Existing in emergency room medicine is hard to explain to someone who has never lived it. It is very much like a different universe in a variety of ways. I see things and am a part of situations every day that most people never see in a lifetime. I have stood on a stool cracking the ribs of someone’s loved one as I and the medical team attempted to bring them back to this side of the living. I have held crying mothers as they stand absolutely shell shocked beside their lifeless infant. I have then had to go in the very next room with the patience of a nun and a smile of a fairy and attempt to soothe the fury of someone’s impatience as to why the physician has not seen them yet for their stubbed toe. I have been spit on, cursed at and kicked in the face (weeks before my wedding by the way).
I was drawn to emergency room nursing because to me, it is mostly black and white. If someone is nauseated, you give them an anti-nausea medicine. If someone has an infection, you administer an antibiotic. If someone stops breathing, you assist the physician in putting a tube down their throat that will breath for them. In medicine, if someone is sick, you make them better. If something is broken, you fix it. I love the directness of this world. I love the responsibility of this role and I love the honor and privilege of being a part of a time in someone’s life where everything has changed.
In emergency medicine, most decisions and critical assessments are done in a matter of seconds. Mere second to determine what medical emergency is occurring, seconds to determine what interventions are needed. Most everything has a solution-for most every problem, we have an answer. In nursing, it is critical to remember every detail, every order, every medicine and everyone else’s need. It is easy to walk out of those glass doors feeling utterly defeated and depleted.
Homesteading is my way of refreshing this depletion. Juxtaposed to the severe world of emergency medicine, is my quiet, simple homestead. In the emergency room, mind numbing, back aching speed is essential, but here on the homestead there is no purpose for speed. There, I take great care with my patients and here I take great care when I am gathering warm, smooth eggs in the early morning hours. There, I carefully thread an IV in someone’s arm and here I carefully secure my seedlings to support posts. There, I plan on how I am going to safely care for 7 patients who have needs all at once, and here I steadily make my way to each animal feeding and loving as I go. I love that I am given the opportunity to exist in both of these worlds; there and here are incredible places to be.
Until next time…