Monday, January 25, 2010


I always feel this way.  Maybe it's Seasonal Affective Disorder, or whatever they want to call it, but really it's the winter.  The time when you must stay in, turn inward, examine what you've learned, hunker down to ride out the cold and think about what has come to pass.  Our ancestors used this time to make things that would be necessary for the coming year- knitting or weaving, sewing, carving, blacksmithing, anything that you could do to keep your hands busy and be productive and useful.  Still, you turn your thoughts in, and that can be hard. 

It's snowing.  I've waited for days for this, because snow makes winter worth it.  I couldn't live somewhere that was cold and barren and yielded no snow.  That is cruelty; that was Columbus.  Cold, naked, bare and covered in ice.  Ice!  How horrible. Snow, though; thick, fluffy, pure white.  It makes a special sussurus as it falls.  That's hard to hear where there is so much population and cars, but if you get yourself out into the middle of a winter wood you can hear the snow fall.  It makes me feel quiet, wonderous and connected to the magic of all things. 

Still, despite snow, I get quiet and withdrawn in winter.  I suppose it's natural, or it's S.A.D. as I've said before.  It doesn't matter; what it means is that I bundle up, hunker down, and turn inward.  This year I've taken to sitting quietly and knitting my heart out.  That helped a little.  My wonderful man took to reading aloud to me as miles of cloth wound out from my hands.  That made things absolutely wonderful.  Then we got me a beautiful Tiffany lamp with a full spectrum light and well!  What do you know; I can see the projects so clearly and it does seem to truly help. 

Winter makes me inward, and wistful.  I know better than to long for spring, because that is a wasted effort.  Spring will come as it always does, at around the same time.  This year we are looking forward to crocus and daffodil bulbs we put in the garden out front.  Still, it is wistfulness and loneliness- a thing made more bearable by the family of the man and critters I have around me.  It is something I am, something I do- perhaps now that I am not in my 20s anymore I can learn to accept that this is what the dark and cold bring.  Stop fighting against my nature so much and just do the things that bring me peacefulness and light; stop feeling I have a "problem" and just nurture what is needful in the winter months.  So I like to be still and quiet.  That is just how it is; give it tea, and light, and lots of yarn then, and let it be. 

Sometimes I think about the skewed version of happiness that people long for in this country, fed to them by media in popular shows and films.  Happiness in that regard is perfection, with broad smiles and ecstatic high energy life.  Well, when I see that I know that this sort of output can't last forever, it's too exhausting.  Then when it winds itself out people feel disillusioned and let down (perhaps this explains the high divorce rate?)  Have people forgotten that happeness comes in many levels?  That yes, the ecstacy of success or reunion or new love is incredibly elating, but that's not the only way?  Happiness is not struggling to survive.  It is having a full belly and feeling content.  Just content.  Being safe, warm, with your needs met, and good people around.  That is also happiness: not wanting for anything.

Am I happy, then?  Yes.  I am happy.  I am content, rather.  Perfectly so.  Would I care to improve upon it?  Most definitely; I crave a variety in friendships, other activities I enjoy that I cannot do right now, and so forth.  That would bring me more or different happiness, different levels.  So wisely, sagely and gracefully I will accept that for what I have and where I am, I am pretty damn content.  And happy.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

I can survive the lunatic...

She barges in while I'm examining patients and having Dr/Client conversations... because she thinks they're all her "friends".  Regardless of the seriousness of what I'm trying to address.

She talks loudly about clients and doesn't seem to care if there are other people in the clinic that can hear.

Not only does she not scrub for surgeries, she wears long sleeve shirts and bracelets and I have on more than one occasion seen her drag these things into an open surgical site.  She will also use the same pack on several (unrelated) animals.

She does not believe in pain management and thinks all animals are "drama queens" who wake up screaming.  All our patients wake up screaming, shaking uncontrollably, smashing their heads against the cage.  This would have gotten you a demerit from Anesthesia where I went to school.  When asked if we can have better pain meds I am routinely turned down because she thinks people will abuse the meds (there are only 6 employees and a lock box!) and she also doesn't believe the animals need it.

She regularly steals my cases, despite the fact that I am paid on production.  She is the one who pays me, the one who proposed the low, low salary to be supplemented with production.  WTF?  Often she will steal my surgeries and say carelessly, "well I'm faster, it'll just get done faster if I do it."  Yeah, but it's MY surgery day!  I lose money and production to my BOSS!

If something goes wrong and a client complains, she will not back her vets up.  She'll just instantly cave and give the client a huge break on the bill or whatever they want.  Without even talking to one of us first, to see what happened, or giving us the opportunity to make it right or talk to the client.

She flies off the handle and makes rash decisions, throws tantrums, breaks things (not just objects but relationships); she is vulgar and rude; she is often out of control.  She will do things like show clients her surgery sites from her breast cancer/ implants, right in the office.  We regularly lose clients because she somehow thinks this is ok.

Often she will call one employee to bitch about another.  After she unloads, she says "there!  I feel better, well, that's all."  And leave you feeling that you've backstabbed someone, participated in gossip, without ever wanting to.

It's crap.  I hate it.  It's hard enough to be a vet without dealing with someone who is certifiably insane and untreated.  Her business grew in spite of her, and this is how crazy people end up bosses and practice owners.  Please Goddess save me from this insanity, please grant me safety and sanity in my next practice.  Please please grant it soon.  I want a good, secure, steady job with liveable hours and wage, a good client base with a sweet case load, an employer/ staff I can trust... is it so much to ask for? I just want to do my job.  I just want to be a good veterinarian.  Please save me from this madness.