So I was out the other night with my girlfreind who is charge nurse at boston medical center on a surgical floor. I work in an icu, I have been here for almost 2 years.
Discussion comes up about work and someone listens in on us and says to me.. you work in the icu? you do gods work.
I cant say this is true unfortunatly. I feel like I am stopping god from allowing the death with dignity part to happen. I dont know what its like for the rest of you, but I find a lot of chronic cases. These patients come in that are like 85, long histories, and you know that if they really had a choice in the matter they would rather die with dignity,... but instead end up trach, peg, with a picc, and just keep coming back untill they code for the 3rd time in 2 days and finally its stopped after being maxed out on 3 pressors and they code again. (I saw this happen once.) I often ask myself why?
I look at it like this... that I have learned a lot keeping patients alive that should not be and have been able to apply that to patients who are acutly ill and turn them around.. but I think this is like 1 out of every 50 patients Ive seen, and its a bit much. IT seems like sometimes our purpose is to just see how far we can keep people alive no matter what the concept of life is.
Also after I got over the initial... holy **** a vent, and wow 10 iv lines at once, and how pressors work, Im finding a lot of routine to this job. Yes often we are busy as hell, but the other half the time its... enter the vitals every hour, document document document until your fingers hurt. Draw the blood, reposition, do the bedbath, do the suction.
I like being an icu nurse. I was a nurse for 7 years before. Tele, medsurg, agency, and as soon as I started my first day of orientation in the icu, it was a humbling experience. It was like starting nursing school all over again where I knew nothing, where I used to be one of the strong nurses on the floor. Ive learned so much more than I ever thought...
But I will be honest, this job is not what I thought it would be.