Thyroid Cancer Strikes Again…

My mom has thyroid cancer. If you are loyal readers on her blog or my blog, you probably already know that.

Mom was diagnosed with thyroid cancer in 2016. She had her thyroid completely removed and underwent radioactive iodine treatment to kill the remaining cancerous cells. They were able to measure the efficacy of the radioactive iodine by measuring a blood level called thyroglobulin tumor marker.

Mom’s number used to be 0.0 after her radioactive iodine.

Then it went up to 0.04.

Then up to 0.3.

1.2

2.3

4.6

6.9

17

27

and most recently 32.

Anything over 10 they would suspect a tumor to be visible. We’ve been looking and looking and testing and scanning and retesting and scanning and biopsy after biopsy we could never find the cause of her rising tumor marker.

Until last week. A lymph node behind mom’s trachea doubled in size since last October. It is now 13 mm up from 7 mm. That sounds bad right? No, that’s good.

We’ve been watching and waiting and hoping and praying we can find SOMETHING to explain her rising result. We found it.

The placement of the lymph node sucks. Your neck literally connects your brain to your body. Think of the blood flow that goes through the neck. Think of the nerves that pass through the neck. Now imagine having to remove something BEHIND your adams apple. Easier said than done.

Mom needs surgery to have it removed. The surgery is honestly risky. The lymph node is right next to the nerve that controls her voice. Not only that but when they make an incision on her neck, it is so vascular the amount of blood can make it so hard to see. Once they clear that out, now imagine finding a lymph node a little bigger than the size of a pea right next to an extremely important nerve.

Needless to say, we wanted to find the cancer but would have preferred it be more accessible. Because it is considered a “risky” surgery, we aren’t rushing to get it out. We want to make absolutely CERTAIN that this lymph node is the absolute culprit which means one more needle biopsy guided by a CT scan. Now whether that can be done at Gundersen or if mom has to go to Mayo is up in the air.

Even though I worked overnight the night before, Kelli and I rode along for mom’s appointment last week.

We missed our turn again which we always seem to do. The last time we missed our turn we were on our way to Dad’s last day of radiation. Mom and I knew things weren’t good. We were talking a lot about what the future looked like and how we might have to live without Dad. We laughed and cried and laughed some more that when we actually paid attention to the road we were an hour off course. Luckily, we caught ourselves earlier this time but it did take us on the same beautiful road it did last May. The frost was beautiful.

It’s sometimes haunting to go to Gundersen. There are memories of the weeks Dad spent in the hospital everywhere. Kelli and I were so so pregnant when Dad had his big lung surgery. Here we are in the same hallway by the same parking ramp. I had just finished up my last day of work before I had Gannon.

I remember mom forgot some of her medications when she was staying in the hospital with Dad. Mom didn’t want Dad to worry about her or know she wasn’t taking her medications so we arranged to have her prescriptions sent to this pharmacy in the hospital.

The carts whizzing by carrying patients around the hospital reminded me of when I was one week post c-section with Gannon and Dad had a pleural effusion and I took them both up to Lacrosse. Dad wasn’t up to par yet from his surgery and I was still sore but we made it. Mom wanted us to ride on one of those carts but we decided we could get by without one. I had Gannon in the wagon in his infant car seat just like we had Georgia tagging along in the wagon this time. Just being at Gundersen brought back so many memories of last Spring when we spent so much time at the hospital.

We’ve had a lot of talk about Papa Moo lately. Carver carries his picture around all the time. He had lots of questions the other night.

“Is Papa Moo alive?”

“Where did him go?”

“Is he living at the cemetary?”

“Where does Jesus live?”

“Why Papa have that on him neck?”

“I miss him SOOO much.”

“Can we go see him?”

“Me want him to come to ours house.”

“I want to ride in the combine with him.”

Oh Carver John. I wish I had the answers for you. I just don’t.

Papa Moo has been heavy on my mind too. Especially heading up again for mom’s cancer appointments. Not to mention the anniversary of his diagnosis and surgeries. The memories and medical updates keep popping up in my memories on Facebook. Carver begged to go see his “rock” at the cemetery. They hadn’t plowed the driveway yet so we looked from the road.

One day at a time, friends. One day at a time.

That’s all I have for today. Check back tomorrow at 0530 for another post.


Also – let’s stay in touch! If I came out with a newsletter – would you subscribe? Let’s be more than friends… and by that I mean can I slide into your inbox once in awhile? No spam, I promise! Your email is safe with me.

Let’s Summarize! A Week with the Friedman Fam!


My little Johnny Jumper Boy (that’s my nickname for Carver) is getting too big for 3T pajamas! I feel like I JUST switched him to 3T and now we are on to 4T! Oh my little boy, don’t grow up too fast! Look how short those jammies are! What do you call pajamas at your house? Jammies? PJs? Pajamas? My nephew Scotty calls them “Night wear”


My new favorite go to freezer meal! I found these in the “healthy” freezer section at WalMart – I had a little bit of sticker shock at $3.69 per meal but they are delicious, they are ready in 4.5 minutes, AND it is better than spending $12 on food delivery at work! These are great for days when I haven’t packed my lunch. I just keep a few in the freezer at work!


My mom made Craig his favorite: fruit brownies. Here’s the thing, if I make a pan of brownies, I literally have 0 self control. I will eat the pan of brownies. Therefore, I rely on my mom to make sweets. If I want rice pudding (my favorite) I send her a text and WAH-LAH! RICE PUDDING! She’s amazing! So when Craig begged for fruit brownies, she obliged. Here’s the recipe if you’re interested! A word of advice, these are best consumed in the first 48 hours after they are made. Here’s the recipe:


Carver took a pretty hard hit! He was racing his combine, the combine hit the lip between the kitchen and dining room at just the wrong angle and he went head over combine face first and got a bloody nose. We always use “wet washcloths” to solve any and all boo boos at our house (a trick my mom used on me so many times) and he was all better.


I found a delicious veggie roasting seasoning for my meal prep for the week! I found this by the seasoning at Walmart and of course. I’m obsessed with frozen veggies so it was a no brainer! I highly recommend! I tried to be stingy and only use one packet to cover two pans of veggies, I would recommend one packet per pan of veggies!


BRRRR!!! Northeast Iowa has been hit hard with COLD air this week! As you can see (I need to fill up with gas) -22 in my car on Friday morning on my way to clinicals! Craig has still been working on the farm but mostly stays in the shop/garage doing maintenance work when it gets this cold.


I didn’t realize how much FOOD content I have in this blog post but WOWZA! I needed a quick meal and I had fresh smoked chops from the New Albin meat market so I made veggie omelets with spinach, mushrooms, onions, and peppers to go along with hash browns in my air fryer! YUM! Carver even ate some of his pork chop! (He doesn’t like to try anything new)


We got plenty of snow last weekend. I worked overnights Friday Saturday and Sunday. One of my favorite co workers scraped all that snow off for me! Thanks Jen! I know you’re a loyal reader 🙂 While we got probably 6 inches it was on the weekend so there weren’t many delays or cancellations – nothing like last year! UGH that was awful! We got HORRIBLE snow storms, blizzards, and even a polar vortex. Needless to say, this winter has been pretty mild in comparison.


I’ve got a sleepy little Gannon here who fell asleep in his supper! Don’t mind the red cheeks – Gannon is usually a little rosy.


This just hit me right in the feels having not worn makeup for about the past MONTH straight. YOLO!


We bought Frozen II. We totally could have waited for it to come out on Disney Plus but it is honestly probably one of my favorite movies right now(along with the Wolfe of Wallstreet – what a combo). We all watched it yesterday. Craig hasn’t seen it yet and he loved it too!


Don’t miss out on a single post! Here are the past 5 posts – check them out!


That’s all I have for today folks! Check back tomorrow at 0530 for a new blog post!

Also – let’s stay in touch! If I came out with a newsletter – would you subscribe? Let’s be more than friends… and by that I mean can I slide into your inbox once in awhile? No spam, I promise! Your email is safe with me.

I TREATED MYSELF!

I remember my first Apple product – a purple iPod nano. I had saved my babysitting money and when I finally had the $240 to spend, and even though I wanted an ipod touch, I got my iPod nano. As soon as I held it in my hands, I knew it was such a higher quality than all my other mP3 players I had gone through in the past.

A few years later, my music library outgrew my iPod nano and I upgraded to an iPod classic. I still have it to this day, I’ll bet if I found a charger and plugged her in she would be ready to go. I remember it had 256 GB which was an insane amount of storage space in 2011.

When it was time to get a phone, iPhones weren’t really a thing yet. My first phone was a banter and it even had a green case on it like the one pictured here. I remember it well. It was my phone when I had my first real boyfriend and I would text him incessantly. When it was time to get a smart phone, I gravitated towards androids. I had every version of the S series up until my S5.

Flash forward a few years and I was running my LuLaRoe business when I purchased an iPad to complete sales transactions. It was okay but I honestly didn’t use it as much as I thought I would and I still don’t.

BUT I could definitely tell a quality difference in the processing system. Everything was smoother and more sophisticated compared to the androids and windows I had grown up with. It convinced me to take a leap into the Apple world once and for all. I bought an iPhone.

I. Will. Never. Go. Back.

As I’m sitting at my desk typing this blog post, I have an iPhone 11 setting next to me as I’m wearing my Apple watch, listening to Netflix through my Apple air pods and typing on my NEW MAC BOOK PRO! That’s right, I fully committed to Apple and invested in a Mac Book Pro.

I’m in love you guys. I’ve been researching MacBooks and I’ve almost bought one several times since I started my blog.

I’ve had a 15 inch lap top and I thought it was too bulky. I wanted something compact so I settled on a 13 inch.

I felt like the Macbook Air wasn’t sophisticated enough for my needs so I settled on the Macbook Pro.

I knew I needed GHz to process video if I ever decide to run a Vlog (would you watch it??) so I picked the 2.4 GHz vs. the 1.8 GHz.

A friend recommended getting more than the 128 GBs so I went with the 256 GBs.

  • Then with Best Buy ad match, my total went from $1,799 to $1,599.
  • 3 years of Apple Care (which would essentially replace my laptop) was $256.
  • Plus taxes.

BAM! I did it! I bought it guys! I treated myself and invested in my blog! My favorite thing about this laptop is that I paid for it in CASH! I worked like crazy, saved my money, learned about the product, waited for the right time and it is all mine. I feel like I’m so much more appreciative of it now that I waited so long for it.

I can see myself working on blog posts on the go, editing videos in my bed, laying on the couch watching a movie with the fam, and enjoying my 10+ hours of battery life where as I was tethered to an outlet with my HP laptop.

I have yet to regret investing in an Apple product and I know I’ll be satisfied with my new Macbook as well. Needless to say, I’m an Apple lover through and through!

I just ordered a carrying sleeve and hard case to protect it from certain curious three year olds. I jokingly sent a snap chat of my new lap top to Craig with the caption “Baby #3!” because I really am that excited about it!

Thanks for reading today guys! Check back tomorrow at 0530 for more content! I hope you have a wonderful day!

My Extra-Ordinary Valentine’s Day!

As in it was “extra ordinary” not extraordinary.

Carver worked very hard on his Valentines…about as hard as a 3 year old can work…which isn’t very hard. He “wrote” about three names on Valentines. He then got himself tangled in the tape. He got mad when Gannon wanted to help. So in conclusion, I worked very hard on Carver’s Valentines.

Here is Carver’s note to me:

It says “I love you mommy!” (according to Carver) Don’t you see it?

I was up bright and early by 0600 for my last day of clinicals with my first year students! They were such a fun group but I will definitley NOT book myself like I did this semester.

36 hours/week in ER + 18 hours/week with final semester students + 14 hours/week with first year students = 68 hours/week for the past three weeks.

I’m so ready for things to slow down. Lesson LEARNED!

After clinicals I called Craig and my mom to meet up for lunch! Craig took his lunch break at my mom’s after the daycare kids laid down for nap we had a quick lunch with take out food from our favorite restaurant The Fort. Their wings are superb. We were in a goofy mood. Mom was showing off her pants. She accidentally wore them in public at the gas station this morning and was told she looked very “festive” 🙂

Here is my romantic Valentine’s dinner with my husband Craig (and my mom.) I’m wearing my whites from clinicals and he’s still in his farm cloths. Mom made chocolate chip cookies for dessert! We don’t exchange gifts for Valentine’s day. In fact, we barely crossed paths other than for lunch!

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6 Years and Counting

Let’s go back to July 2013.

My parents just bought a fixer upper in Waucoma. I was about to move off to college and start the nursing program in about a month. My brother was just about to get married in August. Hobbies included singing and songwriting, playing guitar, heading to the river with my best friend Regan, and daydreaming about having a boyfriend.

Craig and I met when I was barely 18 and he was 19 at a parking lot party.

We both went to the same community college. I was seeing a guy and he was seeing a girl. My guy had asked me to meet him at a party after work. His girl drug him along to this party.

I had just gotten off work as a CNA at a nursing home. I still lived at home – I was about a month away from moving out. I still had to call mom and ask permission to be able to go out after work. She said I had to be home at midnight and I had just gotten off work at 10 pm.

I showed up in my scrubs and I took my hair out of the braids I had in. Craig said that was the first thing he noticed about me was my big wavy hair.

I was one of three girls at the party. It was Craig’s girl, my future roommate, and me. I was new to the crowd and I don’t mean to brag, but I was the life of the party in a sea of drunk single college boys.

This is the only picture I have from the night we met – I can’t remember any of these guys’ names. Also note – Craig is not in the picture either.

“Are you wearing scrubs?” Someone asked me from the row of diesel pick ups. I said “Yeah?” Craig says I looked at him like I was dumb and I went back to talking to the other guys.

I was giving them my number when Craig (stumbled) up to our group and also put my number in his phone. He asked me what name I should put in with the phone number. I said “Kalissa Kramer” – he reaches his hand out to greet me.

I can still remember that smile. If I close my eyes I see it in my mind like it was yesterday. The fluorescent lights in the parking lot shining behind him, his braces he was trying so hard to hide, his black baseball cap and plaid striped shirt. Later he told me he was about 18 Coors lights in and had to run home to his apartment from the cops through a corn field.

As I’m laying in bed typing this blog post we cannot remember what we talked about after that. I know he apologized for asking such a stupid question: Are you wearing scrubs? I know we chatted about my job in the nursing home. I know he was trying so hard to be sober. I know I got swept away in another conversation after that.

The guy I came with and the girl he came with ditched the both of us and rumor has it someone caught them together in a closet later that night.

Before I got home I had a text on my phone from him introducing himself again to make sure I had his number. We ended up texting after I got home and fell sleep with my phone in my hand. I was performing at the Jones county fair. Craig was on a field trip to the big John Deere factory. We were texting non stop…but I was also texting the rest of the guys in his class too.

About two days later, the night he came home from his John Deere field trip, I was scheduled to work in the nursing home 2 pm – 10 pm again. I had been texting about 3 different guys I had met that night. I had a “date” set up with one of them at 10 pm when I got off of work. His name was John. He texted me and cancelled on me claiming he had food poisoning. I praise God every day he had food poisoning.

I had permission to go out, I wasn’t going to waste that. So I called Craig. I asked him if he would come and meet me at the Whippy Dip (a Decorah ice cream shop) at 10 pm and even though they close at 10 pm, could you buy us both ice cream so we can have ice cream when I get there?

Craig said yes right away.

He met me there after work and we talked and talked and talked until it was way too far after my curfew. I thought it was weird that I had ice cream and he didn’t. The conversation was so natural.

I was driving home and I didn’t see his headlights following me to Calmar. So I called him. I said “I just want to make sure you didn’t have any car problems and that you’re on the road.” He laughed and said he was fine. Then with all the nerves that I had I asked him, “Can I see you again?” and he said YES.

After I hung up with him, around 12 am, I left a voicemail on my sister’s telephone telling her I just met the man I was going to marry.

We started dating the next day. He asked me if I would be his girlfriend. It was an immediate and enthusiastic YES. He came over that night and met my parents. We got so lost in conversation at 3 am we finally looked up and I kicked Craig out before my dad got up for chores.

We met July 2013 when I was 18 and he was 19

Taken on my parent’s couch on my Samsung Electrify 🙂
At one point I was grounded and wasn’t allowed to go on a date with Craig while I still was living at home…so I convinced my parents to let him be grounded with me…and we fell asleep 🙂

We moved in together November 2013

Black Friday Shopping the year we met – it was COLD.
Celebrating Craig’s 20th birthday in Dubuque at Texas Roadhouse. What a FUN weekend. He got on the horse and yelled BANG BANG IT’s MY BIRTHDAY for free dessert 🙂

We got engaged August 2014 when I was 19 and he was 20

Our engagement pictures – I wish someone would have told me NOT TO WEAR BROWN AND BLACK TOGETHER! Also – Check out Craig’s baby face 🙂

We got married September 2015 when I was 20 and he was 21

We bought our first home in November 2015

We had our first child, Carver John Friedman in September 2016 when I was 21 and he was 22

I was moments from giving birth in this picture – epidurals make everything better
Carver’s third birthday party

We had our second child, Gannon Jospeph Friedman in February of 2019 when I was 23 and he was 25

The rest is history.

On our 6 year anniversary of meeting each other
Our boys <3
Our most recent photo together 🙂

There you have it folks! A modern day love story.

The Gannon Report

I wish I didn’t have an update. I wish everything was going great. That’s just not the case.

As you’re reading this I am preparing for Gannon to have an in-home assessment this morning. Gannon has been falling behind on some of his milestones. He doesn’t babble very much. He doesn’t have very many sounds or words. He is still quite a ways from walking.

If you recall Gannon’s ear drum ruptured again last week. Gannon was taken to the audiologist and ENT specialist on Tuesday. He had his hearing tested which revealed that Gannon has moderate hearing loss. When we hear noises starting at 15 decibels it takes Gannon at least 40 decibels to start to hear things. They even tried a different kind of hearing test which stimulates vibration in the bone in the ear. That did not go well either.

If Gannon was school aged and participating in a class room discussion, he would miss About 50% of the conversation. He hears what we hear when we put our fingers in our ears and plug our ears.

We aren’t sure yet how much of this is related to ear infections. He has passed other hearing screens, however none of them were done in the sound booth which is the gold standard for hearing testing in his age.


On Tuesday he was tested in the hearing booth and that’s when things went poorly. So that adds another surgery to our schedule because Gannon is getting tubes in his ears next Thursday. We are hopeful this will help his hearing loss. Time will tell.

In the meantime when Keystone comes to visit us tomorrow, I’m going to request that he start working with speech therapy right away so he does not fall further behind while we get this all straightened out.

He also has a swallow study to test how he tolerates different textures on February 28. Gannon does not tolerate food well and often chokes. He’s had a swallow study done in the past but it wasn’t very thorough or as in-depth as this next one will be.

Milawakee finally got back to me and they have absolutely no availability to see him before April 6 which really bums me out because there was a hope that he could get in to Milwaukee in March. I finally heard the answer yesterday that we have to wait till April.

This weekend and has been struggling with constipation and crying every time he has a bowel movement. We still haven’t advanced his diet beyond formula.

We are in this weird transition phase between University of Iowa and Milwaukee where is University of Iowa doesn’t really have anything more they can offer us and Milwaukee cannot recommend anything because they haven’t seen him yet.

In the meantime Gannon really only drinks milk and can tolerate some yogurt and puff cereal most of the time. Last weekend hechoked on a piece of Chex cereal and I had to give them a few back slaps before he threw up.

I keep trying to focus on the fact that Gannon is HAPPY! He is so happy. He is so funny. He is the chillest baby I’ve met in my life. I’m so thankful for him. I wouldn’t trade him for the world.

I love the way he bear crawls everywhere, I love the way he thinks he is SO FUNNY when he goes underneath the table, I love the way he sleeps through the night (I really love that!) and I love how he fits so perfectly into our little family.

I’ll keep fighting for you Gannon!

One Year Ago: Reliving Dad’s Cancer Journey

My father, Roger Kramer passed away from lung cancer on June 2nd, 2019 after his 129 day battle. His cancer progressed quickly after his diagnosis on January 24th 2019. The cancer spread to his C2, eating away at the bone and fracturing his neck. After finishing chemotherapy and radiation, a PET scan t revealed the cancer had spread throughout his body. I was honored to care for him in his final days and he passed away 4 days later. We not only lost a father but Craig and I lost a dear friend and community member.

One year ago on February 7th, I wrote this:

Today was a tough day.

Mom and Dad ventured through the ice storm to get to Lacrosse for an appointment with dad’s surgeon and for breathing tests to see how he would fair without a portion of his right lung.

The news wasn’t great. We originally thought he would get 2/3 of his right lung removed. Today the surgeon made it sound more like maybe they would take the entire right lung. It’s amazing the difference just one lobe would make. Things would be a lot harder without that one lobe. Dad would probably be on oxygen for a long time. He might need a pacemaker. It would have a significant impact on his life as we know it.

There were a lot of big scary statistics that the surgeon brought up. A lot of big scary “if this then that” was discussed. Mom and Dad left the appointment feeling very overwhelmed.

We also found out Dad will need more biopsies on lymph nodes next week and will be in Lacrosse again on Tuesday and Wednesday. IF these biopsies come back okay – the big surgery will be scheduled the next week. IF they come back cancerous – we will start chemo first and the surgery will be delayed.

We all thought we would get a solid treatment plan by today. That keeps getting put off. We are ALL a family of planners. We so desperately want a clear plan and path of how to navigate this ugly disease. No such luck.

So we will wait until next week. We’ve been waiting until “next week” since January 24th.

We are all feeling a little defeated. I say “we” because Dad’s fight is our fight. Dad got some really nice cards in the mail today and their neighbors shoveled their sidewalk for them for when they got home which was so sweet. Mom got an inspiring message from a blog reader about her husbands triumph over the same cancer dad has. You never know when your well wishes or small acts of kindness are needed. Today they were needed. Dad reads all the comments on mine and mom’s Facebook so feel free to drop him a note.

I completely forgot that it was ever a part of Dad’s plan to remove his lung. When he did go in for surgery on February 18th his tumor was to intertwined in his chest wall, pericardium, and lung. They tried and tried to get the tumor out and then get the lung out but they couldn’t. It was so hard to watch Dad recover from the “failed” surgery. They just sewed him back up and sent him on for chemo and radiation.

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“I’m on a diet.”

Them:

“Carbs are bad for you. “

“You need carbs.”

“Don’t eat bread.”

Me: But Oprah eats bread on Weight Watchers! Maybe I’ll try weight watchers…

“Don’t restrict yourself.”

“Bananas have the most carbs.”

“In fact, don’t eat fruit at all. They are full of sugar.”

“Nothing processed. EVER.”

“Potatoes are so bad.”

“You really need a supplement.”

“Corn is too starchy.”

“EAT MORE PROTEIN!”

“Do NOT add low calorie sweetener to your coffee.”

“You can eat eggs, but only the whites. The yolks have all the bad stuff.”

“ACTUALLY, the yolks are good for you.”

“Keto is the BEST you feel so great after you feel absolutely horrible for 2 weeks.”

“Keto is NOT something you can maintain long term.”

“Gluten is the reason you have acne!”

“CUT ALL DAIRY and your skin will never look better!”

“Intermittent fasting is best – I only eat between the hours of 1 pm and 9 pm.”

“Cauliflower really isn’t the best veggie for you…it is so starchy.”

“Don’t even try to lose weight unless you’re drinking your body weight in ounces every day.”

“Why even diet if you don’t cleanse first?”

“Add butter to your coffee but NEVER to your food!”

“Atkins diet is the way to go!”

“You MUST exercise 30 minutes every day. If you don’t, you won’t lose weight.”

“If you can add spinach to it, do it.”

“Are you on a probiotic?”

“Almond milk isn’t REAL milk! DRINK REAL MILK!”

Eat as soon as you wake up in the morning to get your metabolism going and then eat 6 small meals throughout the day to keep it going.”

“Only eat 2 meals a day. Let your metabolism rest between meals.”

“Frozen yogurt tastes just as good as ice cream!”

STOP!

I. Just. Want. To. Be. At. A. Healthy. Weight. And. Maintain. IT.

Where do I start when every step is the wrong way according to someone?

Where do I start when my life is not the same from week to week.

Where do I start when I don’t even have groceries because I’ve worked the last 6 days straight?

Where do I start when I’m supposed to be making “me time” to get to the gym and then people tell me I’m not home with my kids enough?

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Why I Left My First Nursing Job

I can’t stress how difficult the transition is from a student nurse to a professional nurse.

I even had experience as a CNA, EMT and LPN and nothing could have prepared me for the culture shock that was working on my own taking patients as a registered nurse for the first time.

It is well documented how tumultuous the first year it is for new nursing graduates.

The average nurse turnover rate (how many nurses in a particular unit/department/hospital that seek a new nursing position elsewhere) in an average year was 16% in 2015.

New grads have twice the turnover rate at 30% in the first year as a new nurse graduate and a whopping 57% in their second year as a new grad.

This can be chalked up to a variety of factors including heavy workloads, disillusionment of the profession, crazy hours/schedules, insufficient time spent with patients, or seeking a more challenging work environment.

I was a part of this statistic leaving my first RN position after 9 months to seek a more challenging work environment after nailing down the basic/fundamentals in a general med/surg/ER rotation position. I wanted to work full time ER, the opportunity presented itself.

I felt HORRIBLE leaving after they had invested so much time and training in me. They paid for me to take classes like:

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The Sunday Update

Well, it isn’t going to be a SUNNY Sunday in Northeast Iowa. We are in a Winter Weather Advisory until 6 pm tonight. We are supposed to get somewhere between 3 and 8 inches of snow.


It’s my weekend to work. When I’m so busy with clinicals during the week, I end up switching my schedule to work more weekends so I work this weekend AND next weekend.

I always work overnights on my weekend. It works best that way for my family and honestly I really love working my weekend. One of my good friends works weekend package on nights so if I work weekend overnights I’m almost guaranteed to work with her. (Hey Jen!) Also, things are just more calm at night, less people around, I can work on paperwork and get caught up on my budget and clinical paperwork.


Tomorrow mom has her cancer appointment in Lacrosse. We will find out what the next steps are to treat her thyroid cancer that has returned. It has slowly been coming back for years now since her initial diagnosis in 2016. Mom, myself, Kelli and my niece Georgia are all going.


Tomorrow I’m also supposed to FINALLY hear back from Children’s of Milwaukee on the actual plan for Gannon. I was told we could move it up to March and then heard that no it needs to stay in April and then now he might not need a certain procedure which would put us back up to the March date but then he also has an ENT consult so he might need tubes and UGH! I spend so much of my time on the phone on hold or messaging doctors to coordinate appointments and tests. I’m constantly waiting to hear back from someone about something. Some people were confused and thought he was headed for testing last week but right now we are scheduled in Milwaukee for the first week in April. He has a minor procedure scheduled at the end of the month as well.


I have so much to do at home but I only get maybe an hour or two of being awake when I work the weekend overnights so I usually ignore the housework and enjoy time with the boys. I woke up at 5 pm. I have such a busy week ahead of me I opted to do some meal prepping before I left for work. I roasted some veggies, I cooked a shrimp boil, I snarfed down some left overs and took off.

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