Mommy Nurse Wife and 25!

Sunday, July 30, 2006


I forgot to share this with you all:

We got new life insurance policies recently and our blood work/pee test was this week. The insurance lady measured me TWICE and I am now officially 4 feet 9 inches. I think the tape measure was rigged...


Presents for son's 1st birthday: $100.00

Cake for birthday party: $25.00

Photos for son's 1st year: $30.00

Discovering (right before he turns one)that your father-in-law thinks your son's middle name is Devon when it is actually Kevin: Priceless

Saturday, July 29, 2006


It’s funny to watch these kids grow up. I am seeing more and more of my dad in my little man Sammy every day. A few weeks back I caught Sam staring in the trees as the wind blew through the leaves. He was in a world of his own watching them sway back and forth. Again I noticed him doing it a few days later, and since then I’ve seen him do it almost every time we’re outside.

Now, here’s why it’s really special. Any of you out there who know me really well know that my family is extremely close. I consider my parents two of my best friends in the world, and regard my brothers the same. I love them all for very different reasons and for the wonderful people they are.

My dad is one of the most interesting, creative, and kind person I know. In fact, my mom always told me that if I was lucky I’d grow up and marry someone just like him, which I did. So to see these little things crop up in my little guy really makes me happy. I hope that he’ll end up being as courageous as my dad, as gentle and kind, and as quirky. I can already tell that Sam is going to be very affectionate, into nature, loving, and happy.. It’s so cool to be able to see these things this early in his life. Makes me happy.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Welcome Jacob Owen

Just so you all know, had a much better day today. Got a whole 5 hours of Ativan induced sleep and felt great in the AM. I went to my trainer at 8:30 and when I got home my long lost friend Allen came over. Then I had a really good in service at the hospital and got to meet my new nephew Jacob!

Congrats Stacey, James and Aidan. And a big shout out to Stacey who pushed a 9 lb 10 1/2 oz baby out vaginally and lived to tell the tale!

Pee in Pants

Tonight was one of those nights in which I left work upset. I’m not going to elaborate, but I’m raw right now and I’ve been crying for about an hour straight. My eyes are red and puffy and I have snot pouring from my nose.

Despite how upset I am, I am very appreciative for two things. The first is my mom. I am so lucky to have a mother who I can wake up at midnight to talk to me. I am lucky that she is a nurse and knows what it is to be a nurse. I am even luckier that she was a former ED nurse IN this department so knows the unit like the back of her hand. I am so lucky that I have her, I can’t even really put it into words right now how grateful I really am.

The second is that I still have my sense of humor at a time like this. I was in the bathroom, washing my face, and went to blow my nose and all of the sudden I peed a little bit in my pants. PEED IN MY PANTS!!! I have never ever in my life done such a thing. So, now I’m sitting in my bathroom, puffy eyed and snot faced with pee in my underpants and thinking, “Well, now that I’m getting old I guess it’s time that my bladder function starts to go. Guess I’ll have to re-name my blog Mommy Nurse Wife and Pee in Pants at 26” and then I had a good chuckle and felt better.

I think I’d be OK right now if I wasn’t so goddamn sleep deprived, I really do. Tonight I just got pushed over the edge and feel vulnerable and I really think it’s because I’m very low in the sleep department.

So, I’m off to take a Benadryl or Ativan or something that will help me sleep and call it a night. It’s 1:08 AM right now and the kids will start getting up at 5. Luckily I have a wonderful husband who gets up with them and I’ll be able to sleep until 7 or so…hopefully.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Cows and money

I usually don't watch the news but for some reason this morning I happened to catch it. Man, is the news depressing. Stories about dead bodies being found and this person molesting that person, robberies, stabbings...just so sad and too much for my little heart to absorb.

But here's what really gets me right now, which is also the reason I can't stomach the news. My brother, Pat, is in Baghdad with the Army and I can't stand the thought that he is THERE! I see things blowing up left and right and horrible things happening and I keep thinking that Pat is seeing this shit right up close. He's in the thick of it. He is such a brave person I can't even comprehend what he has been doing over there. And this is his 2d tour!

Many of you know that I don't like to talk religion. Just causes too much fighting. If you really want to get in it with me then bring it up sometime, but be ready because I'm passionate about what I do believe in. I really don't care what other believe, as long as you believe in something. If you want to worship cows, chocolate pudding, Buddah, God, the weather, Dansko clogs, Tori Amos, water, or's all cool to me. But what I'd like, is for anyone out there who can, please send a little love to my brother Pat through your higher power. I do every night when I go to bed and I can't get him out of my mind tonight. I feel like I'm on the verge of tears just thinking about how proud of him I am and what an amazing person he has turned out to be. And how truly scared I am for him being in the middle of this mess.

And Pat, I'm sure you're not reading this but if you are, keep up the good work. Like you told me on Saturday you've only got 120 more days to go...peice of cake brotha! I love you!

Two of the best men on Earth; Mike and Pat (AKA Brother 1984 version and Brother 1982 version)

Can anyone tell I love food?

Every night on my way home from work I try to talk myself out of gorging myself on food when I get home. It always seems that on the drive I'll crave a certain food and think of it to the point of obsession. Some nights it's cookies, other it's chips, but most of the time on my way home I crave Original Goldfish. And guess what...they're are NEVER any left in the house.

Want to know why? It's because if there is a bag anywhere in my reach I will eat the entire thing in one sitting! So I usually only buy the cheddar kind for the kiddos so I won't eat them (they're just sub-par in my book), but when I get home from work I glare at them in the pantry because they sit there and mock me in their stupid orange package which should be blue.

So I want to know, does everyone else out there pig out when s/he gets home? And if so, what do you eat? My standard post-work snacks are as follows:
-A 100 calorie bag of popcorn with sprinkle cheese on top.
-Granny Smith apple with PB
-graham crackers

Sunday, July 23, 2006

A cute story before bedtime

I am so tired. We were down an RN tonight; sick patients...ran my ass off for 8 hours straight. I did get to scarf an english muffin and pb at some point when my blood sugar must have been 22. I know, cry me a river, I just wanted to complain.

And, to share this story. A few nights ago I was playing the "eat two more bites" game with Lily because she wanted dessert. So she put them in her mouth, chewed, and I was satisfied so started to talk to others at the dinner table. Not even a minute later she asked for a napkin and I gave her one, stupidly thinking she was cleaning her hands and mouth. Well, it took me a minute but I realized that she was pulling that know, the food in the napkin trick. WTF? She is 2 YEARS OLD, not old enough to know how to be sneaky like that. Seriously, that kid is way to smart for her (and my) own good!

But she's pretty cute huh?


This is an addendum to my previous post about OCD.

After a long discussion with my mom (who has to wear the same cap every Friday or all hell breaks loose) I got to thinking whether or not these compulsions are just compulsions or if they're superstitions...Or a touch of both.

Those things in which we believe deeply are the actions in question. Here are some examples:

1. You can never say the "q" word. Ever.
2. If you mention a frequent flier, s/he will be in that day.
3. In the ICU, at night, if there is a light on in a room you may not turn it off.
4. We may never have an empty tracking board. The last patient can not be erased.
5. If you mention something horrible, like an AAA, you will have a patient with that.
6. When someone is close to death, open the window.
7. Patients always die in room blank.
8. Never schedule nurse A with Doctor B. The s&^t will hit the fan.
9. If a bed is turned down and the admission goes elsewhere, do not re-make the bed.
10. Counting a death toll until you make it to 3.

What do you guys think? Superstitions or compulsions? Both? Am I the only crazy one out there?


I have a personal theory that all nurses have a touch of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD).

I know for sure that I do. I can remember back to being 10 years old laying in my bed at night worrying that the stove was on or the front door wasn't locked. I would lay there until I would HAVE to get out of my bed and check. Then I would get back in my bed after assuring we weren't in danger of a fire or break-in, and worry that I really hadn't seen that the stove was off or that the door was locked and have to get back up and check on it. I thought this was normal.

And about the same time I also became obsessed with order. Mainly the order of my room. Everything HAD to be in its place. The figures on my dresser, my books, my clothes, they all had a designated place and remained there unless used. One day, my friend Allen locked himself in my room and told me he was moving 2 things. I can clearly remember standing outside my door having what I now realize was a panic attack waiting for that door to open. As soon as it was opened I burst in the room and within ten seconds realized that two toys on my bookshelf had been reversed. I fixed them, then was OK.

This continued into college where it lessened a bit while living with roommates. When I met Donnie and moved in with him it also lessened because I wasn't yet at home in his house. I have since made this house my home and now my OCD is back in full force. I can not sleep at night if the cushions on the couch are crooked, if the toys are not in their place after the kids are in bed, or any of the rugs are not at a perpendicular angle to the wall. If there are things out of place, or even worse, things are homeless, I hide them in a drawer, cabinet, or throw them away because I can't stand to look at them.

It also followed me to work in the ICU. I was OK at first with all of the new things I was learning and experiencing, but once I got a little comfortable it came back on strong. When I moved to the ED it also lessened but as I am now coming to recognize, it is back at work with me now like an old friend.

I figured this out a few weeks ago when I caught myself straighting the tape dispenser and the stapler. Then I couldn't stand to look at the pile of paper on the desk and couldn't think of anything else until it was in the recycle bin. So in the past few weeks I catch myself doing it more and more. It really doesn't interfere with my work but it's just something that I have to do.

And I can recognize that this is sort of crazy. Who gives a shit if the stapler and the tape dispenser aren't at a 90 degree angle to the wall? I do. So a few months ago my mom pointed out to my while I was having a panic attack in the car ride to Myrtle Beach that feeling this anxious all of the time is not normal. It was such a weight off my shoulders to hear that. Until then I really thought everyone felt this way. So off I went to my PCP and discussed all of this anxiety and my compulsions (Which, as you all can predict has gotten worse than ever after having kids) and he put me on Prozac.

I felt a lot better in the beginning but am back to my old habits now. They are much better, but still present. My PCP said this is something I will have to deal with for the rest of my life and now I can really see that's true. My anxiety is much better on the meds and I am a little more relaxed at home with my compulsions (Donnie wouldn't say so, but whatever).

But my whole point to this long and boring story is that I think because I'm a nurse it adds to my underlying OCD. We all have our "quirks" and by being compulsive and methodical it helps us be good nurses. Am I way off base with this or do others see it? One of my good friends, and a nurse whom I respect deeply, cleans each and every phone practically as her coat is off. My mom has to write with a blue, fine tip, BIC pen. Another nurse I know can't work until the med room is clean. A lot of nurses, I have observed, will put the exact same things in his or her pockets at the start of shift (and yes, this is for practical reasons but it's also from a comfort standpoint. How many times in an ED do you really use Kelly clamps for God's sake? (And if you use them a lot, should I carry them with me????)) My friend M. has to write out the staffing for the next day on the whiteboard at the same time each night. I knew one nurse who always had to twist a knob on the wall each and every time she walked past it. ..oh wait, me again. Man, I AM nuts!!!

So, sorry to blab on about this. It is actually really therapeutic to put this all down in writing so thanks for listening. And, you other crazy nurses out there, if you exist, just think of silly Cassie arranging the stapler and tape dispenser while you methodically do your own rituals!

Friday, July 21, 2006

26 and old

What a night! We went on diversion at around 1800 tonight and by the time I left (at 2300 on the dot!) we had two patients in the department. One was on his way out the door and the other on cocaine who had just threatened his neighbors (and neighbor's minivan) with a sword.

Oh yeah, and just so you all know. FOUR patients presented tonight within a hour of each other...All female, all with abd pain over their umbilicus, a "burning" in quality, with acute onset, all with nausea none with vomiting. Odd. Then later, four complains ear pain. What the heck is going on? Things are supposed to come in threes, not fours! Odd odd odd.

And by the way,

In 19 minutes it is officially my birthday. This year I turn 26. Everyone keeps saying "you're such a baby" and things like that but I'm feeling REALLY old this year. I think it's because I'm on the downward slide to 30. 25 is OK because you're only half-way there. Now I'm really on my way. Just feels different, you know? Usually birthdays just feel like another day for me, this one is feeling different. Don't like it.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Pink is cool!

Hey Everybody check out the new color scheme in here. How great is it?

AND, I figured out how to put in links on the sidebar! Thanks to Kim at emergiblog for helping me out with that!

However, I think I lost my sitemeter which I will restore a quickly as I can. Thanks to everyone for your patience while I am going through these changes!

With Deepest Regrets

Ok you all, I get it, I can't spell. I'm going to work on that very hard. Sorry to ruin your day like that :)

Saturday, July 15, 2006

I need a good night of sleep

I am in the process of getting Lily tucked into bed right now. I am amazed every night when I put her to bed at what a professional staler she is at the young age of two. Tonight, here is the complete list of requests (and I promise that I am not exaggerating).

"I'm hungry, need grapes."
"I need juice."
"Need new water momma."
"Need medicine, teeth hurt."
"Lip hurts."
"Toe hurts, need band-aid."
"Me no like this shirt, need new shirt."
"My room too hot, need fan."
"No fan too big, need little fan."
"Need to kiss Grammy."
"Want to kiss Sammy."
"Kitty is looking at me under door."
"Need pink baby (pacifier)."
"I peed in diaper, need new diaper."

And wanna know the crazy thing, even though the needs change, this happens EVERY SINGLE NIGHT! And even crazier is that we do EVERYTHING she asks! Well, for about ten minutes, then we read three books, sing a song, listen to her snow globe, give kisses and stop listening to the requests. If we didn't, we would be up with her for hours trying to put her to bed.

But the best thing about tonight was this:
Lily is going through a phase where any time she gets any sort of injury she NEEDS a band-aid or she'll die on the spot from pain. So tonight, as I'm putting on her final band-aid of the night, on her non-injured toe I might add, she looks up at me and says, "Momma, no pick it."

What does that say about my picking fetish? I think I've gone too far...

Friday, July 14, 2006


Today at playgroup Lily was watching her friend get his diaper changed. When the diaper came off she looked at me with wide eyes and said,

"Look mommy, BIG penis!"

I can only hope she was comparing it to my son's and not my husband's :)

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Who chokes on Lasix anyway?

So last night was a new one for me...I saved someone's life. I recognize the fact that I have been a part of saving a life before. Doing cardioversions, helping (or as I learned in the ICU, convincing the doctor to perform) intubations, initiating Dopamine or giving Adenosine, the list goes on and on. We all do it, this is our job.

BUT, last night, I was giving a patient his pills and at that moment where I usually hold my breath until s/he swallows and says "It went down," I couldn't exhale because it didn't go down. Instead, he sat bolt upright in the stretcher, eyed bugged out of his head, and he turned that scary shade of bluish/purple which I have learned to loathe. He was choking, no doubt about it.

So, I encouraged him to cough, which WAS NOT happening, and when I realized he was choking I got behind him in the stretcher and did the heimlech. At the same moment I gave the old heave-ho I thought to myself "holy shit, this dude is big" (I couldn't even really get my midget hands wrapped on top of one another, so it was a modified Cassie-style maneuver) and let go after one squeeze. I came around off the stretcher, while screaming for help of course, and he was starting to exchange a little bit of air. I was cheering him on like I was at the Super Bowl, "Come on, cough it up, come on. Rah rah rah." And with every passing second he did get more and more air through and finally managed a cough. Then he didn't stop coughing for the next fifteen minutes.

So today I've been thinking--When you have those shitty days where you feel like you can't do anything right, you will have one of these great moments right around the corner where you'll know you made a different. And all I had to do was make my patient choke on his Lasix. Piece of cake.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Just wanted to share

Are you pregnant?

A patient asked me if I am pregnant last night. It seems to happen about once a month since I've had Sam. At first I was really upset by people asking me that, now I'm getting a bit better and not crying when it happens. The thing is, I'm petite. I am 4'10 5/8" and I weigh 129 lbs. There's not a lot of wiggle room in there for extra fat. If I gain 10 lbs it's like 40% of my bodyweight (right, that math's right huh? :)

And I do have a mommy belly. I keep telling myself that if that didn't exsist neither would my two little friends. But no matter how much I tell myself that I still feel like a horrible, fat, cow.

And I work out like crazy and eay well. I have a wicked sweet tooth which is really bad somedays and really OK others.

So here's why I am writing about this today. When will I ever be OK with my body? I keep waiting for the day when I wake up and feel OK in my own skin. It has been very altered from having 2 kids in 18 months, I know that, I just can't make myself feel that.

It bothers me so much that I have actually contacted plastic surgeons to see how much I need to save to pay for a tummy tuck. How crazy is that? For the amount of money it would cost we could take a family trip, buy a new car or a boat, or invest some money.

So there's no real story here, just me venting while Donnie's at the firehouse and both kids are sleeping. Because, God knows, I do not want to say this shit around my daughter and step-daughter because I tell them what beautiful women they are and to be proud of their bodies. I just wish I could believe it myself.

Monday, July 10, 2006

If you don't like pee, don't read this.

You know, I was really dreading potty training but it's turning out to be a hoot! I constantly have funny Lily stories about this process. Though she is fully potty trained during the day, here were some of the good 'ens that have happened in the past few weeks.

Lily: I peed!!" (This is usually our cue to shout and clap; everyone in the room is obliged to participate).

US: "Yay!" "What a big girl!" "All right Lily!" "Way to go!"

Lily: "...on the deck."

Though she is fully trained during the day, for some reason right after supper she likes to go on the back deck and pee. Tonight she took it a step further and actually peed AND pooped on the deck. I was trying soooo hard not to laugh when we talked about how this isn't OK. All I could think of is my neighbors, happily cooking supper, looking out their window and see little Lily squatting on the deck outside pinching a loaf. That's my girl.

Today, in the bookstore, she told me she had to pee very loudly. Which is ten times louder than she usually is because A) we're in a bookstore and B) people in public usually don't scream about their bathroom habits making this comment seem that much more loud and inappropriate. Plus, there was this young couple looking at wedding books talking about prenups who glared at her. Which really pissed me off, but they're young yet, they'll be there someday.

Anyway, we went to the bathroom and she did her buisness and as we were leaving she looked at the first woman we saw, a complete stranger mind you (she gets that from my BTW. I 'll talk to anyone, anywhere. I'm totally that girl in line at the supermarket who brings up how much I love the cheese in the woman's basket behined me. It's super annoying, I realize, but I am powerless)-and said "I peed!!!" The lady looked taken aback and then said "What a big girl!" I was super happy she had that reaction because when you come out of the bathroom there is a cafe directly outside the exit. Not the place to be screaming about peeing on the potty when people are having a scone and coffee. But she is 2, what do you expect right?

Well, that's about all of the funny stories I can muster right now. I could always tell you about when Lily pees in the potty and her broter comes to the potty before I can get to it and dumps in on the carpet. But I won't. Don't want to be too gross right? Heee heeee.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Dead Man Working

There are two stories out there in the media which have taken up permanant space in my head, mainly because I can't figure out if they're true or not. You be the judge...

Story #1:
This is a story of a man working in a New York office who died at his desk on a Monday. The problem was that no one noticed he was dead until Saturday. Apparently, the man was first to the office in the AM and last to leave in the PM. Therefore, no one thought it strange when they passed his desk at quittin' time and he was there. My question to you all is could this really happen? We've all seen dead bodies. They look, well, dead. Hard not to notice. So is it really possible that for a WEEK his co-workers walked past him slumped at his desk and took no notice? According to my research the story was published overseas but never here in America. Seems fishy to me. Anyone who has extra time on her hands here's his "name" if you want to research it more: George Turklebaum (even the name sounds fake).

Story #2:
Apparently, in India some dude's skull fell off. He had a previous burn and the tissue just died and subsequently part of his noggin fell off. (

Seriously, you can't even make this stuff up!

So here's what I've been thinking about for this one. What a social faux paux to have this thing decide to fall off at any time. I've been having visions of this man passing supper at the table, running on the track, doing a crossword puzzle, meeting the in-laws, etc etc etc and PLOP. Oops, excuse me, don't mind my skull just falling in that soup. My bad. What was he doing when that final piece of skull let loose? How cool would it be to BE there at that time. My feeble little mind can't even comprehend what a dream that would be.(AND, if that was my skull, you know I'dve already picked that sucker off:)


My little man Sammy, who is 10 months, had 2 huge milestones this week.

July 5th he took his first steps.
Today, July 9th, he said his first words besides the usual mamma and dadda babble. "Uh oooh."

Do you think that his first words are a sign of what's to come with him? That he's only 10 months and already realizes that he's a little terror. I knew having a little boy was going to be so different from a little girl...

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Serious coccyx pain.

It happened AGAIN.

Patient A:
Coccyx injury over a year ago. Fell, re-injured said body part. In ED for pain control.

Patient B:
Coccyx injury almost a year ago. Re-injured said body part this week. In ED for pain control.

Came in back to back. How wierd is that?

My Anniversary

Today is the 4th of July. It is also my wedding anniversary. It got me thinking about all that has happened since I met Donnie the summer of '01. A lot has happened in a short amount of time. For all of you that don't know, here are the clifnotes of my life the last 5 years.

Donnie and I meet in a bar where I work as a cocktail waitress. We spend the next 10 months falling in love over the telephone, writing letters, and spending weekends together while I finish my last year at nursing school. The last semester in school I get to do my senior practium in the ED at Dartmouth. One day I get to fly (twice) with their chopper, DHART.

Graduate from nursing school with my BSN.
Start first nursing job in the ICU.
Get engaged on the top of Mt. Washington.
Start 401K.

Get married to Donnie July 4th. We got married at Popham Beach at 7 am with about 40 of our family and closest friends. My brother, Mike, announced that I am pregnant while making a toast to Donnie and me. Previously, this was only known by our parents. Oops. Funny in retrospect, not in real time.

Lily is born January 26th after two weeks on bedrest in the hospital. The next year is all about learning how to be parents and still keep a marriage afloat while mentally and physically exhausted.

November, pregnant with Sam. Lily is 10 months.

December, get offered Unit Coordinator job in the ED. Ponder taking it, then take it. What the hell did I get myself into. I went from being comfortable and experienced in the ICU to new and inexperienced in a new department where I am now a supervisor. Holy shit.

Start in the ED in March. Holy shit.

Sam is born August 15th via c-section #2. Easy, happy baby. Lily is 18 months old when Sammy is born. Whoa...and we thought we were tired before.

Buy first house (BTW, why didn't anyone tell me how stressful THAT was going to be?). Buy a timeshare. Open ROTH IRA, invest money in the stock market. Feel OK with my role in the ED (most days). Donnie gets promoted to Lieutenant

Now we have three jobs between the two of us, three kids (I have a stepdaughter who's 10 BTW) a house, a timeshare, money, and we STILL manage to be in love and very happy. So today, July 4th, on our nation's birthday I am feeling very happy and content. It's a lot that Donnie and I do and deal with but aren't we lucky that we have it. And it all came from a girl picking a guy up at the bar.