This is a guest post by Molly Lupo, a Nurse Practitioner who is passionate about oncology. Her experience spans the continuum of nursing. She began her career as a certified nursing assistant (CNA) on a Medical-Surgical floor then returned to school to obtain her Bachelor of Science in Nursing. Upon completing her nursing degree, she went on to work as a registered nurse in an inpatient oncology unit. She also has experience in teaching undergraduate nursing students, and currently is a Nurse Practitioner in Texas.
The alarm goes off at 5 a.m. I get up to work out before going to work. Check. I thank my lucky stars for my health, because not everybody is blessed to wake up every day with their health. In fact, a lot of people wake up fighting for their lives where I work. Is it sad? Maybe some days. But, not all days.
I show up to the outpatient clinic eager and excited to see the patients for the day. I check labs, I make note of any abnormalities, check for any new imaging scans, and read up on the patient’s histories. We start rounding. Most everyone is doing pretty well considering the circumstances. Like I said, these people are fighters. They don’t give up.
We arrive to one middle-aged man’s room where he’s receiving fluids so as to prevent other complications related to his treatment. His wife starts crying. But, she’s not sad. She’s happy. She’s very happy. She’s happy because while she has been by her husband’s side from day one of diagnosis, helping him fight, not missing a day with him, they both got a day off from coming to the clinic everyday. They got a break from getting poked for blood, waiting for a room, waiting to be seen. So she was crying, because she was so happy and grateful she got to sit and watch a movie with him. She was happy he had energy to stay awake all day. She’s happy because she got to walk around one block with him. One block. She’s happy because she got a sense of what life used to be like, when it was normal. She is so grateful.
So, my job isn’t always sad. Sometimes, it is quite uplifting. And most days, it makes you a bit more appreciative of every little single thing you have, including having your husband there to take a walk with you, and watch a show. Remember? I told you, these patient’s are fighters, they don’t give up.
written by Molly Lupo