Return to trauma after husband's death - page 2
by NURSESNUFFLES 3,724 Views | 24 Comments
Hi. I am a nurse in the busiest er in my state, a level 2 trauma center. On New Year's day, I worked trauma all shift, then came home to find my husband dead. He had comitted suicide. I will save you all of the details. I love... Read More
- 1Jan 12, '13 by JBudd GuideSo sorry, from another widow who had small kids.
Altra is right, the 4 hour bits were what I did. Mine was different scenario, cancer, but I'd scheduled myself to go in for a few 4 hour shifts. He died before then, but I went back anyway. 4 hours was enough to start with.
What really helped, the next year, was to take time off at the one year anniversary. The kids and I went on a trip and just escaped for a while.
- 2Jan 12, '13 by XmasShopperRNNURSESNUFFLES, I am so sorry for your loss! My son died unexpectedly at 6 months old in the middle of nursing school. I don't know how I was able to continue because believe me when I say that I thought about giving school up many times. Thank God it happened at the beginning of summer break. I took 3 weeks off of work, and my employer was wonderful. I returned to school as scheduled in the fall. While it was difficult, especially during my pediatric rotation, somehow my son's memory kept me going. My experience provided me with an insight most people, nurses included, don't have about the stress and struggles that parents experience when their children are sick or die. I was able to use my experience to better empathize with parents and children and felt so much more comfortable giving that hug or crying with families. Eventually, it was Connor's (my son) death that inspired me to become an emergency nurse. Death should never be an easy part of the job, but I am so much more able to understand and help with the families' emotions after my experience.
I will pray for you and your family's healing
- 0Jan 12, '13 by LadyFree28As someone who experienced a sudden trauma, Altra is correct about cognitive therapies that are available. Almost 5 years later (anniversary date 1/29/2008) I feel as though I am coming full circle. I have been in cognitive therapy for almost two years after psychiatric counseling for 18 months, grief counseling for 18. It's a process. Sometimes you feel as though you are ok, sometimes you may not, and that is OK too. It sounds as if your employer is very supportive, which sounds positive. And you have great support here on this thread. I hope you are able to create a balance. I think YOU ROCK for being upfront and active in your healing process!!!
- 1Jan 12, '13 by canoeheadAbsolutely horrible, I'm so sorry.
My gut says it would be easier to get back on that horse sooner rather than later, in 4 hour shifts, and even with the less acute beds. No traumas. Not even as the recorder. Whatever you choose, I hope you feel support in your healing. sometimes things are moving so fast, we forget to tell our coworkers how important they are.
Your manager may have a day or two of research or teaching she wants done to get you started.
- 5Jan 14, '13 by NURSESNUFFLESThanks so much for all of your replies, and your condolences. I plan to go back this Friday, on intermittent fmla. My boss was adament that I be there when my kids wake up, so I will begin with a 9-3 shift, and the understanding by all coworkers that if I feel overwhelmed or need to leave for any reason, I can go. This was discussed at length with my pcc, manager, director and my grief counselor. They will start me out in minor care, and I'll have the lead on when to go forward from there. I feel good about it.
- 0Jan 14, '13 by JustBeachyNurseQuote from NURSESNUFFLESBest of luck to you, it sounds like a great start especially with an understanding management team and coworkers. It's wonderful that they want you to be home when your children wake up and get ready and have a routine. One day at a time.Thanks so much for all of your replies, and your condolences. I plan to go back this Friday, on intermittent fmla. My boss was adament that I be there when my kids wake up, so I will begin with a 9-3 shift, and the understanding by all coworkers that if I feel overwhelmed or need to leave for any reason, I can go. This was discussed at length with my pcc, manager, director and my grief counselor. They will start me out in minor care, and I'll have the lead on when to go forward from there. I feel good about it.
- 0Jan 16, '13 by sh1015I'm so, so sorry to read this. I can't imagine how difficult this must be.
I do know about the pain of suicide. When I was 15, a close family friend of mine killed himself. He was only 17. I never, ever talked about it. My husband didn't even know. All of this time--15 years--it was as if it was eating me alive. I finally opened up to my PT about it this summer when I went for a shoulder injury. She recommended counseling, and I'm so glad I did it. My counselor also thought I would benefit from EMDR. I also write about it. No one has to read it, but I write it all out.
It's working through all of this that I realized I wanted to be a nurse, especially an ER or ICU nurse. Sometimes I think about becoming a flight nurse (never told anyone that), because he died in the helicopter on the way to the hospital.
I'm so, so sorry that you're having to go through this. You're in my thoughts.