I all the time knew my work schedule, however this time I acquired it mistaken … or possibly I acquired it proper. I clocked in and reported to the ICU for my night time shift to begin, however I wasn’t on the schedule. Unusually sufficient, they’d sufficient nurses that night time. The nursing supervisor requested if I might be keen to go to the neonatal ICU (NICU) and rock a child. Apart from nursing college, I knew nothing about neonatal nursing, a lot much less the NICU. However I assumed this needs to be simple, so I stated sure.
I entered the NICU and the cost nurse requested me if I might rock a 5.5-pound untimely child lady. She was irritable with a frantic, shrill cry, and her physique trembled. I instantly thought, “What have I gotten myself into?” She had a nasal cannula hooked up to her nostrils, and was going by means of withdrawal signs as a result of her mom did medicine – opioids. My coronary heart wept.
Little Greta would tremble uncontrollably, however I held her shut in my arms as I slowly rocked her. She was good, with tiny fingers wrapped round one in every of my fingers. We appeared into one another’s eyes – these small, brown eyes – and I slowly rocked her, gradual and rhythmic. I put her near my coronary heart, so she might really feel my heat, really feel my coronary heart, and really feel my love.
I used to be informed that Greta’s mom had already been discharged, and was present process drug rehabilitation, together with methadone therapy. Social companies would make visits to see the progress of Greta and the mom, and the aim was to finally return Greta to her mom when she was bodily capable of go residence. DSS would finally make properly visits to the mom and child Greta when she was returned.
After two hours of rocking Greta, her respiration slowed to a restful state and her little eyes closed as she slept peacefully in my arms. I might have rocked her endlessly. I stated a prayer for Greta, that she would have a contented life, and that her mom can be rehabilitated and by no means return to medicine. This good creation, sleeping quietly in my arms, and I needed her the most effective that life and love might give her. I might solely pray a optimistic prayer, as I didn’t wish to suppose the darkish ideas that circled my thoughts.
After two hours of rocking child Greta, I handed her over to her nurse and slowly walked out of the hospital. My “task” was over. Tears slowly fell to my cheeks – tears I couldn’t maintain again – tears for child Greta, her good self, and that peaceable snuggle in opposition to my chest as she held her tiny hand tightly wrapped round my finger.
Debbie Moore-Black is a nurse who blogs at Do Not Resuscitate.