Alex Wubbels

Alex Wubbels is our leader. I want a tattoo of her face, on my face. So when people get out of line with me, I can show them my Wubbels.

Her arrest has gone viral for being shitty and wrong. Many scary, wrong things have happened to me as critical care nurse as well. But nothing could have prepared this poor woman for being arrested for simply advocating patients rights and clarifying hospital protocol (which was mutually agreed upon by the hospital and the police department in question, might I add). My God, that detective leapt at her like a rabid banshee! He’s lucky the holy hell of nurses didn’t rain down upon him then and there! There probably wasn’t time, he skedaddled out of there.

You would think people would have learned their lesson from The View, you don’t f@&$ with nurses. We take shit too, cops. I’ve held the hand of mom while she withdrew care from her teenage son and walked into the next room to feed a restrained, belligerent alcoholic some chocolate pudding. All while keeping a cool head.

And if that idiot detective ever does something else stupid like lights his face on fire and lands in Alex’s care one fine day, I know he will receive first class and professional care, as if they had never met (Lord knows he won’t have any unnecessary blood draws). Because if there is one thing I can tell you, us nurses can hand you your ass when need be. But when it’s time to save lives, it doesn’t matter what your name is, your life matters just as much as the next guy.

I guess that’s the difference between cops and nurses. Asshole.

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Cost of War

I saw my dad as ten foot tall and bullet proof as a child. Heck, even as an adult!

The truth? He was 6 foot 2, and experiencing crippling flashbacks of horrific wartime moments that included having a pallet of live ammunition dropped on his hand and then being Life-flown to army hospital only be to returned to the front line a few days later, being in the vehicle of a car that was being shot at while it reversed and drove over the little boy shooting at them, and watching the man next to him be killed.

Vietnam killed my dad; he died in 2015.

It wasn’t the Agent Orange (although I’m sure we will later find some connection to that and the significant physical and cognitive disabilities in my sister).

It was PTSD. I don’t think I need to spell it out, you’ve heard of that monster. It’s been all over the media. Its gaining support and momentum from everyone! Except the government. He didn’t sign up for the war. His soul wasn’t built to kill. But the one place these men and women were told to turn to, were told that they would take care of them, turned their back on our heroes.

That too is all over the media. You’ve heard of that monster as well. The failing VA. But let me tell you what happened to my dad after his diagnosis.

He had to surrender his guns. His 2nd amendment was ripped away.

He had to “secure a fiduciary”. It was me, his child. He was told his child was of more sound mind to handle his finances than he was.

He was denied disability for two years after taking an early retirement. He had to retire early because his VA therapy meetings and doctor appointments consumed his time. He had very little to no money for those two years being a divorced man.

And on top of it all. He never slept.

He always saw that little boy in his dreams nightmares.

Disease processes secondary to Agent Orange that my dad was diagnosed with:

-Diabetes mellitus, type II

-Ischemic Heart Disease

-Peripheral neuropathy, early onset

No, my dad didn’t die from suicide. Although he was being treated for severe depression, anxiety, and insomnia in addition to the PTSD and above mentioned diagnosis. But those diseases had consumed his life. And not at all by his choice. The appointments and meetings and medicines. As so often done in the medical field, a list of meds and diagnosis replaced a person. Became the person.

But he seemed so peaceful and happy the year before he died. So involved with the family and relaxed and social. So at peace. We just didn’t know that he was finally at peace because he’d made a decision to take back control of his life and…quit.

The day my husband and I found my dad on his floor was the day before we found out that he had quit taking all of his medications. Quit going to all his appointments. Quit begging the government for help. Quit.

The official cause of death was natural causes, likely cardiac.

But Vietnam killed my dad.

This is the cost of war.

written by my dad after being diagnosed and subsequently declared “incompetent” related to his PTSD

A Mouse Lost It’s Sock

The innocence of childhood struck me this morning as my 4 year old invaded my potty time. This is what she saw:And without hesitation, she declared, gasp…”MOMMY! A mouse lost its sock!” 

Because her mind is free from stress and worry and fear. And she lives a life of imagination and wonder….as all children should.

HeartbrokenĀ 

I write about grief so much it annoys me….but here we go again!

I hit a milestone yesterday. It was the first time since the passing of my father, that my heart broke for someone else. You know, there is something about the bond between a daddy and a daughter and I was devastated when I lost my dad in my 30’s. But yesterday, a longtime friend of Sissey et al. lost her father and she’s 10. 

I cannot fathom not having him there at my graduations, my wedding, the births of my children (in the waiting room). But this larger than life father now has the best seat in the house, but it’s not the same. 

This isn’t the way it should be. There are two young, school aged children who have to begin a long, complicated, and confusing grieving process that no child should ever have to endure. And so my heart breaks for them.

Live in Your Moment

Today I was shopping on the left. But two years ago I was shopping on the right. 

I used our wedding china for the first time that Father’s Day. I don’t know what prompted me to do that but for some oddball reason I’m so glad I did. As if that Father’s Day meal served on wedding china was my closure I didn’t get.

I only had a month left with him that Father’s Day and no one knew. Not even him. I was so in consolable during his services that I think all people knew what to say to me was, “I guess you really just never know.” God I got sick of hearing it. Because, I lived my moment with that damn china. 

Anger Grief

 You did this to her. This innocent (now) 10 year old who saw you as 9 foot tall and bullet proof sat out in the car while her mommy found your body.

The darkness that follows grief is scary and vast….so very vast. The very first thing that hit me was, “I can’t fix him. I’m a nurse and I’ve saved so many. But I can’t now.”

It is final. That’s what hurts. It can’t be changed no matter how bad I want to change it, no matter how hard I work, or beg, or cry, or pay. I can’t change it. 

He’s gone. Almost 3 years now and it does get better. Believe me, this IS better.