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Calabria 4,060 Views

Joined Mar 3, '11 - from 'U.S.A.'. Calabria is a R.N.. She has 'Always looking to learn!' year(s) of experience and specializes in 'NICU, OB/GYN'. Posts: 119 (61% Liked) Likes: 289

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  • Aug 31 '16

    1. I was feeding a baby in our nursery one night, and I had him propped on my thigh while I supported the rest of his body with my arm while I fed him... The baby had been fussing a little bit a few minutes earlier, but stopped after he got his bottle (and subsequently started passing tons of gas... or so I thought). Well, after I finished feeding and burping the baby, I noticed my thigh felt a little warmer than usual...

    This child took the motherload of all bowel movements (for a newborn, anyway)... not only did it fill and overflow his diaper, but it also came out of the blanket he was wrapped in... and I literally had a lovely puddle of meconium soaking one of the pant legs on my scrubs (which were lightly colored, there was no hiding it). My co-worker started hysterically laughing when she saw it, but I wanted to really just take a shower right then and there.

    2. My first day shadowing in L&D in school, I worked with a nurse who was about to have a patient deliver vaginally. The patient's water broke right before the baby came out... and it literally showered the ENTIRE room in front of her with amniotic fluid. The nurse had the foresight to give me a head cover and eye shield before I went in, but some of the residents weren't so lucky .

  • Jun 13 '16

    I get less than 5 call-outs per year before I get penalized by management.

    If I want to use one for a mental health day (which I have in the past), I will gladly do so. I don't use them to go to the beach, or to go on vacation. I use them to recharge my batteries. I find it comical that so many nurses here seem to be ignoring the mental aspect of health.

  • Apr 12 '16

    I have gastroparesis (and an extremely slow gut overall; for the record, Go-LYTEly doesn't work on me. At all. Doctors found out the hard way). I am stable now, my case is mild, and my treatment regimen is wonderful so I'm virtually asymptomatic 95% of the time, but I'll share my past experiences with you.

    Imagine having a dead weight just sitting in your stomach after you eat. And imagine your stomach/esophagus being perpetually irritated, whether from vomiting or from food just sitting there for hours longer than your body intends for it. It's like living with a stomach virus that doesn't end.

    I will say that I never screamed in pain from my gastroparesis. But I've been extremely uncomfortable, to the point where my quality of life has been adversely affected. I, like the previous poster, had gastritis as a result of my symptoms.

    When I've received dilaudid in the past for GI-related discomfort, I've been aware that my pain has still existed, but I simply haven't cared so much that it's there as I did when the medication wore off. If it were up to me, I'd take a medication that actually treated the cause of my pain (i.e., slow motility, GI irritation), instead of an opioid that's slowing down my gut and duping my mind.

    I wonder, like you, if some of the patients that you see have built up a tolerance as a result of their chronic pain. And I can't speak for all of them, but I wouldn't attribute all of their behaviors to psychologic causes. Gastroparesis can be truly miserable.

  • Mar 21 '16

    It's with sad irony that I power up the treadmill in the gym exactly 24 hours after I started chest compressions on you. You were my first patient loss. Being new to the NICU (though not new to nursing), I know you won't be my last. I forced myself down to the gym to run off the grief.

    The myriad of feelings that I have experienced in the last day is overwhelming. The entire unit, even the doctors, cried as your family walked in to hold you for the first and last time. We held them as they held you. I woke up briefly in the middle of the night. My initial feelings, that I felt like I was wrapped in a blanket of sadness, had evolved. It felt like the wind had been knocked out of me instead. It made me restless. I needed to do something.

    Sweat begins to run down my forehead as I get closer to completing my first mile. Moments replay in my head like a movie, of how your care progressed in the times that I took care of you, of bargaining with God as your heart rate started to drop, of calm desperation as our team rallied around you, and of the feeling of indescribable defeat as we stopped our efforts. I had a feeling that you'd be leaving us on my watch as soon as I laid eyes on you. You looked so unwell compared to previous days. Based on your labs and vital signs, you were circling the drain. We tried so hard to save you anyway. You fought so hard with us.

    Glancing at the clock as I continue to run towards mile one-and-a-half, I realize that, 24 hours ago, your resuscitation still continued. I was giving you yet another dose of epinephrine at that point. We all stared at your heart monitor, praying that (somehow) your heartrate would increase, allowing the rest of us in the room to breathe. And even though I'm getting tired now, I think of your family. I think of how tired they must feel. I think of how you must have felt so tired, especially at the very end.

    I push harder. Thump, thump, thump, my feet whack against the treadmill belt. I force myself run faster. The last time that I ran multiple miles was in high school, but it looks like I'll do it again today. I might hurt tomorrow, but it'll be gratifying to focus on the physical soreness achieved from exercise instead of the emotional pain.

    I step off of the treadmill today one minute after we stopped your resuscitation efforts yesterday. No amount of medication, chest compressions, blood product, or ventilation would keep you with us anymore. Some might say that I was running from my feelings today, but all I saw as I stared at the wall ahead of me when I ran was you.