After a extremely tough few days at work this poem has seemed to put a smile on my face. As for me, and I think for so many other nurses, It becomes a constant battle to stay grounded and maintain sanity when you see so much sickness and heartbreak everyday. As a nurse you are constantly trying to be everything for everyone. Throughout the day I often find myself tangled up in obstacles that are almost irrelevant to my job, but are mandatory to my heart. Last night, after two years of nursing, I found myself once again venerable to a situation that I SHOULD KNOW was out of my control. However, my heart often takes over my head and I am left with with a flood of unknown questions for myself; "What could I have done differently? What signs did I miss? Did I really do everything I could to save a life?" The point is, you questions yourself and your abilities daily. You become your worst critic and sometimes your toughest battle. Just like the poem says I have a tear this morning, a tear for bottled-up emotions, for patients I've tried in vain to save,
and for commitment to the hope that I will make a difference in a person's chance to survive.
When the Lord made Nurses He was into his sixth day of overtime.
An angel appeared and said, "You're doing a lot of fiddling around on this one."
And the Lord said, "Have you read the specs on this order?
A nurse has to be able to help an injured person, breathe life into a dying person,
and give comfort to a family that has lost their only child and not wrinkle their uniform.
They have to be able to lift 3 times their own weight,
work 12 to 16 hours straight without missing a detail,
console a grieving mother as they are doing CPR on a baby
they know will never breathe again.
They have to be in top mental condition at all times,
running on too-little sleep, black coffee and half-eaten meals.
And they have to have six pairs of hands.
The angel shook her head slowly and said, "Six pairs of hands...no way!"
"It's not the hands that are causing me problems," said the Lord,
"It's the two pairs of eyes a nurse has to have."
"That's on the standard model?" asked the angel.
The Lord nodded. "One pair that does quick glances while making
note of any physical changes, And another pair of eyes that can look
reassuringly at a bleeding patient and say,
"You'll be all right ma'am" when they know it isn't so."
"Lord," said the angel, touching his sleeve, "rest and work on this tomorrow."
"I can't," said the Lord, "I already have a model
that can talk to a 250 pound grieving family member whose child has been
hit by a drunk driver...who, by the way, is laying in the next room uninjured,
and feed a family of five on a nurse's paycheck."
The angel circled the model of the nurse very slowly,
"Can it think?" she asked.
"You bet," said the Lord. "It can tell you the symptoms of 100 illnesses;
recite drug calculations in it's sleep; intubate, defibrillate, medicate,
and continue CPR nonstop until help arrives...and still it keep it's sense of humor.
This nurse also has phenomenal personal control. They can deal with a
multi-victim trauma, coax a frightened elderly person to unlock their
door,comfort a murder victim's family, and then read in the daily paper
how nurses are insensitive and uncaring and are only doing a job."
Finally, the angel bent over and ran her finger across the cheek of the nurse.
"There's a leak," she pronounced.
"I told you that you were trying to put too much into this model."
"That's not a leak," said the Lord, "It's a tear."
"What's the tear for?" asked the angel.
"It's for bottled-up emotions, for patients they've tried in vain to save,
for commitment to the hope that they will make a difference
in a person's chance to survive, for life."
"You're a genius," said the angel.
The Lord looked somber. "I didn't put it there," He said.