Tag Archives: stress

Where Are My Tic Tacs!?

Where Are My Tic Tacs!?  

If you know where this line comes from without having to watch the clip, we can be friends.  I’m ashamed to admit I feel like Parker Posey in You’ve Got Mail quite frequently these days :/

Ever since I discontinued my medication for anxiety/depression this past summer, my anxiety has reared its ugly head more and more.  (Thankfully, the depression is a distant memory and I can only hope it won’t return, but I sometimes feel that’s only a matter of time).  I feel agitated frequently, and my temper can be very short.  This usually happens in moments of stress (obviously) and I’m trying to find ways to control it naturally.  For example:

  • I was on the phone with the doctor’s office about getting referred for a test, and they were insisting I had to come in for a visit. I flat-out refused, demanded that they schedule me for the test without a visit (and the huge copay and wasted time I was trying to avoid), asked to speak with the office manager (who wasn’t there that day), and then promptly hung up on them.
  • I still can’t bring myself to make phone calls to strangers – including the cable company and the bank.
  • Mornings are hard for me (I’ve NEVER been a morning person).  My kids and I have to get out the door very early and it’s stressful.  Those of you with young children can understand, I’m sure.  Even though I’ve picked out their clothes the night before and my husband packs the lunches so they’re ready to go, we just can’t all seem to get it together in time.  I end up losing my temper with them and immediately regretting the things I say.
  • I’m a cusser.  I’ve always been a cusser, but lately the cuss words seem to flow a little too easily.  I should probably try to control that.

But how?

  • I’ve tried journaling, but at the height of my anxiety it’s not practical to whip out a journal and scribble my thoughts – especially at my work.
  • I’ve tried self-talk, but I’ve run out of things to say.
  • My coworkers know about my anxiety and have been gracious enough to get me a calming battery-powered water fountain, and a mini Zen rock garden (how awesome are they!?).  I joke that they don’t want to see me rage, but I’m sure that’s partly true.

I wish I could predict when the anxiety was coming, and maybe I could pop a Xanax, but it sneaks up on me most of the time.  I feel like the Hulk is about to burst out of me sometimes.  I care enough about my job and my friends to not let that happen though, but I need to find ways to control this anxiety.

Any suggestions?  Or maybe just a story to share?

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It’s What I Do

imageI certainly didn’t choose an easy career.

I mean, It’s my job to care.

Day in, day out.

Throughout the past 13 years, I have gone through phases where I wanted nothing more than to quit being a nurse.  I sometimes think to myself “I want a job where I’m not responsible for anyone.”

Right now I’m responsible for nearly 700 students’ healthcare while they’re in school.  When I worked in the ER, I was responsible for multiple patients at one time, all with serious medical emergencies playing out simultaneously.  When I worked in Pediatric Urgent Care, we saw 80 patients a day and we couldn’t go home until the last patient was seen.  In my post No Refills, I talk about my struggles with anxiety, and these constant interactions with people can be challenging for me at times.

image

I have other interests and abilities besides being an amazing nurse, and sometimes I wish I had pursued a creative career.  I’ve played the classical guitar since I was 8.  I was in choir from childhood through college.  I take pretty good photos – even had a little side business going a few years back.

I sometimes daydream that these creative fields would be so much less stressful.  But my husband is an artist, and he still has stress.  I have a friend who designs beautiful stationery, and I’m sure she has stress with deadlines and clients.  My sister left nursing to start a photography business, and she still had stress with clients, editing, scheduling and more.

Sometimes I think:

“I just want to make something crafty and sell it for a living.  That way I wouldn’t have to talk to anyone.  No one would die if I misspelled their name on a stamp or it came a day late.”

The one thing everyone’s job have in common is this:  It’s still a job.  When I was younger and I would complain about work, my dad would say “It’s a job – it’s supposed to be work.  That’s why they call it work.”

I’m sure I’m not the only one who has struggled in their career and wondered what “could’ve been,” but I have (finally after 13 years) come to the conclusion that I have a hard job, but I love it, and I’m proud.  What I do and who I am are one in the same.

“What do you do?”

“I’m a nurse.”

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