Bartender, Make Mine A Double
I wish I had Photoshop.
The line for this ad should be, "Are YOU A Registered Nurse?"
This is me after two twelve-hour shifts in a row and five within 6 days.
Actually, this was me after Grand Rounds...
Except I'm in sweats and, hopefully, not drooling.
I am, however, according to some family members, snoring.
The last movie I "dragged" myself through was "Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy." Managed to "drag" myself to that one three times. In one day.
My family has given up a lot more than one evening a week.
Because I live a Nurse Day Life.
"Pretty strong stuff you're askin' for, little lady."
"Sure is. Been handling it for twenty eight years. Sometimes on the rocks, sometimes straight up, but I wake up to it every day."
I've been the first on the scene of a code and saved a life with the push of a button.
- I've missed the chance for memories of many holiday dinners with family members who are no longer here, because I had to work.
- I returned to my job five weeks after my son was born by C-section, because I had used up all my "sick time" leading up to his birth because I was sick for two months prior to his arrival.
- I slept through my daughter's Confirmation because I had been up for 36 hours, working twelve-hour nights and unable to sleep the day before.
- My daughter told me years later that the smell of one particular cologne made her sad to this day because it used to mean I was going to work.
- My husband and I have worked opposite hours for 26 years so that someone would be home with and available for the kids.
- I've missed family vacations because I could not get the time off.
- I've missed seeing my daughter's basketball games and cross-country runs because they were scheduled on my weekend to work.
- I give so much energy to it that twice I've suffered from depressive burn-out without my patients ever knowing.
But somehow, when God handed out the gifts, mine was the ability to care for the sick.
Not the ability to play guitar in a rock band or sing like Ann Wilson, or play the violin in a world-class orchestra.
Didn't even get a voice good enough to be slammed by Simon Cowell.
I think He was trying to tell me something.
Given the sacrifices, frustrations and impact that nursing has made on my life, would I choose to do it all again?