Saturday, October 31, 2015

Acceptance and Cancellation

7:50 am.  Shift supervisor on the phone.  "Nurse Enid, go to Building [X- across the campus] by 8 am.  You have an all-day inservice."
Me:  "It's almost 8.  I'll be late."
Supervisor:  "That's okay."
Me:  "I'm in the middle of helping a doctor."
Supervisor:  "Just tell the doctor you have to go."

I told my immediate supervisor that I had to leave.  "They are supposed to give you written notice when you have inservice," she started.

"Well," I answered, "They treat me different."

I gathered my things and was about to leave.

8:00 am.  Shift supervisor on the phone.  "Nurse Enid, I will call you in five or ten minutes to let you know if you have to be there at 8."
Me:  "It's 8 o'clock now."
Supervisor:  "That's why I will call you back."

I continued working.  She did not call back until the afternoon.

2:00 pm.  Shift supervisor on the phone.  "Oh, Nurse Enid, what are you doing there?  I thought you were supposed to be at the inservice."
Me:  "You told me to wait for your phonecall."
Supervisor:  "No, I told you to go.  There was some confusion later, but if you were not sure, you should have called and I could have clarified for you.  Now you are in direct violation of the required inservice."
Me:  "Could you give me a copy of the letter you sent me letting me know that this was a required inservice on this date and the times?"
Supervisor:  "I would not keep copies of such things.  You should keep track of your own stuff."
Me:  "I never received a letter.  You will need to reschedule me and send written notice in advance of the date so I can plan my work schedule around it."
Supervisor:  "You do what you have to do.  I have no choice but to report your insubordination to our director."
Me:  "You do what you have to do.  Just send me a copy of your written complaint."

I've heard nothing further.  She is such an ass.  She is the same supervisor who canceled my overtime and then reported me for not coming in, pretending that she could not understand that her action negated my agreement to come to work.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Vanishing Responsibility

My supervisor got in trouble.

I don't like her, but it's really not her fault.

A stack of papers came her way by mistake, as usual.  They were older records for a current patient.  She delivered them to the ward where the patient was staying.

The next day, the doctor who ordered the old records started asking around for them.  One of the nurses recalled receiving them from my supervisor, then not remembering what she did with them.

I overheard the exchange between my supervisor and some big wig.

"Why would you just hand over important papers to someone so irresponsible?"

"What do you mean, 'irresponsible?'  She's a nurse just like me.  She is the nurse taking care of this patient."

"Didn't you make copies before giving the papers away?"

"No!  The records have nothing to do with me.  I don't know who brought them here.  I found them sitting on the floor in the hallway when I came back from break.  Anyone could have taken them.  I'm the responsible one who delivered them where they belong."

"You're not too responsible because you didn't make copies.  What if they got lost, which is exactly what happened?"

"I did not lose the papers.  You know who lost them.  Why don't you go after her?  I'm not photocopying inches of papers that have nothing to do with me just in case some careless person misplaces them."

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Good day to call out

While I was out, my supervisor called in insurance pre-certifications for the hospital stays for a few new patients, and she was not happy.

"It's your job, so when you are not here, it falls on me," she explained, bitterly.

"Actually, that is not my job.  I've never done that," I said.

"Well, they told me it was your job," she retorted, as if I'm trying to get out of doing work.

"They put a lot of other people's work on me," I said.  "I need you to stick up for me.  When a shift supervisor calls with an extra task for me, you tell me to 'just do it' and 'stop arguing with everybody.'  They will increase my work and it will flow onto you, too.  They don't care, as long as they aren't doing any work themselves."

"That is your problem if you don't like your job," she quipped and walked away.

She doesn't get it.  They tolerate her slightly more than they tolerate me.  They will dump a bunch of work on both of us, write us up for mistakes or not finishing, and then terminate us both.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Patient Concern or Unconcern

I took a few days off.  One of the wound care docs visited while I was off.  I am so glad I wasn't there.  A stage IV (four) ulcer re-opened and was infected with purulent drainage.  None of the nurses had noticed, in spite of the patient's assertions that he had been complaining about the pain to anyone who would listen.

This patient was on my special list of patients I monitor- until I was banned from patient care areas.  I told the wound care doc about my banishment and she expressed concern that the wounds would worsen.

A few weeks later, her fears were realized.  My supervisor told me that the doctor was livid and went to the director of the hospital.

According to my supervisor, an investigation is ongoing, but the nurses for the patient claimed that they were not doing the wound care or body assessment because they thought I was doing it.

I have not been near this particular ward in over a month, starting with the day I was ordered to stay away.

The wound care is twice daily every day.  I am not at work that frequently, so there is no logical way that someone could claim that I was the one doing every ordered episode of wound care.

But this place is not logical.

"See," my supervisor scolded me, "I told you to stay away or you would get blamed when something happened.  You didn't listen."

"I did listen!" I countered.  "I did stay away.  Yet I'm still being blamed."

I found an email that the supervisor printed.  I was excluded from the email circle, which is strange if I am supposedly the one who caused this big mess.  The doctor blasted the staff assigned to the patient's ward.  The doctor also pointed out that when I was checking on the patient, the wound was healing.

The director of nursing responded, "Thank you for your concern for our patients, doctor.  Nurse Enid is not permitted to deliver patient care."

This statement infers that there is something wrong with me, or an action filed against me, that forbids me from being in contact with patients.

I knew as soon as I stopped doing the wound care, it would fester and re-open.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Job Interview

I am set for a job interview!

Wish me luck.

It is for an insurance company.  Some kind of paperwork job, reviewing medical records.  Not patient care.

When they called and set up the date, I couldn't believe it.  I walked around the rest of the day, looking at my "coworkers," imagining never seeing them again.  It feels so good thinking that someone may recognize my abilities and want to hire me.

I am careful to not let myself get too wrapped up in the fantasy, though.  I have a terrible time securing interviews and an even worse time getting chosen for the position.  My last brush with interviews and potential employment was over a year ago.

If the pay is less than what I make now, I just can't take the job.  My debt is too great.  The days are gone when I took low-paying jobs in hopes of gaining experience that would enable me to climb up the corporate ladder.  They won't hire me cheap, then realize my wonderful contributions and triple my salary.  Not going to happen.  I won't progress far from the starting salary.

My current job sucks, but the insurance is great and I get more paid time off than most places.

I have to try very hard to be confident and not weird.  This place has damaged me psychologically.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Wife Stalker

Dina's profile on FaceBook popped up in my People You May Know section.  Her husband asked me out a few days ago.

This means that she has been looking at my FaceBook profile, right?  Any good stalkers out there have this method figured out?

I blocked her profile after viewing it.  She is back to using her own last name.  There are no pictures of her with hubby.

I've looked for her on FaceBook before with no success.  I don't know why she is putting herself out there now.  I think she's going to explode on me again.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Job Prospects

I applied for a job online and they called!  It's for an insurance company.

No interview yet.  I had to take a personality assessment online.

Because I work in psych, I've been reading about personalities and the types.  I've taken personality tests online.  When I answer truthfully, I end up in the autistic features range.  With practice, I have figured out how to give answers that sway me into a more mainstream profile with no polar extremes in tendencies.

So this is what I did.  I hope.

Try out these free online assessments:

Aspie Test

Personality Test

Saturday, October 24, 2015


I bumped into the union leader.  She acted friendly.

"We wanted your opinion on something," she started.

Yeah, right.

"We need to get the third nurse away from Nurse Fortune and Nurse Joy," she started.

"Don't even think about putting me there," I cut her off.

"No, of course not," she smiled.  "We were thinking of putting the new nurse with them.  She seems tough enough to stand up to them."

"No.  That's mean.  She'll leave.  She has another job and doesn't have to put up with their daily hostility and blaming."  How do they select their targets?

"She can handle them, no?" the union leader continued.

"Nobody can handle them.  Nobody should have to handle them.  Nurse Fortune put me through hell for months, with your blessing."  The smile vanished from her face.  I continued.  "When you are new, you don't want to make waves by standing up to bully nurses.  That new nurse will be emotionally damaged if you put her with Nurse Fortune and Nurse Joy.  They will dump all their work on her and at the end of the day, still report her to the supervisor to be written up."

"Well, then, who should we put there?" the union leader quipped, rather miffed.

I named one of the princesses- the one who got my false twin written up twice recently.

"We can't put her there!" the union leader gasped.  "No work would get done!"

I stared at her.  "You mean to tell me that you know that none of them do any work, so you spread them out among the hospital for other nurses to carry their workload, and yet you defend these bullies when they complain about the other nurses?"  I was getting angry with her.

"What do you want us to do with them?" she retorted.

"Fire them!" I answered immediately.

She shook her head and smiled, and started speaking as if to a child.  "You know we can't just fire someone without a very long paper trail."

I smiled back.  "You had no problem a few months ago when they fired Nurse [X]."  The smile dissipated from her face.  "No paper trail.  Nurse Joy's word and the 'investigation' of an incompetent supervisor.  Took one weekend to get rid of her.  'Indefensible' was the union's description of the fired nurse's predicament, yes?"

She sat there, not speaking.  I walked away.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Work Husband

Guess who asked me out!?!

Dina's husband.

Well, he didn't ask.  He told me about our first date.

He was bright red, smiling, a bit coy.  "I'm old-fashioned," he started.  "I'd like us to begin our relationship with a nice dinner, a quiet place, where we could just talk and get to know each other better."

I leaned in so as to not be overheard.  "When hell freezes over," I whispered, and walked away.  His face didn't change.  He probably didn't understand the phrasing.

Let me clarify the background for you, dear readers.

This couple put me through hell.  Dina would come to my work area and scream at me that I was a whore.  She incited others to rally against me.  Boyfriend/Husband was delighted.  It was some kind of jealousy game they loved to play.  I was a pawn.

Dina has been publicly cavorting with male staff around the hospital.  Hubby needs an in-house girlfriend himself.  Well, it won't be me.  He is a jerk.

In addition, his first wife still works at the hospital.  She has her own group of loyal followers, including a nursing supervisor who goes down in history as one of the few supervisors who successfully got an employee- Dina's husband- suspended.  If this posse thinks that I am dating him, they will go after me.  He was not discreet when he approached me.  Others may have heard him.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Going to the Top

I met with the director of the hospital.

I asked him for clarification about who is in charge of me and what my job title and duties are.

I told him about being banned from the wards by a shift supervisor at the bequest of another nurse and about being floated to cover Nurse Fortune's floor so she could go shopping.

He was annoyed.  He said, "You work in the office now.  You can go to the wards if you need to in order to carry out your job duties stemming from the office.  They can't float you to work the floor.  You got that job fair and square.  They only do this because you let them."

This made me feel better, stupid, and insecure all at the same time.  I carry no weight in this place.  Standing up to a supervisor will not make them stop.  They will come back at me harder.  I can't count on him to stick up for me.

I asked for my job description in writing.  He said, "You should have already received that."  I said I  had not.  He said he would look into it.

I didn't tell him that the union leader told me that I still had the same job title of floor nurse.  In case he follows through, I want to see which job description I get.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Write ups

I think I'm down to just a few people I can talk to at this hospital.

One of them is often confused with me because we are not from the same area of the world as most of the other staff.  We differ in size, shape, age, hair color, eye color; but these don't seem to be differentiating factors in the eyes of others.

One of the Favorite Children got my false twin written up twice in one day for nonsense:
--- Used evening supply of medication for morning administration (same dose)
--- Did not sign a thirty minute follow-up result on an as-needed medication for headache (was endorsed to next shift because this time fell on the next shift)

If she or I had tried to get one of the Favorite Children written up for this, we would have been the ones in trouble for not getting along with others, being critical, and trying to get others in trouble for nothing.

I told her to start going to the Favorite Child's supervisor with similar complaints, which will be dismissed.  Then we can try to get the supervisor in trouble for applying a harsher standard of performance.

But it probably won't work in this place.  The supervisor will deny receiving such complaints, no witness will back up my twin, and any errors by the Favorite Child will be fixed in the meantime.

Anyone have any better ideas?

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Projection: Spying

My immediate supervisor came to me in a hushed tone.  "Tammy got caught spying on people!  She was taking pictures with her phone of the doctors and other workers."

Tammy is the nurse who complained that I was spying on her, which got me banned from the wards.

Projection.  You would think that a bunch of mental health professionals would recognize it.  But they don't.

Tammy accused me of spying on her because she has been spying on people.

"So is she in trouble?  Do they realize that she was accusing me to deflect attention away from herself?" I asked.

Supervisor was perplexed.  "She said she had to start recording stuff because of you and your harassment of her," was the explanation/excuse.

Still can't win here.

Monday, October 19, 2015

Parking Lot Encounters- Parking Spot

Besides arriving super early to avoid people, I leave late, also to avoid people.  I miss most of the people on the incoming and outgoing shifts- except for the chronically late who just don't care.

I park on the side of the main lot, which is not even one of the closest hundred spots.

On this particular day, an orderly saw me and started chatting.  "A few weeks ago, I had the same surgery you did, and I'm fine!  I don't understand why you limp," she started telling me.

I thanked her for her "concern."

We noticed a horn honking.  One of the orderlies for the next shift, which started twenty minutes ago, was waiting in his car for me to leave.

"What are you honking for?" the chatty orderly yelled.

"I need that spot and she is standing around, talking!" he yelled back and honked the horn some more to emphasize his annoyance.

"Go park there, or there, or there!" the orderly shouted back.  "There are hundreds of other spots.  Why do you have to have this one?"

"She is supposed to leave," he roared back and continued sitting there, honking.

"Just ignore him," the chatty orderly said.  She stayed with me a few more minutes until the jerk finally drove off with one long horn blast.

That was very nice of her to stand up for me.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Parking Lot Encounters- Joggers

I have been arriving earlier and earlier to work because the earlier I arrive, the fewer people I see.

One morning, the orderly who accused me of sexual harassment (for sleeping with everyone EXCEPT him) came flying into the parking lot in his humongous SUV.  This was a problem for the group of joggers who were crossing the hospital's driveway at the same time as the truck came through.  The had to dodge the jerk.  There was a lot of yelling, but the jerk kept going, as if he had done nothing wrong.

There was no need to rush, as he was at least fifteen minutes early.

I hope that they reported him to the police and that he faces consequences.  I have no idea how to make him pay for what he's done to me.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Why Snail Mail is Slow

Multiple phonecalls came into my office that a package arrived in the mail.

This is unusual for two reasons:
---When people call the main number for me, nobody knows who I am.
---Mail for my office takes trips around the hospital for weeks before reaching me, if ever.

The package lay in a heap on a desk where the mail of the day had been deposited.  It was something I had mailed, or apparently tried unsuccessfully to mail, over two weeks ago.  I tried explaining this to the person at the desk.

"This is outgoing mail," I said.

"Yeah, it's for you," he replied.

"No, it is from me and to the company addressed in the middle of the package," I tried again.

"No, it is your mail.  You can take it," he answered.

I tossed it in an Outgoing Mail bin.  "Why did you do that?" he roared.

"I need that package to go out," I tried again.

"Well, it's just going to sit here until you come pick it up again.  It is addressed to you," he explained, annoyed.

"It's addressed from me," I said.

Then I walked away.  I can't.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Inspiration: Keep Caring

The Patient Advocate approached me.  She is a nice lady.  She told me that a lot of patients miss procedures and appointments because they are not made aware of the schedule until the last minute, so they refuse.

I told her that when I worked on the wards, I would tell my patients in advance so they could at least let the idea sink in.

She said I should go to individual patients to let them know their schedules and encourage them to go.

I explained to her that I was told to stop going into patient care areas and interfering with the way things are done on the wards.

She shook her head.  "You are one of the best nurses here.  That is a shame.  You should do what you think is best for the patient.  It is not about the ego of other nurses."

I see where she is coming from.  But I have to protect myself first.

I am in a difficult spot.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

New Billing Forms for October

My supervisor, with the help of the "computer lady," sent me a file on the magic computer.

In case you have not heard, as of October 1, 2015, billing codes have been updated.  We now have over 68,000 codes to choose from.

The file was a new billing form, printable on paper because electronic billing is not our thing.

"But you can't use it," my supervisor cautioned me.  "There are misspellings."

I expected misspellings from this place.  "Why don't we just correct the misspellings on the file and then print it out?" I suggested.

The supervisor's suspicions of me multiplied on her face.  "You cannot take an official form and change it yourself!" she blurted, half angry, half afraid.

I went ahead and corrected the misspellings and then printed many copies.  The supervisor grabbed them when she saw the pile, quickly scanning the page.  "Where are the misspellings?" she gasped.

"I don't know," I answered.  "That is what printed when I told the computer to print."

She had me bring up the file on the computer screen.  "All gone," she observed, squinting.  "I wonder how the computer lady does all this."

Monday, October 5, 2015

Waiting for What?

One of the doctors that I assist called to announce her expected arrival at 10:45 am.  She is always late, so I didn't expect her before 11 am.  I finished what I was in the middle of and started to call the wards, planning to stagger the appointments throughout 11 and 12.

The first clerk responded that my supervisor already told them to send the patient at 10:30.

My supervisor confirmed that she called from another room, telling every ward to send the patients for 10:30.  "That way, they won't keep the doctor waiting," she explained.

By 10:45, the waiting room had filled.  Because the orderlies are like preschoolers, I kept careful track of who arrived first, second, third, and so on.  When the doctor finally showed up at 11:15, I called the patients in order of their arrival.

After that fiasco was over and everyone had left, my supervisor came up to me.  "You really upset Bea by making her wait," she told me.

Bea is an orderly.  I hated working with her on the wards. Bea is a jerk.  A lazy, troublemaking jerk.  As is my supervisor.  And I have had enough.  "You told everyone to come at the same time, 45 minutes before the doctor showed up.  If Bea was upset about waiting, that is on you, not me," I countered.

"You controlled when people went in to see the doctor.  Not me.  Bea was here first with her patient," my supervisor said.  Wrong.

"Bea arrived after everyone else," I said.

"No, she was second," supervisor said.

"No, she was last.  And you know what else?  Bea is a lazy jerk.  I have no interest in hearing any more of her lies.  If I had my druthers, she would have been fired long ago.  It really doesn't matter if Bea sits in a waiting room doing nothing, or sits up on a ward, doing nothing.  Bea came down here to make trouble, and here you are, helping her.  I've heard enough."  I walked out, announcing that I was going on lunch.

Friday, October 2, 2015

Doing Better with Less

I am doing less and am proud of it.

When I get fired, it will be for something ridiculous that never even happened.

Like everyone else, my immediate supervisor helps get me into trouble.

Well, screw her.

Thursday, October 1, 2015


I returned from my days off to find a copy of a letter on my desk.

On my first day off, my immediate supervisor had written to a bunch of people in charge that she had no knowledge that I ever went onto the patient wards; she did not ever authorize me to go to any ward; and she could not think of a single reason why I would need to go to a patient ward to carry out my job duties.

This was in response to last week's instructions by a nursing supervisor that I was to stay away from the wards because my presence had offended and insulted another nurse, leading her to conclude that I was spying on her.

I had stayed away, gladly, and then was out for several days.

I was still holding the paper when my supervisor arrived.  "Even though I wrote that letter, we still had to have a meeting days later," she said.

"You know that I need to go to the wards to deliver and pick up papers," I started.  My mini-vacation revival was over.

"That does not include harassing the other nurses," she explained.  "You were told to stay away from the wards, especially from a particular nurse, yet I had to defend you every day since then."

"You call this 'defending' me?  You denied that I had a work-related reason for stepping outside this office.  You've set the stage for anyone to accuse me of harassment whenever they see me anywhere in this hospital," I said.

"Well, really I was defending myself more so than you, but I don't want to get in trouble because of stuff you did," the supervisor responded.

"I didn't do anything!" I answered back.  "Even when the nursing supervisor first spoke to me, there was no allegation of wrong-doing.  The problem is that my existence upsets one of her princesses."

"But you kept going back to that nurse's ward and bothering her," she continued.

"No, I didn't.  There are cameras.  I have not stepped onto any ward since the supervisor told me to stop.  I haven't even been at work for almost a week."

She back peddled as only this place can do.  "No one said you were at work."

"If you are saying that I continued to go to the work area of this nurse every day, then you are saying that I was at work when you know I was not here."

She tried processing this.  "Just don't leave the office without telling me where you are going, why, and how long it will take."

"Could you put that in writing?" I sweetly asked.  She walked away.  She won't codify it in writing because that is proof that they are harassing me.