stop using the shield.  I took a chance and we have been quite successful.  She has been sucking better.  Only problems is she spits up a lot, but not to worry she pee and poop a lot!  Have a great Holiday!!!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Breastfeeding update: 8 weeks

After 9 weeks of maternity leave I finally went back to work.  It is so bittersweet.  I would love to stay home with my baby but we gotta work.  Thank God I'm not full time anymore.  My hours at work is enough and I still have time to spend with my baby.

My sister has been babysitting and she has been a great sitter.  She is very patient with her.  When I come home from work I will breastfeed or pump, spend time with baby, exercise, eat then sleep.  Only problem I have since I have been back to work is the breastfeeding and pumping routine.  I have a oversupply of milk because of the extra pumping I have been doing.  My freezer has the proof of my pumping efforts.  I have a good stockpile of milk since baby doesn't need supplement milk.  We give her a bottle a day with her vitamins or if we are out in public.

My fear was when I went back to work that my milk supply would decrease or baby would not want to breastfeed.  My supply is not going anywhere as my baby enjoys breastfeeding.  So I only pump for work and exclusively breastfeeds when baby and I are together.  I have been more engorge more often since we are not pumping as much as before.  So hopefully my supply will regulate and I won't have to pump just to relieve the engorgement.  

I am now less shy to breastfeed in public.  I have breastfeed in the car, dressing room and restaurant.  The breastfeeding cover is my best friend!!!  Thanks God I'm surround by my family who supports breastfeeding!!!

We have been determine to keep breastfeeding even if it is with the shield. The shield has saved us from giving up so soon.  Now that I'm back at work hopefully we can maintain the milk supply  so she can breastfeed for 6 months or more and stop pumping extra.