Thursday’s Thoughts ~ Reflecting On The Past Week…

Tomorrow will make one week since Ed lost his job–and what a week it’s been!  As you can imagine, we’ve experienced all kinds of emotions this week–shock, anger, disbelief, fear, sadness, and relief, all rolled into one week!  I’m happy to say, as the week has worn on, relief has become the most prevalent emotion in our household.

Seven years ago, Ed was happily working at another hospital.   One day, EMH contacted him and asked if he might be interested in coming to work for their hospital.  Although Ed was happy with his current job, the hospital where he was working was 55 miles from home, which meant a two-hour commute every day.  EMH was located just 7 miles from us, and offered a higher salary.  It wasn’t an easy decision for Ed to make, but, ultimately, he chose to take the job at EMH.  It didn’t take long to figure out that he might have made a mistake.  While the commute was much shorter, and the pay much better, the working conditions were much more stressful, and, over time, they just got worse.  It was the worst working environment Ed has ever experienced, in his forty-three years of employment!  Some of the problems included poor hospital management, lots of back-biting and back stabbing among the staff, not to mention poor morale among ALL employees.

Due to the government’s involvement in healthcare, times are tough for small rural hospitals, with most of them really struggling, these days.  Not long after Ed took the job at EMH, it became apparent that this hospital was struggling, as well.  Years ago, Ed had worked [for twenty years] at a hospital that ended up having to close its doors, so he knew all of the warning signs.  The same scenario was beginning to play out at EMH.

At the beginning of last year, it became apparent the hospital wasn’t going to survive, unless some drastic changes were made.  By the end of the year, a management firm had been hired to take over running the hospital, on a trial basis, for one year.  We had a pretty good idea of how the next scenario would go. Employees were warned that ” some cuts would be made” when this company took control.

Since Ed was a department director, making a higher salary, he stood a greater chance of being targeted.  Some employees sought other employment, but Ed chose to ride out the storm.  He turned 65, in November, and knew retirement would be in the not-too-distant future, anyway.  We hoped for the best, but prepared for the worst.  The worst happened last Friday, when Ed was “let go.”

In hindsight, we’re now beginning to view what we considered “the worst” as a blessing. Living and working in stressful conditions can eventually take a toll on one’s health, and Ed was no exception.  In the wake of this particularly stressful past year, minor health issues had begun to plague Ed.  I feared for his over-all health, and joked with him, at one point, that he was going to stay at that hospital until they carried him out on a stretcher.  Fortunately, that didn’t happen!

As each day passes, Ed looks better and better.  He says he even feels better.  He looks like a man who has had the weight of the world lifted off of his shoulders, and, perhaps, he has.  Perhaps a better analogy would be this:  After years of riding on a sinking ship, Ed finally got tossed a life-preserver.  May he happily find his way to the shore of retirement bliss, and live happily ever after!






Published in: on January 22, 2015 at 12:00 pm  Comments (7)  
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This-N-That On Tuesday…

For some reason, lately, I’m having trouble sitting down and writing a ‘themed’ post.  It could be the heat, or my age creeping up on me, but I can’t seem to stay focused on one particular subject anymore.  I have a couple of ideas floating around in my head, but they haven’t found their way to this blog yet!

Meanwhile, did I mention that it’s hot here?  Apparently, summer has decided to arrive in earnest!  I’ve become a prisoner in my own house, due to the ridiculously hot (90’s and above) temperatures outside!  I’ll spend some time outside first thing each morning, and a little more time in the early evening–sometimes.  If I didn’t have chickens, cats, and plants to take care of, I probably wouldn’t ever go outside!

Yesterday, Ed picked up and counted all of the pears that had fallen from our two over-loaded trees.  Would you believe there were almost 500 pears on the ground?!  That’s a lot of pears!  The branches of the poor trees are really struggling under the weight of the remaining fruit.  Where are the squirrels when you need them?!

pear cobbler, anyone?

We once had a plum tree that over-produced like this.  We gave away buckets of large, red, plums and I made lots of plum jelly, too.  The plum tree died the following year!  I guess you could say it went out in a blaze of glory.  I hope the same isn’t true for these pear trees, but they are getting pretty old…

The garden is doing remarkably well, considering it’s so hot and dry!  The peas are beginning to bloom, so it won’t be long until it’s pea-picking time–again!  I sure hope the weather cools down between now and then!  I’m not in a pea-picking mood, these days.


not welcome on the porch!

The sick ‘girls’ (aka the hens) seem to be doing better since we dewormed them.  I need to devote an entire post to that experience, for the sake of ‘newbie’ chicken owners.  Within days of applying the topical treatment (sort of like you apply flea treatment to dogs/cats) the hens began eating again, and having more energy.  Who knew?!  (The sickest hen lost vast amounts of feathers, and still isn’t quite over the hump, yet.)  Through it all, two of the three girls have continued producing eggs, believe it or not!  Unfortunately, we haven’t been able to eat their eggs for 14 days, due to the medication in their systems. I recently purchased eggs–the first I’ve had to buy in over two years!

My girls free-range all day now, but have become obsessed with the new front porch!  Shortly after the above photo was taken, we had to put up a baby gate to keep them out!  I’ll share my porch with cats, but I draw the line at chickens 🙂

Lately, things have been quiet at Ed’s job.  Let’s hope this is not the quiet before the storm.  The hospital administrator announced, last week, that she will be leaving at the end of this year.  I can’t help but wonder what is going to happen between now and then.  The CFO will be leaving at the end of this month…  Have I mentioned this is the second failing hospital Ed’s been employed with in his lifetime?  He spent twenty years working at the previous one, before it closed its doors in 2000.  How’s that for luck?!

On that note, I’ll just say “Happy Tuesday”–at least I hope it will be!


Published in: on August 19, 2014 at 10:21 am  Comments (6)  
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