Tuesday, October 13, 2009
From my highly un-researched, completely anecdotal experience, ER nurses are generally thought of as ‘tough as nails’, ‘bitches’, ‘know-it-alls’ but rarely are we acknowledged as overly emotional cry babies who can’t keep their shit together. However, I have the great fortune (note sarcasm) of working alongside such a nurse. Every call bell, every new patient brought to her when it’s ‘busy’ and every patient/doctor/nurse/lab tech/porter who’s being a jerk to her brings her close to tears and for some reason, I up having to clean up the resultant mess because she’s too busy wailing (complete with snot and tears) in the bathroom. When I’m off work, I love shooting the proverbial shit with her, but when we are working together, I feel myself cringe because I know I will be running off my feet no matter how organized I keep my area. Not being a completely insensitive dunce, I tried to ask her if anything has been bothering her lately but her excuse for her outbursts is that she is just a very emotionally expressive person and that she feels that it’s better to let everything out rather than keeping frustration bottled up. Fair enough. Except when she’s busy sobbing, someone else has to pick up the slack that she creates. Lately that lucky person has been me and I’m getting just a little annoyed. I get it – nursing can be tough. There are always setbacks and jerks that must be dealt with but there has to be a point in which one has to put on their game face and start paddling through shit creek. Breaking down into a blubbering sobbing mess at every hiccup doesn’t help in anything except erode others’ confidence in a nurse’s ability to function well under pressure – and it’s not very professional either.