Well, it was good to be back at work again. I had an angel on my shoulder apparently since we didn't get run into the ground like we usually do. Although I enjoyed most of my time off, I have to admit it sort of does feel good to be actually earning money instead of just spending. One thought I once again revisited this weekend is that nursing totally sucks now - even fun operating room nursing. Insurance companies, management, you-name-it etc. have conspired to render nursing something no longer bearing any resemblance to what it was when I first started 22 years ago. (Okay, I'm old, right?) Nursing was still great when I first graduated from nursing school. We had enough of the appropriate resources to take care of our patients - we had enough fucking time to take care of our patients. Now, you get called into the office for spending too much time with your patients because if you are doing that, then you are most likely having to stay late to finish all the bullshit stuff that has turned nursing into paper pushing and if you're staying late, they might be having to pay you overtime. Of course, we don't even use paper anymore - it's all on the computer. Don't get me wrong, I love computers - I'm using one right now, but there are times when paper is better. Eventually I left real patient care for the operating room where my biggest chance to feel like I'm taking care of a person is making sure that my eyes and my voice - the last ones they see and hear before they go to sleep - are making the patient feel better about where they are. I have to make the patient feel that they are in good hands for the duration of time they're in the OR and I don't have long to do that. So that's the extent of feeling like I'm still a "real nurse". I love OR nursing, or at least I did until management "managed" to suck the heart and soul out of it. It's not about the patient any more - it's about the friggin money. It's about making sure the management gets their bonuses; it's about making sure there are plenty of managers in department meetings and on committees, even if it mean there aren't enough actual caregivers. So these people have bonused, expensed and partied hospitals into places that are hacking their supplies and staff down to a very bare bone to keep from going under. Like we didn't see this shit coming.
If I had known then what I know now, I would still be a lifeguard. WTF - you're still saving lives , right?