Thursday, January 25, 2018

On Powerlessness

Recently I had the experience of being totally overwhelmed by a clinical situation. It was something like this photo. Only there wasn't ability to ventilate the patient due to massive swelling in the oropharynx.

A tracheostomy was needed, and it too, proved technically difficult.

While it was happening, it was almost surreal. I felt called to be there, it was by chance, random, that I was free when the patient presented to the ER and needed to go to the O.R.

It was the spouse of a colleague, an administrative nurse who supervises the recovery room.

In alignment with recent guidelines  she was invited to be present during the code blue.

Code blues in the O.R. are not like on T.V. They are messy. Extra people come in and bark out orders. I understood due to the nature of the relation to the nurse that everyone, including my boss, needed to come in, be seen, and to contribute.

The nurse, although escorted by other workers, jumped to the bedside, in the way of patient care. The other nurses gently brought her to a corner. I could hear her sobbing. It was like my brain short-circuited, because I felt torn. I had the duty to follow, and the emotions were making it difficult to maintain my train of thought for the resuscitation.

Everyone did an incredible job in a difficult situation.  ICU receipt of our patient upon transport was especially strong.

I had given so much, squeezing the bag, ventilating, that my arms were sore. I was physically and emotionally exhausted by things which were outside my control.

I also was a little, um, 'blank', because I had looked for Ross, the patient's spirit, Raphael during the resuscitation--normally I see them and sense them--and I got 'nil'. I knew this meant it was a test for me, a life lesson, and I needed to learn how to manage this lesson.

In Native American cultures, one of the highest forms of medicine is 'Snake Medicine'. This is not to be confused with 'Snake Oil'--slang for a quack, a false remedy.

Snake Medicine practitioners are shamans who have almost died and come back. They are given the problem they have been sent to treat. They have to overcome it, along the lines of 'that which does not kill you makes your stronger'.

I have been talking about the anticipated reactions from the general public as the Truth comes out. Many of them will be completely blindsided.  But I have been speaking from the comfort of my armchair.

Yesterday I got to experience it in the physical, in ways I understand, in ways that are meaningful communication to me, to my soul, in my own Life Lessons.

This patient was essentially dead on arrival to the ER. Sad as it is, there had been a lack of oxygen from the office where the procedure was being done until the paramedics arrived.

I didn't cause it, I couldn't cure it (although I tried, with my teams), and sometimes terrible tragedies happen to people you love.

It's in God's hands now.  (he was put on ECMO and transported to an academic medical center by helicopter).

It was the seeing with my eyes, the being a member of the team who worked well together, it was being there as support for the family, right in the thick of things, that was my lesson.

In every single situation I chose to keep calm and respond with love. I did raise my voice once, over a piece of equipment I needed. My technician corrected me and said it was in my cart when I asked, he had stocked it without my knowing it. I apologized.

I felt like a limp noodle afterwards.

I felt like my patience had been tested. After three hours, I was hungry, I was going to lunch, and a nurse told me to give the message that perhaps local anesthetic had been mainlined and the patient needed interlipid. So I --starving and with very little time--marched upstairs to the ICU bed, and gave this message to the nurse who looked at me like I was crazy (it was clinically irrelevant) and I explained I was asked to give the message, I promised to give it, and here it is.

My hands were squeezing the ventilation bag throughout the case. For hours. The ventilator on my anesthesia machine wasn't strong enough. I ached.

And my nerves were so stressed, I felt depleted, and rightfully so, afterwards.

These physical feelings, emotions, and concepts apply to anyone who has been in an overwhelming situation, and are rightly described as 'being in shock'.

I came home after my shift and took a bath. 

The fragrance was lavender, and it helped to soothe me, the warmth, the bubbles, and the quiet.

I put in a Reiki Request to Team Doctors With Reiki and the effects were immediate. 

I wanted to skip dinner, but I was hungry. I made a sandwich like Anthony had in his lunch, and ate one pomegranate too. 

I was constantly in touch with Ross and my teams, asking for more guidance. I took care of the pets, and called Anthony to make sure he was okay at his dad's.

Then I fell asleep, early. And fortunately have today off, so I slept in.

In situations like this, your personal energy is depleted. My aura must have been thin, and close to my skin, after an experience like that. I have my diamond shield and gold mesh, but for many, attachments can happen where there are strong emotions like this. 

I wanted to spell it out for you, how circumstances beyond your control (but undoubtedly arranged for you in advance as a Life Lesson) can 'empty your cup', or deplete you in many ways. As helping souls here on assignment, you will need to be aware of this in your own journeys, and to be skilled at self-care to 'refill your cup'.

There really isn't anything as complete 'powerlessness', as we have always the ability to choose our reaction to any situation.

Yesterday, I experienced profound trust in Ross and my teams, and didn't question what was happening. I only asked them to support me and help me to do my very best.

Remember as caregivers, what goes on with those you have been sent to assist is going to affect you too! A lot!

Welcome to the club.

Here's a couple articles which may help you:
  2. Real doctor ZDoggMD critiques The Resident
  3. The Black Child video on Monique. It shows how they attack and betray one another. Last celebrity I saw do this was Kanye, we all know what happened to him. Reprogramming. 

Good things are ahead. I can feel it.

Ross says he is working very hard to help us improve our life, and results are 'forthcoming'.

He smiles, and looks down, turns and goes back to his work. He's in his ivory flight suit. He's such a good man...

Aloha and Mahalos,
Ross and Carla
The Couple