Don't Curse the Nurse!

Sharing support with stories & humor

Careful What You Ask For

on January 7, 2015

I always get stuck in the rut of wondering whether I am crossing some kind of unwritten boundary when it comes to sharing work experiences. I imagine the HIPPA police breaking down my door at midnight and tearing up my license.

Then I read Linda’s post : and my fingers reach for the keyboard.

So just like Whitesnake would sing Here I go again, see below:

I love it when patients and families feel comfortable enough to bring their spiritual strengths to the hospital for the benefit of an ill family or friend. For me it’s a little like going to Epcot and “visiting” several countries that I will never see on my Un-Disney like income. Whether it’s the Buddha statue that absolutely cannot go under the stretcher or looking up a local Imam for a post op patient, it’s fantastic when the world comes to me in my little 184 bed hospital.

So, the other day…

There was this boisterous group; Dad, he was having his gallbladder out — our most commonly done surgery. The group of friends and family crammed into the small space only needed appetizers and wine to turn the event into a party. It was great. My patient was laughing, not thinking about his surgery. Friends, family, then were hugging him, reporting a food filled refrigerator, a lawn already cut.

Then it got better when I saw them form a semi-circle around their loved one — fingers outstretched, heads down, one of the sisters taking the lead in prayer. I wanted to join and when I spread my arms out, the smile from everyone confirmed that I wasn’t being intrusive.

My job felt like more than just a paycheck. But I need to go on.

In the middle of the prayer, I heard these words: “… and if you will, Lord, please show up today.” It yanked me right out of that nice soothing place I go to between getting consents signed, drawing up medicines, and reporting abnormal labs to surgeons.

…please show up

Did I hear that right? Really? …please show up.

Before they prayed, the atmosphere was one of sincere joy for the chance to be together, to be supportive. And the prayer, it was passionate with words that acknowledged His abilities. I just couldn’t wrap my brain around that one comment. At the end I wanted to say something funny like, “God is on the third floor right now — scheduled to arrive soon and…  your surgeon is  always late, so…”

To any of my fellow Christians out there, please take the facetious comments noted above with the lighthearted humor meant to be imparted. Those three words in the prayer annoyed me. It happened last week. It still annoys me.

Maybe it comes from fear, the idea that we think we aren’t important enough to our higher power, that our sense of humility is a vulnerable thing that can mutate like stem cells that have become cancerous and overtake our faith.

Believing is a verb, not a noun.

I wanted to join in the prayer.

I got what I asked for.

Consider this random train of thought jotted down.

5 responses to “Careful What You Ask For

  1. Shannon says:

    It’s all good. We are allowed to feel what is in us and ask the deep questions. You job is the kind where you get to do that a lot. 🙂

  2. Yeah, it’s like “think outside the box” in corporate settings. Christian jargon gets on my nerves, too (and I am one). God’s already there…sometimes the preacher is a little late, but God doesn’t ride with him. 🙂

    • Susan says:

      yeah, you know I beat myself up later for having what felt like a critical kind of response to the wording…people are under stress when dealing with being in a hospital – I need to remember that !

      • But on the other hand, I do think it would have been really funny if you said something like, “Oh, I’m glad you asked him to show up. He said to tell you he’s been here the whole time.” 🙂

  3. irtfyblog says:

    Yeah, some Christians don’t actually believe that God is ALWAYS with them. They have this idea that the Holy Spirit comes and goes…but Jesus didn’t teach that. John 14:16 Jesus told the disciples that the Helper or Holy Spirit would be with them forever. and then in John 14:23 where Jesus says: “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our abode with him.” — God’s never not there…strange how many Christians miss these verses. 🙂 have a great day!

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