Friday, March 23, 2012

Please Forgive Me For Speaking With My Mouth Full

I am sitting at at the home of friends, Notorious and Spanks, eating the yummiest pastor burrito and taking a break from house hunting.  My mouth is full of flavorful goodness, I am sheltered, and I am loved.  Once again, members of our adopted Surly family have overwhelmed Nascar and me with love and support.  As I expressed thanks to Notorious yesterday, he looked me right in the eye and said, "You would do this for us."  I want to believe I would...I want to believe I would.

As I begin to search for a job, a nagging thought keeps surfacing.  Utah is an extremely conservative place.  What if someone reads my blog and thinks I am certifiably crazy?  This is a downfall of sharing your thoughts on an open forum - you leave yourself open for judgement and criticism.  I often ask myself why I write this.  A writer that I admire, sends out weekly e-mails to subscribers, and he often asks himself the same question about e-mail entries.  Are people like he and I narcissists?  Am I know-it-all?  Is this my version of reality TV?

I actually got excited when my blog reached it highest number of readers earlier this week :  almost 50.  In some ways this is my reality TV, and this does give positive validation to my life.  As a woman who is plagued with depression/fatalist outlooks, I really believe I am learning how to re-write my perceptions.  True, I am initially scared/sad/overwhelmed by many if not all situations related to family, friendship, love.  Every time I write about one of these triggers, I work hard to remember it in the most positive way.   This helps me re-shape the experience into something good and gives me power to lead with my best foot and most hopeful perspective.  Jeanette Winterson says in her book, Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?, "I need words because unhappy families are conspiracies of silence.  The one who breaks the silence is never forgiven.  He or she has to learn how to forgive herself."  I feel that this blog is helping me forgive myself for my neurosis and my insecurities.  It is also aiding me in becoming more comfortable with EXACTLY WHO I AM RIGHT NOW, in a way that talk therapy set me up for, but could not cement down for me.

Right Now - with Leonard the Cat

Right Now Again

Jeanette Winterson also says, "When we write we offer the silence as much as the story.  Words are the part of the story that can be spoken."  As I re-read my last post, I read the story of a woman desperately trying to keep her big girl mentality intact, when all her inner child was really worried about was losing her brother - again.  The vestiges of co-dependency and family life without boundaries were so apparent,  but so also were the rebirth, the re-build, and the reunion of siblings.  I am proud of  my family.  We are all choosing the positive steps most of the time.  There is no savior in this group, just a bunch of people trying their best and to say the right thing at the wrong time, instead of continuing to be silent.  Some of the right things we are trying to say are:

"Please forgive me"  
"I forgive you" 
"Thank you" 
 "I love you."

I started that blog post commenting on the politics of being a woman.  I compared my need for birth control to someone else's need for end of life care.  I have become slightly worried that a potential employer, not aware of my impassioned nature, may read these statements as a risk for hiring me.  I feel the need to clarify the statement made:

 "I should not have to pay for you to keep people alive on machines because you believe the insurance companies owe you." 

I do not believe that most Americans believe the insurance companies owe them.  I do believe that many of us have no idea how much health care costs until it is too late.  According to a CBS news story, updated in 2009: 
                                    Last year, Medicare paid $55 billion just for doctor and hospital                                     
                                    bills during the last two months of patients' lives. That's more      
                                    than the budget for the Department of Homeland Security, or
                                    the Department of Education. And it has been estimated that 
                                    20 to 30 percent of these medical expenses may have had no   
                                    meaningful impact. Most of the bills are paid for by the federal 
                                    government with few or no questions asked. 

When I made the statement in my last post, it was derived from this knowledge.  I see first hand how much health care cost, and how often the outcome is still unevitable.  Death is one of our constants as humans.  As anyone's nurse, one of my goals is to assist you in understanding and being as present as possible with the situation you are in.  My other goal is to keep you alive, if a code situation occurs.  If you are non-verbal, almost comatose, and unable to care for yourself, I bathe you, I administer medications to keep your body at is best equilibrium, and I assist your family in coping with this change in the course of your life.  If you decide that you are done with the struggle of staying alive, then my goal to keep you comfortable becomes the primary goal.  As patients draw nearer to death, keeping them comfortable becomes much more difficult the more interventions we attempt.  Let's be clear, I will continue to and have always carried out my patients wishes.  I do believe that death is a sacred passage, however, and hope that more humans will recognize this, and take back control of their own passage.

As the Affordable Healthcare Act is being judged by our Supreme Court, the passions are getting heated.  Please forgive me for leading that last post with an inflammatory statement, instead of offering deeper insight.  I value the experiences I have had as a nurse, they color all of my actions as a daughter, as a sister, as a niece, as a wife, and as a friend.  I urge each of you to learn more about the state of healthcare, and to prepare yourself and your family for all the decisions that are yours to make in sustaining life in this first world country.  Should the mandate be passed, we will all be responsible for having insurance for our selves.  This will be difficult for those under-employed or not employed.  The Affordable Healthcare Act is a great first step in streamlining a very sloppy system.  The next step is for all of us to become more active in our health care provisions and recognize the options that exist for us.;contentBody

soundtrack today included Bjork, Ben Harper, Jeff Buckley, and PJ Harvey

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About Me

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I am Nurse Bacon, a registered nurse who works hard and and lives a full life with her husband, Nascar Pitcrew. A little surly and a little sensitive, I am very much enamored with life and its nuances.