The Professional

Fashion, Person, Woman, Young, MaskIt will be expected that once I return I will be back in the robotic frame of mind that work requires. For that is what we do at work…we become automatons.

Sigh! Can you tell that putting on a mask and pretending to actually be concerned with factors that are more closely connected with remuneration than patient care is not something I relish?

Masks are a funny old thing. I find there are times when I feel safer behind the mask. There are other times when the mask is suffocating. The pretense becomes maddeningly abstruse. Why am I expected to conform to the mold of the mask?

Essentially because we are professionals! We have become experts within our field. Like a disciplined ballerina, trained to perfection, able to perform with exquisite grace and finesse, we have acquired a certain expertise in perfunctoriness, choreographed to enchant our audience. We know how to traverse and travail with grace. We woo, we flatter, we secure pledges and payments, send you away with services and products you had no idea existed, or were relevant to you.

Dress, Fashion, One, Lovely, PortraitYou will never know what we really think, our poker face is too well rehearsed. We are the masters of pretense. Our clients and customers see what we want them to see. Our managers only hear yes. We tick all the boxes, we follow standard operating procedures and report all discrepancies.

You may never be permitted a glimpse, but behind the mask is a fragile human. You want her to process your enquiry immediately. You have no idea she is gripped by the effects of trauma. You analyse her through your lenses, knocking off points for poor customer service if she does not give you the answer you want within moments.

She…she is a bird that was torn apart by wolves. She survived an attack that was supposed to destroy her. However, although her heart beats, her wings will never beat again.

You see her as a professional. Her manager sees you as a walking wallet. She sees you as an antagonist, an aggressor. Behind that mask, those muscles are exerting great strain to snivel and simper for the likes of you – demanding, rude, entitled…but oh, we are professionals – our mask never falls…

“Yes Sir, how can I help you?”


Zorbing For Safety Purposes

Girl, People, Tenderness, WomanGetting to and from work is becoming a challenge on a Saturday. I feel like painting a big sign with a notice to say I am on my way to my work and am part of the NHS – so please let me through – and please stay two metres away from me because I will be dealing with people who are already sick.

It’s awful to see people displaying such appalling behaviour. Here I find myself feeling threatened and afraid of the same people who may have been clapping for the NHS every Thursday for the past couple of months.

Hey peeps – I have been stuck doing overtime for almost six months. I would be glad to be able to get to and from work safely. Violence on the streets of London – like we needed that!

Zorb, Zorbing, Rolling Downhill, SphereI want one of those zorb thingies. Never mind being in a support bubble. I want a big biodegradable plastic bubble that means I am protected from people throwing things in all directions and screaming all sorts of angry chants. I have no idea who is who – just that they are all angry. None of them seem to look as if they have any solutions to offer – just anger and hatred.

Haven’t you read the book? It was all written in advance. While you read it, could you leave a safe route for me to get to work – please. There are some very sick people we are looking after. It would help if I arrived at work in one piece.


I Need A Hug

Paula Light, the creator of Light Motifs II hosts the MONDAY PEEVE (I know it is Thursday today) and invites us all to join along as you can see from this week’s post below:

Well, it’s double trouble from me this week. last night, I published the first part of my peeve. This is to explain what else has been eating at me.

Rough, Day, Hard, Tired, Dirty, WomanOk…I will tell you. I am working at least six days a week. On top of that, I have been enrolled on a course because I have started to do work I am not technically qualified for. Some of my colleagues are on furlough. They made the right decision for them. I am working extra hours, as my other colleagues at work are. But we are tired.

We are working hard. It’s not just the physical work and the long hours that are tiring. We are hearing all the stress and anxiety from our patients and their families. I am sending money to family who have lost work during recent weeks. I am very happy to do that. I am doing my bit to support and encourage everyone I know. I am helping my landlords with grocery shopping (have been doing so for weeks), gardening and lots of other domestic tasks. In addition I have my own housework and laundry to keep up with. I have also managed to finish my Annabelle Riley series and seen the third and final part published (yay!!!)

But with all this…the truth is, I am tired. My longed for holiday to Australia is not going to happen. My boyfriend is in Africa having the time of his life. I have not had a hug from anyone in over three months 😦

iedfljbhvdThere was a mistake at work. It didn’t involve a life or injury to anybody. It’s a case of money down the drain. It involved stock and the loss of money. There was no dishonesty involved. In truth the responsibility for the mistake is split. It happened on a day I was not at work. But the next day it was brought to my attention. I did not understand that at that point I could have done something about it. I had so much other work thrown at me, so I didn’t think to worry myself about something that happened on a day I was cleaning and ironing.

I am annoyed at myself that after all the weeks of hard work and going the extra mile day after day, I came home completely deflated. I was sobbing because I didn’t understand that I could have prevented the loss of all that money. If I had understood what to do, I could have done something about it. Now we all look like idiots. But we are so busy. So we have bled a lot of money. The main cause was computers. Computers automatically creating invoices based in inaccurate stock levels.

Woman, Girl, Sadness, I Feel Sorry ForBut the point is, I am annoyed because after all the good good good things I have done with care and a smile on my face and a heart of love…all I felt was deflation on discovering that we just bled a small fortune. I wanted to cry. I did cry. Why is it, that even when you have done so much to help others with the best of motives, something falls through the net and when you realize all you can think about is the mistake, the missed opportunity.

I don’t like it, but my teenage sweetheart’s father always used to say:


…in other words, that is all our mind can think about sometimes. My heart is so heavy and I feel so deflated, that despite all the hard work and wonderful cooperative spirit at work, we bled all that money…partly because we are all so busy and so tired and because technology is not reliable.

I need a hug!

My Sprinkle Of Fun

I have ended up becoming a creature of habit these over the last three months. It’s been almost all work work work and very little play. Monday to Saturday it is all wake up, shower and dress, work, home, eat, shower, bed.

Office, Work, Business, Computer, LaptopAs well as work, I have been enrolled on a course I have to do at home. Well, I have designated one evening per week for the course (because I that’s all I want to give it – if I stick to that schedule, I will finish the course in three months, which the course providers state is the minimum time frame). Why should I rush it? I don’t see any point in rushing through it just because I can (merely on account of not being allowed to have a social life anymore). I have often rushed courses just for the sake of getting a qualification. I don’t see any need to rush it now. It would be better to limit my pace and use what I learn at work to make sure it has sunk in properly.

ruiegdfhlahSundays I am housekeeping and doing all my laundry. I love cleaning and ironing, but sometimes I have been so tired that I have to push myself to get up out of bed and start work.

I also spend time chatting to Jack and to members of my family. This Sunday I met a friend of mine. He lives in London, but his whole family are up in Snowdonia (as a lot of mine are). We walked and he bought us takeaway lunch, which we ate while we continued walking. It was great to see someone on a social basis.

dfhgdsfdaflWhen I was chatting with Jack on Sunday morning, I mentioned to him that I am missing dancing. I love parties where we can have a dance. I have started to play some music for half an hour at the weekend to have a bit of a dance – just to have my fill.

I am compiling a YouTube playlist for myself…and so far there are five Dua Lipa songs on there. I am not a fan of any musician, but I do know a great beat when I hear it. I like that some of her songs combine a sentiment with a phenomenal dance track.

I am trying to have fun as well as have a bit of exercise. During these strange times, I believe it is good to stay balanced. Work is a fine thing. But playtime is so important. So my crazy dancing to really top dance tracks is a sprinkle of fun over my otherwise fairly dull week.



Another Magical Moment

reuaigfhlasThe absolute highlight of today, was when the tannoy system began to blast out Tina Turner’s “Simply The Best”. Everyone had to stop work and look at each other. It was another magical moment.

These magical moments, during what has been an incredibly intense time at work, have been fabulous when they have come along by surprise. Who on earth decided to play that on the tannoy? It was so random! But so phenomenal!!!

Was it one of our patients? Was it one of our managers? Was it the Health Secretary or the Prime Minister? Could it have been HRH The Queen? Maybe we will never know?


At The End Of A Shift

Black Woman, Jumping, ChoreographyWork is hard going at times. But having a little sing and dance session at the end of a long stressful day has become a popular event.

My manager calls it therapy. It’s also a good way to get our heart racing – dance (well the way we dance anyway) is a great form of exercise.

We love it! It is also a great way to switch off from the things that weighed on your heart during the day.

I know everyone is pleased with the NHS at the moment. One thing that is important for all of us is taking a break for the sake of our mental and emotional health. We work hard…but at the end of a shift, being able to have a dance with some music is really good for the heart.

The funny thing is., we don’t normally do this. It’s only since the …you know… began that we have needed these little bursts of fun to let go of all the pent up stress.

Another Day Another Dollar Another Death

selective focus photography of woman holding cupI am starting to really look forward to a day off. When you are tired, you start to find mornings hard. Some of it might be physical tiredness, but it is more the emotional tiredness I am aware of. Just starting to feel I am ready to shut myself away from the whole world for a while.

But in the meantime I am sipping my coffee in hopes the caffeine will have kicked in before it’s time to shower.

fav appThen I will go and collect the dark sourdough loaf reserved for me by the bakery. I was so pleased to find I had two slices of bread left when I woke up this morning. I didn’t feel like eating granola again. I am losing my appetite at the moment.

We all start to be affected in different ways when we are in touch with illness and death. It does tend to get at you in little ways even it is something you are used to because of your profession. For me, it’s slightly chipping away at my emotional energy, my enthusiasm and my appetite. But I am aware of it. I know it will be good for me to spend my day off doing some things that will invigorate my heart and desire to enjoy life.

I was even more pleased this morning to find I still had half a jar of St Dalfour Apple and Cinnamon preserve. I spread some of it on my toasted sourdough. It is absolutely beautiful. It was a perfect start to the day.

Better go now. Another day of work ahead.



I’m On My Way

I must admit I am enjoying my walk to and from work. With the nice weather, I am walking along wearing my sunglasses, sipping my home made coffee from my papyrus reusable coffee cup and swinging my little lunch tote. I still sing. Every morning I sing on the way to work to fortify my heart for the day ahead.

Adult, Back View, Beautiful, Coffee

I am on my way to work…off to face the dragon that is the …you know. But so far, I am going strong. Another day, another dollar. But more than than…I feel part of a team. We are all in this together, each of us doing our bit.

My Walk Home

Sunset, Sunrise, Field

I am not sure which was more wonderful on my walk home from work tonight. Was it the harmonious choral symphony from my local feathered neighbours? Was it the fragrant perfumes from trees heavily laden with blossom that graced every breath I inhaled? Was it the cool breeze that refreshed me after a long day on my feet with my and body wrapped up in PPE?

I don’t know what it was…but it made my heart soar. Work can be hard, but I am enjoying it because I am making a difference to people. Making a difference to people is a wonderful thing. But I leave work tired. After a fifteen minute walk my heart is brimming with gladness that I live on such a beautiful planet. I no longer feel tired by the time I reach home.

I am going to eat some salad for dinner, have a shower…and then I am going to watch Masterchef. I am sure I will have sweet dreams and sleep well tonight. My mind and heart are lifted by the wonders I see on my way.

I Walk Alone But I’m Never Alone

Alleyway, Back Alley, Bin, City, CrimeI am so glad that the clocks have gone forward and that we that we now have lighter brighter evenings.

Just before the clocks went forward, I was finishing work in the dark. Because of the social distancing measures put in place, the streets were empty. I must admit, I felt really nervous walking home in the dark, through London streets with nobody around. It made me clutch my handbag really tightly in case someone jumped out of the shadows and tried to run off with my bag.

But now when I finish work it is light. Now there are people out jogging (lots of joggers), cycling, walking their dog or walking. There were a lot this evening. Seeing lots of people on on the way home makes me nervous for a very different reason.

I feel safer to see people around. But I am still determined to stay in my little bubble. A lot of people make sure they maintain a distance from others. But some people are more casual. Right since this all started, I have been trying to make sure that I am healthy for work. I am sleeping more than normal. I am eating well. I am cheering up my heart.

I am walking alone, but in my heart I have lots of my loved ones who are a huge source of strength to me. They are keeping me going, full of joy, full of determination. I’m never alone.

Which brings to mind the words of a song I have grown up with – it has been sung thousands of times I am sure at Anfield Stadium, the home of Liverpool Football Club. But today I am going to link to Katherine Jenkins…who sings this song almost as well as I do! I’m kidding, I’m kidding! My voice is not a scratch on hers.

When you walk through a storm
Hold your head up high
And don’t be afraid of the dark

At the end of a storm
There’s a golden sky
And the sweet silver song of a lark

Walk on through the wind
Walk on through the rain
Though your dreams be tossed and blown

Walk on, walk on
With hope in your heart
And you’ll never walk alone

You’ll never walk alone

Walk on, walk on
With hope in your heart
And you’ll never walk alone

You’ll never walk alone