Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Friday, March 13, 2009
Recent history tells me that we were going though much the same sort of thing back in the early eighties but I don't remember it being quite this severe. I was living an entirely different life back then and I don't recall that I was affected much by it. In fact, I was staying at home with my little girl in those days doing those things that I wanted to do: namely, all the things that were all I ever wanted to do in my life. Stay home, be a homemaker, make dinner, tend to my home, be home when my child returned from school, etc. My, doesn't that sound terribly unambitious and lame and boring. However, there's a lot more to being a woman who stays home to run the household and manage family affairs than you might think. But, as usual, I digress.
Work has been alternately difficult, challenging and rewarding. My hours have been cut by a half hour each day. This works out to two and a half hours a week but my net paycheck reflects the pinch bimonthly. The work has become more difficult, more demanding with less time to get it done. There is a freeze on all raises this year. As in so many other companies across the land, our dictum has become "at least we still have a job". While this is quite true at this point in time, I take little comfort in it. This is certainly not what I expected at my age and I have never put so much mental effort and pushed myself so hard in any job before this as I have over the past year and a half.
Friday, November 7, 2008
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
No way was I going to be laden down with a cast for this trip. I pushed very hard to get my cast taken off a bit early which, in fact, was done on August 11. Having that cast cut off was not unlike the joy of childbirth providing great relief from such a heavy weight! I left the hospital with a soft, velcro-fastened removable splint. I promised to behave myself and not get it wet nor fall again and rebreak my arm. The soft splint worked out beautifully. There was a lot of hauling and lifting that I couldn't do and I babied my left arm to the max. Our vacation was grand, my sisters had a marvelous time and my arm was just about back to normal by the time I returned to work. When the day came that I could wring out a washcloth thoroughly, snap a towel before folding it for storage and pick up, carry to the sink and dump a large potful of boiling water and pasta into a colander, I knew that break was truly healed. It's given me no problem at all since.
As it turned out, physical therapy never entered the picture. I think that returning to work almost immediately after my accident was a good thing. Using my arm as best as I could probably helped it heal quickly. I strongly believe I earned a great deal of respect from my peers at work as well as the seniors for whom I work by coming to work each day, doing the best I could. It was quite an experience; one that I don't wish to repeat but there's nothing like losing the use of a part of oneself to make you appreciate it all the more.
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Let's back up in time a bit. Yes, I was thinking maybe some time off from work, some quiet time would be nice. Little did I know that some little demon, gremlin or something of that ilk was listening. On a Sunday morning early in July while "putting the house to bed", I tripped over a cat toy in my living room. I was unable to catch myself and I fell to the floor with a crash. I've had a few falls in my recent past and I've always recovered quickly and jumped right up to resume whatever it was I was doing. Not so this time. I knew I had hurt myself. I was pretty sure something was broken judging from the pain emanating from my left arm.
It was very late. My husband had taken himself off to bed earlier. I gathered the pieces of myself up and got as far as the living room sofa. I felt awful and my arm hurt...a lot. I think I just lay there for awhile, doing the injured animal whimpering thing a bit. Before too long, my son loomed over me asking, "what's wrong, Mom?"
I told him what had happened and the next thing I knew, I was being bundled into the car by my husband and driven to Kaiser ER. The long and short of it: I fell, I was x-rayed, I broke the radius bone in my left arm. This was a new experience for me, having never broken anything in my life before this. Thank God it was my left arm because I am a predominate "rightie".
Ah, how quickly life changes. I've been with the same man for almost 40 years and in all that time, I've managed to handle any bathroom emergencies on my own. Not so this night while still at the Emergency Room. I was wearing a pair of shorts with a zip fly, buttoned at the top. I had to GO and I couldn't manage to undo myself with one hand. Nothing like your spouse taking you to the toilet to help you undo lest you wet yourself. This was just the beginning. In the ensuing weeks, my husband, my love, my best friend became the most considerate, attentive caregiver one could possibly imagine. He did everything.
My accident occurred early Sunday morning. I had that Sunday off, called work to report what had happened and said I wouldn't be in that Monday. I did return to work Tuesday, however, and apart from leaving early in the day a couple of times, worked through my entire casted confinement. About two weeks after my fall and initial ER casting, I reported in and my left arm was subsequently encased in a cast from the first joints of my left hand to halfway between my elbow and my shoulder. Suddenly, I was very much aware of how much our elbows come into the daily routine of life. I couldn't use a curling iron, put in earrings, apply makeup very well, button buttons, zip zippers, put on socks, tie shoes, bathe properly, wash my hair, pin on my name tag, etc.
My husband helped me every single morning to get ready for work. We bagged up the left arm, showered together at which time he washed my hair and scrubbed me clean. I was very much aware that I didn't want this cast to get wet to impede my recovery in any way. My back has never been so clean before or since this episode. He helped to dry me and I discovered lo after all these years of assisting seniors with their showers that places that need drying most seem to get missed. I learned very quickly to dress myself as much as I could because I soon discovered that I hated having my socks put on my some one else.
To be continued...
Thursday, September 4, 2008
Intimidated....yes. It's been so long since I've been in this place that I am amazed, read intimidated, by the mood choices. Obviously someone worked very hard and very long into the night to produce all these emotional choices. Amazing.
Interesting to note that my most recent entry was April 27, a little over five months ago. This reminds me of when I was young and making daily entries into my journal. When life was dreary, boring or simply day to day stuff, I managed to find time each evening to write at least something. Gaps began to appear in this very same journal when Life picked up, became interesting and I was too busy living and enjoying same to stop and write about it. Ah, some things never change no matter what our age.
It's been about three and a half months since I accepted the mantle of Spring Lake Village Outpatient Office Coordinator, and it seems as if at least a year has passed since I said, "I will". Since filling in for this position and, subsequently, accepting the job, there seems to be no spare time to do ANYTHING. The difference in my daily work hours is only one half hour but these fleeting thirty minutes evidently make all the difference in the world. I simply cannot figure out how I managed to write in not only one, but two journals, on a fairly regular basis and still had time to get up, get to work, do my job, arrive home, help with dinner, eat it and shortly thereafter fall into bed. Nothing has changed except than I no longer arrive home before my husband. Maybe I'm so busy livin' and lovin' The Vida Loca that I have no time to write about it. Alas, I don't think that's the case.
I find myself longing for some free, kick-back time, time to myself. Sometimes I think it would be rather pleasant to come down with a minor little "something" that prevents me from going to work for a couple of days but not so dreadful that I can't be up and around doing some things I'd like to do. This is a ridiculous fantasy because I'm the sort of person whose work ethic is so strongly engrained that I have to have one foot in the grave before I call in sick to work. I will call in if I'm in the contagious stage of a cold; i.e. sneezing, coughing and dripping about the place but I rarely get colds. I never seem to "catch" whatever's going around theworkplace at any given time that a vast majority of my co-workers seem to catch on a regular basis. Hmm. I watch my "sick time hours" accumulate steadily with each subsequent paycheck and wonder why don't I get paid for this time that is set aside for me but never used. Sick time at my job is strictly a case of "you don't use it, you lose it"! This makes no sense to me. I think this is a major flaw in the system but nobody's seeking out my opinion on the subject.