One of my patients had a life-saving surgery last week. It was very risky because she was pregnant. However, the surgery was a success and an ultrasound showed the little baby boy kicking and happily sucking his thumb after the surgery. What a miracle!
A few hours later and out of nowhere, I watched as she suddenly delivered her perfect and beautiful little baby--who never took a breath. I nearly fell apart and could barely squeak my way through a phone call to her doctor to notify him what had happened.
I had to take a minute off the floor to collect myself so I could get back to work--I still had 4 other patients who I needed to care for, one who was dying of cancer.
Throughout the day, I spent random moments scolding myself for having been so grumpy about my flooded house and the stomach bug that was sweeping through my family and leaving piles of laundry that I had no washing machine for.
I bet that my patient would have loved to trade places with me!
I also spent a moment here and there wondering why I hadn't called in sick that day when I had been up sick the night before.
Most of the nurses on my floor only experience a handful of unexpected deaths during their career. This was my second in a week. Why do I have such rotten luck? One of my friends and co-workers came over to my hallway later that afternoon and said, "I heard that a patient over here lost her baby and thought, 'It had to be Holly's'". Not a good reputation to have.
By the end of day, however, I could see that the good thing that came out of it all is the bond I formed with my patient and her family. I think we have touched each other's lives profoundly and strengthened each other's testimonies that families are forever.
It is comforting to know that we can have our families for eternity.
Sometimes the Lord allows tragedy to occur in order to strengthen us and remind us of what matters most and why we are really here. Maybe that's why I've had all this "bad luck" lately inside and outside of my work life.
I guess I've needed that reminder??
I know it may be cheesy, but I love to watch these "Mormon Message" videos. After a long and draining day, sometimes I need the visual and audio reminder of simple gospel truths that get lost in the shuffle of stomach bugs, flooding, stress, and tragedy.