A CHRISTMAS STORY |
December 24, 2008
A CHRISTMAS STORY
Name: RN Clara Hart
Posting date: 12/24/08
Stationed in: a military hospital in the U.S.
No doubt about it, these past six months have been terrible; exhausting days filled with sadness and despair. Fatigue became my new best friend, with isolation surrounding and comforting me. As the end of the year approached, with Christmas only a day away, I sat and reflected. I looked at the lights twinkling on my newly decorated Christmas tree while thoughts and memories filtered through my head. I suddenly realized that, as difficult as the last 180 days have been, I've been given wonderful gifts, ones with no monetary value, and yet priceless. So on the Eve of one of the most joyous days of the year, let me share with you my gifts.
The beautiful young girl who trusted me enough to wrap her arms around me and sob against my shoulder over the death of her father.
No new WIA's in the past three weeks.
A soldier, shot in the head, prognosis poor upon his CONUS* arrival, and the absolutely awesome smile that appeared on his face when I walked into his room three months later.
An Airman, presented with his purple heart by the commander in chief, who when later asked who his favorite visitor was replied, "Clara".
The officer who told everyone who entered his room he had "the best damn nurse in the whole hospital".
My coworker who simply announced, "You are one of the best nurses in this place. You know your stuff and you're wonderful with the patients and their families. I'd want you to take care of me and my family." To those in this profession that is the highest compliment you can pay another medical provider.
The grin on an amputee's face as he played tug with my puppy. He had so rarely smiled.
Hearing "Clara" bellowed embarrassingly loudly across the hospital lobby as one of my patients from two years ago tried to get my attention, and the hour-long conversation that followed.
The Christmas card I received from a patient and his family wishing me well.
The laughter I shared with a Marine who brought me an inexpensive and highly amusing gift on my birthday.
The cookies, breads, cakes and photos that adorn the ICU break room, all from appreciative patients and their families, with their Christmas and New Year’s salutations.
Wonderful gifts, some simple, many small but oh, so significant to me.
My sincere wishes to all of you for a fantastic holiday and a healthy, happy New Year!
* CONUS: Continental United States