Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Free Day :-)

I was supposed to work today. Actually I was supposed to work this weekend. We are scheduled to work every third weekend.

No. Matter. What.

But this weekend is the Paducah Kennel Club show. I am the president, so I must be there. I had to beg, borrow, plead, and freak out to get the weekend off. Meaning I can't get the weekend off; I must ask my fellow nurses to trade days with me. Because of this, I was scheduled to work yesterday and today, which was icky and a half because Bill is tra-la-la-ing around back east getting an award from his college, visiting with family and friends, and eating. (I'm not envious. Or anything.)

Now I do have the best friends-and-neighbors in the world, so they come and let the dogs out for me, and feed them. The dogs were actually less frantic when I got home last night (late - two end-of-shift admissions meant I wasn't able to leave the hospital until after 8:00) than they are when Bill is home. They nonchalantly said, "Woo, woo. It's only you. We've had such fun with our new best friend Deb today. She pretty much rocks. Obviously she cares about us because she came and let us out from LOCK UP. And Lee and Dee are the best cooks! Dinner was scrumptious. You could take a lesson or two."

But. Two days in a row of crates all day, just the thought of it was giving me hives.

Then around one o'clock yesterday at work my belt phone rang. Patients can call their nurses directly on our belt phones when they need something, and our unit clerk can transfer calls from doctors or alert us if a patient puts their call light on. But this call was my Charge Nurse who was off yesterday. She asked if I could possibly switch days with her. She needed Wednesday off, so could she work for me on Tuesday and could I work for her Wednesday?

Yippeeeeee! Oh yes I could switch days with her!!! Oh thank you God and Charge Nurse! So, the dogs got to walk this morning, and lay around on couches and I didn't have to leave them for two days in a row of lock up. And my old body didn't have to work two days in a row at the start of the busiest kennel club week.

The Universe was lining up to make my Free Day pretty darn awesome. After the dogs and I climbed in bed last night, I remembered I needed to give Fat Charlie his second dose of thyroid medicine. I threw on a pair of shorts and trekked downstairs to get it. Oh. That somehow triggered the thought that I hadn't brought in the mail. And in the mail? Lo and behold the videos of Best of Breed from the National! Me, the mail, and the moonlight doing twirly happy dances on my front sidewalk. I had ordered those videos so long ago and here they were in perfect time for my Free Day? Oh yeah, more twirly shoulder pumping head wagging happy dances. Me and the mail and the moon.

Something else happened at work yesterday. To get the joke in this I have to make you like me a little less, and understand a little more just what a Saint my Bill is. For a solid year, and more, I have dragged my sorry self home from work and cried. I won't bore you with the why's of it all. I come home to a delicious dinner of Bill's creation and I tell him through sobs that I can't do this. That I'm a burden to my fellow nurses. That I'm constantly asking them questions, because I would rather ask the question out loud even though I know I know the answer, just to be sure I don't make a mistake.

I cry to Bill that the nurses I work with are fed up with me. That they must think I am the stoooopidest old woman alive. I weep and wail to Bill. (Sometimes the weeping is because of the human tragedy I see - this is expected, weeping about bad things happening to good people.) It's the wailing, the constant "I can't DO this!" that tries my dear husband's patience.

"You are too hard on yourself," he tells me. Over and over. What I want him to say is, "You are right. This is too hard on you. You should quit."

But he doesn't. He says, "I believe in you."

Last night I phoned him but he didn't answer. I emailed him: I have two fun things to tell you. I wrote about my unexpected Free Day, and said that the second fun thing needed to be told, not written in an email, so please call. He called after I had climbed back in bed from finding the videos in the mailbox.

"What's the other fun thing," he asked?

"You are not allowed to say I told you so."

It had been a bad day at work. The most experienced, organised nurses were just shy of frantic. No one could get caught up. One of nurses was sick and was going home. She was finishing up her charting in the nurses' station. I zoomed in to get a dose of pain medicine out of the AccuDose.

"Oh," she said. "Congratulations, by the way."

"For what," I asked? I thought maybe she just heard about Swede William at the National.

"For being Employee of the Month," she said.


"Yes," she said. "I got an email that you are this month's Employee of the Month."

I started to giggle. "You mean GOOBER of the Month, maybe! You are not well! You better get home and lie down." I couldn't stop giggling; this was surreal. Each month or so all of the staff on our unit does a secret ballot to pick out an Employee of the Month. Even now I'm shaking my head and chuckling. Goober of the Year, maybe.

Our Unit Clerk joined in. "Oh that's right! Congratulations, Patience!"

"What? What? You two are funny." I headed off to give my Small Bowel Resection their Zofran and Dilaudid. Still giggling. Later I pulled up my work email on my Computer On Wheels.

"Oh my God," I said out loud. I blushed. I started giggling again. "I do NOT believe this."

Bill cleared his throat. "So. I'm not allowed to say I told you so?"

"Good night," I giggled. "I love you."

hug your hounds


  1. where is the Facebook like button on this blog? Hmmm?
    - consider it clicked!

  2. Goober of the month my ass! You Rock!!!!!!!

    Oh...Ok...I still love you

  4. Hmmmm...Can the rest of us say "We knew,but refrained from telling you so?" OK, consider it done.

  5. A big congrats to you Goober, and licks from Nearly..

  6. to Bill: NO. I said you were TRA-la-la-ing. Big difference.

  7. I am not surprised at ALL that you got this award... and long time overdue, IMO!

  8. Francarrich from WWJune 7, 2011 at 6:32 PM

    Nothing like realising that others believe in you to give one a boost. Congratulations & keep up the good work! Hope you enjoy the National videos & that the Show goes well.

    Wags from Banjo & snuffles from Aida.

  9. See, you can DO it! I'm thinking everyone else knew you could. You just needed to know it. You strike me as someone who can do just about whatever she wants to and I haven't gotten to spend that much time with you. Unfortunately. Big congrats. Emma and Dudley say, woooooooo.

  10. Congrats on being Employee of the Month!

    I work every other weekend at the children's hospital, no matter what, so I certainly understand the begging and pleading when you need to trade shifts with someone. :)

  11. Congratulations, silly! OF COURSE you were bound to be employee of the month; I'm not a bit surprised! You are so deserving.

    You know I would so much rather a nurse or doctor asked and double-checked before proceeding. This is a very good quality.

    Best of luck at the show this weekend!

  12. Ohhhh how lovely!!!! We have been MIA a little) that 12 hour shift work thing kind of does you in as you WELL know!!) and we came back here after a while away and found that you got employee of the month and we and PL2 are so very happy for you.... Love and kisses A+A+PL2

  13. PS We are also a little nuts thinking that you have been back at it for a year as to us it seems like yesterday that you started!!!

  14. Congratulations, Patience! (I'm not a bit surprised. :)


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