I am Mandy Moore in the (super cheesy, so bad, it’s good) movie A Walk to Remember. I tell people I’m going to come into their lives and leave again in three months. I want to make them promise not to fall in love with me. But every time, I fall in love anyway.
How can I not?
I’ve never been in the military, but I always imagined the bonds between comrades in healthcare were similar to those formed in the military. Fast and forever. It’s different obviously. It’s not our lives on the line, it’s our patient’s. Our enemy is death, and we always eventually lose. But we keep fighting.
I’ve been on many teams. Sign of good teammates: we’re there for each other.
We are there to help deflect the blows from the crazy patient. There elbow high in multiple code browns and full bed changes. There to silence the myriad of beeping machines for each other. There to catch the fall risk patient who set off the bed alarm for the tenth time in an hour. There to make sure the patient was still breathing even though we couldn’t get a read on the oxygen. There for our coworker who watched her patient on comfort care decline and pass, then comfort the family member who had held vigil all night. We were there to do post mortem care together.
That‘s just one night I was there.
How can you not fall in love with your coworkers who do this all in one day, and then show up to work the next day.
Despite all this we still find time to laugh. At each other, with each other. We get annoyed too. We get angry. We get depressed. We get up. We get moving again.
So yeah, we play cards all night.
We’re human, some of the best. We go home and pretend like nothing is different. We go on living our “normal lives” but have quiet moments as we look at our loved ones a little differently.
But I’m not going back to work tonight. I’m a travel nurse, and my three months is up.
I fall in love every time, and my heart breaks to leave my team. Every time.
I am so blessed. And so grateful.