As a medical coder I have witnessed disease, neglect and abuse. It still amazes me what and exactly how much people will do to themselves and others.
I have also coded my share of death charts – those are where the patient dies in the hospital, and the coder puts that the patient has expired as the discharge. It’s very final, it affects you, it affected me deeply. And every time I had to assign one it affected me a little more, one patient in particular, affected me much, much more than all the others. I think it will always be with me.
I went through bit of depression after that account. It had pushed me over my limit, and I was burned out.
After months of self-care I was feeling better. I was still burned out, but able to cope. It was in that time that I came to the realization that I was meant to do something else. And after months of prayer and meditation I felt God working in me. Not to just help me feel better but pushing me in a new direction to something better.
I hadn’t always been affected by accounts that way. Becoming a mother had changed me, I had a lot more empathy than I used too. Where there used to be just numbers for an account, now was a person. I don’t even know when it changed in me, it was slowly over time. And the wall that I had built up to keep me “safe” from internalizing the information, was slowly being eroded.
Please don’t think I am attacking the medical coding profession. I’m not, for many years, I enjoyed it. Maybe if I had been able to be in a different type of coding job, I may still be there. It is a good profession, that gave me a lot of opportunities, and experiences, But I changed. And after years of guilt and frustration, I now know that that’s ok for me to change. I want more. My experiences that I have enjoyed and endured have turned me into who I am. I have changed, I will continue to grow and evolve. And that’s ok.
With this new feeling that there is something more out there for me, came fear. Fear of the what if. I had always been the responsible one, the one that did what she was supposed to. But now, instead of thinking of what I am supposed to do, I am thinking of how I want to be. I want to be happy. I want what I do to interest me and grow with me. To be more than just a job.
My journey has led me here – talking to…anyone. I am taking Gods wonderful grace and throwing in a good dash of optimism that what I say helps, maybe even making just a little bit of difference.
Making a day just a bit brighter. A chore a little bit easier. Or life a little less complicated.
I hope you have a wonderful day!