Release It Or Let Go

What was exciting about after the capping ceremony of a nursing student is the thought that it was like having the license to deal with real medical situations and interact with patients. It is putting into practice all the theories you’ve learned in your first and second year of the nursing program. The thought that you can wear the nursing apron and the cap makes you rise all above the rest.

One of the most awaited part was the first hands-on in surgery. I still can remember my first case. And every time I do, it never fails to make me smile. My first scrubbed in was a minor surgery. It was an excision of a benign tumor in the neck. I was eager and at the same time was scared. It was my first time to apply my knowledge into skills after all. My only consolation was that it was just a minor surgery and it would be over too quickly. And then the surgery started. The doctor was then asking me to pass the scalpel and then the retractor. The doctor then made a small incision and retracted the skin until we saw the small lump. I was doing okay until the doctor was asking me for mosquitoes (small forceps). He was trying to clamp the bleeders since the tumor is on the neck and taking it out could result to profuse bleeding. He was not only using one or two forceps but he could have been using about a dozen of them, clamping them all around the tumor and each time he clamped he would asked me to hold on to it until all my fingers were all used up and there’s no way I could hold another one. Just when I thought clamping was all he’d ever do, he asked again for scalpel and tried to cut around the edges of the tumor until it was out.  He then looked at me and said, “Release”. My fingers were about to get numb so I willingly obliged and just let go of all the forceps spreading it all around the wound .I thought I did great but the doctor stared at me like I grew horns. Then my clinical instructor who was observing us told me to unclamp all the forceps one by one. I hurriedly apologized to the doctor and painstakingly unclamped them. When the doctor said released he did not mean for me to let go all of them at the same time, he wanted me to unclamp the forceps so we could stitched up the wound.

That surgery could have been just a simple and minor one but using those mosquitoes and unclamping them taught me a lesson –that when you’re working through a problem, you can either let go and let it be and do nothing or you can work around the problem and tackle all the issues that needed to be done to solve the problem.  Just like the surgery. The doctor took out the tumor but then he cannot close up the wound if we don’t unclamp the forceps and take them out. Sometimes the easy way out may not be the best solution to our miseries and that sometimes we have to untangle all the knots to mend the problem.

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