Not that I actually went anywhere but I am back! I had so many things that I thought "I need to write about this on my blog" but than never got around to it. Than it got to a point where I realized not only had I not written on my blog in awhile but I hadn't looked at anybody else's either! OOPS! So than recently with the holidays I had a friend here visiting from Utah and she mentioned to me something and said, "did you see that on my blog?" (or something to that effect) "um nope sorry I haven't been on in forever!" (or something along those lines) and yet again I didn't get on until today.
A lot has happened since my last blog in Oct. I stopped working at CMH! I loved it there but I didn't love the fact that I was 1)on-call, so there were no guaranteed hours 2)working weekends, I wouldn't mind the weekends per say but I requested Sunday's off and was not getting them, not making church life easy 3)no health insurance... that was mainly the things I disliked about it (there were some other "minor" type things that didn't bother me as much as some other people) I loved being in the hospital, I loved working with people, I loved the people I was working with. I had fun! It was nice to know I was working in health care and able to make a difference still. I loved that it gave me a chance to see a lot of my Paramedic and EMT friends and make new friends. I loved when we got a "run" because it reminded me of my time in the field. It was hard though when someone would come in and need some help, or when they had a code blue patient or otherwise needed assistance but because I was an admitting clerk I wasn't able to put on some gloves and help with CPR or in other ways. Although I did that too once in awhile. Like once when someone had just had his IV removed and it was bleeding so I grabbed some extra gauze and (with gloves on) applied pressure and switched out the bandage. The nurse was grateful.
I obviously didn't just leave to leave, I left because I had another opportunity come along. Back in may or June or sometime even before than I applied online for a dispatch job through the County of Ventura. I had actually applied for several dispatch type jobs. So sometime late in Aug I got an email about testing for a dispatch position, so I went in Sept for the testing. Than I got an email that I was in the top ranked group and was #4 on the list (at least I think that's what it was... its been awhile now) so I was emailed and called to schedule an interview. I was to go in and meet with Judy for an interview in the maintenance department for the health care agencies. The maintenance dept is in a bungalow type building back behind VCMC hospital. I went in one afternoon after work for my scheduled time. I was left waiting there for a bit but finally brought in the room. I interviewed with Judy (the supervisor) and Tom who is the facilities maintenance manager. It went well. Tom was joking around the whole time and cracking jokes and was kinda smart-Alick/ sarcastic while still going through the typical questions (strengths, weaknesses, what would you do if... etc) So at the end they apologized for my wait etc and I told them it was not a big deal that I am an adult and I know things don't always end/start on time and that I didn't mind. They told me that they had a few more interviews still and that it would probably be a little over a week before I heard anything again.
I felt good about that interview. It seemed to go well and based on their reaction to some of my answers it seemed as if they were impressed. But I left feeling not so sure. I was thinking it seemed kind of disorganized inside and it was a small building (literally like a bungalow) So I wasn't quite sure. But than as I was thinking about it I realized that maybe it was good. I knew the hours would be set with weekends off. I got to thinking about the small amount of people I saw and thought how nice that would be to be in a smaller "family" type workplace again. I pictured myself getting married and inviting the staff to the wedding etc. I thought how nice that would be. The very next week I got called by Jen asking me to come in for another "meeting" I was thinking it was going to be a 2nd interview so I scheduled that and went in again. I waited a little bit again but this time not as long then they took me into the training room again. There was someone else in there that they were talking to and I thought to myself "should she have waited until they were done before bringing me in?" and they had me sit down and introduced me to Pauli. Than they told us not to worry that we were not competing for one job but that Pauli was applying to be the office assistant and that I was applying for the communications operator (dispatcher). They said they didn't have a lot of time to meet with us individually and since our jobs would be overlapped basically they wanted to see how we got along beforehand.
The meeting started out with them telling us that we were each their top candidate at the time for the positions we were each applying to. So with Jen and Judy mostly this time and Tom peeking in once in awhile we talked. Judy had asked how we felt about the maintenance dept and about how we felt after the interviews etc and I told her the truth. I didn't go into all the details but I told her at first I wasn't quite sure, but the more I thought about it the more excited I was and that I knew it would be nice to work in a place again where everyone is friends and gets along. She told me that they had her baby shower in the training room. that it was really like a family there. At some point she stepped out again, so Pauli Jen and I were talking. We were there for close to an hour and than Judy came back in and she said they were talking and wanted to offer us the positions if we were interested. So we filled out paperwork! I left excited! We talked about hours and dress code (casual Friday's is a nice bonus) and other stuff pertinent to that meeting. We knew we had to go through County HR and do a background check, a physical and new hire paperwork than we would be able to start. All of that took what seemed like forever! But they want people to start with the start of a pay week so than that kinda held it back just a tad too. But I was able to give 2 weeks notice at CMH and had my last shift on a Sat night and started in maintenance Mon morning!
It has been a blessing ever since! I love my new job! The people are great! The maintenance guys although they seem tough on the outside are so helpful. Pauli and I get along great which is nice because although we each basically have our own office we kinda share too (separated by an open doorway mostly) They ordered us our own supplies before we even started and cleared out drawers for us to put stuff in, and said if we need anything to let them know so they can order that too. We all got new jackets (nice ones) Tom took us all out to lunch recently. Its been really really great!! They've been totally understanding with having appointments and stuff too. I was able to take some time off in the beginning for stuff I had planned before getting hired.
One of the greatest things is it is full time with benefits. About two weeks after I started I got my new insurance cards in the mail! Its so nice to not have to wait 3 months for that! Work has been good about appointments too! I have been trying to schedule dentist/eye etc appointments for hours I am not scheduled to work but when I can't they let us go. Its not a strict place! Its not like being in jail and stuck in a cubicle all day long! Its so much fun! The benefits are also nice because last week my knee messed up again. :-( unfortunately I had to go back to the doctor and they told me I tore the meniscus again! (which I kinda already knew) So now it looks as if I am having surgery again sooner rather than later. Last week one night my nephews were staying the night and Isaiah who had been asleep woke up. I was holding him and walking to sit on the couch and my knee popped really bad! So I kinda stood there for a minute or two and it felt ok, I decided I was going to just put him into my bed, brush my teeth and go to sleep too, while trying to get him back to sleep. As I went to walk down the hall my knee popped again this time my mom heard it across the room! I about fell over it hurt so bad! I grabbed the couch to stable myself and stood there like a flamingo. My mom said "sit down" and so I took a couple minor steps over and when I sat down (still holding Isaiah) it hurt to bend my knee and tears started streaming down my face. I was miserable! At this point I just wanted to go to bed! I knew it wasn't good. I had my mom come and take him because I wasn't going to get up holding him and I hobbled down the hall. Brushed my teeth and got in bed. I didn't ice it or anything (although I knew I should) The next day I was getting sharp pains through my knee all day long, when I would walk, even when just sitting at my desk. I decided to see if I could leave work early to go to the urgent care and they told me I could leave then if I wanted to and I said I was ok for awhile. I waited until after Pauli got some lunch than went to the ER instead of coming back to Simi first. I was there for about 2 1/2 hours total, got xrays etc and a referral for the ortho clinic.
So on Weds afternoon I took an extended lunch hour and went to the ortho clinic where I saw Dr Takeda, he told me it definitely seemed like meniscus tear. Said it was almost pointless to do a new MRI because its only going to be fixed with surgery anyway and if they find things worse at that time (during the surgery) they can fix them too. So I have a surgery consult with the sports medicine orthopaedic surgeon on the 19th. Dr Takeda said if it is only the meniscus I should be able to return to work the day after surgery, I am not sure I would be able to quite so soon, but was talking with Judy and she said if I try to schedule the surgery around when there is a 3 day holiday weekend to where I only take 2 sick days I won't need a dr note but it gives me 5 days off to recover. I may try for something like that! (see how awesome they are!?! I told her I feel bad because I don't/didn't want to have to take time off work especially while still technically in probationary period, but they are being so accommodating and helpful)
So that is my new work situation! Things there are amazing! I love my new job! Dr Takeda told me ideally I should heal and be perfectly able to recover well enough to be like new/normal again enough to return to work as an EMT if I want to! Which I absolutely LOVE doing and I MISS it so much but at the same time I know in time I am at risk for more injuries. I would have to choose to leave a county job with excellent benefits and retirement etc for it. So I will have to consider that option when I get to that point. Its nice to know there is that option (ideally) down the road! After 3 years of dealing with the knee stuff I was kinda to the point where I doubted ever recovering fully!
Well Christmas and New Years were good, (well new years i spent watching a movie since I was having such pain i couldn't do any fun activities that involved standing or walking to any extent) and here I am blogging again! Hopefully I can continue to do so regularly again! I've missed being able to share my joys, my accomplishments and even sometimes my trials!