made it to the other side

I’m finally comfortable at work, and can start relaxing and breathing through life again. In fact, dare I say it, I’m even having fun here on my fourth night without a preceptor. There are some cool people here, and it’s business as usual as far as nursing goes. I’m chatting with people, starting to eat again, and have gotten some nice compliments on my nursing care. THANK GOD. Today was the first day that I had a sort of routine with M, too. I increased her frequency and length of school day, so that I can sleep until 2 or 3 while she’s there. Then pick her up, do something with her, clean the house, feed her dinner, get ready for work. By then she is tired and ready to just lie down with grandma. Up until now, I’ve slept and woken with anxiety and panic. Today… no! It also helps that I’ll be off of work for several days after this, too. I feel freer. So I’m doing it, guys! I managed to be a nurse somewhere else… it was crazy hard (mentally), but four shifts in I’m feeling totally fine about it. Free from anxiety, I can now be super excited about my future, and my life here. Advertisements

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waves of anxiety

I’m on a roller coaster. At times I’m fine, thinking that everything was fine at the new job and I’m going to get through every night just fine, take it one night at a time. I got this. Then there are some hours where my body is in agony, panicky, unable to eat, my stomach churning. Luckily, I hadn’t really had panic or anxiety like this in years, and I didn’t expect to have it like this again, if I had I never would have come. I still feel like I’m in the right place, but I’m begging the universe to let this anxiety calm down in the coming weeks. It’s exhausting and I’m already so exhausted. I know that night shift is the worst possible thing for my panic attacks (it was so bad for me when I did nights in 2010). When I’m tired, I’m prone to anxiety. I also know that evening (right before I work) is my trigger time, and not drinking enough water. I’m trying to force myself to eat and drink as much as my stomach will allow me, and remind myself that I’m overtired. I keep telling myself that it’s ok for me to be anxious right now. Every single thing in my life changed in a week’s time. It was all like a vacation until they put some patients’ lives in my hands, and I was in a social situation with strangers for hours on […]

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cross-country road trip

So after Christmas we will be loading up the car (to the roof, I’m sure) and following the setting sun as far west as we can go. We are going on an epic 8 day adventure from the Midwest to the West Coast, and yes we are cutting south to avoid snowy, wintery roads. Day 1: Michigan to the St. Louis area: where I am hoping relatives let us sleep for free. Day 2: St. Louis to Tulsa Start the morning with a romp in Forest Park Day 3: Tulsa to Tucumcari, New Mexico (Why here? Because it’s too far to Albequerque, and the hotels are cheap) Day 4: Tucumcari to Flagstaff, Arizona Day 5: Grand Canyon 1.5 hours drive to the south rim and overnight in Grand Canyon village… this is our “break day”, all other days are 7 hours of driving Day 6: Grand Canyon to Barstow, CA Little pitstop in the Mojave Desert Day 7: Barstow, CA to Monterey, CA via Highway 1 Lots of lovely scenery here, good places to stop Day 8: Monterey to San Ramon Spend the morning on the beaches of Monterey, and it’s just 1.5 hours drive to my best friend’s house in the East Bay area We stay with her for two nights and then we are off to our new temporary home in San Francisco! It’s going to be fantastic, right??? Well, my 3 1/2-year-old is not going to enjoy 7 hours of driving […]

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Now we’re going to be so free…

But freedom can be lonely. I got my first ever travel contract… San Francisco! We’ll be living (and I’ll be working) right in the city! I can’t wait to bike to work, grocery shop a few blocks away, and be so close to parks. (Golden Gate Park will be less than a few blocks away.) We’re going to be real urbanites. After the contract ends in April it’s back to Kathmandu for a month to 6 weeks. Then back to Michigan for some summer by my lake. End of December we drive across the country and I’m going to take the southern route to avoid snow on the highway. St. Louis, to Amarillo, to Grand Canyon, to Las Vegas, to Yosemite, to SF! I wanted my sister to road trip with us, but alas she has pesky things like family in town for the holidays and back to work after. I’m going to be doing these things with my mom, but we’ll be on our own. A little gypsy family. I can’t believe we’re actually doing it. Taking off and becoming gypsies. It’s so amazing and I just wish I had a pack of friends doing it, too!! But except for some really amazing bloggers that I read, I’m going this alone. People must think I’m crazy… This is a daydream, a pipe dream, right? Real single moms don’t just up and.take off. The timing isn’t right… There’s not enough […]

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free falling

Our future is totally up in the air. And I’m ok with it… which is odd. You’d think I’d find it terrifying, but I don’t. I’m confident I’ll find a travel nurse position that is good if not great. There aren’t a ton of January start dates out yet from hospitals, so I’m still waiting. I probably get asked 15 times a day where I’m going after leaving my job in December… it boggles the minds of most people that I don’t know still! I feel a sense of peace and confidence about it, though. It’s going to be just fine. Money worries me, though. M worries me, too. Since coming home from Nepal she says many times a day, “Ahhhh, it’s so nice to be home.” I don’t want to live a life on the move if she’ll hate it. On the other hand, staying here is unsustainable from a money standpoint. Maybe traveling is partly good for kids, though, because they do so much appreciate “home” after returning. I mean, I don’t want her to think that having running hot water that is safe to drink is just a given. We should all appreciate and value it as the luxury it is. I want her to appreciate indoor heating and plumbing, 24/7 electricity, and access to entertainment and amenities because not everyone in the world has those things. It’s important to both appreciate places where those things are […]

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money and plans

I’ve been thinking about how little I spent money-wise in Nepal. True, I only paid for accommodation one night, and rarely paid for food. But still… a nice apartment rental in Kathmandu would cost $300/month which includes utilities, and food is super cheap. I can’t believe how much cheaper it would be to live there versus living here and paying $50 for a few simple groceries, or $400 for gas. Also we won’t have the preschool fees, the gas fees, the electric bill, or the wifi bill. I am on the hunt for a good first travel nurse position starting now. So far my recruiters don’t have anything that’s day shift or at a large facility. I think it might take a month-ish to find something… and the start date may end up being later in January or toward February. In the meantime, I could maybe go back to Nepal for another three weeks. I certainly didn’t get my fill and I’m no longer afraid of going with my daughter, or intimidated by long flights. I have a friend who will even take us ‘light trekking’, with a porter to carry M whenever she gets tired.  Staying there would be way cheaper than staying at home. I have already picked up a holiday shift next week and plan to do overtime and make the extra money for airfare and living off of until I get paid again. It’s so scary not knowing exactly […]

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just let her run free in fairy land

I go back and forth about preschool on a daily basis. Lately it’s been more back than forth, but this morning M’s little friends came running to greet her and enfold her in their little tribe, and I felt good about the community she has there. Of course, she asked me why she has to go school at all on the drive there. Also, the other day when I picked her up the teacher scolded her for opening the cafeteria door on her own when we left. Apparently there’s a weird school rule that the kids aren’t allowed to open doors because someone got their finger pinched. I prefer her to open and close her own doors, mostly because she can and also how else is she supposed to learn how to not pinch her or someone else’s fingers in the door?? Also, that whole rule about not feeding her at school, because she’s supposed to be independent and feed herself? So much for independence when it comes to the doors. No wonder she feels confused and irritated with school. Last week I got a gift card for participating in a research study at work, so I took my sister and niece to the Renaissance Festival. I have always loved going, and this year M’s inner festie just came out in full force. She completely threw herself into the spirit of things, donning her fairy wings and watching performances, dancing to music, and […]

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