Monday, May 12, 2014

Happy Mothers Day to all you Moms out there.

 above is the church on the hill in Ninilchik.  it's always looked cool so i finally drove up the road and walked around for a minute.
 everything is greening up.  i love that Alaska is always changing. it makes you enjoy every day more i think.  it's been a very sunny and warm spring.  i think we have all loved a paradise that is all our own, before the tourists arrive.  not that i'm anti tourist but this has been natures little gift to all of us for living in the darkness and the coldness.  the tourists never seem to come here in the dark and cold.  when you live here it's a right of passage.  you can't ever be an Alaskan without the winter.
 i've lived in Alaska since 1995, next year it will be 20 years.  when patients ask me and i tell them i've been here since '95 i am given the nod of approval. i'm deemed Alaskan now.  they call you a sourdough until you are seasoned..i'm seasoned.
 these are from a day last week.  i walked in kincaid with Blossom and then left her in the car to check out the campbell creek estuary.  there were some cranes there.  not too close, but they flew past once so i at least got that.  just love being near them though and hearing their chatter.  it's such a great sound.
 had gone to bed, watched a movie and then i guess i felt rested enough to try to write in the blog.
 work was busy.  adult icu all week.  that is actually my favorite overall i'd say and it's where i am the most.  it's nice to be able to move around and then return.  probably makes me appreciate it more and keeps me on my toes.  i've been an ICU nurse for many years as well.  i know stuff...i try to pretend i don't, but the fact is i do.
 i had a different assignment each night. my last night i was a preceptor for the continuous dialysis machine and patient.  in report we were told the previous shift had gotten 3 L off.  i knew we may be in trouble.  it's funny.  when you pull fluid out of veins through dialysis the fluid that has shifted out of the veins doesn't magically shift back into them to fill the void.  we do continuous dialysis cause people get sick and when they are super sick, they can't handle the extra volumes it takes to recover them nor can they handle removing those volumes.
 it started in early last night and went on for hours.  i'm sure we gave back all the fluid they had so proudly removed during the days.  it was a good learning experience for the nurse.  one second the heart rate was 170 and the blood pressures were in the 50's, then it would swing back just that fast and suddenly our heart rates were in the 40's and 50's and our blood pressures were in the 180...then back..this went on for was a game of chase.  it's always surprising how sick a body can get and how you can work all those different drips to keep someone alive.  being able to do that dance with all those different medications...well not everyone can do it well.  when i have nights like that i am reminded that i can do it well.
 when you are in the hospital the nurse you get, the doctor you get...those things can be key to your survival...
 the job does get harder physically as you get older...probably another good reason for me to do float pool, my brain and my body get a break from the rigors of the ICU.
 we had a pretty good shaking quake the other morning as well.  i think it was a 4.7 or so.  we rattled for a bit. of course that night i had "crabby" deal with a lot of different personalities as a nurse. i say a wee prayer every night as i'm headed to work in hopes that i can be patient with my patients, with their families and with co-workers.
 these are more with the wide angle
 haven't been to the kids icu for ages.  they never seem to need me.
 it was nurses week last week.  i seem to have missed all the freebies at work.  got a banana one night.  i learned long ago that the accolades of the administrators mean nothing to me.  they don't know me nor do they know my abilities.  often i find that some of the worst nurses are beloved by those in the offices...i try to stay under the radar.  i'm to apt to speak my i just avoid office people when possible.  i take care of my patients and i think mostly they appreciate what i do.  when a patient or their family say means something.
 but there are a lot of great nurses out there and it's not an easy job...we do stuff and see stuff that well, most people have no idea, lets just say that i guess.
 it was Mothers day today.  my mom passed away years ago so i've nothing to really celebrate i guess. i do know lots of moms out there and it looks like a pretty tough job, but the tougher the job the bigger the rewards...that much nursing probably has in common with parenting, though in very different ways.
 i do miss my Mom...miss being able to pick up the phone and talk...even though sometimes those conversations could be irritating.  never get why people get so obsessed with that Fox news network.  we had a few discussions. mostly she listened to me and what was going on in my life.  she loved to keep in on my summer plans. the year she died the big trip was to backpack the chilkoot trail.  she'd been to skagway and ridden the train. the backpack trip is over 30 miles one way and then you bring the train back.  i think she was pretty excited about that one.
 there are no perfect parents but much of it in my mind is about their intentions and their actions.  you sacrifice a great deal of yourself and your life to be a parent.  guess i'm pretty selfish since i have no kids. haha.  truth is i would have happily sacrificed for my kids just like any other good parent.  would have been an interesting challenge, but parenting wasn't in my cards this life.  the single parent thing never appealed to me...sounded great in my 20's but then i was around a few single parents...yikes...
and then i never met a guy who stuck.
 i always got along with my Mom more than my Dad.  as they say my Dad and i were like oil and vinegar, we didn't mix.  in the end i realized he was a very good father...but not a Daddy and sometimes a little girl needs a Daddy.  he just didn't know how to do that.  compliments were few and were always said with a "but..." always!!  when i wrote poetry and he found it, he grammatically corrected it with a red pen and returned it then was hurt that i was upset about it.
 we never wanted for the basics of life, we had a home, we had food, we had love and laughter...the love and laughter were my moms' specialty i think.  they balanced each other in that way i guess.
 my dad make sure we had all the basics.  he also didn't drink or smoke or gamble or screw around on our mom or beat us....he did the things that were required of a man in that era.  i think he just didn't know how to do those other things...the Daddy things.
 when i moved away, left the church did my own thing.  i sense things changed.  i know it bummed him out i left the church but i earned his respect.  he knew i hadn't made the decision flippantly,that i'd studied it.  sometimes you have to move away physically in order to make your own way and ultimately to come to peace with those childhood traumas that we all seem to have.
 by the time my father passed away i think we were okay. he still never was able to give out compliments and all that.  i think though he had uttered the words, "i love you" to me...something that wasn't heard when i was a kid at all.  his respect meant the world to me though. one of my favorite memories of him was when my folks came up to Ketchikan to visit me. i'm so happy they both made it to Alaska.  i know my Dad was pretty keen on me living up here...i got them on a float plane trip out to Misty Fjords.  the pilot landed the plane on a remote lake, middle of nowhere, and my dad and i got on the floats and just stood there...i think that was the happiest i've ever seen him.
 my dogs have been pretty happy laying out on the decks in the sunshine. i've eaten several meals out there.
 i think i wore Rio out pretty good today. the temps in some parts of Anchorage looked to be in the 70's...for some reason 70 here feels way hotter than 70 in other places, not sure why that is.  i was hot too and happy for a breeze.
 today we did powerline pass back to the bridge and back.  that is 4 miles total.
 we've enjoyed the sun in the front deck as well.  i have a gate up front so i can chill with the dogs out there...and this day one of the you can see she is Blossom's pet, not mine...though i pay the bills.
 i have many memories of my mom.  she was such a presence in my life.  in her last days we were friends.  a week or so before she passed she had told me she was ready to go...can't recall the exact words she said but i knew it was coming.  i think my other siblings were surprised but she and i spoke nearly every day and maybe my nursing and the fact that i have been around many people who are dying.  i just knew...i remember that night saying a little prayer.  we were all surprising her with a visit.  i mentioned several times that it would be better to tell her but everyone was keen on a surprise...
 i just remember saying in that prayer that i would love to see my Mom again but that if she was in pain and ready to go i didn't want her staying any longer than necessary just for another visit.
 so even though we have issues with our parents, when they are gone you don't think about those negative things you remember all the kind things.  those sacrifices that parents make for their kids...those are the things that come to mind.
 these are from todays walk. random dog out there on the trails...just liked him looking off at the scenery..i was chatting with the owner..she said really he was looking for birds or squirrels.
 lots of work to do to get this WARIS thing going.  feeling more ready to plunge forward.  i really don't see many folks who are willing to step up for round island which means it's more important for those of us who do care to step up.  not sure what we can do...but it's better to at least make the effort.
 change is always tough, a bit scary, a bit exciting, but i find that after a bit you look back and it wasn't as painful as you thought it would be.
 still lazy though...will have to get over that one.

 did some yard work so i had to get in the shed...spoke to my tenant for a few minutes...he's a nice chap just needs to be reminded to keep the place tidy and not scatter his seeds all over.
 also got a few quilts tied. now just post office.  i've tried to make one quilt per family...or two if the first baby turns out to be two babies.  so a niece is having twins...hope she likes them.  i think i've only missed a few and i'm doubting i'll make too many more quilts.  i used to make many more of them.

it's 3 am and i really should turn in for the night.
thankful for... 1.  being blessed with a mom who was fun and always seemed to be singing and trying to make the best of any situation. i was loved and cherished and protected.  2.  the breeze today.  it was lovely and cool 3.  extensive family, it's fun to have so many people out there to be in contact with, chat/text/'s all good.  night

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