Saturday, September 26, 2015

Death of the Deadly

I haven't touched on the subject of death for a while, because I am not working in that arena any longer. Sure, people keep dying, but not in my Unit. However, the memories never go away. Here, I am contemplating a role I felt I played in the past; The one who handed off a soul to the Grim Reaper, for the journey down below.

We see disparity
And we witness pain,
I've treated a broken heart
And hemorrhaged brain,
I have administered to evil
Murderers, and more,
And still applied compassion
Because that is our chore,
Not to single out anyone
In the course of our care,
Every patient is an equal
So, let's not go there............

Until the Rigor Mortis
Is about to set in,
When the Grim Reaper
Stands, to reckon the sin,
Perpetrated, by Billy-Bob
In his moments of violence,
When nobody listened
Or penetrated the silence,
Until now, the great chasm
That he must cross, on his journey,
There is no chance in Hell
That he will beat this attorney.

As the appointed Nurse
I do stand by,
Grim Reaper awaits
For permission to fly,
Taking his charge
For the Karmic obligation,
"Billy Bob, I cast you out
For a Hellish vacation!"


Saturday, September 12, 2015

Meandering Mind

Look, I'm not the go-to guy for solace and hugs; we all have our area's of expertise, and that is clearly my area of avoidance. You want technical know-how, and obscure scientific facts, that's what I have to offer.

I write more, when I'm stressed
Definitely not when I'm caressed,
And forget all the hugs
I'm not that kind of guy,
Find Linda or Lynn
If someone's about to cry.

Maybe names that begin with L
Can handle the tears that come pell-mell,
Surging from the eyes
A cataclysmal drenching,
Gnashing of teeth and
Primordial fist clenching.

That's when I drift away
It just isn't my thing,
I'd rather just shock you
200 Joules, bada-bing,
Plus a sensible dose
Of the milk of forgetful,
Whatever was the bother
You won't be regretful.

So reader, you see
I meander about,
When work stresses bother
I will not fight or shout,
But rather make words
Build a story or fable,
And with the right glass of wine
I am most certainly able.


Tsk, Tsk

When a force of nature
Meets a natural force,
There's no way to predict
The path or the course,
One can guess at the outcome
And calculate risks,
But when injury happens
Expect a lot of tsk, tsks.

Managers offer
Platitudes of blame,
"Well, you shoulda had more help
Now you're hurt, what a shame,
But really, you're the one
The cause of your disability",
Just talking to Momma?
An endeavor of futility.

Thus, we soldier on
Every day we are tested,
If a patient assaults me
Can I have him arrested?,
Not if he's confused
The result of anesthesia,
I got lucky once again
No acquired paraplegia.


No Heavy Lifting

No lifting more than ten pounds, no squatting, stair climbing and definitely, no ladders. Sounds sensible, doesn't it? Look, it is well known that I don't want to do discharge phone calls. Instead, here's how the day panned out.

A. Prep 3 patients for procedures. (1 to 1.5 hours each)
B. Receive 2 transfers, and prepare them for procedures. (1 to 1.5 hours each)
C. Handle 2 Recoveries (2-3 hours each)
D. Find time for Lunch + 2 breaks
E. Participate in a Mini Code Blue.
D. Document at least an hour on the day.
F. Start 2 IV's (patient reporting, "you better be good"...), do 3 EKG's, Assess Transfer IV sites, wounds, skin, communicate with families, provide an hour of in-depth Cardiac teaching during the shift. Answer 20 phone calls, Page 5 Doctors, and cover other Nurses for their breaks.

Actually, I didn't do the break-relief very well, as I was too flippin' busy. That meant I forgot to give Betty Lou an aspirin for a headache, and forgot to call Mr. Fonebone's daughter to come pick him up. When those Nurses returned from break, I just had to give my lame excuse of failure.

The Elephant in the Corner?; We are perpetually understaffed.
(Two lucky staff members were allowed the day off)..........however, our work load did not suggest that to be a sensible choice.

It is only the true depth of experience and moral fortitude that our team contains, that keeps our patient's safe and alive.

Thursday, September 03, 2015

Shipping Out

Some say that injuries happen when we are fatigued, or just burned out; ther e is some truth in that, but in general (majority) it just isn't so. Our patient's are just too flippin' large and combative. That's it................simple.

They will wonder why I burned
When I never complained,
It's a result of my philosophy
As a High Duke from Spain,
I work for my subjects
I won't quit, if they suffer,
Hence, I never do argue
As a servant, I am tougher;

Than the ones that I work with
Because my philosphy rules,
I'm a servant to my constituents
Their demands, are my tools,
To apply my special talents
And satisfy their needs.
Get them home safely
And nobody bleeds.

The house is on fire?
I run into the middle,
The Demon is smoking
And playing his fiddle,
But I know the melody
Though I didn't write the song,
The demon is a wimp
Soon to be running along.

Frankly, I'm just a member
Of one awesome team,
We understand the wind
And the flow of the stream,
We might not be the Captains
But only in name,
Without us, this ship
Would have no claim to fame.


Wednesday, September 02, 2015


I respect prayer
But I want it to be silent,
You may not like my prayer
And you become violent...............

Look, I was brought up in a Catholic family and my Auntie was a real Nun (and 2 of her cousins, also). And when it was time to perform real, focused and God directed prayers, they was done silently. So, that's why I'm so secretive.

I moved passed religion
I said every prayer,
I know about Gods
But I don't really care,
Because I did arrive here
In the usual way,
My parents got together
Back in their day.

I practiced their training
As much as I could,
Tried to make the best decisions
Just like they said I should,
And whether some god
Had a hand in it, who knows?
The world will keep turning
Because that's the way it goes.

A lot of "God, bless you's"
Are heard where I work,
We were once a Nun hospital
So, perhaps that's a perk,
But I never say it
I don't want to offend,
I might choose the wrong God
And the blessings might end.

Or maybe the client
Thinks the way that I do,
And along comes Brother Jo
Saying, Bless, Betty Boo,
Perhaps Betty is offended
Or embarrassed, to boot,
She has an allergic reaction
To this religious recruit.

I think we need to be careful
Regarding this issue,
Stop throwing prayers
When they reach for a tissue,
Pause for a moment
And ask for permission,
Perhaps a better idea?
Let's call a magician.


One Punch

For the most part, we don't have much trouble with out-of-control patients. It's not like we call a "Code Gray" for help, when a patient who had General Anesthesia has an adverse reaction, and struggles as he wakes up. However, one can not minimize the inherent danger to the Nurse or Doctor at the bedside. If the patient is a colossus that is six foot nine tall and weighs 410 pounds, believe me, this guy could kill with one punch. Comforting, isn't it?

Mo, didn't wake up well
After anesthesia,
I hope he didn't give me
Because my back hurts
Below my Lumbar,
Bothersome discomfort
Down my legs too far.

He was flailing and thrashing
Weighing two twenty two,
Both groins were bleeding
And what must I do,
To protect him for safety
After all, that's my job,
Let the dude bleed out?
Not this Billy-Bob.

The nurse is the one
Who walks away lamed,
Was I too aggressive?
If so, I'll be blamed,
But we had to protect him
With each wild gyration,
I could be sued
For exsanguination.

Pain down my legs
Paresthesia to my shins,
Let me explain
Numbness, needles and pins,
An unexplained coolness
And episodes of weakness,
I ain't horsing around...........
I'm not ready for the Preakness.

I'm off tomorrow
But, I'm calling this in,
Fill out the paperwork
For the Workmans Comp sin,
An Employee Health visit
And a scowling Manager,
They'll be talking and twittering
Like bright feathered Tanagers.

It was bound to happen
With the patient's we see,
Last week was a record
Four hundred and three
Pounds that is, at 6 foot nine,
He fought us, too
Now, isn't that fine?

Two good Nurses
Could have died,
One punch from that one
I would have flied,
Across the room
And out the door,
And the boss might comment -
Your hours don't score

Well, how about that?
Concerned, not a chance,
We're not doing enough
Billing hours, rule the dance,
And the party may be over
For this dedicated Nurse,
He worked as hard as the best
And for that, he was cursed.