Wednesday, March 19, 2014

I'm A Nurse: Terminal Illnesses

I have to admit, this post is a little less on the lighter side than my first "I'm A Nurse" entry.  But hey, I never said nursing was perfect!  Lately, this has been on my mind....

What it's like to care for a child with a terminal illness...
*By the way, I'd like to first just recognize the parents of these children.  They provide so much more than us nurses, and are truly heroes in my eyes.

  1. You get to forge a unique relationship, one that can't really be explained
  2. Many moments become a, "this could be the last", so naturally, you make the most of them.  You allow your patient to eat dessert first, and push aside the veggies- even though you're the nurse and should probably be a better example
  3. You do weird dance moves, have thumb wars (even if your patient is supposed to be doing something else, like listening to their teacher), and you try your best to keep the mood light 
  4. On that same note, you acknowledge the hard moments and give your patient time to relax.  You don't rush them through therapy, and you cry when they cry
  5. You try to give them as many options as possible and let them be the "boss", because they rarely get to choose
  6. Your job stops feeling like work
  7. You worry about your patient when your not with them 
  8.  You cry.  Sometimes you cry when you don't expect to.  
  9. You learn to be gentle, to be loving, to be patient, and to not take yourself so seriously
  10. You become and expert in whatever hobbies or interests your patient has.  Be it Justin Bieber, NBA basketball stars, or boxing matches
  11. You put up with listening to Justin Bieber over and over, just so your patient can memorize the rapping part in "Baby"
  12. You cheer when they rap said part perfectly for the first time and have a mini dance party during therapy
  13. You think twice about what you'd want to be remembered for
  14. You realize your life is easy
  15. You find out that there is a place in your heart you never knew you had- you realize this child helped you more than you could ever help them, and that something as simple as a healthy body is a beautiful blessing  
  16. You find a new meaning for the resurrection, and look forward to the day you can witness these crippled bodies run, jump, and play
  17. You thank Heavenly Father for allowing your life to be changed by such a beautiful spirit