Thursday, October 28, 2010

Raw Musings...

i know i should be stuck among the articles that now define me as an outsource orc...but i long to be free of word counts and restrictions and emails and deadlines and the occasional caucasian cuss-worthy threats...

i long for that byline once more...the glory of names on ink...the unmatched freedom of an empty page waiting for pen and hand to make love again...

the smell of printed pages that mock the world with untarnished truth and my own brand of sarcasm shining through...

i long to write...of life, of love and of truth...

to see each day with passion, to see when others simply fail to even "look".

i long to live forever in books bejeweled with age,

to survive the wrath of the seasons with each turn of the page,

i long to be alive with thoughts that strive,

with words that sing!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

The Superficialities of Urbania

This may be a bad start for an article, but yes, my grandmother makes exquisite fried rice. Of course there’s nothing really exquisite about fried rice, but this is my article.

I admit to being a more-than-willing benefactor of the modernities of Urbania: cell phones, instant cappuccino, smoke-belching transport systems that rob you of your sanity, remote-controlled-everythings. More than once I’ve contemplated the usual temptations of the middle class citizen, and I know there’s more to life than having load or weekend movies at the mall—but hey, I’m twenty-two. I’m supposed to be materialistic. After all, the world has enough beauty queens campaigning for world peace. Despite the expensive upkeep, these supposed-to-be luxuries have become prerequisites to survival. Or so we think.

While having one of those rare, rejuvenating opportunities at the province (where my grandmother makes exquisite fried rice), I had a chance to think things over. It’s nice to know you can think about other things aside from incident reports, exam results, vaccinations, and the world according to Grey’s Anatomy.

Halfway through my private musings, I had to start a fire to cook supper. My grandmother uses “kalan” (a form of pottery that uses coal to cook food); she lets the gas range rust to death for fear it might burn her house down. This suited me just fine; after all, it’s been quite a while. The sight of dark wood dancing with fiery sparks of red illuminated the dusky twilight. It reflected the glow from my grandmother’s tobacco, the strands of gray on her temple visible with each flicker. In the distance, the music of crickets cavorting filled the musty air.You must understand, this is a refreshing break from the afternoon traffic jam I contend with every day.

In the morning, it took me a while to realize that instead of the sound of my Nokia alarm, and the usual banging of kitchen pots, I was awakened by the cock-a-doodle-do and warm morning sunlight peeping through my window. Adding to that wonderful wake-up call was the realization that it was a Saturday and the hospital was nowhere in sight!

What an intermission from the superficialities of modernization, native chicken instead of microwave dinners, Cat Stevens instead of MTV incantations, fresh air instead of my roommate’s farting spree. I’d rather indulge in quiet walks through fields of green than count the cracks on sidewalks or Volkswagens in the highways of the metro. The only traffic that occurs is when black ants break the line of the red, and fistfights only come in handy between matchbox spiders.

Sometimes the simple rural life appears more charming and subtly uncomplicated than the amenities and sophistication of remote-controlled Urbania. But we, the predecessors of the new age often regard the old ways as backward, primitive or simply cheap.

Lying in my hammock and finishing my Formalin-free buko … I wonder, would I ever survive without cell phones, Friendster and Facebook accounts, or hot-water showers? Looking back on the last few days, I think I just did. Would you?

Now, how about some of that exquisite fried rice?

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

of life and ultimate frisbee...

Life is like a game of ultimate frisbee. Discs are like moments…mmmbops that are unrepeatable. They either fly off or you get to catch them and hold them for as long as you can ( in a game, thats roughly ten agonizing seconds, in life, it can be much shorter… ). Then, there comes a time when you have to let go… and watch it soar towards somebody worthy and waiting. If it drops, its gone. You need to go back and start all over again. Life offers start-overs too. Luckily.

If you get tired…there’s always the end-zone. A thin line between victory and defeat. Its a nice zone to watch the game of life pass between players, lovers and cough syrup drinkers… its a nice place to wait…. for those moments to once again come by…

New-Age Definitions

What is Love? here's a pessimistic, moronic view of the freak accident we refer to as "love"

this is "love" re-defined....

boyfriend - a guy with an open heart and an empty wallet who consistently gets manipulated "into swiping his card" (note to the dirty-minded: words in " " are open to other forms of interpretation)

girlfriend- the soon-to-be EX of your current eye-candy

girlfriend- your current arm-candy who retains her position so long as nobody better comes along

date- wat you feel compelled to do when the rest of your friends are married

- an end you work for by dropping obvious hints and wrong-sent messages, and yes, very encouraging Facebook posts that ummmm don't really get noticed in the first place

cool-off - the subtle break-up

friend- what she/he would rather be in your life

confused- the phase he goes into before he renounces his masculinity and decides to wear Boa feathers and a tiara

insecure- the adjective you use to refer to a partner who is always jealous to save you from the guilt of knowing there's equal justification for his/her jealous state

"the talk"- an out-of-nowhere response that tells you its the end of your attached life and the beginning of singledom!

me- the reason they give to make you believe its not "you" ( though ofcourse it is you and your stinking breath, your unshaven legs, your manic-depressive episodes)

feel free to add!

Monday, October 25, 2010

A Sairy Gamp's Metamorphosis: How I've Come to Love Nursing, Every Amber-Stained, Stinking Step of the Way...

It started with a choice: to serve Humanity or to write broken sonnets for the rest of my life. Guess what? I found myself, all 4 feet and 11 inches, standing next to a measuring tape on a wall at Franklin Hall. With just this final requirement as entry to the College of Nursing, I found myself wishing I was 4 feet and 10 inches instead. Then, I would be free to enroll in AB English and write sonnets and be broke for the rest of my life (did I just jumble all those up?). But as fate would have it, I was 4 feet and 11 inches tall enough. And I had to end my love affair with sonnets and Liam.

After 4 years of cuban heels, it's great to wake up in the morning, feel my carotid pulse and realize that yes, I'm still alive. To say "it hasn't been easy", is an understatement I dare not make. I admit to days when I wish I stuck with sonnet-writing instead.

During brief lucid intervals, I can still recall wearing my school uniform with a full sense of paranoia. Back in 2002, pencil skirts were nowhere near fashionable and the main reasons why people stared would either be because of your printed polka dot panties or your need for a good shave. But now, like a trained poodle, I can walk (or run if the class starts at 7 sharp) with perfect balance and absolute precision over man-holes and wet-tiled floors without impairing my skin integrity. Although I admit, with or without the cuban heels, I still arrive late.

I remember my very first skin test, it was half-way between an IM and a subcu...but how was I to know? I  was simply thankful for the classmate who consented to be my brave guinea pig for that day. She forgave me, but she eventually got even during the TSB. Don't ask how. At times when I think I have already mastered the art of juggling Rizal and the medical sciences, I get a wake-up call from my test results in Pharmacology. And I'm back to wishing I were sonnet-writing again. Can't we all just take Paracetamol for every imaginable ailment on earth?

My first IV follow-up resulted to a magnificent display of bubbles. It was then that I learned the art of "pitik-pitik" (a term which unfortunately doesn't have an English equivalent). Its a very primitive yet effective tactic when you want to save yourself from the legal liabilities of yet another incident report.

After 3 years of Related Learning Experience (RLE), I still catch myself wondering what an osteorized tube feeding would taste like, whether breast milk would taste better if it came in different flavors and if it would be ethically acceptable to ask for that leftover cookie on my patient's tray. Of course I never voiced those thoughts out loud. Instead I continued to diligently count the borborygmic sounds of another frustrated stomach who has been sentenced to "second batch".

I must admit, after my first post-mortem care, 3rd enema, fifth catheter insertion and seventh recopy episode, I intermittently considered other career options like call center and Korean tutorial services. Only two things kept me from quitting: coffee and dreams of californication.

Yet, despite these mishaps, it's sometimes surprising to miss the smell of Lysol, the rythmic sounds of S1's and S2's, and the feel of life pulsating beneath my fingers. I found myself embracing nursing, with all its smells and sights. Yes, folks. What may seem quite exciting for the average guy may look utterly boring for those on DR duty. That's probably the main reason why some of my male classmates decided to "convert" right after college.

Horror of horrors and miracle of all miracles, I have come full circle! In a way I began to see Nursing in a different light. Looking beyond the profession as a one-way ticket to the stars, I began my own metamorphosis. From a caterpillar who abhored pencil skirts to a butterfly who still abhors pencil skirts but is somehow willing to go the distance despite the vasoconstricted waistline. Time is a wonderful thing. It teaches us to be patient, to endure...and ultimately, to love.

So, how do I love Nursing...? Let me count the ways...

I love it with every urobag I empty, with each diaper I change, with every single cord I clamp...

I love it with every breath I count, every pulse I feel, every heart I hear...

I love it to the depths of my incisions, with every possible complication and beyond all phantom pain...

And after 4 years of cuban heels, in pure Shakesperean fashion I say, "shall I compare thee to a summer's day? Nope, come to think of it. Nursing...? You are far beyond compare.