Jump to content

Calabria BSN, RN


Content by Calabria

  1. Nothing, really. I am working. My partner and I live nowhere near our families. All I want for Christmas is to move back home, which is a gift that I know that I won't get for a very long time, if at all.
  2. Calabria

    Worried about paying off student loan debt

    I graduated in December 2010 with $60,000 in student loan debt. That was between 2 different Bachelor's degrees, and in spite of going to the school with the most value available to me. It was not ideal, but I had little help from my parents, and I worked 3 jobs through my first degree to try to offset costs. When I took out my loans, I knew what my monthly payments would be in relation to my monthly earnings, and I knew that I wouldn't be struggling every month to survive. And it's true: my partner and I live comfortably, we have a healthy savings account and retirement funds, and we should have all student loan debt wiped out within the next 2 or 3 years. I now have $30,000 of debt left, after working only 3 years, because I make extra payments on my loans, which enables me to pay them off early. It's painful to think that I could have had $30,000 in the bank if I went to school for free, but that wasn't an option for me. I would not have taken out more debt for my education if I had to, though. $100,000 is way too much money... some people in my class did take out that much money. I'm not sure what their financial situations are like, but if they are anything like mine, they must have a hell of a time making ends meet every month.
  3. Calabria

    You are not getting enough sleep if...

    More than once, I've tried to badge into my apartment building with my work ID. It leaves the people at the front desk very amused.
  4. Calabria

    Are we tyrants?

    No, that's ludicrous. I'm saying that the signs and symptoms of the bleeds were first noticed immediately after suctioning. My point, like Bortaz, is that we shouldn't be exposing micropreemies to unnecessary interventions that heighten their risk of complications such as bleeds. Excessive suctioning is one of these interventions. We have no way of knowing when the bleeds definitely happened, but they first manifested right after suctioning.
  5. Calabria

    Are we tyrants?

    I'm currently laughing at this thread. Especially at the people (who don't work in NICU) that are aghast that NICU nurses take such ownership of their patients. Babies are not little adults. And it's not just instillation of NSS that's against evidence-based practice; suctioning when there's no REASON to suction (e.g., nothing in the ETT, clear breath sounds bilaterally) is harmful to micropreemies. Just a story to share with you all: I once had one of my micropreemies die after suffering massive pulmonary hemorrhage and brain hemorrhage. It coincidentally happened after RT suctioned her. When I left her, nothing was in her ETT and her lung sounds were quite clear. She was doing wonderfully when I left, and was weaning from respiratory support. When I came back 12 hours later, she was maxed out on respiratory support, seizing, in DIC, and her sats were in the toilet. Respiratory therapy and I negotiated a game plan as soon as the shift began so that handling would be minimized. I managed to keep her alive through the night, but she passed away a few hours after my shift.
  6. Calabria

    Are we tyrants?

    I prefer the term "assertive" to the term "tyrant". Neonates can't advocate for themselves. They need somebody who's willing to do it for them. I've gone so far as to threatening to call the department chair at 3 AM (after exhausting all other options) because I've vehemently disagreed with an infant's plan of care, and I was concerned that my patient was actually going to die.
  7. Calabria

    Sweating The Small Stuff

    Regarding scenario one, if the doctor wrote the order in accordance with standards set by the Joint Commission, she would've written it as "1 gram" instead of "1.0 grams", if that's what she really wanted. Adding ".0" leads to increased risk of error.
  8. Calabria


    Why should any nurse put 2 lives at risk by exposure to an infectious disease, as opposed to one? If possible, spread out the patients in isolation to the non-pregnant, non-immunocompromised nurses and call it a day.
  9. Calabria


    I hope that some of you aren't my coworkers.
  10. Calabria

    vent about floating

    My employer gives us the option to say that we don't wish to float if we sign up for overtime, and it's noted by scheduling. If a float is needed when our overtime shift rolls around, then our shift gets cancelled.
  11. Calabria


    I'd report them to the Department of Health. And anybody who listens, really.
  12. I care when it, like any other medical condition, affects my coworkers' abilities to function and perform as an effective member of our nursing team. If you can't train to be the charge nurse, and I have to do more often, because of a medical condition, perhaps it's time to go to a doctor and evaluate options for treatment. Or perhaps it's time to evaluate your lifestyle choice and your career. I would do the same for myself and any medical condition I have if it were impacting my job and my coworkers.
  13. Calabria

    Unusual Names for Medical Diagnoses

    I'm personally dealing with some anal glaucoma right now. I.e., I can't see my ass going into work tonight.
  14. Calabria

    What did you do the day before your test date?

    I didn't do anything nursing/NCLEX related. I enjoyed lunch with my best friend at our favorite restaurant. We enjoyed a couple of alcoholic drinks. I spent the rest of the day enjoying time with my family. I showered, pulled out my favorite outfit for the test (because I'm a big fan in looking good when you need the confidence to do something well), and went to bed early. It took me a little over 60 minutes to pass my test. My test shut off in 75 questions.
  15. Calabria

    "I don't want an admit..."

    1. I have another perspective. I work in a different environment than you (NICU), but if we walk in and see that the assignment is unsafe, we call management/in-house supervisors to tell them that we're formally objecting to working under such conditions. And we fill out paperwork saying so, and submit it to our union. Which leads me to #2... 2. We complain because if we admit, and we feel that our assignment is unsafe, it puts our patients/licenses/careers at risk. It's not fair to the patients, it's not fair to their families, and it's not fair to any of us.
  16. Calabria

    Night shift dinner time

    I'm a big fan of low-glycemic eating, especially on night shift. I've found that I don't get as sleepy/hungry between 3 AM and 5 AM on this diet. As a result, I pack my meals for work. Last week, for instance, I ate some lettuce wraps before my shift. I snacked on a piece of fruit with a cheese wedge between shift change and lunch. I had some grilled chicken with quinoa salad for lunch (which I try to take after midnight). For breakfast (before I go home, or as I'm driving home), I'll have a homemade green smoothie. My only guilty pleasure is a small can of Coke/Pepsi, which I drink with my lunch and only on nights when I'm working.
  17. My father spent 5 days in the MICU at a level-one teaching hospital when I was 12. My sisters were 9 and 6 at the time. We were on vacation when his health status suddenly deteriorated, and he was rushed by ambulance to the hospital. He required extensive resuscitation in order to survive, including (but not limited to) intubation, epinephrine, and pressors. I'm forever grateful to the nurses who snuck my sisters and I back to his room to say hello to him. We were allowed to stay only briefly, we had to wash our hands (and couldn't touch anything, except to give him a kiss), and we could only stay as long as his vital signs remained stable (his heart rate would occasionally spike as he saw us walking down the hall). I think it was good for him, too; not only for his mental and psychological status, but also for the well-being of my sisters and mother, after going through something so traumatic.
  18. Calabria

    Drawing the Line: Shutting Down Verbal Abuse

    I hope that you wrote up the fellow.
  19. Calabria

    What would you do if you got overpaid?

    I'd be going up the chain of command about this as soon as their office opens. They should advance you a check for their mistake.
  20. Calabria

    And the award for most asked question goes to...

    I don't entirely agree with this, and I think that sometimes too much emphasis is placed on weight gain as a reliable benchmark for good health in NICUs. Fluid overload may cause excessive weight gain, and has adverse affects on pulmonary and cardiac function. Lasix to correct it may cause weight loss that's anticipated by the medical team, but not necessarily by family members. This can all be broken down into simple terms for families, but telling them that we're giving their child medication that may cause them to lose some of the excess weight that they gained the night before might cause some issues with this view.
  21. Calabria

    And the award for most asked question goes to...

    When Mom/Dad/grandparents call for an update: "What's the baby doing right now?" The answer that I usually give, since it's true most of the time (especially for our littlest ones): He/she's sleeping/resting quietly right now... The answer that I'm tempted to give on the most stressful days, but don't: Tapdancing, hula hooping, jumping rope, doing gymnastics, reciting poetry.
  22. Calabria

    Personality At Work vs. At Home

    At work, my work area is spotless, my babies' cribs are well-organized, everything has a place, and I always have a plan (and a back-up plan). I let myself unravel a little bit at home. I let myself be more spontaneous and relaxed with plans, I don't mind if my significant other leaves his shoes in the middle of the floor (unless I trip over them... and only one pair!), and it's okay if things are a little messy. Oh, and I'm the world's most impatient driver... but I try not to be so impatient at work.
  23. Calabria

    How to pay back your student loans

    I've actually started doing Dave Ramsey's plan. I'm paying off my smallest loans first, and snowballing those payments to pay off other loans. I also do everything I can to get rebates on my loans. I initially used extra funds (while my loans were in deferment) to pay down a high-interest private loan so that my monthly payments would be lower on it, which helped a lot. And I will sometimes apply bonus/holiday pay or tax refunds to this loan, too. At this rate, I'll be paying my loans off several years earlier than planned.
  24. Calabria

    Nurses are getting younger...

    When I started working at 23, I was the youngest nurse in our entire division, let alone my unit. It's been a few years now, so I don't hold that title anymore... but I'm still one of the youngest employees. It doesn't make me any less respected, especially since having experience and being an articulate and bold advocate are very helpful.
  25. Calabria

    Pregnant Nurse - Vent

    I thought this, too. It's explicitly written out in our contracts, actually. This website has information about pregnant women caring for patients receiving chemotherapy. It outlines OSHA's recommendations on this as well. Look up your employer's policy, familiarize yourself with what OSHA says, and contact your manager. Your coworker is in need of serious re-education.