In this “Employee Spotlight,” get to know Paula Stockton, a radiology technician at our Marietta location. Learn more about Paula below!
I love helping the doctors visualize difficult anatomy and enjoy training new hires who struggle with the c-arm. It makes my day when they get to see the anatomy, learn the value of good body mechanics, and utilize safe practices for operating equipment.
Also, I love building relationships with my patients and easing their fears by helping them breathe and relax. I am sometimes called “human sedation” around the Marietta office.
“You make operating the c-arm look so easy and never lose your cool with difficult patients or stressful situations.”
I try to follow all of the core values. However, if I had to choose one to strive for, it would be compassion. When we are dealing with patients who have chronic pain, they need patience, understanding, and compassion.
I have often advised younger employees to stop and listen to their patients' stories. We don’t know how much their pain has cost them, perhaps a job or a career. Our patients may have lost the ability to do the things they most enjoy. Also, they may have lost important relationships because chronic pain puts stress on their family members too.
Patients can be agitated, angry, dirty, unkept, scared, or fearful due to their pain, so I strive to see past these things and just “love on” our patients. I laugh with them and try to get them to tell me a good story. To help them get through their appointments, I ask the patients what has made them smile that week and get them to focus on the positive aspects of their lives such as pets, children, grandchildren, hobbies, etc. We must help them believe there is HOPE.
During high school, I worked in the personnel office for a coke and coal plant and was a key punch operator too. I worked on a “dinosaur” first generation computer that was as large as a room. Instead of fiber optics and wireless internet, we had to punch cards that went through the computer system and calculated payroll.
Years later when I was in college, my class was watching a film on the history of the computer and there was a huge key punch machine. I said, “Wow! I used to run one of those.” All of my younger classmates thought I was a “dinosaur.” The same reaction happens to me with new radiology techs that are unaware of dark rooms and film processing. When that equipment was used in our industry, we had to be able to completely tear down and rebuild the film processor.
I enjoy gardening, refurbishing yard art, baking, cooking, sewing, and all kinds of animals. I am blessed to have six grandkids, and they call my house “Grandma’s Farm.” I’ve been blessed to teach them about life through chickens, rabbits, cats, dogs, a Koi pond, and all sorts of crafting.
My favorite thing is to take them on a “Grandma Grande Adventure” where they have to learn something new. The activities include visits to state parks, zoos, aquariums, fairs, circuses, or hiking. “Life is either a Grande adventure or nothing at all.”
I had both my children as natural childbirths with no sedation, and my second child was born at home.
During pregnancy, I earned a certification for informed homebirth as a midwife. I had the opportunity to deliver eight babies while I was pregnant, alongside the midwife who delivered my son. Her fifth child was born the day after my son arrived. Thankfully, my delivery came first because my husband would not have been the best midwife.