Saturday, April 15, 2006

I haven't posted since March!?

I'm tired. Very, very tired. It's been a busy month. Ended by a long week at work-I had a donor who was a baby, killed in house fire with mom. I DO NOT want to talk about it.

I will say this, though. You should never jump to conclusions. The intensivist told me afterwards that she was taken aback by how heartless the recovering surgeon was. She wanted to hate him. I told her that she didn't see him in the OR when he asked me what the baby's name was as he made the first incision. I told him and he said "S____, I'm so sorry. I so, so sorry." He has kids, too, and he didn't want to do this but we had no one else.

There are two things about this job. One good thing is, it makes me so grateful for the things I have-my health, my family. I try to live every day like I may never see them again. The one bad thing is-I live like I may never see them again. It scares the bejesus out of me. I think of all the bad things that could happen to my Laughing Baby or my older, Dear Kid. It drives me nuts. I want to encase them in bubble wrap whenever they go out of the house.

I remember a bad week I had many years ago when I did trauma. In one week I took care of a teenager who hanged himself, a young girl killed in a head-on collision and a new father who had pulled over to the shoulder when his car broke down and was rear-ended by another driver who had passed out from being sick at 70 mph. He had taken off his seatbelt while he was waiting for the tow truck and killed. I had to talk to his wife, the mother of his 4 month old baby. Then I had to return to the ER where the driver that killed him was being treated.

That was it for me...I did something I had never done before. I sought out the priest from pastoral care. Father was a great guy. I told him how upset all this had made me and then how I was worried I'd run into the guy that did it as my next patient. He said, "I understand. I spent a long time with the family of the man who died and it was very draining on me too. Then I wanted to know if I'd have to minister to the other man as well, but I looked him up in the computer, and thank God, he's Protestant!" *

Which leads me to the third thing about this job:you need a wicked sense of humor.

* I cross-my-heart-and-hope-to-die swear that that is exactly what he said! I loved that priest.


Bob said...

Great bit about the priest!

I'm taking off work early today to finish my taxes, but before that I'm going to test the smoke detectors... I can't bubble-wrap Baby (not that she'd keep it on for long), but I can at least work on the in-house safety.

star firstbaseman said...

Love it - how could you not?

Keith, RN said...

Great story, moving post, and all so right on. Fatigue can be deep---physical, emotional, professional, not to mention compassion fatigue. We all must care for ourselves, or illness can result. Do something nice for yourself soon.

Anonymous said...

Great to see your posting again.

unsinkablemb said...

Thanks for sharing that post. Honestly, I don't know how you do what you do. Please take care of yourself!