As an Emergency Department nurse, I see a lot. Some days go by so quickly, I barely have time to think about anything but what is before me. Lately, I have been thinking about the reasons most people end up in the ED as we call it now. It isn't a room, it's an entire department that runs like a fine tuned machine with lots of people to help you out of the mess you have usually gotten yourself in all by yourself!
What do I mean by that seemingly heartless comment? Well, let's think about it for a moment. I say it because I care. I say it because I see it every day; all those things people do that impairs them and heads them down the unhealthy path.
Who made you smoke all those cigarettes from your early youth on that caused you to develop Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease? (COPD)
Who made you eat that unhealthy diet all your life that lead to diabetes, bad knees and hips from carrying all that weight and more?
Who forced that alcohol down you to the point where it injured your liver and other important parts of your beautiful body?
Who forced you to take all those uppers and and downers every time you felt the need to be up or down?
Who made you drive while drunk?
Who made you cross the street in the middle of busy traffic instead of at the crosswalk?
Who made you think that joining a gang would be good for you and nothing bad would ever happen as long as you were with your crew?
Are you getting it yet? Most people who end up in the ED actually created the circumstance that put them there.
Now of course, we are there to help and to save and create a safe space. Unfortunately, we don't have the time to sit down with each of you and have an in-depth conversation on how to change some of the behaviour that brought you to us. I always try to do the best I can to teach, support and encourage. Most of the time, I hope that this can be a wake up call and a time to think about what you can do to make positive changes.
Granted, many people end up in the ED for various reasons and we are there to help. I am very proud to be an ED nurse. I also hope to be the person who will help you think about how you take better care of yourself. As a nurse, I want to help you during your immediate emergency but I also want to help you think about what you can do to make your life even better.
So what's it gonna take? Do you need to end up in the ED or are you gonna start taking charge of your life and get on the healthy path?
If you get on the path you will Stay Young Longer!