Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Thank GOD it's over!!

Whew! I made it through the 10 nights of work and now I have 12 days off!! Well, kind of! L called and asked me to do a surgery day at CCAH and I agreed; but I'm only working that one day...

Things at home got, surprisingly, much better as the week went on!! B adjusted to taking care of Baby Girl and stopped bitching about it, which was nice. He even let me get in a couple of naps! Yeah, I was as shocked about that as anyone could be! LOL

The situation at work... well, THAT was different. Honestly, the only issue I have is with Dr. C. I just don't like her, which is fine because we don't ever have to work together... if we did, I'd have to quit - just like I left CCAH because of Dr. K. I know that may seem "childish" at first glance, but the truth of the matter is, jobs for veterinarians are far too easy to come by to stay in a position that is miserable. And, if I had to work side by side with Dr. C, I would be miserable.

Dr. S called me about 2 weeks ago to give me a "heads up" about the new policy at work regarding spouses, children and friends... the memo stated (and I quote) "IF YOU ARE ON THE CLOCK, UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES ARE YOUR SPOUSES, CHILDREN OR FRIENDS ALLOWED IN THE TREATMENT AREA". Color me simple, but that didn't seem ambiguous... I thought that maybe my kids were the reason for the new rule - but they were only there maybe 2-3 days/month since I normally don't work when the boys are here. I found out, first from the techs, and it was then later confirmed to me by management, that the true reason for the ruling was Dr. C's husband, who came with her every single shift (that means 14 times/month or more) and stayed for hours at a time, taking up space, distracting Dr. C from doing her job and getting in the way, making work for the girls difficult because they didn't feel like they could tell him to move. (The techs actually told the manager that I always made sure that the clients/patients were taken care of before I did anything for the kids, even telling her about that day I had Baby Girl there and we had to put that dog to sleep -- and when the owner apologized from taking me away from my daughter, I apologized to HER for my daughter being there, and told her that the patients were my priority... I can't believe that they actually remembered that and told management about it, but it kinda gives me warm fuzzies to hear it!!)

Anyway, back to my point - since the memo was put out, Mr. C has continued to come to work with her and is there at the beginning and the end of every shift, though now he is staying more like 30-40 minutes, not 4-5 hours. I know they have only 1 car, and I can understand (I guess...) him showing up at 8p to pick her up and waiting for her to finish up, even though he could certainly sit in the waiting room until she's ready to go, but no matter what, I can NOT see ANY reason that he has to come inside at the beginning of her shift... he can drop her at the door and go on home. In my opinion, her actions are saying "the rules don't apply to me" because the memo didn't say "please try to limit their presence" - it said "don't do it AT ALL". So, this was one source of irritation.

Another thorn in my side was her determination to leave right at 8pm. Well, that's a nice idea, but it rarely works on the weekends; we're just too busy. As long as she's been working at AUC, she just dumps whatever isn't finished on the doctor that is taking over (somehow that is usually ME). I've been letting it slide because I remember how overwhelmed I was at first, and learning when to stop seeing new clients so that you can finish up what is already waiting in the back takes some time... but she's been working for nearly 6 months now -- it took ME less than a week (2 shifts, actually) to figure it out!! Part of the "problem" is that she hasn't even been out of school for 2 years so she's SLOW on a good day - that can't be helped. She's also, in my opinion, completely unqualified for the job she's doing because she CAN'T do some of the more complex surgeries, and she HASN'T had all that much in the way of EXPERIENCE to draw on, but that wasn't my call. I'm not saying she's a bad vet, just too new... I couldn't have done this job (at least, not well) when I first graduated!! The manager DID tell me that she usually leans away from new grads for the aforementioned reasons, but at the time, they were down to just 1 permanent doc (Dr. S), I had not yet signed a contract and they weren't sure that I would, and she was the only other one interested - e.g. they were desperate... and now we're paying for it.

Anyway, when I came back to work this past Saturday night, Mr. C was there (as usual) and both the waiting room and the hospital were full; we went to do rounds and the theme of the night seemed to be "I'm leaving this for you to finish up" ("this cat was attacked by a dog and has a deep laceration under her front leg" "so, you're going to sew that up?" "no, I thought I'd leave that for you to do; and then this dog was also attacked and has a laceration that needs a drain, so I'll leave that for you; and this dog hasn't eaten in a week and has been vomiting, I did bloodwork and x-rays already and I'll leave that for you to finish up" etc., etc.) -- and that just didn't sit well with me since there were at least 5 cases in the back that needed procedures and 6-8 in the waiting room that hadn't even been seen yet... so I told her "if you've quoted them to stay overnight, I'll take care of it, but if they're going home, then you need to finish everything that you started." I will give her credit that she didn't argue with me -of course, if she had, I would have raised holy hell; thankfully, she sent her husband away and told him she'd call when she was ready (apparently they only have 1 car right now), and she did finish up. However, when she punched out at 10:30p, she mentioned to one of the techs that she was circling her finish time on the time card because she hoped to be paid extra for staying late. Another case of wishful thinking... what about "salaried" does she not understand??

Well, as if that weren't enough, it turns out that one of the things she left for me to "finish up" was a Cane Corso with a GI foreign body - she DID look at the rads with me and then called the owner to tell him the dog needed surgery, but only because she was still there doing other things; turns out that not only did he need an enterotomy and a gastrotomy, but he also needed an intestinal resection and anastamosis... now I didn't mind her leaving the 3 hour surgery for me, because quite honestly I don't think she's qualified to have performed it as it was difficult for ME to do, but the dog had come in at NOON and she was just getting him x-rayed at 8pm! She hadn't done a damn thing except draw blood and throw him into a run in 8 freaking hours... and even that, I had breezed over, thinking they must have been slammed all day and he got overlooked, UNTIL one of the techs told me that she had been scheduled to work the swing shift Saturday (4p-12a) and they told her NOT TO COME IN BECAUSE THEY WERE SO SLOW!! So, what in the hell was going on all day??

When Dr. S came in Sunday morning, I told him that he and the manager had better do something about Dr. C because I've about had it. I told him the basics of what had occurred and apparently he called higher ups about it, because when I came back in Sunday night, he told me that she (our manager) would be in early Monday morning to talk to me. Which was good, because I had planned on waiting for her to get there anyway!!

Well, the manager showed up about 7:45a, and we sat down to talk. I told her about the Cane Corso and that the tech had told me they were slow until about 6p, but that I didn't know if the fault lay with the doctor or the support staff since I wasn't there; I told her that I felt Dr. C wasn't qualified for the job but that was HER (management's) call and I respected her decision; she then told met about her own concerns about Dr. C and the desperate situation that led to them offering her a job... I told her that Dr. C was not only slow but that she hadn't learned to balance seeing new clients with finishing up patients that were already in hospital; I also told her about Mr. C still hanging around despite the new policy -- she said she had NO idea it was still going on and that she never thought she'd have to explain "UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES" to a doctor...

Anyway, she said that she was going to talk to Dr. C about what's been going on and then we are going to get together for another doctor's meeting... the manager is seriously limited in terms of what she can do (though she CAN enforce the threat outlined in the announcement of the new policy - first offense you will be written up and warned, 2nd offense is termination of employment); nothing but time and experience can make Dr. C fast enough to keep up with the weekend pace at AUC - my fear is that this pregnancy (yes, she just announced that they're expecting in the fall, coincidentally just about the time her contract is up...) will make her even slower and that will be a nightmare... I'm just praying that either (1) she'll elect to not renew the contract or (2) they won't offer to renew it. That's bad, huh?? But, the truth of the matter is I LOVE my job, but can't stand her...

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

It's been tough, and it's not getting any better!

My 10 days straight started last Friday... it's only Tuesday and I'm exhausted. 4 down, 6 to go! This wasn't a very good idea... not only am I working a lot of back-to-back shifts, but we've been busy (which is great, but it means that I can't get any sleep at work, and I'm not getting to nap at home because I have to take care of Baby Girl all day -- don't ask... that's a long story). Tonight is night 5; it's quiet (quick! knock on some wood somewhere) - I have to pump again in 2 hours and then I'm going to bed. I'm worn out.

Baby Girl is, I think, getting sick again. She's been sneezing more than usual and today I had to keep cleaning some crusty schmoo off of her nose. B called tonight after I left for work to ask if I had noticed the rash all down her chest - apparently it's bright red. Well, it wasn't there when I changed her last... she went down for a nap earlier today and woke up with splotchy cheeks - I guess maybe the rash started then?? She wasn't down too long so she didn't get changed when she woke up - then she went down again just before I left... Poor little girl! I sure hope she doesn't end up with the skin issues (eczema) like Little Man has. I hope it's just more "new baby rash"!

Anyway... I can't wait for this week to be over. Never again will I agree to do my entire month's worth of shifts back to back! I've been doing SO good going to the gym every day, but right now I can barely function at work; I'm not even attempting to exercise... of course, the exhaustion is killing my appetite; I only ate 1/2 my dinner and I'm stuffed. Maybe something good will come of this after all! LOL

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Remind me to just be thankful for the good nights!!

It seems that Baby Girl alternates bad nights with good ones... the bad ones are usually pretty bad... she goes down for the night about the same time regardless , and for the most part, the first waking is at about the same time, around 2a, but this is where the 2 paths diverge.

On a good night (which, to give her credit, is her "norm"), she will get up again about 5:30a, sleep until 7 or 8a, and go back down for a morning nap by 9:30a. She will also take a midday nap and an afternoon nap. We haven't managed to work in an evening nap, because of her early bedtime, so she tends to get grumpy around 5 or 5:30p, so instead, we created a "bedtime routine" of a bath and some snuggle time! Then, we just vary her bedtime according to her "mood" - she gets put down anywhere between 6:30 and 8p.

On a bad night, once that 2a waking, she is up every 60-120 mins, and she is usually up for the day by about 6a; to compound the problem, she then refuses to nap, except very briefly. She is much fussier, and more demanding, and often times nothing pleases or suits her. It's very frustrating... today has obviously been a "bad day"!!

On a more positive note, she is trying very hard to sit up - when I sit on the bed with her in my lap, leaning back against my legs, she strains and leans forward until she is sitting upright. Of course, her balance isn't well developed, so she wobbles and will fall over unless supported, but she is really progressing!! I'm already amazed at how much she has changed since the original helpless newborn stage. I know I've been through it before, but it's been so long... it's like being a new mom all over again and I am again in awe of the developments that occur during the first year!!

Monday, February 2, 2009

My Super Bowl picks...

Even though I generally feel that the commercials are the best part of any Super Bowl, last night's game was a good one... and the commercials were a bit lacking, IMHO. There were, however, a few that set me to laughing!!

I loved the Mr & Mrs Potato Head ad for Bridgestone in the first quarter!! I loved that he bounced her lips right down the mountain and then she put on her "angry eyes"!! http://video.aol.com/video/bridgestone-mr-potato-head/2409722

My second quarter favorite was the Grim Reaper ad for H & R Block! http://video.aol.com/video/handr-block-grim-reaper/2409741

The third quarter "award" goes to the Bridgestone Moon Dancers... that was hilarious. http://video.aol.com/video/bridgestone-moon-dancers/2409760

Nothing in the fourth quarter really "moved" me, but I suppose I have to choose something... so I guess it's Coke Zero's sorry take-off of the old classic Mean Joe Green commercial!! http://video.aol.com/video/coca-cola-zero/2409773