Working with the elderly is Health Care is not always the easiest jobs, but it can be quite rewarding. It takes a certain type of person (you know that weird person that sits and talks to your grandma on a regular basis) to do this type of job. Almost everyone in the field has similar struggles, but here are sixteen signs that are relatable to all people who work within this field.
1. The perpetual smell of old people.
Old people smell comes in a number of different varieties; it is the old lady perfume, aftershave. Vic’s vapor rub, Aspercreame, or the common old people smell it never seems to leave your pores.
2. Calling baby diapers Briefs
You are brainwashed to the fact that telling an old person that you are putting a diaper on them is so detrimental to their wellbeing that when you actually have to change a baby you say “will you pass me that brief”. Let’s face it; diaper is no longer in your vocabulary.
3. Nicknames such as: cupcake, honey bun, sweetheart, and babe
These names are common grounds between both the staff and residents because either you are calling your 90+ residents this because you never want to say the wrong name or you are in fact one of these pet names because old folks mind is not as sharp as it used to be. In my case no offense you do not want to be called cupcake, it means you have become an old ladies slave.
4. Only time it is appropriate to wear cartoon clothing in public no matter how old you are.
Yes, I like Scooby doo, Spongebob, and Winnie the Pooh. So yes I will buy and wear scrubs to work. I don’t care if my residents know who they are. They are just so cute! Yes most of us are guilty of this.
5. When 65-70 years old is considered young
Your concept of young completely changes. Fifty is no longer old, but in fact it is quite young. Hey half your nursing staff is probably fifty are close to fifty, and your residents are probably almost 100!
6. Getting paid to be insulted and assaulted
Yes I probably get called out of my name about twenty times a day, and it is never a surprise to get hit, punched, kicked, and (in my case) a cup of cold water thrown in your face.
7. Bland unseasoned food
Between the no spicy food and no salt diets all the food taste like is a bunch of mashed soft particles no matter what it is! “You know we are having spaghetti for lunch or more like really soft noodles with flavorless tomato sauce sounds more like it.”
8. When you have the same conversation everyday with the same person.
Yea my name is Kate and I am… let’s just say there is tons of repetition and most to all will not remember who you are tomorrow.
9. There is no off time because your job never closes
This is a 24/7 job and you will never forget that but hey holiday pay is kind of nice! I mean you come to expect those calls at three in the morning asking if you could make it to work early.
10. Poop is forever known as BM
Enough Said. No need to explain that one!
11. Speaking of BM you probably are comfortable discussing BM
No matter if it is talking about how often you may go, or how big one of your residents was that today. We love to talk about poop. It makes our world go round.
12. It is normal that within an 8 hour period you probably have urine, BM, or blood (that is rarely your own) on your scrubs and it is acceptable.
And yes I have had days where I have come home with all three. Believe me showers become your best friend. You can never shower enough.
13. If you are under the age of 35 you are considered a Baby still.
No matter how long you have been in the field you will be always considered a baby in the eyes of your residents, and if you are not a baby. The scary alternative is that you are considered one of them! Yea I like being a baby.
14. You have probably seen more balls, tits, and vaginas than any human should ever see!
Hey at least you will never be surprised in any awkward situation because sadly you have already seen everything before. Ranging from big to small. Circumcised to uncircumcised.
15. No matter how much you make it is never enough!
I mean let’s be real, you are taking another human beings life in your hands, but you make less than the people at Lowes. It defiantly sucks and the pay is not always worth the crap but at the end of the day you are not there for just a pay check (although getting paid is nice!). You are there because you care, or you are the type of person that can handle the environment.
16. Overtime is to almost always to be expected
Regardless if you want the time and half or not you will probably get stuck picking up others shifts “Yea Patty found out this is not the field for her, so who wants to pick up some shifts?”
17. Your residents and coworkers become like family
This is probably one of my favorite. Each part of the team that I work with is like members of my own family. We cry together, we laugh together, and we struggle together. Some of these people will attend your wedding and share your every day joys. I think I call a large portion of my residents’ grandma or pops. They simply help make the job worth it and your day faster. It is simply part of the job, and is the reason everyone stays at a job that sometimes does not seem worth it. These people count on your vital role in making the team operate.