Portal opening

Ramblings about life . . .

What I share about my life is simply to help reinforce the understanding that it is possible to live with love and laughter, even with tough times.

Life is what we make of it, no matter how harrowing. We accept and embody this with-in ourselves, thereby allowing the energy to manifest outwardly in our reality.

It starts with each one of us as an individual to form the collective consciousness.

Be the dream.

We honour the light and the life within you.

Please be aware - I upload other bloggers' posts and then delete after a month. This is my journey and others help me understand where I am, until they become irrelevant (a few posts excepted).

Friday, 23 September 2016

Job satisfaction

I really enjoy my job. I enjoy the fact that I hold a safe space for people to explore making a difference in their life...and I get paid to do it.

Job satisfaction is always important. Being in service as a wayshower takes many forms. Mine is to hold a safe space for others. I don't ram my opinion down their throat, I simply explain what is happening and why and leave them to make up their own mind. I know some physiologists are very...um...forceful and this can piss someone off something terrible. I've heard some of my colleagues called some very choice words, lol!

I always give them a choice, because I know how I would feel if someone told me I HAD to do something. There are those who would rather remain in denial, and I respect that. A person is where they are and no matter how much I talk or show, it won't change until they are ready.

Quite often treatment will be turned down, but I have seen them return a few years later acknowledging that they need to do something about the problem. That's okay...everything happens all in good time.

I do have a problem trying to sleep after a night of working a 12 hour shift as I cannot sleep more than four hours and if I am doing a second night in a row, I'm totally knackered the second morning. You'd think I could sleep a whole day, but again I cannot. I get so lethargic, unable to do much. I kinda feel like I am jetlagged and living underwater. The brain fog is unbelievable. So as a result I am constantly in sleep debt which is not great for someone who specialises in sleep!

I don't know of many sleep physiologists who manage to sleep a whole eight hours during the day. Shift workers get a pretty raw deal when it comes to night work. The body is not equipped to do night shift. As teenagers many of us were night owls but that changes as we get older. I'm not saying there are no night owls, what I am saying is that the majority of us aren't.

Which of course poses a problem for Sleep Medicine as night time is the best time to monitor people with sleep problems.

But enough of that...

I don't know how many patients, over the last ten years of doing this job, have been so grateful that they finally have a diagnosis for something that has been plaguing them for years. Sleep is such a new medicine that it hasn't been a part of the medical school's curriculum. That is all changing albeit very slowly. As a result patients constantly pestering their GPs about how awful they feel during the day (mostly described as constantly feeling hungover), start to wonder if they are making it all up, it is all in their mind.

No it isn't. Time and time again these poor people have gone through the mill, up and down, inside out, roundabout until someone recognises that there may be a sleep disorder and finally they get to us.

When I left the UK things were on the up. More and more GPs and Consultants were sending patients for sleep studies, if only to rule out a sleep problem, before moving onto other investigations.

It kinda feels like I have stepped back in time here in NZ as far as that is concerned. I recall one year in London, a physician who originally hailed from New Zealand said that he was appalled on arriving in the UK 20 years ago at how far behind they were with regard to Sleep Medicine, but over the years this has changed. UK is now jumps ahead of NZ.

The biggest change I've had to face since starting to work here, is getting to grips with the Maori lifestyle and to learn a whole new version of English that is interlaced with Maori words. It is no different to the African lifestyle in that it is more family and community oriented which compared to the UK is...different.

This is the third version of English in my lifetime. South African English is interlaced with Afrikaans and various African languages. British English has other terms that had me flummoxed...and now New Zealand English with its Maori words.

The community is a very big thing for Maori. There are the Whanau who are "an extended family or community of related families who live together in the same area." When a patient arrives they normally have a few of their relatives in tow with them. Mostly the relatives simply stay until the patient goes to bed and then they leave. But the other night the whole family brought their sleeping bags and pillows and spent the night. Lol, it can get rather crowded. They keep the patient's morale up laughing talking and joking as you wire them up. It can be great as the unknown can be relatively scary otherwise.

It warms my heart to see how concerned EVERYONE is about the patient. Far from the aloofness of westernised life. When you explain what is happening and why the person has sleep disordered breathing, or whatever the problem is, the whole family is there to hear and understand. Normally there is one person who is the spokesperson, and it is not necessarily the patient.

This happens during the daytime clinic as well. The clinic room can get very crowded and often I don't have enough chairs for everyone to be seated. I think this is great because if everyone knows and understands what is going on and what the treatment does, they can encourage the patient.