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A high-heel loving gal and her trusty sidekick…
Friday, July 9, 2010

life update

Okay okay, I admit it - I'm a bad blogger. I know this, and embrace it. And then do a cop-out by posting a crappy cell-phone picture of the dog to make up for it. So I figured a life-update was long overdue... So here goes.

What am I up to these days? Working. and then working some more. occasionally finding time to play with the dog, but not much which makes me feel guilty. I currently am working 2 jobs, for the first time in my life, which is hectic but worth it in the long run (I think...)!

My newest job is at a home-health agency, where I am working 1 1/2 weekends per month, plus one evening (about 3-4 hours) per week after i get off at Cancer Care. It is actually semi-fun when i get over the bitching about having to go do it on what should be my time off. I do a lot of teaching/admissions - mainly people on home antibiotics/enteral therapy (feeding tubes, nutrition via their IV, etc.)/wound care. It is nice, cuz I get to use some skills that I was missing by not being in the hospital anymore.

My other job, at Cancer Care Northwest, is going really really good these days. (And, side-note, I've been there 2 years next month, which is a personal record for me since starting my nursing journey.) I recently added some new responsibilities, and am working 3 days/week as the Stem Cell Transplant Program coordinator. (The other 2 days are spent giving chemo per usual.) Our regular coordinator is going to have a baby any second, so I am filling in until November. It is scary, busy, and interesting - but probably not a job I'd want to do full time or forever... Basically my days are spent getting people ready for their autologous stem cell transplants from start to finish. (*For you non-medical peeps, this means that they get a whole bunch of nasty chemo to kill off every last bit of cancer, then we give them drugs to get them to over-produce white blood cells and move their stem cells [undeveloped blood cells] from the bone marrow into the blood stream. We collect those cells, store them at the blood bank, give them more chemo to completely kill of all of their bone marrow and give them back those immature stem cells so they don't die. It's safer than the other kind of transplant [allogeneic] because you are getting back your own cells so your body won't reject them, instead of getting a stranger's immune system which is much harder to deal with...) It's very very complicated, and now completely my job to keep our stem-cell Doc on track and make sure every single thing is ordered, done on time, deal with any complications, answer questions, etc. So that has been fun to learn something new! (Although I think I'm getting my first ulcer, and woke myself up at 5am the other day, in a panic because I freaked out over getting some cells ordered from Seattle that are shipping next week...) :O

Anyways, that is going to be the story of my life for the next few months... Maybe things'll slow down in time for the holidays. We are busy trying to plan out a family trip to Belize/Caribbean/anywhere warm for Christmas - and I'm already ready for that vacation!

9 comments:

Laurie said...

so proud of you for taking on a new challenge at work! You will be fabulous, and we all know it.

Meg said...

Wow!!! I remember these coordinators...YOU GO GIRL! And what a great excuse to drink:). Actually, all this stem cell talk makes me really, really miss my days at UW/Fred Hutch. Glad to see such an amazing gal changing peoples lives. You are a dynamo.

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