The other night was the big kick off to Nurses Week, the pot luck was set out and delicious smells rolled out of the galley and were making my stomach growl. I wanted to run out and grab something hot, but I was stuck. Stuck in my room with a patient who was in a very very bad way and a family who didn't dare move from the room. I don't know why but whenever a potluck is set out, my patient crumps. I stayed in that room for most of the night unable to step out for supplies let alone for food, but at the end of the night I couldn't feel happier.
That night was a blinding example of nursing at its absolute perfection, the team pulled together, nurses in and out of the room helping me with supplies, an extra set of hands or just whisking away the accumulating mess of tubing and wires and surgical instruments. Cups of coffee were cheerfully delivered to the family, reassuring smiles flashed their way and somehow, somehow they knew everything was going to be OK.
At the end of the shift I was exhausted, but not as exhausted as the family who sat and watched helpless to do anything and having to put trust and faith in absolute strangers. When I left that morning I saw tears on their cheeks but hope in their eyes, I received hugs that conveyed so much more than any words.
I walked out the doors that morning exhausted yet somehow renewed and revived. It's because of these moments I am a nurse.
Happy Nurses Week to all of you who have felt what I felt that morning.