Tuesday, May 20, 2014


The Noro virus epidemic is over and we are out of quarantine. So work is back to normal! Whoooo 

I survived Fiancé's graduation party and I think everyone had a good time. The after (as in after the family left) party led to a tequila fueled cake fight that left my house looking like a chocolate bomb went off. Why did we have it at my house again?

My house is finally on the market and I have had about five people express interest in it. No offers yet. Booo

And that's my life. 

Friday, May 9, 2014

Attack of the NORO VIRUS

Dun Dun Duuuun. 

You might have picked up by now that I work at an assisted living home. If you've never been to one, it's basically set up as an apartment complex with a dozen extra common areas, a library, game room, fireplace/sitting room, activity room and common kitchen area. Most importantly, a dining room, where three times a day, every single resident gathers together to eat. 

This leads to one simple fact, if one person gets sick ... everyone gets sick. As caregivers, we are used to this. And we take steps to lessen the impact. Meal trays, disinfectant, gloves and masks. But then the Noro Virus made my workplace it's playground. 

In all the years I have worked in this field, I have never ever seen anything like this. On day one, one person got sick. On day two, four more got sick. This is normal and this is when we start isolating the people close to the sick people and keeping an eye out. But by day three, five employees were sick and ten residents were sick. We went into full quarantine where the dining room closed and everyone was confined to their apartments. And the staff moves from masks and gloves to masks, gloves, protective single use gowns and paper booties. 

This is very rare but it does happen. This gives us a chance to identify the people who become ill before they have the chance to spread it around further. We keep them in their apartments and the infection dies out. Usually the quarantine only lasts a couple days and since it only happens every few years, the residents mostly view it as exciting. Meals are brought to me? Who else caught it now? Can I sneak downstairs without the staff finding me???

The employees view it as hell but suck it up. 

However, this time was different. By day four, the sick list rose up to thirty people and it kept climbing. Over ten people had to go to the emergency room and one lovely gentleman died. And even with all our precautions, people kept getting sick!! 

The hospital finally confirmed that it was the Noro Virus. The tests take 48 hours to confirm and by then, it was everywhere. Bad Ol Noro is highly contagious through vomit and feces and one of the residents was unfortunate enough to vomit in the dining room on day two. That is why our normal containment strategy did not work. 

We have been in quarantine for a whole week now and no one new has gotten sick for two days but it has been a nightmare. 

And I am exhausted. As a staff member, we had to figure out how to deliver all three meals to 80 plus residents. All of whom want a different thing. Some of them need help eating. One by one. 

As a caregiver, well .... The Noro Virus causes severe vomiting and diarrhea. Who's job is it to clean all that up? Yup. Mine. I've been wiping bottoms, striping beds and cleaning up puke from before sun up to sun down. Pretty much all of us caregivers have been pulling double shifts and we still can't keep up. 

I only come home to sleep for about 5 hours and then I'm back at work. And in only 24 short hours, my lovely and amazing fiancé is graduating with three degrees. Oh and approximately 45 people are coming to my house for a BBQ. 

I should probably go to the store or clean my house or something. I have no food, no decorations, and no beds made for the ten people staying the night. 

But I did manage to order the cake and balloons! Go me!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

The weekend that tried to kill me

Also known as, how I found out that I am allergic to Kiwi.

A couple weekends ago I went to a birthday party at a Mexican restaurant. While there, I decided to order a Kiwi margarita. Bad decision. I'm not a huge kiwi fan and I don't think I've eaten one in over four years. It just sounded so summer ish and refreshing. But then my mouth started burning. Followed by my tongue feeling fat and my throat muscles not wanting to swallow right. 

Obviously I stopped drinking the margarita and gave it to the birthday girl. And then I asked Fiancé to bring me home. I'm not sure if it was the kiwi or panic but I was having a hard time getting enough air. I could breathe, I just felt like I wasn't breathing enough. By the time we pulled into the ER (twenty five minutes) it had started getting better. So I didn't go in but I never want to eat a kiwi again!!

Food and I have always been close buds and I feel a little betrayed by this. Like my best friend just stabbed me in the back for no reason. Little witch. 

Welcome to the world of food allergies. Bah humbug. 

Then the very next day, my car decided she hates me too. I was loading my groceries into the trunk and had my hand up above my head in case the lid tried to close. It was just a habit really as it wasn't windy and I wasnt actually touching my car as it was staying up on its own. I bet you can guess what happened next. One of my bags break, I reach down to grab it with my other hand and BAM!!!! My trunk slams shut and hits me in the head. Hard. With the latch of course. 

One second I'm loading groceries and the next second I am sitting on my butt in a Walmart parking lot. As I'm sitting there trying to figure out what just happened and why I am seeing double, a group of college guys walk by and start pointing and laughing. Cute college guys. 

Yeah, I ended up with a minor concussion from that one. 

Weekends will be the death of me. Which explains why I have been working so much over time lately. 

The weekends can't get me if I never have one. Right? Riiiight??