For more information about PCOM's Physician Assistant Studies Program, click here.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Moving Forward Means Exposing Open Wounds

Hello Readers,
I know it has been a while since I have updated this blog.  A lot has happened for me in this past month some of it good and some not so much.  Rather than make excuses I thought I would do something a little different.  When I decided to write this blog, I wanted to do it to help others, whether it was to help shine some light on the PA profession or just help someone get through the difficulties of PA school.  Sometimes, I forget that I also decided to write this blog to remind myself of the journey it took to get to where I am today.  Today, I have decided to really let in my readers, to expose myself more than ever.
Where to start... On April 25th, 2013, I lost my grandfather, he was 90 years old.  Just to give you some background on him.  He was in the US Navy and served much of his time in the Solomon Islands.  He was an amazing person.  He inspired everyone he met.  Most of all, he was the rock of our family.  He was never judgmental, and always patient.  While he did not have much he gave like he was the richest man in the world.  
Two weeks before he passed he took a terrible fall.  He fell backwards onto his back while walking up steps. While nothing was broken he was in a great deal of pain.  About a week later he was sent to a rehab facility to help increase his mobility and begin to work on his activities of daily living.  I know, even if he did not show it, that this depressed him greatly.  I called him the day he got into rehab.  He was so cheerful on the phone, he told me that the people in the rehab were so nice to him and that they told him 95 was old so he was not old yet. He just kept laughing on the phone.  I told him about my job and how much I love it.  The day I called him was my first night working alone in the hospital. My training period was done.  He was so proud.
           Why am I telling this story? This week, I was pretty drained from the funeral and I was pretty down.  Also, transitioning from working days and being in training to officially working by myself on night shift has been taxing.  My confidence was increasing but not all together 100%.  Then this week, there was a patient that developed complications after surgery.  When I came to visit her before saying goodnight, I looked at her and asked if she was ok.  Immediately she began to cry and I took her hand and told her that this was not her fault that these things happen but that I would be there.  I helped answer her questions about her case and what to expect.  She thanked me repeatedly for taking the time with her.  She said she has been so scared not knowing what was happening.  I spend a good 45 minutes with her.  I left feeling happy that I had helped.  
            Reflecting on it today, I remember how fondly my grandfather spoke of the care he was receiving in the rehab facility.  During his difficult time those health care employees were there for him.  Today can’t help but think how proud my grandfather would be of me for helping this woman and many others.  Not only am I working with patients on a floor by myself but that I am doing it well.  I can’t help but think that I got some of this from him.  I am thankful that he was with me during my progression from struggling student to successful PA-C.  I know that going forward I will be ok.  I only hope I can continue to make him proud and live up to his legacy


  1. This event was really unfortunate. Jennifer. You were right about the rehabilitation facility taking care of your grandpa and making him happy. People his age do not ask for much. Instead, they want the love and care from the people around them. I'm sure he had a lot of fond memories to take with him, and I'm pretty sure he's watching over you somewhere and is very proud of his granddaughter.

    Taneka Carl @ Heal at Home Care