A nurse came to work at exactly 6am. Skipping breakfast just to make sure she makes it on time.
I hope I’ll have time to eat.
After endorsement it was 7am.
Hmmnn. I can still sneak a few bite.
Just as she finishes those thought, her patient calls her. “Can I have my meal now?”
“Sure ma’am”, the nurse replied. With a smile, she serve her patient’s food. I’ll have mine after setting her tray.
As the nurse walked away from the patient, she saw her drop the food in her clothes, her hands trembling.
Without hesitation, the nurse took the spoon from her patient. “Let me help you with that.” and started assisting her patient. I guess breakfast have to wait.
After a few minutes, the patient was done eating. The nurse looked in her watch and realized that it was already 7:45 am.
Okay, I can definitely eat in less than 3 minutes.
On her way to the pantry, she saw her co-staff. “Lend me a hand, will you? My patient keeps on slipping from her bed. I need to feed her.”
“Sure. It’s turning time anyway. Let’s turn all our patients.”
8:15am. The nurse was on a dilemma. Well I could grab a bite, but, I haven’t fed my other patient yet. She hasn’t taken her meds as well. She looks at her finger and it was starting to shake. She grab her pocket, took a candy and pop it inside her mouth.
To the treatment room she went and prepared osteurized feeding and medications to give.
“Do you sometimes wonder what an osteurized feeding taste likes?” asked a colleague.
“Wonder? I’m so hungry, I could gulp one right now.”
9:00am. Feeding and medication of patients done. Finally, I can eat. I’m starving, the nurse thought.
“Laboratories are in Ma’am. You can give your patients stat dose of 20ml Calcium Gluconate and 1g of Magnesium Sulfate, SIVP”, the resident doctor said. “And, oh, secure consent for blood transfusion, 2 pack RBC.”
“Yes, doc.” By this time, the nurse’s hunger no longer seems important.
10:00am. “Whose for EEG? Orderly is here” asked the head nurse.
“That would be my patient sir”, replied the nurse.
11:00am. Back from EEG. The nurse is not hungry anymore.
“Can I have my lunch?”, asked the patient to her nurse.
“Absolutely Ma’am.” With love and care, the nurse assisted her patient.
11:45am. Time to feed the other patient. “Let’s turn our patients guys.”
“Hey, have you taken your lunch yet?”, the co-staff nurse asked.
“Nope.” the nurse replied. “Have you?”
“Not a chance. I haven’t even started my charting yet.” They both chuckled and went to their respective patients.
1:00pm. “Blood is here.” the nursing aid said.
The nurse looked at the clock and resided with her faith. I guess no meal for me today.
1:30pm. Time to close the chart.
2:00pm. Endorsement time.
3:00pm. After endorsement, the nurse turned to her co-staff and said smiling… “Finally, I can have my – – –
“Code!!! Hurry guys, get the E-cart!”
This is a typical day in a nurses life. Sometimes you get to eat, other days you’re lucky if you can even sit. But choosing between yourself and your patients, the nurses always makes the right choice. It’s not even a choice, it’s a “reflex” that nurses have. To put patients first before oneself. And it is not appreciation of our work that we want. Just knowing that at the end of the day, we did our best to improve the life of another person, that in itself is a priceless reward. It’s what keep us sound asleep at night.
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