Tuesday, January 06, 2015

Lack of Material

I'm in the mood to post something but find that I have too many incomplete thoughts to post.

I don't know if it's that I truly have a lack of material or if it's because I'm to scarred to put down any of my true thoughts into words.  There is defiantly plenty of trivial and important things that I could comment on.

I find today that the trivial are what I don't have fully formed.  The important things - opinions, thoughts, news I shy away from for two reasons:
1.  I am not on any site consistently enough to be able to host any type of banter about my thoughts and opinions.
2.  I would not want anything I would say or type to affect my professional life.

So with a lack of things to post today, but working on getting back to the blog more, I will simply wish you all a good night and hopefully I will have some work on a craft project soon that I can share with you.

Friday, January 02, 2015

Check this one off the list

Before the movie people would just say I want to do ___ before ___ (I'm 40, I've had kids, I'm dead, etc).  Don't get me wrong, I had heard of a bucket list before the movie using that term, but it wasn't as saturated through our culture as it is now.

I don't know that I have a true bucket list, or that I've honestly sat down and given it true thought.  If I were to make one it would consist of at least this - Visit all 13 original colonies (which has now become visit all states along the eastern seaboard), travel internationally, see a Broadway show in NYC, turn one of my ideas for a story into a novel, walk the Ravenel bridge (follow the link for really old pics from me of the bridge or just google search for new ones)from end to end, travel the South Carolina Heritage Corridor Discovery Trail.

Of the things I have listed above I have managed to see a Broadway show in NYC (Lion King in 2010), traveled the Discovery Trail (5th anniversary trip in 2008), and today I walked the Ravenel bridge from end to end.

I never made myself find the time before today, I also thought it would take me an excessively long time (which it might have 5 months ago) but now the distance is within a range that I am trying to walk regularly and today I sent Ann to "school" and then made the time to do it.  (Image above is a screen shot from my mapmywalk page).

Now that I've checked that off of my list I think it's time to truly sit down and create that bucket list of things I want to do.  I'm sure that if I take the time to do that it is a little more detailed than what I have put down above.

Thursday, January 01, 2015

It's really hard to brag about myself...

I can't believe I'm doing this but I told Karen Griph that I would put this on facebook and so many people that see me are now asking.  Plus, I can see it when I look at pictures so this is also for my own personal reference.

I am very thankful to be able to start 2015 better than last year by having lost 37 pounds so far since August 4, 2014. (And if you look at my happy new year post from today this is what I started in August that I referenced) I look forward to continuing my journey until I can be at my healthy goal.

There are no magic pills or secrets to this loss.  I'm simply counting calories (using myfitnesspal) and am more active (love having a fitbit).

For comparison, the first picture is from when I was in Cleveland in June and the second picture is from today.

Happy New Year!

A wise man once told me that what you do on new years day is what you will be doing the rest of the year.

While I'm not overly superstitious I could only hope that this could be true as today has been a wonderful start to the new year.

I am resolving this year to take each day as it comes and not let 2015 seem to go as fast as 2014 did.

On the surface this is a simple concept, almost a cheaters way out of a resolution as so many of us share this sentiment and then find ourselves feeling the same way each December.  For me though, this sentiment has come to mean not getting overwhelmed by the end result of a project but focusing on what I can do for that project right now to get to that goal.

I actually started this in August with one part of my life and now want to work to move it to other areas.  While I don't know what this will mean for me overall this year I do hope that I will be writing more, completing more craft projects, and growing as a mom, wife, and nurse.

There are a lot of goals for me to accomplish in that list.  I look forward to the steps that it will take to do that.

Here's to 2015 and that at the end of this year I can look back and be proud that I didn't let it slip by to fast.

I'm not going to promise to blog frequently, but I hope that I will continue to follow through with my thoughts and actually get more posts up here.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

International Kangaroo Care Awareness Day

I am re-posting this from 2 years ago in celebration of Kangaroo Care (skin-to-skin) contact.  This is the area that truly drives my nursing practice and I wouldn't change it for the world.  While the years have changed and I have corrected my certifying body for this posting the information is still correct and powerful.  I speak even more passionately about it now that I did then, I truly believe (and know) that every infant should receive this powerful therapy.

If, you feel that you've read this before and do not want to revisit it, let me leave you with the one statement I would make if that's all I was able to say about Kangaroo Care:
KC is essential to ALL infants because it recreates the uterine environment better than any technology.

TUESDAY, MAY 15, 2012

Happy International Kangaroo Care Awareness Day!

Happy International Kangaroo Care Awareness Day!!

For those of you confused right now, I have finally made it to the blog to talk about my work.  Most of you know that I'm a Neonatal ICU nurse.  I have done this since nursing school graduation, almost 7 years ago.  I love this field.  It's challenging, heart wrenching, sad at times and joyous at others, and incredibly rewarding.  Even more challenging is that the facility where I work is a referral and surgical center too so we see the sickest of the sick and the smallest that you can imagine up and everything else that comes before that too.

In working at my facility and learning neonatal medicine I have grown and expanded and I have a committee that I run (and have now run for three years) to help address issues in one area of neonatal care.  I chair my facilities Kangaroo Care Committee and have also become a Certified Kangaroo Care Provider from the United States Institute for Kangaroo Care who actively participates with the World Health Organization's International Network of Kangaroo Care Providers.

Kangaroo Care is a wonderful practice where a parent holds their infant in direct skin-to-skin contact on their chest.  The infant wears a diaper and a hat (hat as necessary) and then both are covered in some manner. (A blanket, a wrap, etc)

From everything I've learned about kangaroo care I could speak non-stop for hours about it.  It is so wonderful that you can call it a medical treatment that the parents can provide.  Kangaroo Care promotes bonding, better thermoregulation in infants (better temperature control), improved brain growth, improved brain development, improved overall growth, increased parent-infant bonding, increased parent confidence, better pain control for both infant and mother (no information available for pain control in fathers), improved breast milk production, improved breast milk content (a richer better quality milk), improved amount of infant sleep, decreased incidence of depression and more benefits being discovered daily.  Just to name a few of the simpler ones.

I'm really keeping this very basic.  I'm not going into the history of kangaroo care, or the over 400 studies available for it.  I'm not going into the high-tech ICU environment versus lower tech and third-work country practices.  I could tell you about how the skin makes antibodies and helps the infant receive them.  I could tell you why the skin of the chest is so receptive for this care.  I could break it down further into how a mother's body works differently from a father's body works differently from another family member's body, etc. Where I work we keep kangaroo care exclusively for mom's and dad's.  There's just too much going on to allow it to spread to all, it's the one thing we can offer a parent that can first help them to feel that they are truly being a parent and that the experience is not taken away from them.  But in tragic or extenuating circumstances, the benefits are known to apply to all who practice in kangaroo care.

Kangaroo Care is practiced differently depending on age and stability of the infant.  Healthy infants out of the hospital, using a wrap and walking around is fine.  Preterm infants that are stable, depends on age and ability to feed.  Sick infants of any age do best when the Kangaroo Care provider is laying back (we use zero gravity loungers for our parents) as it allows for the infant's heart and lungs to function at their best.  All methods of performing Kangaroo Care involve direct skin-to-skin contact.

More importantly Kangaroo Care is important for ALL infants.  So much so, that when I became a certified provider I was pregnant and completely changed my plan for how I was going to care for Ann.  See:
Please forgive the picture.  It's a really bad one but I was trying to put it on record that we did Kangaroo Care at home.  But I would have never purchased the wrap and I would not have thought to provide it at home had I not learned so much about it.

There is so much out there about Kangaroo Care:
A picture of a preemie in Kangaroo Care here in the United States:
Article from my local paper about a mom in our area 

Some reputable Kangaroo Care sites:
United States Institute for Kangaroo Care

Kangaroo Care information from the March of Dimes

A booklet from the World Health Organization:
Kangaroo Mother Care: A Practical Guide

So spread the word, share with others how powerful simple holding skin to skin can be for infants of any age and parents.  It's amazing what can be done by the human body!