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School daze August 20, 2007

Posted by 5 Wester in General Announcements.
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Finally…. After almost 2 weeks of absence (thanks to the short summer break), we find ourselves back in Texas again. Yup, it’s back to school for the kids.

I find MJ’s latest post quite amusing “Back to School Advice From Your Mama”. I still remember the days I had as a student nurse years ago.

Student nurses here have it made. They have nice classrooms, comfortable seats, air conditioning, the Internet, snack machines, laptops, libraries with up to date books, medical dummies, and all the amenities of life. Back in the PI we had classes at 1300 (the hottest part of the day at 82 deg F), wooden arm chairs (some were broken), ceiling fan (no A/C), no Internet, bring your own snacks, notebooks (pen/paper). For practice we didn’t have medical dummies. We had partners! Yep, that’s right, partners. “OK class, time to learn how to give shots. Choose your partners now!” Ouch! Enema anyone?

Despite all that, we had fun. Like MJ puts it… “Embrace your time in school.” I know I did, and I had no regrets!

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Deadly game… August 4, 2007

Posted by 5 Wester in General Announcements.
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It’s been a busy 2 weeks lately. For some reason I find myself sleep deprived, thanks to the upside-down sleep cycle we night owls experience. I guess having to juggle work and school at the same time is starting to take a toll. I need a break… anybody got Ativan?

I’ve had the privilege of taking care of a 26 y/o gentleman who finds himself with a GSW to the right frontal area…the bullet apparently still lodged in his skull. As I started my assessment, I spoke with the mother briefly and asked her “what happened?” She tells me that her son and a few of his buddies were at home playing a game to see “who has more balls”. From what she was describing it sounded like Russian roulette.

Balls? Who’s got more balls? I’m thinking to myself, it’s one thing to be brave, it’s another to be stupid. I guess you can be both… unfortunately… it’s sad. My mom always told me growing up, “you play with fire, you get burned!” What a way to prove you got balls! I think it takes more balls to say, “guys, I’m not going to play this game and take an unnecessary risk. You go ahead… you got more balls than I do… I’ll help you clean up after you blow your brains out!” Unfortunately for our young gentleman getting loaded with booze, cocaine and marijuana doesn’t help either…or maybe it does to numb the pain. I’d hate to see more of this senseless self-inflicted injuries (which account for 80% of the traumas we get). GSW, MVC unrestrained driver, ATV roll over (I see a lot of this), falling from a moving truck hitting head on the pavement, etc… etc… the list goes on. When will it end? How can we stop this senseless cycle?

I guess the answer would be more safety education starting at home. Do you think more public awareness will make people think twice about doing something risky or stupid such as driving without your seatbelt, or getting high with friends around deadly weapons? I don’t know… all I know is that as nurses we are called to care for the sick and in need.

On the lighter side, I’m glad to be able to take off for a week. School is about to start and summer break will be over soon and it’s time for the family to come back to Texas from California. This break will be a blessing… seeing the stuff I see everyday makes me appreciate life more and more. Life’s too short for trivial pursuits. Let’s take time to stop and thank God for our blessings! So to you my friends and colleagues, have a wonderful day and God bless!