Content That CarryThatWeight Likes

Content That CarryThatWeight Likes

CarryThatWeight, BSN, RN 5,515 Views

Joined Apr 17, '12 - from 'Texas'. CarryThatWeight is a RN. She has '5' year(s) of experience and specializes in 'Oncology, Mental Health'. Posts: 304 (52% Liked) Likes: 673

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  • Apr 22

    I think it is very important to differentiate between true PTSD and stress, grief, anxiety, or other conditions. As the mother of a sailor who was in the bombing on the USS Cole in the Gulf of Aden in 2000, I have difficulty when any stressful or grief-related situation is automatically categorized as PTSD. Trauma is being attacked, being raped, being exposed to the horrors of a tsunami, enduring a terrible auto accident, perhaps even witnessing a violent event. It has many, many origins, but it is not the same as stress or grief. It is not the same as nurse burnout, or anxiety from working in a chronically stressful unit. It is not something one develops, as I was told by a co-worker, "when I lost my grandma...we were really close!" It is a disservice to sufferers of each of those specific conditions to classify everything under the catch-phrase PTSD as we see commonly done now. Just food for thought.

  • Apr 19

    My heart goes out to you. I am going through a similar situation with my beloved husband, who is dying from pancreatic cancer. Even as nurses, we are never quite prepared for things like this. Our knowledge and experience counts for so little when it's someone we love. Thank you for writing this...it helps me know I'm not alone, even though it feels that way.

  • Apr 19

    In recent weeks I’ve studied the clock a number of times while watching a family member sleep restlessly in their hospital bed as I wait hopefully for the doctor to come through. Rounds are few and far between you know.

    I can see now how waiting really affects families when they are hoping for just a little bit more news. Labs, once a day. Just once. Unless there’s something else to check, to monitor, you have to wait. Everyone wants you to wait. And so you do. Because there’s nothing else left for you to do.

    And so, my family and I trade places to wait things out, to keep watch, to pray that the nurse has an easy day, a good assignment. We hope in the care one expects a beloved family member to receive. But with the chiming call bells outside of this hideous room with the bright window, and the rushing feet down the hall, I know in my stomach that they are just as pressed for more time in a day as I am. They are fighting the same battle I fight every day. Because they are nurses, and I am a nurse too. But today, for today and in this moment, I am family.

    I’ve been the bearer of bad news on more than enough occasions. It’s just difficult when your loved one is on the receiving end. That statement. That statement that no one wants to hear. And yet, it still comes. Rushing into the room as the floodgates fly open. “There’s nothing else that we can do,” the doctor says. I knew that it was coming, I think everyone else knew. To know and to hear it are two totally different things. My throat closed up and I felt like I could get sick on the floor that was barely supporting my feet. People can’t live forever, but deep down, I know that we wish it in one fantastical way or another that it was possible. The doctor continued the lingo that only I understood. Why do we do this? I thought. Why do we spout abbreviations and medical jargon when most don’t understand this realm? It’s a habit. We are habitual in our motions. And in this moment I realized that more than likely on enough occasions, I could be faulted for the same.

    The double vision started. I could see my family in this room, their needs, their fears, and I could see myself in another’s hospital room acting on the same infarctions I sensed now. It felt ugly. I felt even more sick for it. Our “mundane” everyday tasks can be the catalyst of someone else’s pain. To be quite plain, today did not feel mundane for me. Today was the end of an era of trying to get well. It was the start of comfort care for this loved one of mine. Of which they were ready, but in the moment I realized I was not.

    The rest of the day dragged on as we waited so impatiently patient for the hospice team’s arrival. We needed to hear the plan. We needed something tactile to hold on to.It is a beautifully raw thing, hospice. Having the gift to pass with comfort and dignity is priceless. But regardless of how your loved one departs this world, the pain is still there. It is visceral and it is raw. It leaves an imprint on your soul. My family has been empowered by this gift, and yet, being on the side of the conversation where we are being instructed and educated felt numbing. Normally the tables are turned. I realized that this is moment when I recognized fear in people’s eyes. I remember seeing it there, and I remember feeling it. I can see you now. This part makes more sense now. I feel it now.

    I was beginning to feel a slightly double existence. My nursing brain was running while I was trying to remember to be myself, outside of scrubs and unit routines. Here I am the family member providing support and love. It is a terribly strange place to be. Between both worlds. I was hyper aware and yet I felt as though all of my education and experience didn’t fit here in this middle dimension.

    Discharge day came. I watched as my family member navigated the paperwork and we both attempted to digest all of the information at hand. It’s mind boggling, nursing education in the hospital. We want to take our time and do the best for the patient and their families in order to provide ultimate care, yet on the flip side, you are pressed for time. The nurse phones ring while you talk. So much information is shared. There is so much noise and talking. And then it’s over. Just like that, it’s over. What just happened? I could sense that the room felt uneasy. It was up to us as a family. And it was up to visits from hospice and aides.

    The transition home has been a rocky one. Preparation of the home isn’t really taught in the sense of what to expect. What to expect in the sense of how you will feel. How time seems to stand still but speed heavily ahead like a bull in a china shop. It’s easy to feel uneasy, on pins and needles, waiting for when you may be needed to help in any situation that arises. And this happens. To many. To everyone in this boat. I can see where desperation can sneak in. How sleeplessness can raid your schedule. How worn down isn’t just a feeling, it’s a symptom. Can you imagine doing this alone? People DO do this alone. Without a support system. I can’t even imagine a walk in those shoes. My family has been amazingly supportive like an unforgiving assembly line. Just moving, moving, going, and going.

    But it’s hard.

    It’s hard coming to terms with a ticking heart that does have to stop at some point. Lungs do give out you know, even when you don’t want them to. And I know this. I truly do. Because I am a nurse.

    I know this.

    But it’s different when it’s personal.

    So I can see you.

    I can see all of you who struggle, who hurt, who have pain, who are coping with loss, who are coping with illness, being a caregiver and those just trying to make sense of what’s happening.

    I can see your desperation, your agitation, your frustration.

    I can see where I have fallen short as a nurse in your eyes and how I can fix it.

    This side of the tracks is teaching me far more than I ever expected.

    But most of all it is teaching me, reminding me, of the sanctity of life, how precious it is, and how time is of the essence, because at some point, it does run out for each one of us.

  • Apr 19

    Quote from Pangea Reunited
    I can't get past the title. I might have been a good idea to hang around here for a while before choosing it.
    Titles are meant to draw in the readers......just like the titles of best-selling books. Who wants to read an article (or buy a book) with a boring title

    This is a seasoned nurse (20 yrs exp and has been a member here for 2 years) sharing her personal experience.

  • Apr 14

    I enjoy my current job because I am far removed from the bedside and direct patient care.

    I detested the bedside due to the increasingly abusive families who want to displace their anger onto nursing staff. They wouldn't be able to get away with their antics in any other industry, but nursing excuses it because "these people are stressed."

  • Apr 14

    Yep, what TheCommuter said.

    I am personally of the opinion that even if everything related to the person ends at death, it's still better to go into that great nothingness than being slowly tortured as the pressors kill your fingers and toes, that giant pressure ulcer on your sacrum gets worse, you get tubes stuck in every orifice, you lose control of your bodily functions because even if you are aware, you have no way of telling anyone you have to use the bathroom, your arms are tied down to keep you from pulling things out so you can't even move your hands by yourself, and somebody manhandles you every two hours in the name of preventing further skin breakdown whether you want to be manhandled or not. You get holes cut in your throat and in your stomach without your consent because it's what your family wants.

    And, of course, then you are forced to be awake through all of it because your "loving" family insists that they want you awake enough to interact with them, and so you just have to deal with how bad you're hurting because they bullied the physicians into D/Cing your pain medicines.

    There are a lot worse things out there than dying.

  • Apr 6

    Quote from CarryThatWeight
    If you are so sensitive to be offended by this relatively gentle, straightforward info, you'll never make it as a nurse. Sorry to say. You asked for information, you got it. I'm not sure why you're so upset.
    I have to agree with this poster. If all it took was a few people on a messageboard to discourage you from the career - you should probably choose another one. I am willing to do any and everything (that is legal - don't get any ideas) to achieve my dream of becoming a nurse. It wouldn't matter what anyone said to me - I know I will get there. That's the kind of attitude you are going to need to make it.

  • Apr 5

    Quote from Shanty3710
    I'm sorry. To be clear, our tone, and patience with her is what can help in leaving her feeling either discouraged or encouraged. I agree with you though, we could give her the most best conceived and enlightening answer on the planet, and whether she's encouraged or not will still be up to her. But honestly my point was only to point out to her that some people Didn't speak to her very politely or patiently. And to just take what they've said with a grain of salt. She's 18. Think about how much patience you needed from someone at that age....at any rate, I'm not that good at this tit for tat stuff so Ima' just go on ahead and just leave this right here.

    *backing away slowly before I piss anybody else off*
    I'm not "pissed off" & no one has but anything but honest with her. The same way they will treat her in school & the nursing program. If she can't handle this, she can't handle nursing.

  • Apr 5

    Quote from Shanty3710
    For what it's worth, take what people say here with a grain of salt. I think firsthand experience, shadowing where you can by volunteering, and reaching out to actual nurses that you can talk to and bounce ideas off of in-person will prove to be invaluable. As you've said, you've received more discouraging and crude comments than helpful ones. With that being said, I wouldn't exactly use them as primary sources to deter you from your goals. But as someone who has received 2 previous Bachelors in different, and is just now starting my nursing journey, I think you are taking a wise step in reaching out! Definitely keep asking more questions, you need to research more so that you can corroborate some of the comments that have just been thrown there (i.e. There is a nursing shortage), and you need to speak in person to a variety of nurses, and lastly get out there. Get exposure. See what you can. Saying that you want to help people, and that that is why you want to do nursing, is neither a cop-out nor inherently naive answer. I think your heart is in the right place, but you Do need to educate yourself in those ways I stated above in order to make the wisest decision for yourself. Don't let others discourage you, just make an informed decision. Best of luck to you!
    She didn't receive disparaging comments, she received realistic ones. Is there a nursing shortage? No. Not for newly licensed nurses there isn't. Do nurses get bullied? Yes. But so do people in every other type of work. It's not just specialized to nursing.

  • Apr 5

    Can I ask why people do this, ask a question on an anonymous Internet forum, and then say no negative comments? Which translates to, if you don't agree with me and my plan then I don't want to hear it. Why do you ask a question then?? I'm not saying whether I think your plan is feasible or not, but why come on here? I don't get it.

  • Apr 3

    Quote from IVRUS
    C'mon, Farawyn, you judge people every day... We all do.. That person lying in the gutter with an empty alcohol bottle in his hand.. Quick, what say you? That he is a man who has passed out from a drunken stupor. Right? Or, how about that pregnant women who comes in to see you at your clinic, and she tells you she wants to come clean and she fears her baby will be born with addictions. YOU immediately start to identify that she is a person with real problems who is attempting to drown them with drugs and/or alcohol and you have a concern about the babies health.
    It is the same thing here. If I see a person speaking to the "fact" that they are a Christian, and then two minutes later she is talking to their husband on the phone, and telling him to F off and that she doesn't care that he is upset about her new boyfriend. What thoughts come to my mind - your mind? Are you judging her to say that her marriage won't last long? Or are you stating something which appears apparent to you? Parakeet was making an observation too, and just as it is her right to do so, you have a right to be offended. But know that many who complain that they don't want to be judged do so because they don't want light shined on their life. Coming under condemnation is no fun for anyone. Now, I'm not saying this is you, as you may have other reasons for your actions or thoughts, but at some point, my Lord says that EVERY knee will bow and EVERY tongue confess...And yes, It is your right not to believe any of this, again, just like its Parakeet's right to want to seize an opportunity to share Christ if she can. As long as discernment is used, she'll be fine.
    Bipolar Bible Bingo. Pick and choose which parts of the Good Book you would like to follow and repent about the rest....
    Sigh.
    Jesus may be the way, the truth, and the light for any number of nurses. Or not. Same goes for patients.

    If a patient wants spiritual guidance, there are other disciplines that can provide that, and should. And a nurse should refer to the Chaplain, ones own minister, prayer group, whatever it is that the PATIENT requests. But to then start preaching/praying and otherwise then makes the nurse a peer. And that is a boundary issue.

    The moment that the nurse, in his/her professional capacity over ill and vulnerable people, hold hostage a patient with come to Jesus moments is when one crosses the line to unethical.

    OP in school (and as you will find in work) it is highly offensive to attempt to gain brownie points to heaven by preaching any sort of religion. Outright or disguised as a gift. Which is really devious in my opinion.

    And to throw in some food for thought--those people who are devout in astronomical ways could question why it is that a female is working, not home having the Lord bless her with kids, wearing pants, having a haircut, wearing makeup or jewelry, having an uncovered head, or not submitting and cleaving to her spouse. Which are all parts of the Bible. So it you are going to open Panadora's Box, you need to then get into a justification on why it is that you are just choosing SOME things as absolute fact and not others. And as a male nurse, becoming too" familiar" with female patients who are not your spouse.

    It is all a question of ethical (and legal) boundaries.

  • Apr 2

    Quote from elkpark
    I "share (my) gifts of nursing and the healing arts" with people who have solicited them. I don't run around randomly assaulting people with nursing care.
    Hey...buddy... You look like YOU need an ACE wrap. Sure ya do. I want you to have it, and it doesn't matter how you feel about it...

  • Apr 2

    Quote from IVRUS
    What right do you have to tell HER not to share with people? If the OP wants to share, bur then the recipient doesn't want what is being shared, then the receiver can discard the gift. You share your gifts of nursing and the healing arts with others, don't you? If she is prompted to share this GOOD news, then don't discourage her, Let her share. When Jehovah Witnesses come to my door, I know that they sincerely want to share their views with me.. and therefore, I am hospitable to them as a fellow human being. It is very sad that some of the most intolerant people are those who can't stand it when someone mentions Christ.
    I "share (my) gifts of nursing and the healing arts" with people who have solicited them. I don't run around randomly assaulting people with nursing care.

  • Apr 2

    Quote from Davey Do
    EXCEPTIONAL! A piece of family history!

    If more People journalized, there wouldn't be so much of a need to pour out their every boring random thought or opinion verbally or on public websites!

    Journalizing is a type of cathartic expression by the inner surfing of the soul.

    Good for you, Kitiger!
    Is 'journalizing' a word?

  • Apr 2

    Mine probably doesn't want me here, either.
    So, I post more.


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