I’m still Alive! (2nd year anniv post)

Hey there!

Buhay pa po ako! (I’m still alive!)

It has been almost a year since my last post, balikat at braso, september 22, 2013. And thanks to wordpress reminding me, today is my second anniversary! Woooh!

In celebration (and in summary), let me recount the things I survived for the past year.

  1. October 15, 2013 7.2 magnitude earthquake

It was around 7:30am and we were just doing our nursing rounds after the endorsement when the whole earth suddenly shook the soul out of me. I was in the male surgical ward and we’ve had at least 5 patients who are bed ridden, two immediate post operation, one paraplegic (paralyzed from neck down, but very well awake), 2 on ventilator, and a couple with chest tubes thoracotomy (with bottles of drainage).

 I know it is my duty to save lives, but trust me, I just shouted, everybody out! and ran straight to the garden together with my 3 other female duty mates. All that could walk followed suit. The rest, including the paraplegic, I pity as they lay there helpless.

Soon I was drenched in sweat lifting patients out of the building (thank God it did not collapse, though cracks are visible). Finding them in the open garden area along with a thousand other patients from different departments was the next thing. 

And don’t forget the aftershocks that lasted a month. Ugh!

  1. Yolanda PH

Mother earth was not done! Supertyphoon Yolanda slammed damaged destroyed wrecked my province, Leyte. November 7, 2013.

No words could describe how much sorrow I felt as I went home a week after the typhoon, with only a text message from my loved ones (mother, father, and sister), if worst came to worststst, I was the only one left here in Cebu.

Here are some pictures of our house…

DSC00793

overlooking the backyard

water, water everywhere

water, water everywhere

our kitchen

our kitchen

a ray of hope

a ray of hope

poor greens

poor greens

To add, working in a public hospital, the rush of incoming patients from the devastated region were overwhelming. 

 

  1. RN HEALS Program

As 2013 ended, so was my contract as RNHEALS Program. The last day of duty was during the new year’s eve and I ended up taking blood pressure as the fireworks colored the background.

It was altogether inspiring since my parents and sister spent Christmas in the city with me, and a little bit depressing as I slowly accept that I may have been swallowed by the profession of which I’m passionate about.

ward 5

the only thorn

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But wait, there’s more…

(should’ve been separate blogposts, but for now, take a bite)

– I got an option to extend my stay for another six months as contractual nurse and I happily accepted.

– Last April, I got invited to be the guest speaker during the graduation exercises of both my high school and elementary school alma maters(?) (haha, add that to the resume!)

– I’ve went canyoneering down the Matutinao river in Badian and even jumped 30 ft off a waterfall. I’m  acrophobic and hydrophobic by the way.

– I may be in  love and inspired again. Maybe that’s the reason why I’m writing again. Maybe. Just maybe. *wink*

So long !

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Taking that Big Leap: RN to MD

Sometimes, it just feels like there’s so much more I could offer. Sometimes, it feels like it would be a really great thing to be a doctor.

Maybe I’m just getting sick and tired of carrying out badly written (as the penmanship goes) doctor’s orders. And besides, I have a bad penmanship too! Now that’s a solid reason.

But you see, taking that bold step isn’t that easy. That bold step might just require me to strip and get naked. I mean, push me to my limits and all.

I believe I might have the I.Q. required (a bit boastful eh?) but I still think I am not that worthy after all the lapses I make even as a nurse. What if I killed a patient? Or let him die because of my incapacity?

Responsibility. Yes, that’s what I’ve been dreading. Being the captain of the ship sure could get my nerves in ecstatic punishment. I sometimes would get irritated by some doctors who bark like mad dogs during the last hours of their 24-hour shift. I’m afraid I might do even worse. I have good patience, but I only work 8 hours. Can I extend that to 24? After the lack of sleep, physical exhaustion and all, I doubt that.

Perhaps another petty reason would be my financial status. My younger sister has just graduated and is still unable to earn for herself, and my parents have just been starting to relax and save after spending so much for us to finish college. To add more, our house needs repair, my father’s a bit ill and is on maintenance medications, my mother’s not that young, and I sooner or later might get married (if ever I stumbled onto her, or realize it’s her all along, or the other way around)…

You see, when I’m trying to ask my parents if I can study medicine, these considerations hold me back.

It has been two years since I graduated college. To be honest, I missed being a student. With all the allowances, doing homework, taking exams, attending lectures, going along with friends; I miss the intramurals and all other school activities. I missed the thrill of inquiring for our grades. I miss the chairs, the elevator, the library, the white board. I missed school.

So I ask myself: Do I really want to be a doctor someday? Or do I just want to be student again?

I would also enjoy studying education (and going back to school everyday) and be a teacher, but a shrug from Papa is all I get. Not the same reaction when I mentioned the possibility of studying medicine though. I might have a better chance on the latter.

But I want my parents to BREATHE.  It would be such a hard time for them earning (or borrowing) money for this RN to be an MD.

In the end, I guess the appropriate question would be:

Do I really want this dream to come true?

Or can I be contented as to what I already have the power to do?

 

 

 

Making the most of what I got, I have to say.

Perhaps only a win from a lottery would push me. That, if I decided to even bet.

 

 

_________________

In response to the Daily Prompt.

Pasensya, Pasyente

Siguro nga kaya pasyente ang tawag sa inyo kase kailangan nyong maging patient.

Kahapon, ako lang mag-isa sa OB-GYNE cubicle. Remind you na trainee pa lang ako. Yung staff nurse na partner ko nasa General surgery. At yun na yata ang isa sa pinaka-busy kong duty sa Gyne.

– 5 direct to Operating Room

-2 scheduled operations

-1 transport to ward

-4 admissions

-2 blood transfusions

-1 patient without company

-8 hours

-1 nurse

-night shift

______________________

It was a long night. Punong puno kami. Parang pista. At syempre, sa tindi ng mga eksena, may mga ulong umiinit na.

Pansinin niyo naman kami. Magbabayad naman kami. Sabi ng isa sa bagong dating na tagabantay. Incomplete abortion ang pasyente niya, nagbi-bleeding, at  hinimatay sa CR.

Ewan ko kung bakit niya nasabi yun eh, hindi ko pa nga nakikita yung pasyente eh. At dumaan naman sila sa triage (kung saan kina-classify ang condition). Yun nga lang, tanging yung intern (na may pasyente sa I.E. room) lang ang natira. At ako (na busy sa bagong admission na ihahatid agad sa OR) . Yung resident doctor, nasa operating room may inooperahan.

Buti na lang at tiyempong andun ang Team Leader namin for the night.

TL: Ma’am, anong sinasabi niyo? Kung gusto niyo po, lumipat nalang kayo sa private hospital. Eh, magbabayad din naman pala kayo eh.

Snap! Nagulat din ako sa sagot ni Sir TL. Umiinit na din ang ulo.

Ale: Wag niyo naman akong pagtaasan ng boses! 

TL: Ikaw po ang nauna. 

Natahimik si ate. Naging aware na siya kung gaano karami ang pasyente doon. Na hindi naman kami nakatunganga lang at hinahayaan sila. My gas! Ang busy kaya namin!

Pinalapag na ang pasyente sa stretcher. Kinuhanan ng BP. At nag fast drip ng IV. Natapos na din ang intern kaya natingnan na din siya. Pinalabas na ang nagpapanic na ale.

In a span of 2 hours, na admit ang pasyente, at dinala ko na sa Operating room. Kasabay ang isa pang parehong kaso.

__________________________

Naalala ko din tuloy yung eksenang nakapag-snap din ng medyo mahaba-haba kong pasensya.

Naghahanap ako ng bedpan para sa isang pasyente. (Opo, share share po sila ng bedpan. Public eh!). Ayun, nakita ko ang bedpan sa ilalim ng stretcher ni Lolo. May lamang ihi. Hindi man lang tinapon! 

Kumuha ako ng gloves para ako na mismo ang magtatapon. Pero nadatnan ko ang teenager niyang apo kaya sinabi ko nalang: Miss, pakitapon nlng yung ihi sa CR.

OK.! Ako na lang kasi maarte ka! 

Ha? ako pa daw ang maarte eh tutulungan na nga sana. Nagwalk out nalang ako. Hindi naman sa ganun, marami lang akong ibang gagawin.

Sa totoo lang, kung ayaw naman niya, ok lang sa akin. Kahit hindi ko na trabaho yun. May nursing aide naman sana. Di bale, I got what I wanted.

Ang Bedpan. bow.

_________________________

 

Hay Lord! Give me more patience.

Pasensya mga pasyente!

________________________

Sa lugar kung saan maraming nag-aalala, kinakailangan talaga ng extra pasensya.