January 27, 2010

The Visit

Last night at the beginning of my shift a woman on the unit caught my eye. She was vibrant, she was happy, she was familiar. I decided she reminded me of the choreographer, Mia Michaels, and went on with my work. As I was charting on the computer I could see someone approaching me out of the corner of my eye. I turned my head to see the woman standing next to me. I smiled at her and then she said "I just wanted to say hello, I remember you were one of the nurses who took care of me in bed 14 and I wanted to thank you. You all took such good care of me and I really can't thank you enough." Boom. Light bulb in my head. Oh my gosh! I remembered her now! Oh my gosh! When I took care of her she was really sick. I told her I would have never recognized her had she not said something, she looked amazing. She looked healthy! I was instantly flooded with lots of emotions. It's not often we get a follow up on a patient at all...let alone one like this.

As critical care nurses, we see patients at their worst. When they aren't critical anymore we transfer them to medical floors or rehab, so we never really get to see them better which can be disheartening at times. For that reason, this visit meant the world to me. She gave us hope and encouragement. She reminded us that although it might not always seem that we are making a difference or helping these people the way we want to be...what we do matters..what we do does make a difference and helps in ways we may never know.

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