Wednesday, June 4, 2008

pow. zing. right on the kisser.

PT: You have to do those ankle pumps, so that your right foot won't continue to drop.


PT: Oh. Goodbye, then.

me (turning J.D. style to the camera in my mind): Yes! That's it! That's what I've been pissed at you about! And you don't, you don't have a do a flippin thing. You and your fistula and your ostomy and your graft sites and your dropfoot and your helpless ass.

Dad (off camera): Just lay here and die already!

me (still in the fantasy): Dad. Seriously. That's not cool. Knock it off.

me (returning to the room and speaking aloud): Mr. Patient, what's the overall plan here? I mean, what's your goal?

a.p.: Well, to go home of course. I have to get this surgery.

me: (feeling the Zen start to flow) Yeah. I remember hearing that you need to get your strength up for the surgery.

a.p.: well (snort) I heard that I need to get my protein up before I can have surgery.

me (with an infinite expanse of pleasantly interested detachment): Mmm. Having a higher protein will make you feel much stronger. I'm wondering about these four protein shakes on your bedside table. They deliver one with each meal, don't they? I can't remember seeing you drink one.


me: (moving the table closer) Here you go.


me: okay. (still in the zone) sure thing.

This was a hug yourself moment. I was so excited. I bounced through the rest of the shift.

I also had a horrible dream about this guy last night. The kid came in and got into bed with me at some point, and I almost booted him right out on the floor, because in my dream, he had a leaky ostomy bag and I was so mad that he was leaking shit into my bed.
And then I was so mad that my sweet baby child was this guy, this horrible guy.

This is awesome on so many levels - bringing the "shit" from the unit home into my bed, into my dreams has been really bugging me lately. I wake up feeling like I'm still running, still not getting enough people bathed or vital-signed or accu-checked or spent enough time with the preceptor or emptied enough foley bags or remembered to chart that output on the flow sheet or gotten enough ice water for other nurses' patients.
And the anger - well, isn't it all in me if my son is a sweet baby and this man is horrible? Aren't there times that I feel my son is horrible? I am the common denominator. I am able to detach from the knee-jerk and see the habitual thinking and examine it, if I choose. And then the bottomless pool of sweet Zen nothingness opens up in front of me, and I dive on in.

I wonder how I can let my brain know that I'd rather not dream about the unit anymore? I hope that I won't have to keep dreaming about it until I'm okay with everything that happens there, because that seems impossible. uh-oh, is that one of those things that you should do the thing that seems the most impossible? hmmph. Maybe venting crosses over into non-therapeutic, keeping my mind at work when I'm at home. Maybe a ritual, like a bell or something, to remind myself to leave the unit when I actually leave the unit.

I believe that it is no surprise that bedtime reading for the past couple of weeks has been first Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert (this is the real thing, it's no poppy krappy imitation) and Thich Nhat Hahn's Peace is Every Step. ah... good night.

1 comment:

GingerJar said...

I know exactly what you mean. It's like as soon as they are placed in a bed none of their appendages work anymore. "I need water"..."where is my phone" (uh, in your hand, the opposite one from the call bell), "turn my t.v. channel"...(uh, callbell in hand...remote in hand) "the tv only goes one way with this remote and I'd have to go through all the channels to get back to the last one" (I had to leave the medication room where I was pulling Morphine for my post-op patient to respond to your call bell because the aid is in another patient's room...but by all means your tv program is the most important thing). It's got where when the call bells go off...for certain patient's I forget I'm working in the public and just say "SHIT!!!!! What now!!!!" I keep expecting to get written up someday....Oh and the 15th billion time I went into this one room to do itty bitty shitty stuff I was putting the imaginary pistol to my head and pulling the finger trigger!