There are people who pave the way for your success and without them, you would not be half of what you are. I know mine. Hands down, The nurses i have worked for and worked under.
I’ve always been amused by the arrogance some doctors have grown in to. Assuming their right of choices even when wrong. Flaunting their preconceived notions of authority. Creating a power struggle in their head, all to the detriment of the patient.
Most of the nurses i have been blessed to work with, have always been kind and supportive. They have always lifted me up with the knowledge they have acquired through years of service. The motherly figures who saw interns(slaves) as people too. Stopping you in the hallway to ask you when last youve eaten. Sympathizing with you when you’re ill. Bidding you farewell when it’s time to leave.
Interns(slaves) are usually seen as entry level doctors with so much to prove. The ‘toughness’ of a doctor. The mental strength of watching people die. Slogging hours after hours without meals breaks or showers. If you dare mention a snack break.. you will be met with a lecture of how when we were interns we NEVER complained. We had it tougher. We worked More, ate less, and were generally all rounded better than your pathetic behaviour.
Some medical officers were down right unhelpful. Too experienced and bored to teach you the basics. Too busy studying themselves. Too overworked and tired to sympathize with your troubles.
But nurses are always there for you. Dressed in nearly ironed crisp clothes which smelled of staysoft, truly a mothers touch. Fragrant, happy and ready to work at the crack of dawn. There to wish you luck when your call begins. Seeing you off when your night call is over . reminding you to eat when you look riddled with hypoglycemia.
A big portion of what i know i have learned from the nurses ive worked with. From the tricks of putting up IV lines to how to swaddle a baby to prevent hypothermia.
Midwives are particularly skillful people to learn from. My first solo normal delivery was done under the supervision of a midwife. She was calm while i panicked to infinity. The head was crowning. The perineum was stretched and yet the head refused to descent. The mother to be was wacking around vigorously. Eventually tiring out.
The midwife looked at me and said dr moosa. Take control. The baby must be taken out now. I grabbed a vacuum and sucked the head out like the first lick of a yogetta lollipop in 2005. Pop. Crying. Joy.
It was a nurse that assisted me during my first resuscitation as the medical officer was incapacitated by diarrhoea in the doctors room. It was she who taught me how to fill in a death certificate. And how to forgive myself for something i could have never prevented to begin with.
It was the ICU nurses that taught me when to bolus and when to increase adrenaline. How to rail road a catheter. How to mix rocephin doses. It was a nurse who sat with me all night watching the patient with a stab heart, BP drop until there was asystole.
It was the CCU nurses that helped me take morning bloods at 5am when admissions were flowing through the door.
It was the nurses who became my closest friends when i was being drowned my medicine. Who reassured me that the ups will come and so will the downs. They taught me how to talk to patients with empathy. How to feel their pain yet to make decisions from a point of logic.
They helped my broken zulu along and chipped in when needed. They translated for me when the words were beyond me. It was the nurse who was with me when i had to tell a mother that the child she was carrying for 9 months, 40 weeks, to term. Had died before delivery. A fresh still born. Apt.
It was the nurse who was with me when i told gogo that her only grandson was in a car accident the day of his graduation. The child she raised from scratch. Sleeping on a mans garage floor, working for 55 years as a domestic worker, to provide for her and her grandson. She clothed, fed, raised, educated, graduated this boy. And here lay his lifeless corpse all in vain. It was a nurse who cried with me. Prayed with me. And comforted me.
It was a theatre nurse who taught me how to dress an open abdominal wound. How to apply skin clips. How to expel clots post a Caesar at 3am.
It was a nurse who helped me explain to a young mother who defaulted her ARV treatment , the dangers of it. It was a nurse who helped me spot child abuse and confront the parents.
I used to wait until the 7am choir of nurses would sing the morning prayer. United as one. Patients chanting along. Regardless of your religion age gender or illness. Id rest my head on my elbows and close my eyes allowing my mind to be emmersed in the comfort of their voices.
Nurses in my life have been put onto a pedestal that no one can ever touch. They’ve been my backbone. I will always be grateful.