Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Reaching Deep


How ironic that I’ve been too stressed out to write and when I do finally find my voice the internet is out. Typical. Which is why I am writing in word and hoping the internet comes back up soon.

Some of you may know that I have been struggling for the last 3 years to find a job that is the right fit for me. It hasn’t been easy; I’ve tried many things, both within my career field and outside of it and failed. I’ve failed, but I’ve never given up.
I’ve been undergoing a rigorous interview process for the last month, for a job that I feel could be the perfect fit for me. After several extensive interviews I finally received a formal offer. They wanted me, yay!!!!
I start next week and am extremely excited about this position. I will be working as a caregiver for mentally challenged senior citizens. Caring for seniors is where I started my career and what I love the most. After 35 years in the field I was burned out and had all but given up on finding a position that would work for me when this came along.
I had just one barrier left between me and this place that feels so right. That thing would seem, for most, to be a relatively easy thing. The dreaded physical. It’s just a routine thing, nothing to worry or stress about.
I wish.
This is such a serious trigger for me. Too many bad memories, of a young girl, facing awful doctors, all alone in my past, to even explain. Bad enough, that once I found the right doctor for me, I stayed with him for most of my adult life, until he retired. When he did retire, his daughter took over his practice. She was so much like her father in the way she practiced, I stayed with her.
I’ve had to undergo other work physicals in my career; they have always been extremely unpleasant. I even had one that I went toe to toe with about the fact that a work physical did NOT include a gynecological exam. As if I would let that creepy old man touch me, much less do that to me. I won that one, but not without a bit of stress thinking my job hung in the balance.
I had my work physical today. I was so stressed about it, that I did not sleep more than 2 hours last night. It was a 5 minute drive from my home, but I left 20 minutes early, just in case something happened. I’m not sure what I thought would happen, but I was very nervous about the whole thing.
By the time I arrived, over tired, due to only getting 2 hours of sleep, I was in a full blown panic attack. My heart was racing and felt like it was going to beat its way out of my chest. My hands were shaking so badly I almost couldn’t complete the required forms. I started to flush and was so warm I thought it would be a miracle if I didn’t pass out, or vomit, my stomach was definitely in an uproar.
The nurse was so nice, but was immediately concerned about my heart rate and blood pressure. Normally those are not an issue for me, but today they were. They were both abnormally high. She was very kind and considerate and questioned me about what was going on. I admitted my anxiety with the situation and even shared some of why it was so anxiety provoking for me. She reassured me as best she could, but I still couldn’t seem to get myself under control. I’m ashamed to say, I was reduced to tears at that point. Darn hormones!
Too my surprise I wasn’t actually seeing a doctor, a nurse practitioner would be completing my physical. He was a lovely, kind, older gentleman. He too was concerned about my reaction to something so routine. I have no idea why, but I confided many things to him that I’ve never even told my own physician. He listened and gently advised. He guided me through what should have been such an easy thing, yet something I found so extremely difficult.
He reminded me of something so profoundly important. He told me that no one on their death bed has wished they had worried more. He told me it was time to let the past go. He told me I’m still a young woman and I have a lot left to offer. He was genuinely concerned about how high my blood pressure was. He was so concerned that he sat with me for several minutes, he told me to close my eyes and take a deep breath. He told me to imagine meeting my grandbaby and what I would say to her when I finally met her.
It worked, my heart rate had slowed, my blood pressure had returned to normal. I passed my physical and will be starting a job I know I am going to love and find totally fulfilling, without detracting from my personal life.
I hope someday that I can make a difference in someone’s life the way he did for me today. He is truly a great caregiver. That’s something I aspire to be.
The above illustrates one of those times that sub or not, Musicman couldn’t really help me. I know he would have, had there been anything he could have done, but there just wasn’t. This was one of those times, I had to reach deep, find my strength and push through it on my own.
Of course, that doesn’t mean there’s not something he could do to comfort me after the fact. There definitely is.  I think we may be due for a conversation later tonight.
 

 

 

 

30 comments:

  1. Congrats on the job!!! I know you will make a difference in more than one of their lives. Sometimes things work out...that PA was just who you needed for that physical!
    hugs abby

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    1. Thanks abby, it's been a long stressful road back to my career, but I'm very excited about this position. The PA was a wonderful and I'm so glad it's over :)

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  2. Congratulations on the new job! I hope it's a good fit for you. I'm sure you'll make a difference in the lives of the people you'll be caring for.

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    1. Thannks for the kind words Mrs. D. I hope I make a difference for them :)

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  3. i'm so happy about the job and so proud of you for having the courage to tell the nurse and PA about your extreme anxiety. Trying to hide it would have been ridiculous. By having the courage to talk about it a little you gave them the chance to help you feel better. So nice to see you here.

    Hugs,
    PK

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    1. Initially I did try to hide the anxiety, such a silly thing to have a panic attack about. Unfortunately, my body did not cooperate and my heart rate gave it away. Oh well, it's over now and time to put it behind me :)

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  4. Congratulations faerie, on the new job! That's really wonderful. Your physical experience sounds challenging, but what a great caregiver you had. I'm sure you'll be able to pass that along as you're caring for others. *hugs*

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    1. Nice to see you Riley, hope everything has been going well for you. Good caregivers are worth their weight in gold :)

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  5. I love that the health care givers were so caring and nurturing and understanding and made you feel safe. I know in my heart you are going to bring lots of smiles to the people you work with and truly make a difference in their lives. So happy for you, Terps Hugs

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    1. Thanks Terpsichore, they really were great and made a very stressful time easier for me :)

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  6. This brought tears to my eyes. (Perhaps mine is hormones as well! lol) It isn't often we see one human being taking the time to truly care and invest in another. I'm glad he was there to help you through this and hope that the memory sticks with you and reminds you to do the same for the patients you encounter.

    Congratulations on the new job!

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    1. Gotta love those hormones, eh? I surely will remember this gentleman and how kind he was to me :) The world could use more people like him in it.

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  7. Oh Faerie! What an ordeal.
    Mega congratulations on the job!!! That is awesome!

    I've had my share of doctors and specialists and I have major anxiety every time I have to go--a few times I have brought my sister or husband right into the examination room with me and that's helped a lot but many, many other times that wasn't possible and its amazing how we can reach and dig and find that inner strength and our own guidance to get us through when we need it.
    I am so happy and grateful that you were met with kindness and understanding during such panic-causing moments.
    Hugs!

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    1. I would have loved to have someone go with me, but that just wasn't feasible. The personnel were absolutely wonderful to me, even though I know they didn't understand why I was so stressed out.

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  8. Congratulations Faerie. Hope this fits as well as you think it will.

    It's amazing how people come into your life just when you need them most. I am quite sure you are already that kind of caregiver and your goodness and caring was just being returned to you.

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    1. Thank you for the kind words sunnygirl. I guess maybe this is karma coming to visit :)

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  9. I was having anxiety just reading about yours!!! I'm glad the "doc" was able to put you more at ease. You have amazing strength!
    Who says you haven't made a difference in a persons life? I have no doubt you already have many times.
    Congrats on the job. Excited for you!

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    1. Oh, sorry to cause you anxiety, believe me I had enough for all us, lol. Such a silly thing to get stressed about really, but I suppose this proves the truth in the saying, healthcare workers make the worst patients :)

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  10. Congratulations on the new job. I have a hard time with doctors to. So much so that I am usually offered anti anxiety drugs on the way out of the office. Just a few doses to help with the immediate trauma. I have never taken them up on the offer but I am happy that they offer it.

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    1. I took anxiety meds for years, but stopped quite some time ago. This incident made me wonder if possibly I should start again. I really don't know what exactly happenend, but this was one of the worst panic attacks I've had in a long time. I'm hoping it is an isolated incident.

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  11. Congratulations on the job. I usually find docs who do routine physicals bored and indifferent to their task. What fortune you actually had one who cared and took the time to guide you through it. I hope you caught up on your sleep.

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    1. I did get caught up on my sleep, the whole experience just wiped me out. This gentleman was definitely not the norm of what usually happens, for that I am very grateful :)

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  12. Congrats on the new job and for opening up to the PA about the causes of your anxiety and you were so fortunate that the PA was understanding and so supportive.

    FD

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    1. Yes, I was fortunate that he was so kind, that hasn't been my experience in the past. That's what caused the problem to begin with, though I did let it get out of control. I don't handle lack of sleep as well as I used to anymore, so hopefully it won't happen often.

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  13. Congrats on the job!! yaaay!!

    Aluv

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    1. Thanks, I'm truly looking forward to getting started.

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  14. Congrats Congrats on the job and all of what you accomplished today.

    That PA was an angel from heaven.

    ~faithful

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    1. Funny thing, when I couldn't sleep and was trying not to stress I kept praying for my guardian angel's to be with me during the ordeal. Guess they listened to me :)

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  15. so glad you overcame your stress, were able to share some of what was bothering you, and came out the other side!

    Congratulations on your new job--I hope you are fulfilled with it, and are a blessing to others at it.

    Hugs,

    nilla

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    1. Thanks nilla, it was rough going for a bit, but it's over now and I'm so ready to move on. I'm quite excited about this new position and really believe it is what I have been looking for.

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