"The Jingle Bell Bum" (Read The Touching True Story...please!) Comment at patriciahanrion.com

"The Jingle Bell Bum" (Read The Touching True Story...please!) Comment at patriciahanrion.com
Still available on Amazon for Nook and Kindle, hard copy booklett to re-print November 2013

Friday, April 29, 2011

I assume the dog died!

I still have hopes of getting in that last door but right now I doubt that task will happen any time soon.  My husband is for the first time in our 40 some years of marriage….working in another state, 6 ½ hours away, down the ten freeway.  He only gets to fly home twice a month (on the company dime) so most likely will not be too interested in my honey-do list. 
We’ve been lucky with Patrick being in the construction industry he has not only had jobs in Calif., but they’ve been near enough that travel over an hour has not existed.  We’ve been able to live in the same house for 30+ years.  I’m not sure we’ll move to Arizona where he is working because it seems they are moving men around like chess pieces.  He told me last week some fellow who had moved to Arizona from Oregon, bought a house, moved his family and has now been transferred to San Diego, go figure!
Since October it has been unsettling at best to know he was going somewhere out of the state.  Now mind you they asked if he was willing to be a trunk-slammer (that’s what a guy on a travel contract is called) and he said yes! We thought with the kids gone…it was better to travel than have no job at all since we recently discovered our 401K  is now a 201X and if we don’t want to end up eating cat-food and crackers after the age of 80 we better work a little longer.
Now having studied gerontology when senior citizen age was in the very distant dim future and learned taste buds are almost nonexistent by the age of 80…I pondered that statement for a while and thought…”Well by then cat-food may not be so bad since most likely we’ll only be getting the texture anyway.”  Then I thought of a missionary in our area a few years ago who had no sense of taste or smell and told us to him food came in two varieties…chunky and smooth.  Ech, I’m not ready for that one!
I must say Chandler Arizona is the best place considering one of the possible choices was Guam?  After I did research about the 8 mile wide and 30 mile long island with a Fanagolo-bolo monster plaguing the residents, I consider Arizona a blessing…sort of, and I’m trying to be positive.  So far only a few melt-downs and a dream about being attacked by crows.  One thing we’ve realized is, after all these years of marriage we hate! Really really hate being apart, and miss each other a lot.  We’ve discussed how weird it is to go to bed night after night…ALONE.
But I’m always telling my nursing students to be positive so I’m really trying hard to follow my own advice and to look for the good.  After all, with tons of poop piled up…there has to be a cute little pony in there somewhere…right?  At least that’s what I tell my nursing students.
One time I had students in a medical surgical area and the nurses were continually sour and nasty…every day…without fail.  I always think, “How can they be grumpy every day? One day they should be happy, or at least smile.  Why are they in health care? Why are they in nursing?  Go get a job at the DMV!”  My students suffered from the abuse and were always afraid someone would yell at them.  Sadly, they got used to taking the blame for anything and everything that went wrong.  I guess things have not changed much through the years when you’re a student…I wasn’t allowed to sit in the presence of a physician, and had to stand and give the doctor my chair if I was sitting. 
One day, during post conference, (where we discuss difficult or interesting medical cases and situations) I tried to cheer up the group and told them to try and ignore the insults and that I knew how hard they were trying to do what was best for their patients. Then I said, “Just assume the mean-spirited nurses and doctors are not really angry or mad at you.  Probably something else has set them off…like maybe the night before a patient passed away, or they had a fight with a spouse, or maybe their dog died!”
A week later one particularly sensitive and serious student pulled me aside and quietly said, “Professor, I know what the problem is with all the nurses on this floor…They’ve all chipped together and purchased a kennel, and every night a dog dies.”  She turned and walked back to the nurse’s station with a big smile on her face.  
 I hope someday those nasty nurses remember how scary it is to be a student and sell that dog kennel!

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