October is here

Well I guess I must apologize, I have been so busy this last week journalling only a few notes here and there about what has been going on and how I have been feeling I hadn’t actually sat down and typed anything. This is the first lazy morning where I have been perusing Pinterest and catching up on some of the blogs I follow and I look around my place. My coffee table is covered in papers I have dropped from the various orientation sessions I have attended this week. Looks like a weeks worth of Ziplocs from my lunches are piled up to be washed. I have laundry to do, school work and meal prep for the week ahead, but I think I’ll make a tea and reflect a bit.

So last post I was recapping some tidbits I was picking up from nursing orientation, so I’ll pick up where I left off.

Friday morning we sat down with the Director of mental health and addictions. Her educational background is in the area of social work and her department branches off to three that assist with outpatients. 1. Withdrawal Services 2. Assault, Care & Treatment Program 3.Mental Health & Addictions. The team works within the hospital and also a satellite site that is downtown for individuals who do not feel comfortable approaching the hospital. She explained that counselors and social workers who work at this site are there and may only engage people in small talk over coffee. Nurses are there as well, one thing this site also provides is needle exchange and even open on the weekends. The counselors are also available for staff members.

Lunch was spent at Pelican Sandwich Co. Second time in a week – tried the Banh Mi (Vietnamese Pork) sammie with corn chowder. It’s nice to get to know some of the other new nurses to the hospital. We were gifted a slice of Carrot cake to share, and omg. Sooo good!

The best part of the afternoon was going through skills with the educator. One new RPN graduated a year ago and then had a baby so she’s pretty green to nursing but super excited to get to work. I haven’t inserted an NG tube since my time in St Catharines (5+ years ago) very good to review.

Also very helpful was a quick overview of what is covered in ACLS, arrythmia interpretation, use of the monitors and pacing. I always get stuck identifying heart blocks so made a few cheat notes as it will apply working in ER and having telemetry patients on the ward. Also there is a small ECG department however they do not do inpatient or ER ECGS, good thing I have experience with that aspect. Did I mention that taking ACLS & PALS is offered free to nurses — yeah, gonna try to get em down before I come home!

My intention Friday night was to go back into work to complete an 8 hour night shift but my preceptor was unwell so he text me the night off. So what does a girl do with an unexpected night off — well drink wine and restart binge watching The Walking Dead – obviously. I don’t have alot of time before the new season premiers – and The Boy and I have decided not to wait to watch it together, as we usually do. So I wanna get ready.

So Saturday, yes I was off but maybe slightly hungover and actually did normal day off stuff. In the evening I prepared for the Canada vs Russia game. I wore my North America hat, as I had hoped they would be playing Canada, oh well. For this I ventured out on my own and found the lounge at The Forrest Inn was showing the game. So I enjoyed some drinks and the game with a few fellow travelers. One American and three Canadians from all over the country, you can imagine how the conversation progressed after the game, I didn’t stay long it was kinda killing my buzz.

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This week I orientated to the nursing floor 2 day shifts. And everyone knows how I feel about day shifts.. anyway. Got er done. My second day shift we were short, so I charted on 7 patients- glass half-full, good practice with the newer computer charting system.

The nice thing about nursing is that no matter where you are, certain things remain the same. Personal care and assessing, ensuring medications are given and people are eating, drinking and pooping and breathing. It is so reassuring. And the two shifts of nurses I worked with were all supportive, helpful and seemed to get along.

85% of admitted patients are Indigenous and come from the North, the Interpreter’s desk is located between the North and South nursing units. There are 3 interpreters on during the day and 1 overnight. The trouble of course is that because the reserves are so isolated there are 3 different languages and 19 dialects patient’s potentially speak, so sometimes these interpreters are not enough. It was later in the week I was flipping through an Ojibway – English medical dictionary and listening to the language thinking maybe my Rosetta Stone French and Spanish lessons are not the best to be working on while here… but.. of course… there is an App for that.

Well I must end it here today guys. But just wanna end on how much I miss David’s Tea, now that the weather is getting colder (especially here) Tetley’s Earl Grey just doesn’t compare. I have some school work to get finished and wanna snooze before my ER night shift tonight. Anybody up to anything cool this weekend? How is the weather? Let me know in the comments section below.

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