Saturday, April 16, 2011


Yesterday I heard the "bad news" as well as the "good news". Evidently, the mountain I just recently tried moving has only budged a little bit. After, what, nearly three weeks I was put more into my misery than out of it.

The HR person called with the news. She informed me that the "bad news is we can't move forward at this time...unable to support new grad...."

The good news?

They've decided to open a new grad program in July.

Sure, that's stupendously great news...for a new grad.

I guess that's what I'm being labeled, thanks to still being a new nurse and even more thanks to my experience being from a rehab/nursing home setting. I get it. I get that although my experiences have been great technically speaking, that technically speaking they're not hospital quality. The long-term care world is a different world than that of the hospital. I can appreciate that I will basically need re(inforced)training on some things. There hasn't been a lot of top notch guidance or teaching, so a lot of what I've learned has been sheerly on-the-job and is only supported by the foundational training I was given in school.

That all being said, I am intelligent. I am a quick learner.

I will admit this past year and a few months, since the onset of my last semester of nursing school, has been extremely challenging and might even leave most leaving the profession.

I've never been one to quit, no matter how tempting it's been. There comes a point when, like Kenny says, "You've gotta know when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em. Know when to walk away and know when to run."

I'm 40-years old and it's extremely frustrating to me because I feel at this point in my life I should be beyond where I'm at, professionally speaking, than where I am. I know that I don't want to spend the next 20 years doing bedside nursing.

Right now it's like being at a professional crossroads. Do I stick it out and go for the new grad program at The Hospital or do I apply as a RN2 at other hospitals, which some are probably even better choices experience-wise, but not as close or whatever reasons I have to look at in deciding where to work hospital-wise. That's a whole other blog post.

Or at this point do I fold them, and run, looking elsewhere, possibly using my BS in psych somehow?

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Monday, April 11, 2011


That's the time my phone rang this morning. It was the HR person from The Hospital. She had "good news and some interesting news" to share with me. First off, they're trying to figure out what can be done to support a new grad on the unit. (Have I mentioned that in July I will no longer be a "new grad"....gah!?) <--can't wait. They want to hire me, but it's not as simple as "you're hired!"

Must there be such things as budgets, and personnel considerations...the current state of the US economy?

Secondly, I need to retake the pediatric pharmacology and general pediatrics assessments that I took last time I'd applied for a postion at The Hospital. I missed passing both by around two points. This didn't shock me too much. Actually, I was pleased considering this would have been around January, and at least a year, or so, after I'd studied peds. It shocked me in that I expected to miss it by a lot more.

So, I have five days to retake it according to the assessment instructions. To avoid waiting too much longer to find out if I'm hired or not, I'll only take, at the most, the next 2-3 days. This gives me time to brush up.

As far as the current job goes, I finally received my schedule when I worked this past Friday. Normally schedules should be provided before the month they're posted for, right? Not at the fine establishment I'm so lucky to be working at. As a matter of fact, I'd gone in a week ago this past Thursday, so on the 31st, and asked for mine. No-can-do, it wasn't completed yet. Hmmm, with only being put on it for two days, exactly what was so hard in completing it? Yeah, two days. Two lowly days is all that I was scheduled for, for the month of April. Now, I did request to be put on as PRN (as needed) and they've just hired a bunch of people, therefore fully-staffed, so I'm not as needed as needs be. [--stop here before going on and on about the wonderful...oh, just stop!

Today we have one of those teen-who-needs-to-learn-lessons-the-hardest-ways-possible-because-of-his-own-bad-decisions kinds of appointments with a robed individual. We're actually looking at a deal, but considering he swears up and down that he didn't take part in one of the charges, or at least directly, we might be able to fight it being that there were no fingerprints taken. And wouldn't ya know it, it's April 11th.

Really, by the time my youngest graduates high school my skin should be as thick as that of a rhinoceros', that, or I'll have a one-way ticket to a state institution.

...and maybe I'll be more than a "new grad"...

Monday, April 4, 2011


As Crazed Nitwit pointed out, I did give the wrong date for my interview. It was today, the 4th!! What can I say? I am a dingbat! A hopeful one at that. The interview went fairly well. At least, I walked away feeling pretty good about it. So, now I've done all I can to attain employment at The Hospital. Meanwhile, it's on to more applications....

....and prayers.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

the limb

Sometimes you have to go out on a limb and decide to move a mountain.

At one point in your life the mountain may be the Air Force assignment orders you've received that threaten to take you away from the one, or at least keep you far, far apart. That one special person who has come along and you are certain that he is "the one", you may have to be separated before the going gets really good. In late January/early February of 1992, I decided to move a mountain.

Big B had asked me to marry him. We'd both recently received our next assignment orders. I was being sent to Bergstrom Air Force Base, in Austin, TX; a base that promised to be filled with great things to come, not to mention a great area to be single in. College town, great climate, close to other cities that have tons to do, you name it, it was sure to be a great assignment.

Big B had orders to go to Minot Air Force Base, ND. Key the Deliverance banjos and start your engine block heaters!

Did I mention I was set to leave the beginning of March, just over a month away?

Rather than spend who knows how long apart maintaining a long-distance relationship, I decided it would be best to find some way to stay geographically together. The solution? One of the other medics I worked with had orders to Minot as well. Hot diggity dog! We swapped. Thanks to all the muckity mucks (first sergeants, commanders) and a desire for JD (the other medic) to NOT go to Minot Big B and I were able to end up in the great white North together.

If there's a will, there's a way!

Being one that chooses to fight for what I want, I decided, last week, to take the proverbial bull by the horns and move another mountain.

A couple of months ago I was told by the local community hospital that they would not be hiring nurses with less than 2 years experience. Yes, hearing such news was somewhat jarring---think, your own personal mental Iwo jima.

I mean, most hospitals have "1 year (RN) experience" as a job requirement, at least around here. Now you're telling me "two years"???

Far be it from me to sit back and rest on my laurels. I decided to email the HR contact I've kept in touch with ever since that fateful summer I didn't acquire a position as an extern. She's the one that had given me the most recent bad news about experience.

Here's my going-out-on-a-limb-to-move-a-mountain attempt:

HR Person,

Last we spoke you informed me of The Hospital's** decision to not hire anyone under 2 years RN experience for RN positions. Because it is my intention to someday be a part of The Hospital's team, I'd like to let you know I've updated my resume in hopes that I may be considered sooner than later for any open RN positions. Please see attached.

As you know from our last round of communications, I am willing to do whatever I need to do to secure my dream. I willingly became your guinea pig and took the assessment you provided me, and from what I remember you said I did very well. Yes, I am still a fairly new nurse, but the experience I've gained on the skilled unit I work on is worth twice the normal first year of experience for a new RN. I am coming up on my one year anniversary this July. Since being licensed in July, 2010, I've secured a temporary position as staffing relief for a local pediatrician's office and have since been employed working on the skilled unit I just mentioned. As a RN Charge Nurse I do everything from admission to discharge of the skilled patients we care for in our facility. This includes assessments, admissions/discharge paperwork and documentation, any lab work that needs to be done, care and maintenance of tracheostomies, colostomies, PEG/J tubes, surgical wounds, pressure ulcers, administration of narcotics and other scheduled medications, IV therapies, supervision of CNAs, communication with physicians and interdisciplinary team, developing rapport with patients and family who spend 2-4 weeks, or more at my facility, maintaining a patient care load of 12-18/shift, and any task I am asked to do I am certain to complete with a smile on my face.

I have a list of references I can also provide you, to include RG who graduated with me and is a RN on your med/surg/ortho/peds floor.

As always, I thank you for your time in consideration of my resume and taking the time to read this,

**Edited for anonymity--of sorts.

Wednesday I received a call from HR person letting me know she'd read and re-read the email, she impressed upon me to not let her down, and that she was indeed going out to bat for me. She called the director of the med/surg/ortho/peds floor and was going to forward my resume over. She wasn't going to promise anything, but was hopeful I'd be receiving a call.

Thursday, The Director called me.

Tomorrow, Monday April 3rd, 2011, I have an interview.