Tonight after a long day at work I realized, there are going to be things at work that happen that I cannot control... Mostly it was the fact that when people die on our floor it just seems like it is a system and stuff. I realized that once my shift is over my association with the people on the floor is also over. And pretty much every night I come home I forget about half of the connections and communication that has been exchanged that day. I answer hundreds of call lights a shift, each with their own interaction:
Will you silence my IV pole?
Can I have more pain medicine?
Where is my doctor?
What time is my echo?
Would you mind taking me for a walk when you get a chance?
Can you help me on the comode?
Like I said... Each exchange is something individual to the patient's needs... After being a patient many times, I can honestly say I remember my nurses and CA's and I remember the interactions we had. However, as a CA now, I realized once the shift is over unless you were overly combative or extremely ill, or just very obnoxious with the use of your call light, I don't really remember much of the exchanges that happend. Life goes on and soon that person is just a blip in the screen.
It's crazy to think as the world seems to stop for some of my patients, they face surgery in the OR alone or recieve diagnosis of intense diseases... At the end of my shift all of the day slips into a little pocket and will be reached back into when I return to the unit the next work day. For some people, life seems to stop abruptly, they lose a loved one or fear the health of them. People recieve news that their insurance is no longer covering their stay and they will be paying $1,000 a day if they cannot get a safe place to move within the next 24 hours.
People are faced with intense things in the hospital, and we as their care providers are expected to give them compassion but not too much. Show them that they matter- even if it is a false sense of identity as everyone rolls their eyes walking to the patient's room to answer the light...
I guess for me it was a wake up call- I can't do anything about these situations other than be a glimpse of hope and light in the lives of those arond me... However, it's just weird to think- tonight for many of those patients the world came to an abrupt stop they are trapped within the walls of the hospital room. Confined there with the loss of identity and freedom. While for the first time it seems, I am garenteed an exit at the end of my shift... I pray that the patients I come in contact with are able to find hope in the coming days... Most of all, I pray for peace in the rooms I enter no matter what the outcome may be.
Living a life of radical love, and holding up patinets while we clean them and spending an extra few moments at the bedside... I pray for transformation where it can be obtained.