Care from cradle to grave…or the other way around.

baby_feetI love my job. The reason I know I love it, is because I come into your room in the dark of the night to take care of you. I take care of you and yours when my own need taken care. I set aside the recitals, the school programs, and the PTA events to be with strangers at their time of need. I stand beside the gurney in the ER and discuss the risks and benefits of continuing your care. I discuss how aggressive you want me to be in your hour of need. Then, I follow you to the floor. I check in on your nurse to make sure that I’ve not forgotten the small details of care – like whether or not you have a diet ordered so you can have breakfast in a few hours. You may be feeling better or you may be worsening. I evaluate my treatment plan and worry and pine over you. Your job is to get well. My job is to worry. I do my job very well. The nurse pages me and your condition has deteriorated further. I stand with you as your soul leaves your body. I comfort your family after you have gone. We tell each other that you are in a better place. And my pager erupts. Someone else needs me. I think, as I take the stairwell, running over your last few hours. Is there a sign I missed? Did I do everything I could have or should have done? The next page is a new life entering the world.

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