My first

May 24, 2017

My First: Sometimes It’s Out Of Our Hands

I looked down at my admission slip and saw written "35-year-old male, high potassium, and low platelets.” Humm...okay. I already began to plan out in my mind all my interventions even before calling to get report. I'll never forget that report...even to this day, it seems like I can so clearly hear the sadness in the ER nurse's voice. The first words out of her mouth were "Oh man, this is a sad one.”
May 22, 2017

My First Smile: How I Choose To Comfort Amidst The Chaos

We learned slowly that the only power we had to comfort people in pain as they entered a complex system of care was the softest power at all: tenderness. There were no promises we could make, and people often lied to us to protect themselves. So we smiled.
May 19, 2017

Our Bodies Are Amazing: Witnessing The Power Of Medicine For The First Time

They gave her a heart shaped pillow that has the anatomy of the blood vessels and a heart on it. The surgeons signed the pillow with a sharpie and drew on the arteries that had been grafted. Her job is to hug this pillow when she moves, or when she coughs or sneezes. She wraps the pillow, we have the nurse, the PT, a respiratory therapist, another nurse and me, the newbie aide to use a slide board to move her to the chair. The PT reminds me to watch all the lines and go slow. I was on high alert and we slide her over.
May 17, 2017

Wrestling With Death

I went from feeling like the guardian angel, to feeling like the grim-reaper himself. I knew we were doing everything right. I knew we followed the protocols correctly. I knew we worked with good crews and good hospitals. What I didn't know, were the statistics.
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