Life has been like a roller coaster for all of us this year, has it not? At one point we are ringing in the new year and making goals and 90 days later the nation is shutting down and we are all learning
together how to function amidst a pandemic. There was an immediate call put out for Nurses, EMS, Physicians, Nurse Practitioners, and other allied health workers across the nation to head to New York City; I jumped at the opportunity.
As many of you know life in New York City was nothing shy of a roller coaster; I saw more, my colleagues saw more than any of us ever imagined. In the thick of it all there was significant respect us as healthcare workers; as things have “calmed down from a news perspective,” the respect has diminished across the nation. Respect for humanity is at an all time low and it hurts. It hurts personally and you probably wonder why?
Think back to the stories I shared with you previously….in the thick of it all, at the peak of Covid-19 in New York City! What many of you don’t understand is that our nation and our healthcare system is STILL, yes STILL feeling the effects of the first wave and even worse families are just beginning to grieve their first loss and now onto their second, third or even fourth. My family (our family) has now personally been affected by covid-19 and I will tell you that I have never been more terrified in my life than those two weeks; being half a nation away and knowing that there was absolutely nothing I could do except pick up the phone and call the staff broke my heart.
One thing you must understand is that I wept with my patients, I held their hands, and prayed with them as they took their last breaths; I was (as were my fellow team members) these individuals family members in their final days and weeks. So to know that my mom was struggling to breathe, alone at home, then alone in the hospital was more than a punch in the stomach. As my mom slowly improved and found her way back home the fear and the anxiety has not eased; simply because there is so much many of you don’t know, don’t understand simply because the NEWS (ALL CHANNELS) do not report!
Covid-19 destroys the human body from the inside out from top to bottom and is not, I REPEAT not like influenza. Influenza affects the lungs, aka your breathing which most of us know; Covid -19 affects your heart, lungs, skin, brain, kidneys, it simply affects your ability to function in almost any and every capacity depending in the severity.
Respect, where do I begin…where does IT begin? We as adults all know or should know what basic respect is. There are going to be times in life when giving respect isn’t easy though we know it is the RIGHT thing to do. The right thing to do is often times the most difficult, again we carry on.
Travel nurses do not have it as easy as everyone ASSUMES we do. We are sent in to situations in the toughest of times; hospitals are desperate for nurses, nursing strikes, and now, nurses are needed amidst national shortage and a pandemic. We leave our friends, our families, our homes, everything familiar to us to go help others in need; yet when we are at these facilities we as travelers are treated like sh*t!
One would think we would be appreciated because we are lightening a load, easing the burden they have been feeling; instead they give us double the patient load, the most critical, needy, emotional, train wreck patients because, “you’re a traveler, you make lots of money, suck it up.”
I would love if you take an opportunity to read this, to post one thing you have realized you are more thankful for since this struck our nation. I look forward to reading each of your thoughts!
Enjoy a couple pictures of kiddos!@