I just got report in the ER and shift change was underway. We were in the midst of the first COvid crisis and stress was already very very high. I’d taken over the care of a very young expecting soon to be (for the first time) mother. She miscarried once. And much had to be done even though she already had a room ready. Meds, IV fluids and meds, paperwork, etc etc etc. . Plus she was POSITIVE!
I suited up in all the PPE I could and I went in. The goal is always “in and out quick” when dealing with contagious diseases. I bombarded her with education while going over paperwork, giving meds, POC, etc etc. Never wasting even a second. I got wrapped up in everything and all the tasks at hand that I had forgotten something. Plus I was sweating and it was getting hard to breathe. ‘Time to go’ was pressed in my mind.
I was backing out and near the door (still talking, mind you) when she said the word. “Nurse?” “Is my baby gonna be ok?”
It floored me. In an instant I felt all her fear. I looked in her eyes and it was there. How did I miss it? I’ve never ‘carried’ (a baby) before but I got a glimpse of maternal responsibility at that moment.
I pulled up a chair and sat right next to her. I took her hand. I assured her that her baby was ok. Not because I was a visionary or anything magical like that but because I knew that baby had the best mom it could. And she was going to be one amazing mother. This is what I made her understand. This is what I forgot. She thanked me in the most heartfelt way. And I in turn thanked her. When I last saw her the fear in her eyes was replaced with a ‘smiling glow’.
I had forgotten for a moment the depth nursing can take. And the opportunities that can be missed when caring for others. I was rejuvenated (again) in that moment. Nursing at it’s best is caring (truly) and sharing- (of myself). Again, I look at this as way more than a job and that’s why I still love it. That’s my vision for you. That’s the magical part.