Sunday, August 26, 2007

work, work, work...

The last several shifts at work have been money-earners. That means, when I finally come home, I say, "Boy did I earn my money today."

We had an absolutely full unit until yesterday, when the mass exodus began. 15 patients went home. That's half our unit! That's also a lot of work. I sent 4 of those patients took care of twins, plus did baby bloodwork, plus monitored a 35-week pregnant mom, plus waded through the discharge paperwork for each mom and baby sent home (that's 8 charts), plus didn't eat lunch until about 3P...anyone feeling sorry for me yet?!!

It's days like those that leave me feeling restless for something different. My favorite way to solve the "restlessness" problem is to make a change. My favorite changes tend to be big ones. I need to learn to be satisfied with more subtle improvements. Like, why couldn't I just take up exercising? It's really good for me, I probably would have more energy to handle intense shifts and two busy kids, I might even drop those last ten "baby pounds". Or, maybe I could just pursue some additional certifications in my current specialty. If I pass a national certification exam (that the hospital would reimburse me for), I not only earn an extra $1.50/hr, but I get to sign my name: M Collazo RNC (not just RN). This is very impressive, and I'm sure I would enjoy this accomplishment. Or, I could pursue the clinical ladder in my hospital. This is a way for nurses to earn additional money by presenting proof (i.e. lots of writing) of their clinical skills and judgement. One can earn up to $4.00/hr extra. Both accomplishments and switching to night shift allow me to potentially earn up to $10.00/hr extra than my base pay. This is significant.

All I can think about, though, (and this is where the big change is) is when should I make the switch to critical care so I can start down the path toward anesthesia school? Should I apply this fall to switch specialties? Should I wait till the beginning of the new year? Maybe I should wait until we've worked through the new business for a bit. A completely new specialty would definitely consume a lot of my attention initially, and that might not be wise at this point. Lots to think about, better yet, lots to pray about. There's my answer right there. Acting on a dilemma (in this case, my recurring wanderlust/restlessness/need for change) always decreases the anxiety, so I guess prayer is a wise place to start.

Life was so much easier when I was 8...the biggest dilemma at this point in the summer was what outfit I'd be wearing on the first day of school.

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