Wednesday, June 16, 2010

What I Saw

My day was spent seeing machines breathing for tiny bodies, babies with flat affects who startled as I drew near because of abuse. There are no opportunities for teaching when the parents are just not there. There are no opportunities for interaction when the other's consciousness is just not there. I gave pain medications based on a heart rate and a blood pressure. Sedatives, paralytics. I saw lifelessness, and I saw myself sustaining it. 

Even though my actions may have meant healing and life, I couldn't see that. It's why I wasn't cut out for the PICU. It's not because of the PICU, it's because of what I saw there. And I didn't want to stay long enough to become numb to it, to see something else.

Betty says crying is like washing the windows of your soul. I went into the shower after that day and spent some good time sitting on the floor of the shower all huddled up and crying for the children until he came in. He saw me, and got in the shower with me. He lifted me to my feet and held me. When he got out, he put the plug in the tub, and sat beside the tub and let the water fill up around me. We talked. I don't remember what we said. But it was good and healing.

Maybe it's because it was the first time anyone had ever really entered into my place of sorrow. Maybe it's because it was the first time it was really evident that I wasn't alone in anything anymore, that I didn't have to run away or hide to be sad. Maybe it's because it was a picture of God - how He enters into life with us and makes it bearable, because we're not alone, how we don't have to be clean to be with Him. Whatever the reason, I saw it as the very definition of precious itself. 

"I will make your battlements of rubies, your gates of sparkling jewels, and all your walls of precious stones." 
Isaiah 54:12

So Long Insecurity

I just have to repeat this from Beth Moore's book. 

"We can stop playing the game. ... When we work from an activated mentality of God-given security, we are fully capable of thinking another woman is beautiful without concluding we are ugly.  We can esteem another woman's achievements without feeling like an idiot. We can admire another woman's terrific shape without feeling like a slob. Where on earth did we come up with the idea that we have to subtract value from ourselves in order to give credit to someone else? You see, it's our insecurity that makes us so poor at math. It constantly leads us to the draw the wrong conclusion." 

Oh, it feels like relief. How freeing it is to be objective, to enjoy another woman's talents and beauty without comparing it to my own. Do you ever just feel happy for another person without thinking of yourself - even if it's a little kid? Please just extrapolate that feeling. You can feel happy for another person without thinking of yourself. 

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

ants and the important things in life

Yesterday, I got to work, and they told me I had the day off. I went to Arlington Cemetery. People swarmed like armies of ants. I didn't get to see the ceremonies at the Tomb, because others had more patience to weasel their ways to a point of view. I did get to see Thomas, though. I spent some time watching him. He stood straight as an arrow and held his mouth and jaw strong as the ants streamed around him. He and the other men are images of strength. Afterwards, we went to a pool party with his buddies and ate burgers. All of his buddies's wives want to be nurses.

Today, I got to work, and they told me a patient I took care of last week died over the weekend. I didn't think about it again until the drive home. It makes me cry a little. I love it, though. More than any other feeling, I feel honored to have taken care of that woman in her last days. I rubbed her feet and back. I warmed up her soup in the microwave. I did all of the piddly things like keeping track of her IV lines, giving her meds, making up her bed. Somehow, they're important.

Our day on the floor was so busy that our manager bought us milkshakes. I didn't get time to eat mine. I don't even know if it came. There were some things that I couldn't get to today, like lunch, and double checking fluid orders. I think this is a trend I'll be experiencing more. I ask God for help with knowing which things are the most important. I do everything I can, and I leave the rest up to Him.