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Apparently providing patient education is a terminable offense.

For real.

All nurses and patients need to check out her story.  And the follow-up here.

Pages will be set up on Change.org and Cause.com by tomorrow so that petitions can be made and funds can be gathered.

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Update 01/26/12:

Facebook Support Page: Nurse Up for Amanda Trujillo

Cause.com Support Page: Amanda’s Fight is Our Fight, Both Nurses and Patients Alike!

Banner Health on-line feedback: Tell her former employer how you feel about their actions.

Change.org Support Page: Arizona State Board: Remove Amanda Trujillo’s nursing license from “under investigation” status

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Update 01/27/12

Click here for a full resource list of ways you can support Amanda Trujillo.

Here is a link to a fun article about why seven Disney princesses make the worst role models for girls.

About Princess Aurora:

She’s a princess who doesn’t know she’s a princess and therefore has no aspirations besides meeting other humans—preferably male humans.

After 15 years of seeing animals bang in the woods, Briar Rose sings a little ditty called “I Wonder” where she basically mourns the fact that all the lady animals are getting some from their male cohorts and she hasn’t laid eyes upon a man in the entirety of her life.

In fact, the only other people she knows are 3 fairies masquerading as humans to take care of her.

She’s so lonely, in fact, that she creates an imaginary “dream prince” and the animals play along (the owl acting as the prince, of course).

While they’re dancing and singing, however, a real prince comes along and starts dancing with her. This startles Briar Rose until Philip’s smooth line of, “We’ve met before … once upon a dream” wins her over.

Yeah, nothing like telling a poor, desperate girl that you’re her dream prince to get some.

It actually makes me wonder if the entirety of Sleeping Beauty happens in Briar Rose’s head (and how awesome, albeit f*cked up, would that be?). A girl so desperate for love, she’d rather sleep and dream of imaginary princes than live a life on her own, be it within the forest or outside.

That would make a fabulous, darker interpretation of the story.

She spends more time imagining what she wants than she does actually trying to achieve it. There are few other characters that could potentially inspire girls to be lazy, submissive, inside-the-box thinkers than Sleeping Beauty.

Aaaannnd…. this is where it hurt just a little bit.

The Texas Nursing Voice quarterly has an article titled “10 Good Reasons To Hire/Retain TPAPN Nurses: A Commentary.”  Written by the program’s director Mike Van Doren, it goes on to explain why employers shouldn’t shy away from a nurse participating in the Texas Peer Assistance Program for Nurses (TPAPN).

Doren describes TPAPN as “a voluntary, alternative program for RNs and LVNs of Texas whose psychiatric and substance use disorders have impaired their practice.”  I didn’t realize psychiatric disorders fell under its umbrella as it has only ever been explained to me as a rehabilitative program for substance abusing nurses.  The official website lists the following diagnoses: substance abuse, substance dependency, anxiety disorders, major depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and schizoaffective disorder.

I believe in second chances when someone has proven themselves.  I have some problems with a few of the arguments Van Doren made favoring a TPAPN nurse over a nurse without a similar record.

“When employers retain or hire a TPAPN nurse, they have a nurse with an identified risk who is closely monitored, including frequent, random drug testing.  The nurse applicant who is less known, i.e., not in TPAPN, may seem more desirable but may actually prove to have more liablities.”

I have more liabilities than the nurse with a history of stealing narcotics?

“Nurses participating in TPAPN are often very motivated to make the sacrifices necessary to improve their lifestyles through their recovery, thereby benefiting their patients and their employers as nurse managers as TPAPN nurses have attested to time and time again.”

This one hits a bit close to home because it seems to be a necessary qualification to be a nurse manager or a coordinator of anything at my department.  This hospital passed up several well-qualified, long-term employees a few years ago for a nurse manager position in favor of a TPAPN nurse.  This hospital seems to make up cushy positions to keep a TPAPN nurse while still claiming there is no money to increase staffing.  It’s as if the next step in the professional ladder is to get caught, complete the program, and get position coveted by non-TPAPN nurses.

Van Doren uses a lot of “mays” in his arguments so that he can’t be accused of actually stating a TPAPN nurse is a better choice.  However, I think this next argument is particularly worded poorly.

“If health care employers often, directly or indirectly, care for or help in the rehabilitation of patients who may have a substance abuse or psychiatiric disorder as well as other chronic diseases, why would they not allow similar care and re-entry to practice for their nurse employees, especially those who have demonstrated good practice and loyalty?”

Shouldn’t that read “for their nurse employees especially those who have demostrated good practice?”  (I don’t know where he was going with the loyalty part. Loyalty to the employer?  To the profession? To the patient?)  His argument as worded seems to indicate that every nurse with such a history should automatically be allowed re-entry just because we as nurses treat these types of patients- not just re-entry to those nurses who have fallen but proven to have picked themselves up and moved in a positive direction.

I agree that a history of TPAPN should not be a career-long burden for a nurse who has recovered and continued with good practice.  I believe that a nurse who has successfully completed a program and maintained good nursing practice for a couple of years should have the opportunity for promotions and advancements in the profession.

I know that Mike Van Doren is advocating for the nurses participating in the program, however, that advocacy should not be at the expense of us nurses with “unknown” risks.  The rehab program should not have any appearances of reward.  It should simply assist the nurse in recovering his/her footing and continuing toward a successful career.

I’ve been coming across more and more posts through my reader about the highly sensitive person.  I did a little on-line research, and my jaw literally dropped as a read article after article describing myself better than I could have.

Highly Sensitive Person Traits

22 Signs That You’re a Highly Sensitive Person

Attributes and Characteristics of Being Highly Sensitive

…and more.

Not only did the descriptions fit, but the articles even listed the reactions that highly sensitive people receive from those around them.

It was as though I were reading about my life.  These are characteristics I don’t usually speak about to other people because they’ve never understood and have even mocked.

Interesting.

“Next time you are in a major airport, look around and you may see nurses preparing to travel with patients aboard the same commercial airliner.”

Click here for the rest of the article.

My Happiness Project

1. Set a bedtime.
2. Make my bed every morning.
3. Always be reading something.
4. Move more.
5. Toss and organize.
6. Give proofs of love.
7. Leave the past.
8. Fight right.
9. Don't expect praise or appreciation.
10. Kiss more, hug more, touch more.
11. Aim higher.
12. Find some fun.
13. Ask for help.
14. Smile.
15. Realize it's possible.
16. Don't compare;be inspired.
17. Focus on what I have.
18. Beware of drift.
19. Take a chance.
20. Listen.
21. Be mindful.
22. Cultivate gratitude.
23. Spend out.
24. Do good, feel good.
25. Show up.
26. Have the courage to be imperfect.
27. Find joy in the ordinary.
28. Work smart.
29. Enjoy now.
30. Talk to strangers.
31. Go outside.
32. Start where I am.
33. Show up on time.
34. See art everyday.
35. Love with abandon.
36. Be colorful.
37. Dress the part.
38. Revel in accomplishments.
39. Learn something new.
40. Fear less.
41. Take pictures.
42. Speak with integrity.
43. Don't be critical about small things.
44. Manage my pain.
45. Surround myself with creative people.
46. Practice, practice, practice.
47. Don't force it.
48. Deal with something once.
49. Trust my instincts.
50. Avoid gossip.
51. Choose to see the best in people.
52. Take time to be silly.
53. Throw my own party.
54. Be a mentor.
55. Lean into my fears.
56. Find the others.
57. Do the unexpected.
58. Don't break the chain.
59. Do things others aren't.
60. Slow down.
61. Be cool with not being cool.
62. Be kinder than necessary and more generous than reasonable.
63. Pretend I'm good at it.
64. Keep in touch.
65. Row my own canoe.
66. Do what only you can do.
67. If it doesn't work out, find something that does.
68. Dream bigger.
69. Notice what's right.
70. Stop talking. Start doing.
71. When in doubt, choose laughter.
72. Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good.
73. Respect everyone.
74. Be early.
75. Delete the unnecessary.

Three Simple Rules

1. If you do not GO after what you want, you will never have it.
2. If you do not ASK, the answer will always be no.
3. If you do not MOVE forward, you will always be in the same place.

All I Need

1. Someone to love.
2. Something to do.
3. Something to hope for.

What I’m Reading

Blood Meridian
by Cormac McCarthy
Their Eyes Were Watching God
by Zora Neale Hurston

U.S. States I’ve Visited

Alaska
Arizona
Arkansas
Colorado
Georgia
Florida
Louisiana
Maryland
New Mexico
North Carolina
Ohio
Oklahoma
Pennsylvania
Texas
Utah
Virgina

Countries I’ve Visited

Mexico
Colombia
Thailand
Vietnam
Bermuda (British territory)

I write about…