Monday, September 8, 2008

The Wall Around Me

I had such grand plans to sleep in a little today but apparently the kids didn't get the memo. Carly was up bright and smiley at 6 and ready to watch Blue's Clues. Thanks Steve!! Anyway, her baby sister was up minutes later and I soon realized that the best laid plans are...just that- plans, they rarely work out. So we were up and going quite early and that made it oh so necessary to make a pit stop at McDonald's on the way to take Carly to school. Carly just doesn't understand why she can't have a Happy Meal breakfast. I finally convinced her that she wouldn't like a Star Wars toy anyway. So then I thought Anna and I would come home and cuddle up and take a little nap- yeah right. She has other plans for us. I worked 60 hours in the last week and I am so tired but alas, I will go on. I pray this afternoon holds at least a few minutes of shut eye. Kenneth is on duty so it's just me and the girls. Carly always says, "Mom, is it just girls day today?" So here I sit blogging and eating sweet tarts as if my butt isn't already big enough. The weekend flew by. I worked both days and neither day was much fun. We had a lot of patients die, some that were expected and some very unexpected. I have learned to put a wall between myself and most of my patients so that I care a lot but not so much that it hurts when something bad happens to them. This weekend I lost one of those patients who got to me and I never was able to build that wall around myself. She was such a sweet lady and had such a wonderful family. She had suffered for months and her family decided to take her off the vent and let her go. We disconnected her Saturday evening and when I went back Sunday morning she was still there. Her b/p was crap and she was barely breathing but because she had a pacemaker she just kept on going. Her family finally requested that the pacemaker be turned off as well. It was turned off and she did immediately thereafter- her heart did not beat one more time after that. It was somewhat of an ethical dilemma and in some ways I felt like we were playing God but I guess when it comes right down to it turning a pacemaker off is no different than turning a vent off and I am almost never opposed to shutting a vent off. I know eventually she would have become acidotic enough that the pacemaker would quit capturing and she would have died anyway but it just really seemed to her family, and to me, that she had suffered long enough. It's so funny sometimes how death brings people together. The patient had 2 sons who had not spoken much in years and now they are back together. I hope their momma is proud as she looks down on them. When I look back on my career there are a few cases that really stick out in my mind and although sometimes they make me sad I think they remind me why I do what I do. I digress. The girls are doing good. That picture is when I made brownies with Carly and Kenzie. Anna is so proud of herself- she is just crawling everywhere and just smiles as she goes as if to say, "I knew I could do it." Sooner Start will be here tomorrow and I am not sure what they will do with her. I have been at work during the past couple of sessions so it will be good to see Kathy again. We will still be going to see the geneticist next Monday at the request of the neurologist. I am a bit nervous but I know everything is going to be ok. There is just something unnerving about new doctors. About 3-4 days before each new specialist visit I get nauseous and sad and start not doing well. I have got to overcome that although i think we are about done with all this specialist stuff. I am going to have lunch with my mom in a bit so I guess I better go get myself into the shower, she'll appreciate that...

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