Move Over, Grandma

It’s True

We are living in a culture that is overly enamored with youth and good looks. Those are the things we have less of each year as we add more  candles to the top of our birthday cakes. [Someone call the fire department.]

Oh, sorry, did I hit a nerve?

Well, it’s true. I know it, you know it, and the American people know it. Being a displaced professional over 50 looking for a job in today’s marketplace is tantamount to having leprosy. I suspect that there’s a number of you who can relate to this as well, based on the number of threads about this that I’ve seen lately.

Ewwww Becky. Look. It’s An Old Person.

Survival Skills

I find that a healthy sense of humor, self-control, and a very strong filter goes a long way in keeping it together in such trying times.

For example, had my mother not insisted that I develop good manners, today I would not know how to graciously nod my head, smile politely (through my gritted teeth), and bat my baby blues sweetly —while being interviewed by a condescending little fetus—for a job that I was doing while she yet a zygote undergoing cell division!

Ah yes, and haven’t we all encountered that precious little upstart who can’t think outside the box, yet they can certainly can point out when you have left one blank on your employment application.

“Um, there’s an address and phone number missing here.”

“Where?” we ask, looking at the form. Immediately we want to scream, but we don’t. Rather, being the nice lovely people that we’ve been raised to be, we force a smile, and say nothing. But silently we want to shout:

Really?! You want the name and phone number of my high school principal when I’ve been to college and in the workplace for decades?! Darlin’, did someone drop you on your head as an infant?!”

As I said before, that’s what we want to say. Once again, we say nothing. It is imperative that we maintain our composure at all costs, right?

Anatomy class taught us that knee-jerk reactions bypass the brain for interpretation. Thankfully, I’ve generally had the mental wherewithal to restrain my impulses. Thus far, I have yet to grab Little Lord Fontleroy by the tie and jerk him across to my side of the table and slap the stupid out of him. What moronic inquiries and comments!

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Throwing In The Towel

In my view, health care has irreversibly changed, and not for the better so this Bullwinkle has bowed out for good. She’s tired of trying to pull magical rabbits out of hats.

I say go ahead … give my prox card and executive parking space to the next wet-behind-the-ears applicant who wants the job. I say let them figure out how to breed animals, recombine DNA, splice genes, and/or whatever else may be necessary to eke out enough revenue to stay ahead of the whack-a-mole game of practice management.

Let the younger generation whip and nae/nae with the Medusa of constantly changing regulations. I worked for our state’s Peer Review Organization at one point in my career, so I enjoy reading The Federal Register just as much as the next person. It’s just that I know my limits these days. With my humor imp out in the open, I can get slap happy just perusing the Tabular Index of the ICD-10. Don’t even get me started!

Pigs And Their Latin

Ixnay the thought of me ever again competing with every Gerber Baby in the world for the ‘privilege’ of working 80+ hours a week and being a counter monkey. I’m no longer deluded enough to think that a time will come when everything’s finally ‘done’. It’s like housework, it’s never done.

Ixnay the prospect of me being an interim administrator again. Nope. Nada. Zilch. No more doing all the ‘heavy lifting’ by cleaning up a practice only to have someone young upstart come along and look like a genius because they simply maintained the systems and checklists that I put in place.

“But what about all those really messed up practices that need me?” my ego posits.

With a sharp whack across the face from the back of my hand, I silence that ridiculous notion. But I do ponder the thought—but only for a nanosecond. Nah! Been there. Done that. Got a drawer full of stupid t-shirts.

Nah, it’s time to enjoy myself for a change—even if that means I’m on the austerity plan. So I say slap the ‘Vacant’ sign on my executive chair and let’s ‘get gone’. Lord knows, I’ve worked hard. I’ve paid my dues. And based on the amount of L’Oreal I used before finally deciding to embrace my gray—I’m definitely worth it.

Elvis Has Left The Building

I can sleep at night, having made this decision. All those doctors and all those messed up practices will be just fine without me. I’m certain of it because:

  1. There’s a boatload of consultants out doctors can call if they get really desperate.
  2. There’s a logjam of applicants queued up and waiting like little compliant little clones in the black hole of all those online Applicant Tracking Systems. They’ve already submitted everything but their DNA samples when they spent over an hour applying for each opening.
  3. There’s no shortage of business majors out there to fill the bill. Each year a new crop of graduate students are expelled from the lower intestines of our revered halls of higher learning. They’re all ready to burst onto the scene waving their newly minted MBA’s. [Join me in a golf clap.]
  4. Lastly, every practice that I’ve ever helped has any number of resident (self-appointed) heirs apparent. They’ve long been waiting in the wings … eyes locked on … perched and ready … looking for the slightest nod to spring forth and claim their position in ‘the chair’.

God love ’em. They know not what they face. Please join me in a moment of silence.

In All Seriousness

Humor aside, I really do feel for these naive folks. I started out just like them. I too, was full of spit and vinegar. I too, was once eager for my chance to prove that I was a super-human and that I could drink from a fire hose on a daily basis and still get things done.

I’m not saying that I never enjoyed anything about my time in practice administration—because I did. I’m simply saying that running Mach 1 with my hair on fire and having to stay in Stepford character all day long has somehow lost its appeal.

I can’t imagine why. LOL


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