It’s rather shameful to not be posting anything lately. Especially with so much going on.

I got the job that I mentioned in my last post. And, while I love the job, I can see why some CNA’s never want to become nurses.

The CNA has a lot of the “dirty work” and more physically demanding work at a long-term facility. It hurts your back, it takes a lot of time, and occasionally becomes somewhat tedious. It’s a wonderful job to help people, and it requires an extreme amount of patience and humility. Lights are going off all of the time, residents can become angry with you, you often go home with soiled scrubs, and if the nurse isn’t a fair and good one, you’re in for a long shift. You watch the nurses as the move about the halls only walking, usually with no need to run. They sit behind the high-countered desk so that you’ve no idea what they’re doing. They ask you to answer the call lights when their ten-minute pager goes off, and if they come in to give pills or insulin while you’re working, you need to stop and step aside. I’ve seen countless aides become bitter with their nurses or nurse managers – and I can see why, though if they only knew . .

Responsibility jumps up about thirty notches, pills have to be given by a certain time, phones ring and ring until you answer them, ostomy bags of various types need changed, notes need written, orders recorded, each little bruise, skin tear and trip need recorded on not one but many forms, and so on. You need to keep track of the groups and aides, and that often means interrupting their work to remind them of something. There are no case studies, but case studies weren’t nearly so threatening.

The first few shifts were a bit daunting even though I was being trained. I’ve flown solo a few times now, and this weekend will mark the beginning of the rest of my job there. I’m still learning a lot about the various medications, what can and can’t be crushed, who likes applesauce or pudding, who exactly needs just a blood sugar check and not insulin, and what reputation the residents and aides are giving me.

I really am enjoying it, and hope that I’ll get the hang of everything quickly for the rest of my coworkers and duties’ sake. I’m still a bit slow and somewhat clueless, so the quicker I get things down, the better.

I’ll be switching to part-time beginning on Monday. I was able to get the position with forty hours per pay period, and that allows me the scholarship the home offers. I still need to order a rather large amount of textbooks, pay tuition and finalize the last details for school on the twenty-second. But with the scholarship, the money spent will all be reimbursed.

Here’s hoping I don’t leave for so long next time.

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