Nurse, Unfinished

About holding things.

About things I have held as a nurse or a medical professional.

  • Hands – although with viral epidemics and times changing I fear this may change. I hope not. Sitting quietly with someone and holding their hand while they process or grieve or celebrate is the best kind of magic. The best.
  • Heart – I literally held a heart one night. I was working in the ICU and a heart transplant occurred during my shift. I had the opportunity to scrub in and watch the transplant surgery. When the old heart came out and the new one went in I had the very unreal opportunity to hold a heart. I did not drop it.
  • Tools – scalpels, drains, syringes, tubing, catheters, gauze, more catheters, suture, catheters, pads, needles, and so on. Medicine loves its toys and tools.
  • My breath – waiting for a defibrillator to charge. Waiting for a medicine to work. Waiting for an artery to be opened. Waiting for a tube to come out. Waiting for a baby to arrive. Waiting for a decision to be made. Holding my breath usually goes with waiting for something.
  • Space – every patient has a space in my heart (even the really cranky ones, because you are not always at your best when you are ill). If they choose to connect or reach out or open up it is there. Waiting for them. Every person deserves space. To be seen. To be heard. To be witnessed. So I hold space.

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