What I think New Nurses Need in the Work Field!

First and foremost (as I’ve begun to come out of my writers block), I’d like to say it has certainly been quite awhile since I’ve written a post and so I think this topic is rather suitable since I’ve progressed at my work place. As other new nurses have also.

Let me just start by saying this is only my opinion! I am sure there is plenty more a new nurse needs but these are what I found in myself and I believe they can help other new nurses.

1. Confidence

       I purposely put this one first because I think it is the most important. One of the first compliments that I received from a lot of my patients and the nurses training me was that I was confident in what I did. Now I’m not saying act like you know what you are doing or be over confident… no thats not the solution. When I say confidence, I mean hold your head up high, greet everyone with a smile and mostly talk to your patients beyond what you were intending on speaking to them about. It lets them know you actually care and aren’t just there to do your job. To explain a little further, don’t just go into your patients room to do a single task and leave. Every visit you should be collecting some sort of information from your patient and their surroundings; it becomes vital later on, when you have to put the whole picture together. Nursing school teaches us to look at things bit by bit and thats only because we are building up to a whole different perspective, THIS is when that perspective will develop. Being narrow-minded will not work here, the more you open up the more you will see and learn.

If you have the confidence, it will help prevent you from being overly flustered. It becomes important to take things one at a time because overthinking and jumping ahead will only mix you up more and you do not need that especially when you are pressed for time. Now there will always be times when your priorities will change and you have to change gears; I’ll explain this later on. Many times a patient will tell you something and you will not have a way to respond and guess what?!! That is perfectly OKAY! We don’t always have to have an answer to everything; sometimes its good to use your senses and listen.

2. Know your stuff!!

      One thing should be clear; nursing is not the profession where we can say …”thank god, I don’t have to look at books again”. Uhmm, huge sorry for you because if you want to be a good nurse and be on top of your game then that is one of the things you will do! Human brains don’t have the ability to remember every single thing we have learned (unless we are Rainman) and I know I’m not. Looking back to your nursing school notes or even doing more research IS NOT I repeat IS NOT going to make you look stupid. People often thing of it as a weakness, that you have to refer to notes again and I think its sad that they think that. Reinforcing something is a strong trait and I back it up.

Knowing drugs… first your not a pharmacist… let them do their job! Nurses and drugs are a complicated relationship. You will always learn them when you are working, they are not something you need to know immediately off the top of your head! This is something I wouldn’t stress about because if you don’t know it then look it up but please don’t guess. Most importantly, nurses should know signs and symptoms of disease processes and drugs more. Because we are the ones present 24/7 and we are the ones picking things up on patients. Skills get stronger as you work but it doesn’t mean you should have an excuse to know nothing! Look at the acuity of your floor; look at what occurs most in what patient population. Focus more on that, it will help you branch out later on.

3. Learn to ask questions and utilize all of your resources

     One word: PRIORITIZE. The way you can do this is by asking questions when you don’t know something, instead of standing there and wondering what could be. Utilize your resources people!! Use the senior nurses, use the COW (computer on wheels), use the protocols at the nurses station and read the policies if you are second guessing yourself. All of this leads you to help prioritize. At first I had trouble with this when I started work and that is fine because you pick up on “how to” once you work more. Its expected of a new nurse and it is okay, please don’t feel down or upset because you believe you should know everything.

In one of the previous sections I mentioned how priorities change. And they change quickly! At one point you will be calling pharmacy to send up an antibiotic because its due at 10:00 and they haven’t yet and btw its 10:15, at the same time you’ll find out your patients blood sugar is 40mg/dL. Things like this is what I mean when I say your priorities change immediately. After all those nursing school exams and NCLEX questions, prioritizing should be easier in terms of filtering out who needs to be seen first and what you need to do. What I do is: once I get all my information on my assignments; I have started to ask myself who is more acute?! Who has more of a chance of going downhill? At that point you will definitely have your answer. If you have two at the same level; break it down further.

At some point people will expect you to think ahead and anticipate a certain situation. You can’t delay this! Its important to learn what you need and when. For example; you get a patient with end stage COPD, who cannot breathe unless they sit up, who has a productive wet cough. What do you need before your patient gets on your floor and is under your care?!!! These are the types of questions you need to ask yourself.

           You’d need to grab suction equipment, oxygen lines, non-rebreathers, and an ambu bag. Keep a dynamap near by b/c you’ll need vitals.

4. A calm approach to everything!

       This one is harder to grasp, especially because it depends on our personality and everyday demeanor. But it is certainly good to get practice in so you can have a sturdy foundation. Hold your ground no matter what!!! Take a few seconds and breathe deeply because most of the time you can’t speed something up that isn’t under your control. Doctors will ask you a million times if the patient pooped or something or if they coughed up a sputum. No your not going to force your patient to poop or push them to cough. It will happen… unless they have a severe bowl obstruction or something then, relax. Freaking out makes things worse and you definitely don’t want your patient to see you like that because guess what?!! They will freak out too.. they depend on you for care, if caretaker flips out, patient flips out.

5. Don’t be afraid of doctors!

    I come to think of everyone as working together. If you have a question, ask them while they are on the floor. It gets getting used to calling or paging a doctor. Importantly, your job is to look at the orders… do they make sense? A lot of the times docs can easily overlook what your goal as a nurse is to prevent & it happens, they have their plate full too, but thats why you are there as a fail safe mechanism ….** NERD ALERT**  Which cardiac rhythm is also known as a fail safe … to my nurses out there.. – Junctional Escape. : )

6. Lastly, a positive attitude and don’t forget to reward yourself

      Being negative Nancy isn’t going to get you anywhere. I know, it sucks… you deserve to have one bad day because anything and everything happened at home between you and your mother or you and your boyfriend had the most horrible argument. This is where being selfless comes in. Keep reminding yourself that for the next 8-12 hours, you are devoting all of your time to your patients. This is where you leave your problems at the door. A positive outlook will not only guide you to do good things for your patient but also make your patient happy every time you see them. Sometimes its easy to forget that your patients are going through a hard time too and only they know what type of hell they are experiencing, but it helps me to remind myself every now and then. I sometimes like to think of what my patient has as something I would have; it puts it into perspective… because even you don’t want to feel like they are, so why treat them like they don’t matter. Make them feel important, make them feel cared for. Reward yourself, everyday and every week! You deserve it. You work in a fog all day and only stay on one path. Its tough to not lose focus and stay motivated. Unfortunately, we don’t have that options to come back and do it tomorrow. Here and now… here and now. So, get that massage, spend that extra cash, go to dinner with a hot date, go to the beach and relax with your girlfriends. You need the balance with this type of work and kudos to you for graduating nursing school…. the real fun is only now starting!

** One awesome piece of advice I received from one of the nurses that was training me was…. “As a nurse, you do everyones job; it doesn’t matter if you have assistants to do something, you be your own assistant”. And she was right. There will be more than one time where you will be searching through the halls for someone to help you or to get a support to clean a patient up. You will waste more time looking then actually doing. Do it yourself. Please don’t be the nurse that says “well thats not what I do” … actually it is because your job is to care for your patient. If you don’t want to lay in a pile of your poop for more than 20 minutes then I’m pretty sure your patient doesn’t either. The floor I work on does vital signs every 4 hours; its a cardiac floor. This task is the job of the nursing assistant or support as we say. I do my own. A. I get to include it apart of my assessment and I get to check up on my patient (which you should be doing periodically btw). B. the assistant can get to other work that needs to be done.

This was just a compilation of what I thought was important because this is everything that I do and everything that I am growing stronger in. Of course, there will be qualities specific to the nurse and that is just as important. Nursing is the most selfless profession I know, giving your time to a group of patients who are strangers is the most respectful thing one can do. Pushing aside your feelings for once and thinking about anothers’ is vital here.

Goodluck to the nurses who just graduated … good luck on the NCLEX and the job search. You got this, never fall back because you will never realize how great you can be.  😉

Hope this helped for those who need it!! Peace Out !!! – TP

 

Advertisements

Nursing isn’t what it used to be; Working can’t change me.

 

I know its been awhile since I’ve written a post, but between recovering from a tonsillectomy and starting my first nursing job; I’ve been rather busy and plus I needed the time to gather my thoughts!

First, let me start by letting those of you who are not in the nursing field know that, nursing school and work in the field are two separate things. This might be true for quite a few fields, as we all learn to accommodate to the work environment but here is why nursing really sticks out like a sore thumb.

In nursing school we learn to be the patients backbone. Most patients are in a hospital nowadays because they are incredibly sick; hospitals these days are not keeping patients over night for simple post -op recoveries, they send them to nursing/rehab centers to recover, which is what scares me. In school we are taught to look at the patients perspective, to understand how they feel and what they are going through. To me, that is what a nurse is. We become advocates for the patients, we are their support system.

Now this is where things get tricky….; during my first few weeks, I was handling 15-30 patients on a single cart (med cart). And here are the rules:

1. Finish your med pass by noon (you start at 8am) + blood sugars and insulin

2. Answer doc questions; drop everything you are doing and get them the information they need

3. Stop what you are doing if there is a temp higher than 99 F or if someone is in pain

4. No electronic medical records; so make sure you remember to sign out the narcotics from their cardex. The count should not be off or your ass is on the line.

5. Gather vitals on who needs them.

6. Check off everything in the med book.

7. Know who takes their meds crushed or whole. (Crushing meds takes another 2 mins)

8. Find your patients if they are not in their rooms…. this requires an awfully fast walk to the other side of the building.

9. Finish morning med pass and start 2pm pass and hopefully finish by change of shift, which is at 3pm

10. Chart notes on your patients, do a monthly note, take off doc orders, fax pharmacy new med orders, report to the next nurse.

You get the point, I’m making here right? Now I am not complaining because this is the job I chose, my point here is that where do I have room to sit for 2 minutes and talk to my patient to see how they are doing? The truth is, you don’t have that time. The reason I chose nursing and the reason I actually fell in love with the profession during school was because I was able to uncover who I really was. All my life, I have seen myself tend to peoples feelings, putting myself behind them and I am okay with that. It is how I was built and it is how I am wired. But in the field where I cannot be who I want to be and I cannot give my patients the attention they need, how could I be the nurse I want to be?

I have met some extraordinary nurses while at my work place and they have years of experience. I have been told, once you figure out your routine and nook, you will be fine. Unfortunately, upon observing other nurses, I see them doing what the nursing field isn’t anymore. I encouraged one of my co-workers to further his/her degree, I saw their work ethic and I was amazed at how efficiently they dotted their I’s and crossed their T’s. They said “honestly, even though I wanted to, I wouldn’t do nursing again because nursing isn’t what it is used to be anymore”. As a new graduate I have quickly realized that.

I think I am more angry if anything at the system. I went to school in New England, where a nurses patient load did not exceed more than 5 patients. Here in NJ, it is 15-30 (in a rehab center) (7+in a hospital). I am the one these patients rely on throughout the time I am there to survive and to pick up on minor problems. If a patient is crying (even if I am told “oh she/he cries all the time”), I want to be there to comfort them, at the time they are feeling hurt and confused, so why not offer what I have? The answer is, “I can’t stick around sir and or madam because truthfully, I have 17 other patients just like you, to take care of and give medications to on time”. I mean, what kind of system is this?

I saw good nurses and bad nurses throughout my time in school. I vowed to myself that I do not want to become that cold nurse that ignores her patients because she needs to finish a med pass or write a couple words in a chart. I fear that most of the nurses that I am working with have changed. I do not want it to happen to me. I stuck with nursing because I became a shadow for someone in dire need of help, if my shadow can’t stick around what good am i? I refuse to be the one who is in and out with a paper cup of meds  and yet that is all I find myself doing because I am rushing to move on to the next patient all the while triple checking my meds because I cannot make a mistake.

The list I wrote, looks simple to the untrained eye. But if you look at it, as everything being done in a cluster or some what simultaneously, the picture might become clearer. Being a nurse is hard work and I don’t say that lightly.

I would’t be a nurse if I did not pay attention to my patients, if I did not speak to them or have a simple conversation, if I didn’t do them little favors etc. I owe my professors the most gracious thanks because through them I learned to go the extra mile. Through them I learned I should listen to my patients speak for two minutes because that is what they need to do; they need to communicate. Most of my patients spend their time alone in a room or doing activities. The individuals who are alone, just want to have someone to talk to; after all no one wants to be alone.

I recognize that I am still being a nurse while I work. I give meds, monitor conditions, change dressings etc. What I am really upset at is that there is no room for therapeutic communication, which is something I believe it truly helpful to someone who is healing. The power of communication itself is such a grand opportunity, it should be woven into all walks of life.

So, what am I doing about this? I think, slowly during my day at work I am trying to integrate my own practice into something that is so set in stone. I am noticing, that it does set me behind schedule but only by 15 -20 minutes. Now, in nursing world thats like one hour… but I’ve received more information out of my patients through talking to them then by just walking in and out of their rooms. I am better able to control their pain because I ask them if they are in pain and how much and where it is hurting. I try to clean up what I can while I am doing their meds. The  nursing assistants are just as busy as the nurses but I only wish that some could be more attentive. After all, no one wants to sit in a wet brief with food all over their face, I am sure you wouldn’t, I wouldn’t either. I am only standing up for what I believe in, whether it be quietly and on my own. I am one of the youngest and most inexperienced nurses in the field but I know what I have been taught and what I believe in should also be considered in the care of patients. I know I am doing the right thing for myself because when I am done talking to my patients, they thank me for listening, or give me a smile even if they are having an awful morning. Think about how many times you have had an awful day, where you wanted to quit…. then think about how many people you resided to… quite a few huh?! Now think, these patients do not have that. Some don’t even have a family to turn to, better yet friends.

So then, why not do what we can for people who cannot even raise their hands due to paralysis or because they forgot how to go to the bathroom due to Alzheimer’s?!

I am incredibly grateful that I became a nurse, I owe it to the family members that helped guide me in the direction and to the nursing school I attended and of course myself because I believe being a nurse not only includes what you learned to do in school but who you are as a person. I hope for change to occur, I know it is impossible to completely recreate something that is set in stone, but if us nurses are really in it for the patients & their happiness then bringing change little by little can’t be that difficult.

I will continue to work the way I was trained. Of course, I have remained fair to both systems presented to me, but I cannot stand for poor nursing just because your 9ams are behind schedule. I tried following the nurses’ lead…. the guilt of not reaching out to my patients came at me like a speeding 16 wheeler. I hated it.

As I may have mentioned before, I plan to go into humanitarian aide work. I want to travel to countries that do not have the proper medical means to survive. It is my ultimate dream and I plan on carrying it out 100%, I want to live in a country for a few months to become a part of a culture that is foreign to me. No matter where I am in the world, the greatest good I can do is helping another human being (and animals but thats a topic for another post 🙂 )  There is no such greater gratitude than the one you experience after you help heal someone and that is all I need.

“Sure, I’m for helping the elderly, I’m going to be old myself some day” – Lillian Carter

– TP ❤

Notorious Wedding Talk & Where I’ve Landed.

It took me sometime to come up with a topic I wanted to talk about. Fortunately, I can owe this post to an Indian soap my mom was watching this morning, titled Jodha Akbar. I mentioned to my mom that I wanted to wear a “large nose ring” on my wedding day because one of the women was adorned with one in said scene; otherwise called a vaari (in Gujrati). Preserving my cultural heritage is my priority, I was born an American, but I’d die for my culture. Thus, the planning began in my mothers head.

“Maybe you can wear a big necklace, it has to be gold though” – Indians have this obsession with gold due to it bringing prosperity to a family etc etc. 

To my non-Indian friends, the ridiculous round circle in this woman’s nostril is what we call a vaari. You only wear it on your wedding day. Disclaimer: Make sure to use a straw when drinking your beverage.. or else it’ll look like you are having a stroke.  Photo courtesy of Google images.

She continued to say ” Ohhh, and for the reception, if you want a real pearl necklace or a diamond necklace, we can get one of those too”.

And this is where I cut in to say, “First, let me find a guy, the last clearly didn’t work out the way it was supposed to”, in which we both burst out into laughter!

I gotta hand it to myself, my humor is top notch!

Awhile ago, my mom got an offer from a family friend about a guy who is “looking” for a girl. She told me and I rejected… (at that time I was in a relationship). She of course bought it up again this morning. She wanted to call the family and let them know….. eeekk. I don’t think I’m ready at the moment. The first thing I asked was if he was tall.

(Its a deal breaker for me, a tall man is like a Tulsi magnet…. not just because I am highly attracted to such a characteristic, its everything I’ve dreamt of … and then some ; ) And so, that is one of the qualities I do look for… I myself am short… someone a few inches taller has just never appealed to me… I like the tippy toe affect… always have)

Anyway, to continue… I still said no not yet.. I wasn’t ready. I need some time. This leads me to my next conundrum.

The idea of marriage to me has always been precious. I think of myself as an old soul. To me, if you aren’t ready to marry then don’t do it. It is something that is sacred enough to create a bond between two people, even if they were dating for awhile and things have died down a little. Truthfully, this is something I want, it is definitely something I want to share with another individual.. an individual that works for me. I believe, being married to someone will bring on that weird butterfly feeling, the excitement is another part of it. To be able to share a life with another is practically nuts and yet its become the norm. You learn to work in sync, sometimes things fall out of that coordinated life but thats where the excitement is, working out problems, making it work and of course the make up sex is the cherry on top. In my book at least. The height of marriage falls into friendship for me, being best friends with that person is an absolute must. Things just flow much better that way; acting like two people who are married to fulfill the contract… no, thats not how I imagine things. Marrying cause you’re getting old and you just want to settle… hey if you can handle that mind set, knock your self out, but I won’t. I can’t bare to imagine to spend my entire life with someone who I just settled for… what if my IT guy is out there and I just gave up because the hunt became to damn hard? At this point, its easier to say, to hell with getting old and the nagging that you hear from your parents… yes you should respect their opinions but 20 years down the road… its not their life that will be reaching the pinnacle, it will be yours. Like I said before, don’t do it until you are ready or until you’ve answered all of the questions you’ve come up with in your own head. Getting advice from a respected friend or sibling is great, but guess what… everyone says different… follow your mind, take a break for a bit.. its an everlasting project, its good to sometimes take a step back and evaluate things as they are. You know, seeing girlfriends getting engaged and then married literally kills you inside. Trust me, a good bunch of my nursing school friends ended up being proposed to after we all graduated. MY HEART fell out of my ass, for myself of course. Theres nothing more you can do but be happy for them, the one thing I wouldn’t want any woman to think is.. “when will it be my turn?”. I thought that. My relationship theme park shut down before I could even get in line for my turn. My point is, you never know what is going to happen… throughout my time with said person I dated I vowed to keep thinking that we never know what will happen, its better to be surprised then to have a plan in this game. The best relationships are the ones that are never expected to happen; whether they last or not, they teach you the most valuable and worthy lessons, its best to take it as an opportunity and go with it, because like I said you never know what will happen.

In all honesty, I thought I had found that person. I could picture myself, getting ready either standing at the altar or sitting around the fire, every things going smoothly, until I actually have to say “yes”. I saw myself hesitating. Why did I hesitate? After all, this is what I wanted, I couldn’t answer the question. There was something there that was stopping me, I couldn’t put a finger on it, I still can’t but something wasn’t right and that’s when I knew, this may not work. And that’s where my world began to shatter… unfortunately neither of us knew it. I like to think of it as not being able to face the truth because we both were happy with each other. Then I realized, maybe happiness isn’t the only thing you need to lead you down the path of marrying someone. Of course, there is love, respect, happiness, communication, compromise etc. Many factors make up a successful marriage to me. In my case, not everything was there; beliefs, values and the infamous party crasher, religion. As mad as I was at the latter, I had to let it go. You see, respecting him was a part of it and respecting his values is what made our decision easier. I’m more spiritual then religious, my beliefs are spread out through many religions, not just Hinduism and I like it that way. I’ve never seen myself being able to conform to just one thing; I like everything…. hmmm kinda like food. : x

In any relationship I’m in, my goal is to make things 50/50, to be fair is one of the ways I can give back to someone I am involved with. Just because I’m a woman does not mean I need the man to place everything at my feet.. it doesn’t work like that and I don’t want it to. For it to work… I should also be putting stuff at his feet; he needs to feel the appreciation just as much as I do. The male brain is wired WAY different than the female brain, for those of us into psychology, we can attest to that. Understanding, both worlds is important to me, you’ll see me catering to the male side just as much as the female; thats a real relationship to me.

Now that I may have solved some of this puzzle, my next worry is … who the hell is out there that shares what I have? Finding someone after college is probably as difficult as finding a needle in a hay stack; being that, that needle is the one you want to use. At one point in time, I promised myself and my best friend Reema that the next person I would date would be the person I’d want to marry. Obviously, that wasn’t the case. My fake promise led me down a path, although I regret nothing. 

There are so many people out there, I think most of all I am a bit scared, especially where I am right now. Time will fix that. But to me, what lies ahead isn’t necessarily going to define who I will marry and what will happen, what if I go through a series of boyfriends, before I hit my winning ticket? I’m 24, in the Indian world, this means your ass better start fighting for men, like someone handing out free ice-cream from the back of an ice-cream truck. (This really happened during my childhood by the way… it ended with sweaty Indian armpits in my face and big hipped women pushing to get a ice-cream cup for their 1 year old, who would’ve barely ate it).

As I’ve grown older, I have thought about many things. I’m a thinker and do it way too often. Probably way too much for my age. Its what makes me who I am. I think I know myself very well and I encourage many people to sit and think; it helps to define who you are. After dating around and being where I am, I know the type of man I want, of course I’m still learning as all of us are… but nonetheless I’ve got it down pat.

My ulterior motive here is to potentially find someone I’d want to marry. Mutually agreed upon, of course. Now, how do I do that? I’m done with school for now. I have a small circle of friends. Networking, seems to be a smart way of handling things; meeting a friends’ friend, or my favorite introductory line of all “I have this friend, who knows this guy, he’s also single, let me see if I can hook it up”. My face at this point, turns into an expressionless blob. Yes, I want to meet people; No, I don’t want to drown in dudes. I can’t play the I’m dating 5 guys at one time, to see who I like best game because frankly, I’d mess it up. Probably end up, texting guy A about plans I had with guy C and guy B is still waiting on my call all because I got confused between A and C. Then, they all peace out on me and once again Tulsi is as single as they come. Not my game, requires too much thinking, I already need my brain power to pass meds at work! I’d rather read a good book! So then, where does that take me? I live in a small town; unless the man of my dreams calls me out of the blue… looks like I’m still at square one.

I hope for someone to fall in love with my quirky humor, my witty remarks, my sailor mouth, my inappropriate comments, my love for books, the love I have for caring for those who cannot help themselves, my career, my family, which is huge, my short height because he should be 6 foot, my kinkiness, my hate for PDA, my need to have intellectual conversations, my love for debating, my appreciation for fights, my everlasting dreams of going paint balling, visiting a shooting range, laser tagging, acting like a ninja, when I can.., my nerdy-ness, the loyalty I have with said man, the love I have for him, the respect for his family and mine, my hate for lying and cheating, my feminist side, my independent-ness, my crazy anger, my sometimes irrational behavior… and so on… holy shit, theres so much more that makes up who I am.

                                   Where will I fit in some guys life where all of this will be accepted once again? I guess, we have to stay tuned to find out huh?!! Comments and thoughts are  always welcome! Especially from those married folk LOL.

Taking it one day at time;  Happy Pi day all … 3.14 all day. – TP

Startlings of Grief

What do you do when you miss someone so much and you cannot speak to them anymore? I’ve asked myself this question almost everyday for the past 4 years. I think what is making my situation worse is that I am also in some physical pain from a recent tonsillectomy I had done earlier this week. Recovery is awful and eating usual meals becomes close to none. I’ve been living off of popsicles and fluids and let me tell you that fluids become your best friend and thats if you don’t want to feel like you have a pulsating nail in your throat. I also lost an incredibly important relationship in my life just before the surgery, which added more fuel to my fire. Probably not how I planned it, but I couldn’t deal with the worry anymore. But thats another story for another day.

All of the pain that measures out day by day leads me to miss my dad who has been deceased for 4 years. Seems long, but its always recent for me; like it was yesterday.

Today, I was preparing to eat a dinner my mom made for me; something soft; accepting that I took to it well the other day, I figured I’d be able to handle it just as well today. After taking a few small bites, I felt a sharp shooting pain through my lower jaw and into the back of my tongue, as that area is rather swollen from the tonsillectomy. It felt like there was a permanent blade situated in the upper left corner, which punished me every time I would attempt to chew and swallow. Thus an unimaginable response displayed itself, I became incredibly upset and tears started rolling down my face. I wanted to hide, to lay down and wait to recover completely. I did not care if I didn’t eat for another two weeks, I would sleep it off… who am I kidding?! Eating is a joyous task for me and to those who know me can attest to that.

I badly wanted to eat since I haven’t had anything sustainable for a week. I became unsettled and sobbed for a few minutes, told my mom to leave my room because I was in pain and I wanted to handle it alone. I’ve done everything alone, since I was a kid… so why couldn’t I do this now? The answer is, I didn’t want to be alone, I wanted someone beside me, to comfort me, to see how I was doing. I think that is a part of what pained me so much. I wanted my dad.

I remember awhile ago when I was in India on a family trip, I got the most horrific case of gastroenteritis. Believe me, it was bad. From what I recall, my dad never left my side. He sat by my bed and stroked my head until I’d waver in and out of sleep. It was a terrible last few days in a foreign country, as much as I love my dearest motherland… it definitely is not a place to get any type of sickness. I went through two IV bags, which for some reason were hanging from the ceiling fan, tied to a rope. Oh yeah, did I mention I wasn’t in a hospital? I’m pretty sure I would have died if I landed in a state hospital. No thanks. If I was there now, I know I would have slapped the odd looking man-child who said he was LIKE a doctor. I was 19 and had no idea what to expect. On the day I took my flight back home, my dad cried. He cried with me in his arms and told me that everything will be alright. I needed that and I certainly needed him.

At times I realize, I can no longer speak to my dad, its not that easy, you see. Realistically, I know he has died. I secretly hope that he is not. Perhaps, he wanted to get away and maybe faked his own death. Its the only way I can keep him alive in my memory without completely forgetting his presence. I believe it is my need for a father that drives me to such a thought, its irrational. I try to remember the smell of his hands, they always smelled like fresh cigarettes. Its rather ironic that the most vivid memory I have of him is solely driven by what took his life. Neither friend nor foe; I hope for one day to move onto another thought of him with much less of a hate connected to it.

Nonetheless, he can no longer sit beside me and have the desire to take my burdens away. I couldn’t say my good-byes, the day he passed, I made the best of it. I struggle with that everyday. We all have our scars, some are deep, some are superficial, mine have developed well distributed along that spectrum. I don’t know what to do anymore… I want to jump start my life as soon as possible. Move on, walk through life with those who love me and those I love; new and old… but I feel like I’ll never be able to break this tension. I want to start fresh, begin doing rather than thinking. For someone who has been alone their whole life, I can surely say the active need of bondage and love should be endless. My message is not meant to be a form of sadness wrapped in a depression blanket, my idea was to write it out and I did just that; at least until my pain meds kick in.

I surely hope to share the story of my dads death, I believe it to be a learning piece. It was rather unusual in the way the timing worked out and I still cannot define why it happened the way it did. All I know is that, it wasn’t fair and I hope no one else goes through what I did.

In my final thoughts to wrap this post up, I’d like to say never be afraid to love openly. For many it can be a point of vulnerability and that’s why many of us put up that wall to protect our emotions. Its a normal reaction that human beings have and it certainly cannot be erased. But think about how much that can be given to the other individual. Perhaps, they haven’t felt as much as you can give. It seems selfless and it is, I maybe just that. It is how I give, I’ve held back on my feelings before and I have not been able to be the same person I am today. Creating such a bond is extraordinary to me, especially between two people, I certainly have learned to cherish it and I hope such a person can give all of that back to me one day. ❤

Live, Laugh, Love – TP

Love Getting Creative with Makeup?! Check Her out:

Hi fellow peeps!

I was hoping to have a section on makeup on InspireMe, after all makeup and beauty can be very inspirational. After much debate (took me like ten minutes!), I decided not to. I only “put a face on” (thats what I call putting makeup on lol) when I’m going out, I think over the years I’ve toned it down… why?… ehhh I think I’m just too lazy! I do take advantage of “HACing” – courtesy of Maskcara.com – Cara whose blog I also follow;she is a wonderful make-up artist!

However, I would like to share my closest friends’ blog. She is a new bee in the blogging business like myself but she definitely rocks at doing makeup! Reema, covers everything from the night-out look to the simple, “I am going to do errands but I look like a raccoon” look. Reema knows how to add that simple glow, especially when we find ourselves in a dull lighting. Since she is starting out, she has a few posts but I am sure she will expand, once she finds the time. I know Reema, through our undergraduate careers at Temple University and she has stuck by my side since Day One! I can rave on and on about her but here are somethings she covers on Simply Radiant:

– Skin Care

– Doing make-up and the perils of owning the “right” tools. (I put right in quotations because THERE ARE SO MANY RIGHT TOOLS!! and it of course depends on your preference).

– Her own personal advice – and I assure you she has the knowledge one needs for the make-up industry! When we were roommates, I used to watch her apply her make-up …. I swear I am not a creeper…!

– Highlight and Contouring (aka HAC)

I have her linked to “The blogs I follow” in the lower right hand corner. But here is where I can link you up… http://rpatel119.wordpress.com

Definitely, take advantage of her blog… follow us and expand your knowledge … you brainiacs!

Love & Peace … TP

My Fab Five Books!

Like any other reader, I don’t think I have exactly a “fab five”, but I guess this is to make things easier. Of course, I’ll be posting many more but to get things rolling this seems like a pretty good start. I definitely will not be giving a synopsis, perhaps a small description and if it tickles your fancy then start reading! Throughout the years I have either met someone like me who loves to read or someone who who hates it… its a hobby in my eyes; not a bad thing if you hate it either… people have their reasons, right?! So here it is (in no particular order):

Paolo

The Solitude of Prime Numbers is by far one of the grandest novels I’ve read. It was something I read recently and it immediately had to jump up on my favorites list! The author Paolo Giordano is a particle physicist, which is something I was intrigued by because you wouldn’t expect a physicist to write such a novel. He mysteriously ties in his love for prime numbers to his main characters, thus making them as mischievous as the prime number series itself. I think this is an awesome novel, it has an unusual perspective of love and I could not stop reading! Definitely worth checking out and the upside is, its pretty short so for those who have a distaste for the longer than usual books this is perfecto!

Perks

The infamous Perks of Being a WallFlower by Stephen Chbosky; why I chose this one is because I have read it three times and still haven’t got bored. I am sure most of you know what this book is about since a movie has been made but I encourage those who have only watched the movie to read the book; the insight it offers is wonderful. I find that my past relates most to the main character, particularly due to the fact that he keeps to himself. Once he discovers his admiration for friends and the like, the book takes off. One of the themes I see in this is that the human mind is an expert at subconsciously hiding what we cannot or do not want to face…. If you haven’t read it, please do!

Lipstick in Afghan

Lipstick in Afghanistan by Roberta Gately is a novel I recently finished! The novel follows a nurse who is interested in reaching out to individuals in third world countries. Lipstick in Afghanistan, definitely expanded my interests in humanitarian/volunteer work and I have since researched a multitude of projects and NGO’s. It is intertwined with the life of a nurse as well the stories that the main character experiences. It is a portal for experiencing a new culture and provides for a new outlook on those individuals who continue to deal with war and death. I believe, this novel really let me come to terms with the extravagant life I live when compared to those in countries like Afghanistan. It is something worth looking into, everyone has a life that is equal and in my opinion, if fortunate people like us can help, then its only a blessing, not for us but for those who live in war and hate.

Siddhartha

Siddhartha by Herman Hesse; In my opinion, Herman Hesse is one of the greatest writers that has walked this planet! I have read two books by him and still find myself reverting back to his writing. I will say that his writing is complex but each piece tells a wondrous story of the journey of life. For many, this may fall into the religion realm but for me it opens up a different perspective. It is the story of how a man journeys to find the religion we all know as Buddhism and what an enlightening journey it is! Siddhartha is bound with a spiritual elegance and thought provoking insight. Although, Siddhartha  is an incredibly short novel, it takes awhile to understand the writing. Hopefully, it appeals to the more kindred, humble souls out there… it definitely did for me!

Inside of a Dog

Inside of a Dog by Alexandra Horowitz. Exceptional is all I have to say. Hands down, this book is for animal lovers, especially dog lovers. Alexandra Horowitz is a researcher who digs into the psyche of a canine. I appreciate all animals and particularly love dogs. I myself, do not have any pets of my own (I blame it on my mom!), but one of my dearest cousins has a beautiful Yorkshire Terrier and she is the ultimate likable personality. Inside of a Dog, holds a lot of research and evidence based on the canines character; from the nose to the tail, everything is explained in detail. The author also throws in a few bits about her own personal canine friend, whom she loves to pieces! This book is full of information, but its worth reading because you only learn to appreciate the canine breed more than before. These are souls that cannot speak, who do not have opposable thumbs but end up expressing an unimaginable amount of love and gratitude, teaching us to appreciate our lives just as it is.

So, thats the list! I hope it can really introduce new books to those who haven’t heard of them or intrigue some of you non-readers. Knowing me, this list is bound to change, but I plan on adding different books through different posts, these are just the ones I would definitely read again without thinking about it twice!

** The pictures I have pulled from Google Images nor do I own any. (just in case those Feds come for me … ha ha)

Hope you all enjoy !

Live in the beauty of Life

TP ❤