I have a very wise nurse-friend, we call her “Coop.” I have always thought that she double-dipped from the fountain of compassion. This paper, which she wrote for a Nursing 403 class, proves my suspicions true and gives us all a clue on how to become more like her. This lesson is applicable to ALL of us who care for and serve others, not just those called to nursing: Continue reading
Standing up from my computer terminal to go see another patient, I caught a glimpse of a small, spindly frail woman being rolled by paramedics into one of my shock and trauma rooms.
Very calmly, I remarked, “That woman is dying.”
The medical student who was rotating with me was unnerved that I would make such a pronouncement out of a mere casual observance, “Oh my goodness! How can you just say that?” Continue reading
Watching my grandfather pass away changed my life. It wasn’t sudden and it shouldn’t have been unexpected. Yet it seemed unnatural, mysterious, and incredibly uncomfortable. I can still remember receiving the phone call from the hospital, my mother letting out a distraught cry that my grandfather was no more. My initial reaction was shock and confusion; I just couldn’t understand what had happened. Looking back, he had been under intensive care for so long – five months to be exact – that we should have known that his body was only taking its natural course. Continue reading
Throughout the course of my career I have probably been with hundreds of people as they transitioned into AND out of death. Although I am familiar with what this journey looks like, I have not yet been privy to the journey myself. Rarely though, I have had the pleasure of listening to someone who has journeyed back from death and arrived with a story to tell. Regardless of your position on the validity of near death experiences, take this one for what it’s worth to you-
In an alternate universe, I would get on TV and as a public service announcement
I would say: “If you are very elderly or terminally Ill please don’t come to my ER To die, please instead choose to die in the safety and comfort of your own home.” Continue reading
I have been an ICU and ER nurse for 16 years and during this time I have seen very few, if any patients or family members that have been “prepared” to die. I have seen a lot of miracles that have kept people alive, but never have viewed a death as a miracle, until the case of “Mrs. Elizabeth”.
I am often described as a sassy, confident, lip-gloss wearing trauma nurse who does not mind “telling it like it is” or stating my opinion. When I am doing my job critical or not, I am very focused and serious and feel that I have to hold back my emotions to provide the best care for my patient. This said, my co-workers are shocked when I get upset over a patient or when I become gentle and sweet because I am moved by a patient experience. Continue reading