Sunday, November 29, 2009

What I'm Thankful For...

So lots of folks had been posting their facebook statuses as things that they are thankful for. I love seeing what folks are thankful for, but I am a twisted individual and would rather try to vent a bit o' frustration or attempt to be humorous via my status updates, so instead, I am going to post what I am thankful for this way. Now, I did begin this waaaay before Thanksgiving, I just didn't get around to posting it until now. As for the what I'm thankful for, I could just rattle them off, but I thought about challenging myself a bit. I figure I'm 31 (yup...that's right...) so I should have at LEAST 31 reasons to be thankful for, and I am sure that I do...but when I sat down to write my list, I tapped out at 23. If you notice one GLARINGLY bad one missing...feel free to let me know!

Now, my list will have things both real and what may sound trivial (to some). Pfft...this is my list. I'll list how I want to!

1. Dad
2. Mom
3. Melissa - for our marathon discussions
4. Kurt - for what he does with his kids
5. Chris - for how happy he makes Melissa
6. Maggy - for how happy she makes Kurt
7. Baxter - for comic relief and fur therapy
8. Work - pays the bills and I feel like I actually make a teeny difference
9. Friends - too many to list and the ways they impact my life are too numerous to count
10. Food - need it to live, but I'm also lucky to have what I have instead of nothing at all!
11. Love - from friends, family and God most of all!
12. Life - the alternative wouldn't be as fun...(heaven yes, death, no.)
13. Flatirons - for keeping me grounded and making me think
14. My small group - for making life's ups and downs a bit easier knowing I'm not the only one living this roller coaster!
15. Target - yes it's odd, but I have a love/hate relationship with Target. I love to shop there b/c I can find what I need for less than most other stores (normally) but I hate it because I walk in needing socks and walk out $50 later.
16. iTunes - to keep my drives from being boring
17. Email - to stay in touch with those not close by
18. Facebook - (I just heard half of you laugh at me and/or roll your eyeballs.) Has connected me with many long lost friends, and has distracted me for numerous mundane hours.
19. Laughter - without it, I'd die.
20. Where I Live - Colorado is called "God's Country" for a reason...
21. Our military - without them and their sacrifices, I wouldn't be able to write what I'm writing today, let alone live my life without fear.
22. Hugs - nothing will make a bad situation a bit easier or another person feel a smidge better than a good ol' fashioned hug. Don't do it if you don't mean it either.
23. My (annoyingly) sunny outlook on things - if I don't see that glass as half full...I will go stark raving mad. Why focus on negative when there is ALWAYS a silver lining.

And THAT is what I'm thankful for. :)

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Reminding Myself to Have Patience With Patients

I posted a while ago (like over a year and change ago) about a particular experience with a potential patient at my last practice. (You can find that story here.) Today, while in no way comparable to the woman in the story referenced above, I did receive a rather odd request.

Today I called a patient to schedule her for a follow up to her MRI she recently had done. Now, this patient is a difficult patient in many ways, but to give you the short list, here we go:
  • Very rude woman
  • Demands things be done her way and NOW.
  • Terrible at returning phone calls/messages.
I even turned to TCI (The Crazy Italian for those that don't know) and asked her "what do you want to bet that I don't even get her when I call and if I do, she won't have her schedule there and will want me to call her back?"

I was right, to a point.

When she answered, I was floored. I was right though in the fact that she didn't know her schedule, so she asked me to call back, HOWEVER in my defense, when she picked up the phone I asked her "is this a good time?" she said yes! So, if it really isn't a good time, maybe you shouldn't answer your cell phone...just a thought though. Anyways, I asked her if she was available either of the times I had available and she said 'sigh No, I need a later appointment, so you need to ask Dr. M when he is willing to stay late for me to come and see him.'

I'm sorry, what? Where on earth do you think you can schedule an appointment with a doctor AFTER HIS LAST APPOINTMENT?? I know that this woman comes from a bit of a drive, and I know that the drive can be bothersome, but COME ON...if you have to have a follow up visit with your radiation might tell work to shove it for a couple hours so that you could go to your doctor's appointment.

I swear...some people's

UPDATE: I just had a phone call from a patient who I am working on getting a prior authorization for his procedure. Sadly his was one of the ones I just didn't get to before the Thanksgiving holiday. I explained to him how I was going to TRY to get to it today if not first thing tomorrow. Apparently this wasn't enough for him. He just left our nurse a *wonderful* voicemail. I cut our patients a lot (and I mean a LOT) of slack but I have to stop and wonder at times if patients think all there is to it is just calling and talking to one person. NO. Most times, this takes me 3 phone calls, submission of clinical data and sitting on hold for a very. long. time. Also, I don't just do prior authorizations. I do scheduling, I order supplies, I manage 2 very busy and slightly high strung doctors, a nurse and a therapist as well as maintaining billing and checking patients in and out. You think my job is that easy? YOU come sit here for a day and tell me how you feel at the end.

Ok, I"m off my soapbox now...sheesh.

A Blog I Started A While Ago I started this forever and a day ago...and there is some good stuff in here...but I also whine a bit...

I started C25K and I debated even saying anything to anyone. Instead, I posted how excited I was after my first run, and received amazing amounts of compliments and comments of support. I fell off the wagon for a little bit (a week) and am back on it. I have to force myself to go to the gym. I need to somehow get my mind back into the game of going to the gym right after instead of steering my car homeward. Before Melissa and Chris' wedding, I was dedicated...every night after work, and I had put out a ton of money to have a trainer to kick my ass back into gear. I don't know if it was because of that oh so fun dress, or was it because I felt like it was about time I finally did something or what...(okay, I know the answer to this, most of it was the dress...big girl arms in a strapless don't lie)

My life seems to never stop. I've kind of talked about this before. I love my friends dearly, and I adore spending time with all of them. I am lucky in a couple ways because I am still single, I can come and go as I please, don't have to check with someone else's schedule, I don't have to rush home. However, I do work.

I work hard. I take pride in my work and what I do. My job is relatively easy compared to say, being a doctor, lawyer, high powered executive etc. I am a Medical Administrative Assistant, Insurance Verification Specialist, Insurance Authorization Specialist, Scheduler, On-Site IT lackey and Office Supply Coordinator. Allllll rolled up into 40 hours a week. No more. Overtime is a big no no. I leave work at night and am so mentally exhausted, the only thing that sounds even remotely do-able is vegging out in front of the TV.

I am a girl who has an extremely hard time saying no to things. And normally when I do say yes to so many things, I am exhausted by the end of everything, but I love it because apparently my body doesn't like it when I just sit. (Btw...I never just sit.) I worked two jobs for years...and at one point for about 6 months (maybe less) I worked 3 at a time. Yeah, I had no life. Now, I work one job, and fill the rest of my time with friends, volunteering and somewhere in there I think I sleep. Well, I know I've said before, that I would really like to un-busy myself somehow. This would entail me needing to start saying no to things when asked. (Sidenote...I'm in Starbucks and they have a Tony Bennett ballad playing and I love him, but now I'm feeling all kinds of I have to report, I am rather proud of myself, while I struggled to decide if I should finally say no or not...I did. It was hard...I had to say no to something that I truly love doing. But when I did finally send off that email stating that I just had to step down to be fair not only to them but myself...I had a couple of of dread of what these people were going to think of me and another of sheer relief. I had said that I would be able to deliver something and the more I got involved, the more I saw that I just wasn't going to be able to do that so I felt it was in everyone's best interest if I stepped down before things ramped up so much that I was failing them. Yeah, that didn't go over so well, but thankfully b/c it was a volunteer position, there wasn't TOO much grumbling.

(Okay, it's now been FOREVER since I started this and since I have another thread in mind, I need to publish this one so it isn't nagging me there.)


Smug Asshats...

When do you finally get to that point where if you don't say something, it's just going to get worse?

I work with some really cool and really smart people. I do! I also work with one very smug asshat. We'll call this person...(something witty that I can't think of right now, but will ultimately make you giggle) yeah...that. This person walks around the office, scratch that, they STRUT around the office like they own the place. Uh, yeah no. If this person's ego were any bigger...I'd be shocked if they could fit through our sliding glass double doors.

When this person started, I was welcoming, tried to help ease transition (as I had only joined the team about 5 months prior myself) and we started just kind of getting to know each other. Now, I'm lucky if I even get the time of day. In a way, I'm soooo happy with that because I'm tired of their sense of entitlement. The world does not revolve around you, no matter what your mommy says. Sorry bud, not true. The other part of me (this person and I are the youngest folks in our office by about 15-20 years) is bummed that a camaraderie has died.

I'm sure I will live to see another day.

(PS: this too was a blog that was started quite a while's amazing how these things just stack up...)

UPDATE: 10 days after I wrote this blog...this person got themselves fired. Karma people...karma...

Saturday, November 7, 2009

The Theatre, the Theatre, what has HAPPENED to the theatre???

Yes, I'll admit it, I totally stole my title from one of my all time favorite movies, and if you can name it, wow, I will be thoroughly impressed. Moving on.

Last night, my friend CMM and I went to the beautiful Performing Arts Center in downtown Denver. We have had tickets to Wicked for forever and FINALLY the big green day was here!! C had never seen Wicked, this was my second go round. Now, since this isn't a blog about the wonderfulness of Wicked, I will refrain from spontaneously bursting into song on the page. However, if you can, get tickets and get your butt to the show...omilord, it's the most amazing thing...ever. No really. Okay, enough, time for real reason for writing.

I was a theatre minor in college, so I feel like I have SOME authority to speak on this issue, however theatre majors, you and Broadway (not Hollywood, BROADWAY) professionals, you may supersede my thoughts.

I know that society's version of dressing up nowadays, is COMPLETELY different than what it was "back in the day". For this in some ways (like I don't HAVE to wear a dress to church anymore) I am thankful. However, going to a Broadway show (touring etc.) or going to see a play in general, in my opinion is still a reason to dress up. Jeans and a t-shirt...mmmmmmmmmmmmmm yeah no. Khaki's and a button down? Okay, but did you really even try? There were PLENTY of people who did dress up, in fact the people who didn't were in the minority, I have to be honest.

But this wasn't even the thing that got to me most about last night. What floored me the most, was the fact that in all the years I have gone to the Temple Buell Theatre in Denver, NEVER were you allowed to bring your drink in to the theatre with you. Now, not only can you do that but there are cupholders as if you are the average neighborhood movie theatre. I don't know how to respond to this...I'm floored and outraged in one respect, but I'm kind of not surprised in another. Is nothing sacred? I saw a woman (dressed nicely) come back from intermission with a beer bottle in her hand as if she was at a baseball game. No judgement on the beer, but more disappointment in the theatre.

ALSO on the theatre's website it says to plan for traffic, other events in the area, etc. and that there is a good possibility of not being seated late. Good grief you would have thought they were simply waiting for the break in the action like they do at Coors Field with the Rockies! PEOPLE! You are going to a play at a performing arts complex, you have paid good money for seats. It is considered extremely poor form to show up 20 minutes into the show and take your seat. I know, I sound snobby, and maybe I am being that just a touch, but I knew I had tickets, I came from about 45 minutes away, knew I'd be sitting in rush hour traffic (Hwy 36 AND I-25, so double the frustration) so I planned ahead! I actually made it to the theatre with about an hour to spare before C and I were meeting up. Am I saying get to the theatre as early as I did? Heavens no! I had so much time to kill, I spent most of it on the phone with my friend Soccer Mom. However, I do mean, get to the theatre early enough that you are able to be in your seats at least 5-10 minutes before that time that is stamped on your tickets you've had for probably a couple months.

So, to sum up...
1 - Show up to the show on time
2 - Look like you actually TRIED to look nice for your evening at the theatre.
3 - Leave the beverage in the lobby, I don't want to have to worry about my purse under my seat like I do my coat at the baseball game.
4 - Have an amazing time and enjoy is a living, breathing work of art...and those actors, bust their a$$es every night making you laugh, cry and that play come alive.