I fear this one can get too long, so I’m gonna break it up into two posts.
We had an incident with Ande yesterday that resulted in Courtney telling me I suck as a nurse. It will really lengthen this post to go into detail about what happened. He got stung or bit. I had to leave for an appointment so Courtney came home to care for him. An ice pack and a Benadryl later and he’s fine. But the end result was that I was told I suck as a nurse to both Courtney and Ande.
I don’t think I’m a terrible nurse; I buy and cook the soup. I get the special Vick’s flavored tissues. I believe the sickest personal gets full control of the remote control. I’ll go out in the middle of the night for a medicine run without complaining. But chances are slim that I’m gonna give much physical affection. I’m also not gonna be like “open wide, it’s time to take your next dose of medication.”
Courtney extended me some grace, “that’s just how you were raised.” She’s right. But I guess I could work on being a better nurse.
I don’t think I was abused when I was sick, my family just lacked nurturing. And in fairness, poor country people do things differently. Typically they’re uninsured and have to just fight through illnesses and injuries. I don’t think it’s that they don’t care, they just can’t afford to.
This first story is mild
I was five years old and having my first sleep over at a friend’s house. It was a scary and exciting moment. We were riding bikes in front of her house. I tried popping a wheelie on a ramp and wrecked. Both knees got scraped up pretty badly in the fall. My friend ran to her parents for help and they were by my side before I could even fully stand back up. As soon as he saw the blood running down my legs, her dad grabbed me up in his arms and ran me inside their house. He sat me on the kitchen counter while his wife got out their first aid kit. I’m gonna pause here for just a second to talk about their first aid kit, y’all. This thing was nice, totally store bought with all kinds of stuff (ice packs, band aids, gauze, little scissors, smelling salts….). Ours was an old pencil box with some off brand band aids and a bottle of Bactine. Anyway, they cleaned up my knees while I pulled the rocks out of my hands. The entire time her dad kept commenting on how I wasn’t crying.
“Doesn’t this hurt?” he asked. I responded with an “it does.”
He couldn’t let it go that I wasn’t crying. It really seemed to shock him. Maybe he was afraid I was in shock.
Once they got me all cleaned up, they called momma to let her know her precious first born had been injured on their watch. Her response “she’s tough. she’ll be fine.”
Obviously I don’t think she should have come and picked me up or anything, but she also didn’t really know how to be nurturing either.
I have some growing to do
This story is no big deal….most kids wreck their bikes and scrape their knees…it’s almost a childhood right of passage. I think the reason it has stood out in my memory for all these years is that I can remember thinking how strange it was that her parents were making such a big fuss over me. I was not at all accustomed to that. And as an adult, I feel sad for my five year old self that knew crying would win me no sympathy so I better just suck it up and carry on. At five years old I knew I had to be tough…and tough I am.
So no, I am not a good nurse. But I am willing to look at my short comings and grow. I’m also proud to say that our first aid kit contains more than just bandaids and antiseptic spray.
Stay tuned tomorrow for part two of “I’m No Nurse.”