I had a breakdown after my extended nine hour shift last Saturday. It took a lot of effort not to shed a single tear during those hours considering I was mentally, physically and emotionally tired.
The day started off heavy as I said goodbye to a grieving family. They thanked me for the care I had provided even though it was only for a few hours. Dealing with death early morning did not make for a good start.
Unfortunately, it went downhill after that.
I was literally running with only a meal supplement in my stomach that I forced myself to take as breakfast. Complications after complications unfolded until I was watching the doctor do chest compressions on my patient. Everyone knew how far from my element I was. It was my first code*.
After the incident, I held my composure as I reassured my student and thanked everyone for their help and support. I asked J to pick me up and cried as soon as I sat down.
I keep asking myself, why did I choose to be a nurse again?
I ate lunch at 5 pm that day.
*code blue = indicates patient requiring immediate resuscitation*