Amanda Thomas is an Emergency Room nurse. Every second of every shift is a challenge that must be analyzed and acted on instantly as a matter of life and death. Those split second decisions define what makes a good E.R. nurse, and she wanted others to understand the extent that she and other medical professionals like her go through as soon as they step out onto the hospital floor.
E.R. nurses are a different kind of creature. We condition ourselves to roll with the punches..no matter how brutal..you roll.
We condition ourselves to not feel it…not take life too seriously…we know how fragile and brief it is..we are reminded every time we swipe that time clock…every time…and we roll.
I picked a young lady up off the floor this morning after she walked out of the room where her daddy died. She dropped to her knees…she wailed..she cried out for her dad…and without batting an eye, I knelt beside her and helped her the best way I could…death had won again.
We become numb…our hearts don’t feel things like the hearts who are protected from this type of consistent and repeated defeat…we cope..and maybe too well. Maybe we come off as cold and emotionally unavailable. Maybe we aren’t approachable. We come off a little bossy…because we have to be good patient advocates..to be the person our patient needs.
Be patient and kind with your ER nurse…you never know what battlefield they just walked off of.”
The main point to her heartfelt confession is to let people know that their nurses don’t mean to be callous; they want to protect their patients from the realities that they see every day. She wanted others to have compassion for the nurses and technicians and personnel that work in hospitals because as bad as someone’s day might be, they are still breathing, and that counts for a lot more than most people realize.