Who is that person in scrubs who positions you in bed? Who injects you with needles? Who compresses your heart when it cannot do it on its own? Who feeds you? Who comforts you? Who advocates for you? Who skip their lunch to feed you yours? Who lets your soul depart with dignity? Who is that human being who introduces them-self as your nurse and for 12 hours does all the things you wish you can do for your self?
I welcome a new life into the world,
And with dignity and respect, I farewell the life departing.
I fight the battles of the stubborn, non beating hearts,
And I calm the waves of the intricately, turmoil brain.
I clean your wounds so your skin can heal,and wipe your tears, as I attempt to comfort your broken heart.
I breath for you;
When your lungs are too stubborn to inhale that beautiful breath of life.
I suck the blood from your body into myriads of tubes;
So that I can help solve the mystery of your painful symptoms.
I transfuse blood into the frail body,
as I quench the thirst of a fragile, but still beating heart.
I poke and prod with needles so I can ease your pain with medications;
And I sooth and comfort you when an undesired diagnosis is confirmed.
I skip my lunch to feed you yours;
I rub your back as my own back aches.
I lift you in your bed to make you comfortable;
My body dreaming of my own bed, neglected and empty tonight.
I search for a chair so your family can sit at your side.
As I position your feet up, I yearn to rest my own throbbing legs.
You are annoyed that I haven’t gotten you your water yet;
But I am next door compressing the heart of another human battling for life.
You are angry because of the long wait.
I am angry because of the lifeless body I was unable to save.
I leave after 12 hours,haunted by tasks or documentation I may have forgotten.
I come for my next 12 hours, anxious that I will be able to provide all the care your body needs.
I live with hope that each day my actions will extend a life.
I dread the straight lines, the codes, and all the lives that slip out of my reach.
I get spat on, yelled at, vomited on and pooped on.
Yet, tenderly clean your gaping wound, as I wash you with respect and treat you with dignity.
I speak with you and try to make you laugh with some mindless banter;
Hoping to distract you from the dread that overwhelms your frail mind, and battered heart.
I hanker for an extra moment to spend time with you;
To get to know the person hiding under the oversize hospital gown, so I can better tend to your needs.
Each day my purpose is to give and maintain the life of others;
My own life beats with desire to keep yours in this world.
My days are a hazy kaleidoscope of endless but life changing tasks;
My night are consumed by regrets for the lives that slipped me by, and the dangling lives I will need to catch and patch up tomorrow.
Everyday I fight the battle of life, and evade that angel of death.
I live each day to pump life into the hearts of the living and farewell the lives departing.
Who are you?
You are a brave being fighting the battles that threatens that wonderful gift of life.
Who am I?
I am your nurse; your advocate, your cleaner, your stress ball, your needle poker, your pain med giver, heart beater, body washer, your chest compressor, your comforter, your turner, your voice, your feeder, your shoulder to cry on, and I’m your person for whatever else you need.
I am all yours; I help you fight the battle of the living and I dignify the journey of the dying.
Dedicated to All Nurses
Now here’s what I want YOU to do.
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