For thirty-two years, I had the great privilege to work with some of the greatest people in the world at the Mental Health Institute. And the staff weren't half bad either!! I've also been in the hospital, (not MHI), a couple of times and just last fall, my daughter, Annie, became a nurse. A very proud one, by the way. I don't know when "Nurse's Week" is but this week I dedicate this column to all those wonderful and hard-working nurses everywhere, especially those who had to put up with me when I was in the hospital a few years ago.
* Do you know what it feels like to enter the room of a child delirious with a fever...crying out in moans...reaching out in darkness for some comfort from the frightening world of sickness. I DO!
* Do you know what it feels like to stand in the hallway of a busy Emergency Room as victims of an automobile accident arrives from just five blocks away. I DO!
* Do you know what it feels like to see a young man grasping in pain from what I can tell is a "heart attack"...looking at you with horrible fear of the unknown? I DO!
* Do you know what it feels like to hold the hand of an elderly woman, who is in the dying stages of her life...to stroke her white hair and offer some words of comfort as she breathes her final breaths? I DO!
* Do you know what it feels like to walk into a family's waiting room...to approach the family inside and as painlessly as possible to tell them their loved one has passed away? I DO!
* Do you know what it feels like to hold the hand of a young, single, teenage girl battling a decision whether or not to bring another life into this world...to offer her guidance and to pray that your words may help? I DO!
* Do you know what it feels like to share with a mother and father that their 22-year old son is battling a serious mental illness and may do so the rest of his life? I DO!
* Do you know what it feels like to see a young girl fighting an addiction to drugs, almost dying of an overdose, was in your group session just last week promising never, never to use drugs again? I DO!
* Do you know what it feels like to help a young mother giving birth...her hand squeezing yours and the absolute joy on her face as she gives birth to a health, vibrant son? I DO!
* Do you know what it feels like when the surgeon you assisted the other day in surgery takes a moment to approach you in the cafeteria to offer his thanks and appreciation for a "job well done?" I DO!
* Do you know what it feels like to walk into a dark, back room and just cry? Sometimes tears of helplessness and sadness for those who didn't "make it," and sometimes tears of joy for witnessing a "medical miracle?" I DO!
* Do you know what it feels like to come home after three "12-hour stretches" in a row, bone tired, only to get a call the next day to come in again...because by doing so, you know without a doubt "that YOU make a difference?" I DO!
* You see, I am a Nurse; YOUR NURSE! (written anonymously by "a nurse."
That's The Way I See It. Let me know what you think at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at 319-327-4640. Love to hear from you. Have a blest week!!