Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Where is my semi-charmed kind of life?: 6 month review

Where is my semi-charmed kind of life?: 6 month review: I received my 6 month review from my supervisor. For someone who for a year struggled with the fear of having to figure out how to get a jo...

6 month review

I received my 6 month review from my supervisor. For someone who for a year struggled with the fear of having to figure out how to get a job, I ROCK!!!!

For a year after getting canned I was so scared of trying to figure out how to get a job. I was not able to answer questions. I was having too many doctor appointments. I was getting tired way too fast. I could not concentrate on one thing for very long. I could not handle being in or going to new places. I was afraid I would do something dumb. Would I repeat myself too much?? Would my scars on my head show? Would I be in too much pain? Would I get angry over something and flip out? How the hell was I supposed to get a job if I couldn't answer a question such as "How are you doing today?"

I had some interviews, didn't get those jobs. Had an interview for a job I thought I would love, got the job and pretty much within 3 days I was over it. HATED IT...and I was full of so much anxiety. How was I supposed to do this? I needed a job, but I despised the one I got. I knew my anger was getting out of control just in the 3 days I went through training with this particular job. And then wouldn't you know UPMC calls me and offers me the job I figured would be better for me. YAYAYAYA!!!

Somehow I went from not being able to answer questions to acing interviews. And now I have a job that I rock at! Sometimes I get angry, I have only flipped out once. Not at a patient but at a nurse and nursing assistant. I deal with the unknown daily. I get asked questions by doctors, nurses, patients, and families. I somehow am able to deal with all of this without having meltdowns. Some days are crazier than others. And believe me I feel it when I am driving home and ready to crash and burn. Here is an example of a crazy day. I get to work and am assigned to work the Traumatic Brain Injury unit. I am working, getting in my groove then all of a sudden I am pulled and have to go to the ER. In the ER I am with a drunk and disorderly patient. Then I get pulled and am told I need to go to the Detox unit. I get to Detox and am working with someone that is going through the tremens stage of detoxing. Delirious, angry, flight risk, swinging...and then all of a sudden I am pulled to go with a child in the burn unit. See, change change change....walking all over the hospital getting from point A to B to C to D. And doing it all in record time and not getting lost.

I got my review and I basically kick ass!!!I got solid strong performer on every section.

Kara is able to maintain direct observation of her patients and report all needed information to the RN on duty and the patients doctors.

Kara is very polite and enthusiastic about every patient that she sits with. She is able to maintain a positive relationship with everyone she meets.

-Takes responsibility for own actions
-Recognizes own strengths and weaknesses and seeks/accepts constructive feedback, incorporating it into work
-Exhibits objectivity and openness to the view of others, including patients/families
-Considers, and takes appropriate actions, based upon the perspectives of diverse populations
-Adapts to changes in the work environment and appropriately incorporates new information
-Effectively deals with pressure and uncertainty
-Deals effectively with a variety of people, personalities, and cultures

Kara has been a very positive and enthusiastic member of our team. Kara is able to provide a safe environment for our monitored patients. She maintains a positive relationship with everyone she encounters. She voluntarily makes great use of the patient monitor activity program. I look forward to having Kara continue her employment with UPMC.

That is just a snippet. I don't want to bore you all with my awesomeness!!! But seriously, from a girl that was petrified, scared, anxious, confused, angry, easily flustered, etc, I kick ass. My work brain is awesome. Now if I can just get my work brain into the rest of my life. :)

I was struggling to get cognitive rehab and was getting denied because I was not severe enough, I was high functioning. So I shut down and had a few meltdowns then put on my big girl panties and went after the world instead of the world always knocking me down. So now I am an employed, kick ass brain scrambler. I am by no means perfect, I am not what I was, but I am what I am now and I am almost ready to accept this version.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011


Tis the season of thanks. I have been kind of thinking about this. So here goes nothing.

I am thankful to be alive. I may be frustrated and angry and upset about this life, but it is a life...I am alive. I could be dead or vegetative. I could be more severely disabled, I could have lost all of me. I say I am version 2.0 but I am not that far from the original.

I am thankful I have a job. The year unemployed and having immense fear and anxiety and self doubt of ever being employed again were not good. That year was the pits. It was depression at its finest.

I am thankful that I have an amazingly awesome father who has been there for me when I almost died, and helped me when I was trying to come back to life. He has supported me, and cheered me on and has put up with and learned to love all my different versions. If I could, I would give him the world. But I have the feeling being alive is more than enough for him.

I am extremely thankful that I did not lose the part of my brain that deals with long term memory. If that part was damaged I would have lost all memories of my mom..and memories are all I have left of her.

I am thankful for my friends that trust me with their son. To some people, it would be no big deal. To the original version of me, it would be no big deal. But to this version it means a lot that they trust me. I know I am capable, I know I am better than I give myself credit for, but it really does make me feel good that they have trusted me and do trust me to be in charge of their son.

I am thankful for the friend I have made after my brain scramble. He puts up with the best and worst of me. He has seen me at my lowest my most confused frustrating moments of myself. He puts up with the good, bad and ugly, and the sarcastic smart ass I am. :) He has nothin to compare me to, never knew the original, but he has seen my progression from what I was a year ago to now.

I am so very thankful for my facebook brain scrambled family. We all understand each other the way no one else can. Without them, I think I would feel more lost than I do feel.

Thankful that I am slowly gaining confidence, I doubt myself less, and I am trying to find a balance in my life. I am not 100% of what I was, but I am 90% of what I am now. I need to shake off some self doubt, become more confident, stop having so many damn doctor appointments and I will be 100% of this version.

I am thankful that in 2011 I did not have any surgeries. Since 2009 I have been having no less than 2 a year. That is a record I am glad to break.

I am thankful that I am still able to articulate well via writing. I still get the best of me out when writing rather than speaking. But I am so glad I did not lose this skill. So thank you all for reading my ramblings the past 1.5 years.