Saturday, September 22, 2012

The Lesson in This

After a long and difficult summer at work, I am trying hard to catch up. Working far more than I wanted to was not a choice. Two nurses had left in spring to pursue their retirement. One nurse was pulled from the floor to assist the manager in her role. One of our nurses died suddenly and in expectantly.

I, like the remaining nurses, was left to "man the lifeboat.".

I declined a full-time position. I have neither the energy or ambition anymore. Having grandchildren changed my world. What spare time I have, I want to spend with them...and when they are not available, I want to paint again.

My summer passed and all garden and preserving plans fell by the wayside and as things returned to "normal" at work, I played "catch up" at home.

Yesterday I struggled to make jelly in the few hours before my shift. All was going well...four burners sending steam upward...when my grandson arrived. I was worried by his business...darting too close to the busy stove. Papa came to our rescue, and I was able to finish the job, but without the usual satisfaction, and I experienced the same dissatisfaction I felt all too often at the end of a shift this summer.

Why do we nurses expect so much of ourselves? Would it not have been better to put down my ladle and pick up my grandson?

Time passes too quickly. Every soul that I have had the privilege to care for has lamented this fact.

So this post is dedicated to my grandbabies. Nana will try to do better!


  1. Wow, Wendy! It sounds like you have a really tricky balancing act. I hope that help in the form of new hirings at work comes soon.

    In my experience little people are fascinated by watching grownups work and I think it's especially great when they can reap the benefits of that work, i.e. toast topped with Grammy's yummy jelly and a warm hug on the side :-)

    My Grammy kept boarders, and owned and rented the house next to her own. She worked pretty hard. My fondest memory of her is eating doughnut men (made from the doughnut holes stuck together with tooth picks) fresh from the fryer in her huge kitchen. Maybe the way to my heart was through my tummy :-)

  2. Wendy, your days remind me of mine just before retirement. A different vocation but the same issues and problems. You ARE blessed to have seven grandchildren. I have two granddaughters and they are grown women now. I am waiting for great grandchildren :-)
    Thanks you so much for visiting my blog and leaving a comment.
    I hope your days mellow out for you soon so that you can do all of the things you want to do and at a slower pace.

  3. Good Morning Wendy!... The comments in your post underscore those in mine which you commented on so beautifully!

    There are some individuals... who by their very are led to choose paths of service as their life's work. Actually... I believe that the road chooses us.

    There are wonderfully rich blessings from having made that choice for both the giver and the receiver. However... there are dangers as well. Knowing when... and how to contain the urge to "man the lifeboat" far beyond reason is the trick.

    I learned too late, as a teacher that health... family and quality of personal life can become eroded under one's very nose... and far more quickly than one realizes.

    Follow your wonderful mantra Wendy. Live life simply! Keep your grand kids close. Ladle with them... with Papa's help! And set aside sacred time to paint or craft... to nourish your own soul... so that "You" can continue to be the "giver" that you are!

    Happy Thanksgiving to "You"... and "Yours"!

    Good Painting... Ladling and Nursing!
    Warmest regards,