Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Thoughts after a long night in the ER.

I'm thinking there must be a bunch of introverted folks reading my blog - or - I'm not saying anything worthy of many comments.  I can always depend on Brandy, my long-time friend and trusty side-kick all through my school years.  She had the unfortunate last-name-starts-with-a-B problem which meant she sat right beside me for what, 12 years?  Whether she wanted to be my friend or not, she was stuck with me.  And I love her for it.  Isn't it about time for a high school reunion?  Brandy, let's do dinner!

Tonight in the ER was long and hard.  Some icky sad things happened, and there were more than the usual odd assortment of strangeness.  Strange patients with strange situations that sometimes have strange endings.  I love calling a spade a spade and being right about it.  I was hitting the nail on the head so much tonight that I felt slightly psychic...and no, there were no tarot cards involved.  Not even my magic 8 ball.  Sometimes I joke with my coworkers that I seem to have left my magic wand at home - there are some problems even I can't solve.  Ha!

I've had a number of nurses tell me that they couldn't do what I do.  Well, let me be very clear - there's no way I could do what they do either.  Nurses put up with a lot of crap, on a daily basis.  If you are a nurse coming on for a 12 hour shift you can count on being yelled at, puked on, at fault whether it's your fault or not, and probably stressed to the core.  You can laugh till you just about pee in your pants (and why shouldn't you since you haven't had a bathroom break in 8 hours?) and you can cry because your heart genuinely hurts for this patient and his/her family that you've never even met before.  It's like jumping on an emotional roller coaster every single day and praying for the best.  They do it because they love helping people, because some nights it can be exciting, and because they know deep down they are making a difference.  I really have a lot of respect for what those guys go through.  I could never be a nurse.  But that's one of the few things I've figured out I don't want to be when I grow up.   It takes all of us to make the ER run smoothly, and in a larger sense, it takes all of the greater collective us to make the world go round.  There's something out there for everyone.   It makes me sad to see people come into the ER high on narcotics or illegal drugs or alcohol just living for the next high.  There's intrinsic value in each one of us - but it's up to us to make the most of what we're good at and do something for the greater good of society.  If I can make a small difference for even one person, then I can feel good about that.  But take this guy Blake Mycoskie who founded TOMS shoes - this guy is making a difference for millions of kids who didn't even have shoes on their feet.  That's a big deal.  And now his company is trying to help those same people in 3rd world countries or areas affected by devastation and natural disaster see better too.  You buy a pair of sunglasses from him, he helps give someone their sight back.  Now that's helping.  That's making a difference.  That's living your life to its fullest potential.  I wish I had an idea that great.  We all have a purpose here - what's yours?

1 comment:

Brandy said...

I do want a high school reunion!!! Something fun!! Or we could just get our girls together and let them play while we catch up! Love you too Heather! I will try to give you a little warning the next time I come north so we can work something out. Also...I have no idea what I want to be when I grow up.