The ❤ heart of New York right now is centered around Healthcare workers, essential workers, and really just keeping people safe. Each day the beat is a little different; for my nurse friends the days and nights range from a steady or “NSR,” to incredibly fast paced aka a little “SVT,” or on most occasions its rapid and ever changing, “rapid A-Fib.”
As many of you know I have done all types of nursing and love working in a fast paced environment 🙃…well life here inside the hospitals is exactly that! Since being here I was moved from Med-Surg to Emergency Room Staff and now this week have started working in the Intensive Care Unit. I had 24 hours notice of switching from days to nights as there is a dire need for nurses to work in the ICU, let alone get them to work night shifts. I obliged, as I have said from day one, “I came because I had a calling, I stepped up and here I am, I go where I am needed.”
At any given moment Med-Surg nurses may have 10 patients, yes 10:1…is it ideal, of course not. Let me tell you one thing though, these nurses that work on the floor are amazing. You want to see an example of teamwork, come on over! In the Emergency Department it isn’t uncommon to have 6 or 7 patients; remember these are 90% of the time patients that are having chest pain, difficulty breathing, and some literally gasping for air. Covid-19 is no joke! So imagine you’re one person and trying to get all 6 or 7 oxygen on oxygen, IVs started, labs drawn, EKG, Xray, etc. it is a bit chaotic. Now, I am located in the ICU where the game gets interesting…
The game of Life, that game that we all played as kids is almost coming to life, just different options. Options are life and Death, unfortunately how these patients are arriving at their final resting place is tragic; tragic for the nursing staff, families, and most importantly the patient. Many times patients can pass peacefully, this disease strips our patients of the ability to breathe. They gasp, they struggle, they are in agony and it is painful to see and attempt to help when you know there is nothing to help them.
As we each go about our day today, tomorrow, and in the weeks and months ahead; remember this beat, remember the tune that it went to. I challenge each of you to dig deep and not only find your beat and your tune amidst the current chaos, find your message.
Do you bring a message of hope to those around you? Do you lend a helping hand even when it may be uncomfortable? Just stop and think what tune you would want to deliver if you were a nurse and even more important as a family member what message or tune is going to be helpful?
Stay safe, stay warm, smile, help a stranger (from 6 feet away), give extra hugs, and say a prayer for all front line workers; we would all be lying if we said were not struggling.