He asks me "Why am I alive?"

Nurses General Nursing

Published

:) :) For purposes of HIPPA names have been changed :)

It's not all the time that I remember all my patients. Sadly I fall into the category of Room #

But sometimes you just encounter those few who you remember name, face,and what they said.

This is what John said to me.

I was Johns' nurse his first night in the Progressive Care Unit. He was 24 hrs post CABGx4.

John was a 54 yo. male that is a 5th degree black belt in Judo in the US and a 4th degree black belt in

Japan. A very scholarly type man. In fact the book he was reading was on the Free Masons. He looked the

type that would sit by the window and ponder the meaning of life while chewing the end of a pipe.

John was teaching an adult JUDo class and he arrested in the field. To his luck there was a

fire fighter in his class that started CPR and someone called EMS. He was shocked twice by EMS and

transported.

He was sitting there one night and said to me Ellie I don't know why I am alive. I have fought in Japan and Korea and I technically died the other day. Why am I alive?

He asked me what I thought. I told him I don't know but I will give you my thoughts. There is a reason, I don't know what it is and I told him he may never know what it is, but there is. He asked to me to give him an example of how there could be a reason why and him never know. I gave him this example. I said John, your getting your pacemaker tomorrow, Then in a few days will be going home. What if this. In 30-60 days you will be back teaching JUDO and what is some 15 year old girl comes to a class and you teach her just one move to get away from and attacker. After the class the girl decides that JUDO is not for her. Forward, 5 years later and this girl leaves home for college and god forbid is attacked, but she remembers that 1 move that you taught her in that JUDO class and she gets away and survives. I told him that is a perfect example of how he would never know.

He pondered for a moment and said "that was very insightful" Something about this pt touched me.

Later, the next day his grandson was comming to visit. His grandson was 4 or 5 about. He called me in and told me he was going to call his son and tell them not to come, because he did not want his grandson to see him with all these wires attached to him (telemetry). I said John hold off on calling them. I went to the OR supply room and got a X-large scrub top and brought it back to him. He said Ellie thank you so much I have not seen my grandson in 3 years and he had tears in his eyes. I left the room with tears in my eyes,

John was discharged and the Cardiologist tells me that is doing well. Some patients just touch your heart. And they are always remembered.

nerdtonurse?, BSN, RN

1 Article; 2,043 Posts

Specializes in ICU, Telemetry.

Beautiful. One great save can get you thru a lot of crappy days....

You could look after me or mine any day.

Specializes in CCU,ICU,ER retired.

When I was working I would always get the overdoses ALWAYS. One day when I got the od I complained. Most of the time When I would ask why I get this answer"Because Unit Manager says so, Ask her." So I did. She said she would tell me in my evaluation in a couple of days. Fast forward to a week later. She had my complete file from HR with her. She showed me 3 letters to her from patients and/or families. They talked about how blunt I was when I first got the patient"So who ****** you off?", and then how later I gave them all kinds of info on how to get clean and stay clean or how to help the family member who suffers from an addicted loved one. She also had letters from staff members who said I just "get" where the the addict is or family suffers from it. Some times there are things that you do to that has no other explaination. I told every single OD I ever had that there is a reason why they didn't suceed at killing themselves

It is no secret that I am in recovery. have been for over 20 yrs. I never knew any of it.

I did get a humongous raise out of it though.

Since I don't work anymore I volunteer at the BON and I still get to say "So who ****** you off?" and give them TONS of information aboujt how to get clean and stay clean

leslie :-D

11,191 Posts

i recently read one of my son's books from school, the 5 people you meet in heaven.

oh my gosh, that book had such a profound impact on me...

for it made the reader aware of how much we influence others lives, even though most times we are completely oblivious to the impact we have.

even for those who don't believe in heaven/afterlife, this book will leave you feeling purposeful and worthy.

and, we wouldn't ever feel the need to ask this question, ever again.

months later, i am still inspired.

leslie

Specializes in Psychiatry.
i recently read one of my son's books from school, the 5 people you meet in heaven.

oh my gosh, that book had such a profound impact on me...

months later, i am still inspired.

leslie

Leslie,

I agree, I loved that book. I've read it twice now.

thanks for sharing.

-Diane

Long Term Care Columnist / Guide

VivaLasViejas, ASN, RN

22 Articles; 9,986 Posts

Specializes in LTC, assisted living, med-surg, psych.

I read that one a couple of years ago myself, and I had much the same reaction.

It is my firm belief that even if we never learn how we impact other peoples' lives, there is Someone who does, and He never gives us work to do without a good reason. I also believe that Heaven is the place where we will finally find out all the answers.:p

Beautiful post, Ellie. Thank you for sharing your insight.

mom35

507 Posts

i recently read one of my son's books from school, the 5 people you meet in heaven.

oh my gosh, that book had such a profound impact on me...

for it made the reader aware of how much we influence others lives, even though most times we are completely oblivious to the impact we have.

even for those who don't believe in heaven/afterlife, this book will leave you feeling purposeful and worthy.

and, we wouldn't ever feel the need to ask this question, ever again.

months later, i am still inspired.

leslie

I was looking for a good book to read on my summer break. I dont know if there is a God or afterlife, but I believe there is a power and I believe in the power of being positive, and helping my fellow humans to the best of my ability.

OP you did an awesome job-I am proud of you and sending positive thoughts your way:heartbeat:nurse::heartbeat

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