|Sissinghurst, June 2012|
I am crazy tired, and it is my own fault. I continue to try and play badminton twice a week for two hours, and this eliminates two evenings from the week. I am challenged by simple tasks like arranging a service and MOT for the car, because I need to drive the car to work, so will have to arrange everything in a city I don't know at all, at a garage that allows me to drop the car off and pick it up without impinging on the working day. The job makes me late home quite a lot, although this ought to change in April when the schedule of clinics will change, and I will have my own clinics with my name on and everything.
Work is interesting and stressful and difficult but full of promise. I have been keeping a list of 'things to write about on the blog' that I thought I would get round to, but (see paragraphs above) I may as well summarise now because that's as much as I can manage.
Things I have learned about diabetes: all about different sorts of insulins, rules for days when you are sick if you use an insulin pump, how to manage exercise and alcohol if you take insulin, how to manage someone who has just been diagnosed with Gestational Diabetes and keeps bursting into tears, what carbohydrate counting really involves.
Things I have been taught that are not about diabetes: how to use at least four different computer systems, how to apply for study leave, where to find at least 100 policies and procedures, what the Very Low Calorie Diet is for, how to wash my hands and not contaminate food.
I would like to write much more about most of these things, except for handwashing and food safety.
One of the most annoying things at the moment is needing to remember at least five different combinations of user names and passwords. I am told that all of the passwords have to be changed regularly, and don't allow you to just change a number e.g. password01 to password02. This policy does not improve security; all it does is force you to write your user names and passwords down. As long as I can remember the password that gets me access to the document with my passwords in it, I should be OK.
All the most annoying things so far involve administrative systems. The induction process has been shocking. My scheduled day for induction is two months after starting my nine month contract, and seems to be a series of presentations about the Values and Vision of the Trust - the mandatory training I was expecting will be at a future date that I won't be told about until induction day. Just as I think I've done everything administrative that needs to be done, I find out about more - I have to email evidence of mandatory training to a random email address. Food Safety and CPR training is arranged by someone who works in Catering. I have to complete a document for my Personal Development Review that I didn't know about on a date I haven't been notified about. I have to book any annual leave at least six weeks in advance, using a form I haven't been given yet, without knowing how many days I'm entitled to. Today I found out that a filing cabinet drawer in the main office contains copies of referral letters for me - nobody had thought to mention it before. And don't get me started about Tracking... I may muster the strength to write about Tracking another time. And clinic procedures: what to do if a patient doesn't attend, or changes their appointment, or does attend, or I am asked to see them by someone else, or I want them to be seen by someone else.
There are some very good aspects of this job, though. Professional development seems to be built into the job, rather than an expensive luxury available only to the lucky few who have to pay for it themselves. This means that I am already booked onto a postgraduate module about diabetes taking place over four days at the university, and there seems to be little resistance to other opportunities that come my way. I have already learned a great deal about diabetes, and have reached the uncomfortable stage of being much more aware of how much I don't know, but I do occasionally have flashes of insight allowing me to feel good about some of the things I do know.
There is so much to write about work that it has almost squeezed out any mention of the fun that has been happening at weekends. Lola II and Mr M staged a film festival, and Lola II and I went to Liverpool for the weekend, and there was much hilarity at both these events. I would love to write blog posts full of amusing anecdotes and illustrated by YouTube clips and photos, but perhaps Lola II will volunteer to document these occasions on my behalf. She is pretty busy most of the time as well.