Get up and out!

Sometimes…rarely…when the alarm goes off in the morning you feel like covering your face and going back to sleep. However, I have recently found that doing something truly fulfilling during the day can remedy that.

I work in two places (technically three- two of the sites are the same job), as a nurse practitioner. One site is about health, weight loss, sports, and everything that I care about in my personal time. The patients here are motivated, have all the right resources, and are ready to do whatever you tell them. The other site is a jail where I see patients that are waiting to go to court for their various indiscretions. The patients are difficult, sometimes untruthful, and frankly very sick (both mentally and physically).

You think you know where I’m going with this. You are wrong, however. I love the jail very much. I love the challenge of getting through to someone who hasn’t had a provider HELP them in many years. I love having to sort through stories like a detective, because the patients have been taught that they should lie to get what they want. I love making a difference and showing them that they can change their lives with small steps. I love not knowing who or what is going to walk into my exam room and I especially love having to take care of any problem that comes up.

I almost didn’t take the jail job. I sat on my couch and pondered for days whether this was the right choice for me. The thought of being in charge of these patients petrified me to the core. I talked to everyone I know, and they all (but one!) told me I shouldn’t do it. I wanted to listen to them, but something inside me kept me from sending the “Thank you but no thank you for the opportunity” email to the hiring manager. Something intangible. Something wonderful.

I wrote this little monologue to say that as Hallmark as it sounds, things that scare you are probably worth doing. If you heart quakes a little when you wake up in the morning, it’s going to be a good day. If your hands are shaking while you’re doing a procedure, you’re probably gaining good experience, and if you have no fricking clue what to do for a patient, I’d call that a good patient to learn from. From difficulty comes success.


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