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Tuesday, February 3, 2009

On a medical note . . . My infectious disease doctor added another type of antibiotic to my daily does of bacteria-killing meds that I am taking.  We will get test results on Thursday or Friday to see if we have managed to kill off the bacteria from the wound.  Time will tell. The VAC continues to suck out gook from my wound and the sponge will be changed tomorrow.  

On a personal note . . . It is funny how getting good news can allow you to come up for air, breathe a little, and get out from under the gravity of your situation for a while.  Today has been like that.  It was Student Nurse Tuesday today (I have been in the hospital so long now that I actually know the weekly work, meal, and activity schedule by heart) so I was asked to tell my story twelve million times to all of the student nurses.  Later, their supervisor came in to assess if they had asked me the correct questions, collected the appropriate data, and checked out every part of my body to make sure it was working (or “moving”) properly.  It was amazing how some students could make an instant connection—putting me at ease, anticipating needs, offering genuine encouragement, etc.--while others were essentially “going through the motions.” 

As one who is now in the constant care of nurses and doctors—I get what it is to be on the receiving end of someone who enjoys what they do and desires to do it well.  Nurse Cam remembers to bring me orange jello and saltine crackers whenever she gives me my Percocet.  Nurse Mae giggles when she walks in on me doing my exercises and tells me that I am the only person who does them without a physical therapist standing by.  On a dark morning, Nurse Michelle shared her favorite nugget of wisdom with me: “It is my resistance to what is that causes my suffering.”  Nurse Jorge taught me how to take a shower without getting my foot wet.  Nurse Miriam called me from her home to give me the name of a web site that we had been talking about the night before.  Nurse Ingrid brought me a “magic eraser” from home so that I could clean my laptop.  Mind you—all of these things are happening while these nurses are just “doing" their jobs—taking vitals, administering medication, assessing changes, etc. 

Since being in the hospital, I had one day that I had a nurse who mixed “doing her job” with subtle put-downs, an attitude of annoyance when I asked questions, and an unwillingness to respond to my basic needs in a timely manner.  Although she technically performed the duties of her job, her attitude nearly crushed my spirit.

My realization for today is that people can have an amazing impact on the world by serving others with joy and love.  May we all be a blessing—even when we are just “doing our job.”

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