Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Photographer Wannabe

Recently, I have had a couple of blog friends wondering what I do for a living.Penny, bless her heart, wondered more than once, if I was a Professional Photographer or perhaps a teacher.I would love to say I'm a pro Photographer, but I am not. That is a dream I have, though I have never been one to go out on a limb. If fate brings that course to me then I shall pursue it. It takes a certain ego to be able to get out there and sell your 'talent'. I love photography but do not have a self promoting nature. And to be in that field, one has to be able to sell themselves. Either that or have a really great agent.
So far, I am making photo note cards and provide them as birthday cards for the Lady's group I belong to. I have also been approached recently by a local businesswoman, who came across my Maple Ridge Daily Photo Blog and my link to my Flickr Album, where some of my favorites are filed for your viewing pleasure. She wants to use my photos on a promotional business mail out campaign. She will actually be paying me! I have sold a few 8x10s to co-workers and fellow students when I was in school. Usually if a friend wants a photo, I don't charge. But when a few at once start asking, the cost of paper and ink adds up, so I just ask for enough to defray those costs. So now, to answer your questions Penny and Herman, what do I do for a living?Herman you were right, I do work in a hospital. I am a Licensed Practical Nurse.For years I was a Health Care Worker in Riverview, our provincial Psychiatric Hospital, a job I absolutely loved. But with government cut backs, the large institutions were getting phased out, thus my job security was swiftly diminishing. So I stepped out of my comfort zone, with alot of encouragement and support from Keith, and went back to college. I studied part time while continuing to work at the Psych. hospital. Two years ago, I graduated from the practical nurse program and now work at our local hospital.
This is a terrible fuzzy photo. I took it with my phone camera but I wanted to show this to you anyway. It is a full size poster at work, promoting donations to the hospital. Guess who that nurse is!!!! I was chosen to be one of the models for the campaign! Its kind of embarrassing having your face splashed about the hospital! While I was sitting for this photo session, I couldn't help but be envious of the photographer who was doing this for a living!Nursing does have its rewards. Its damned hard work though. We have an ongoing nursing shortage and we often times work short staffed. Overtime pays well but nurses are getting burned out.I rarely work overtime. I know my limitations. I only do it if I am already there and they are really stuck. The injury rate is high, most nurses experience muscle strain or sore backs, we are regularly exposed to bodily fluids and other disease hazards. Occasionally there are patients that become aggressive and violent.So... if conditions are so exhausting, why do we do it?Because overall, it feels good to help people. Most patients are so grateful for your efforts and praise every thing you do for them. We don't do it for praise, but it is nice to be appreciated. There are some patients who seem to think you are their slave and boss the nurses around and complain about everything, for some, nothing you do is good enough. That's OK too. Just part of the job, I never take it personally. When people are nasty, I put it down to it being their own shortcoming. Some folks just can't be pleasant when they don't feel well. Seeing people recovering and gaining strength is a big bonus. Cheering them on as they take their first steps after a hip replacement. Being there as someone tries on their first wig after chemo has taken their hair, and seeing that person feeling 'pretty' again. What ever their victories in health, you are pleased to have been a part of that.One of the greatest honors, is to be involved in palliative care. I don't work in our hospice, but often times dying patients are cared for in other parts of the hospital. To help keep people comfortable in their final days and hours, is emotionally challenging, but it is the most rewarding part of my job. During those times you get to really know the families and are there to support them also. It is a very intimate time for a family and it is an honor to be included in such a difficult time of their lives. So there you have it, nurse and photographer wanna be! It's beautiful day. I'm headed out for a walk with Keith and to snap some local pics. Sushi for lunch sounds pretty good. Then I am working the first of three night shifts. Then I am on Vacation!!!! YAY!

4 comments:

Herman Verbrugge said...

Sometimes I picked up a few words or a situation from your posts and deducted that you were working in a hospital. Now we know what kind of job you have and how heavy that job is, you deserve a lot of respect because you have also a lot to do at home, attention for your husband and three children. And all what you do for family and relatives. You have my respect and I hope to see a lot more beautiful photos from you.... for free {;O)

Bobbie said...

It's a difficult job you have but on the other hand it must be so rewarding to be helping people.
Your photos are so good and you have an 'eye' for taking good pictures. It might be an idea to promote your photos as a sideline.

I'll bet you're looking forward to your vacation. You deserve a break. Take care and Happy Hump Day!

sharon said...

wow, Susan, I didn't know you were a nurse. I don't know what I thought you did for work. thanks for sharing and enjoy your vacation!

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