Jake was so sick. After the appendectomy, an abcess grew in his lower pelvis. That 5 cm nightmare made our baby feverish - 103.5 degrees at one point - and I found myself growing frustrated as I tried to make him comfortable.
One shift of nurses promised pain relief. The next shift also promised. The third shift explained that a decision had been made not to medicate him so that the procedure to remove the abcess could be performed ASAP.
These women were only doing what they had been told to do. They didn't realize that I didn't know the doctor's decision. But, they worked hard to help me take care of him and they worked hard to keep me calm and patient.
I cannot believe the working conditions they endure. One of our nurses was there every day that we were so she worked 6 days in a row, either 8 or 12 hours per day. She was running back and forth between the pediatric floor and the PICU. The census (number of patients) was low, so the two floors were sharing nurses. (????!!!!!!????) At one point, they were caring for a 10-day old baby on the pediatric floor. He stopped breathing and they rushed him to the PICU, 3 floors down. His nurse had to go with him but she was still responsible for the other patients back on the 7th floor. (That baby was eventually intubated, still did poorly and was flown to St. Louis.)
Another of our nurses worked a 3-11 shift one afternoon/night. I wandered out to the nurses' station at 2 am and she was still there. She didn't have time to do reports on her shift, so she had to stay and complete them after her shift "ended".
I didn't hear a single nurse complain about anything. AND, every single time they came in our room, they not only asked Jake what they could do for him, they asked me and anyone who was visiting us, if they could help us or get us anything.
They let Jake scream and cry (without telling him he had to stop disturbing others), they encouraged him when he wasn't feeling well, and they thrilled in the fact he was feeling sooooo much better after the procedure was complete and the drain tube was doing it's job.
I was so impressed! I appreciate their dedication to their jobs and their love of the children for which they care each day.
Thank you to the St. John's Pediatric Staff!!