Ken Dean | The Heroism of Nurses

Letters to the Editor
Letters to the Editor

At most of our City Council candidates forums we were asked what we would do if we were on the City Council regarding the COVID virus. This is a trying question, because there are so many factors, our citizens, our businesses, etc. Where do you start? I’m going to go in a different direction. To this I would like to share my personal feelings. Most of what I’m going to write is heartbreaking. I basically like happy stories and news, but I write this letter as a process of thought with nothing intended to be negative. It is thoughts of our current time that one day will fall privy to history.

Every generation has its heroes. Ours is the emotional weight our health care providers experience. Among many, they dreadfully witnessed those who died without the comfort of family. With a heavy heart I will start out with a story from a nurse dealing with all the complexities dealing with this pandemic. 

I quote, “I took care of a patient who was in their mid-30s and came in with shortness of breath. He was admitted and after three days got worse. When he went down to the ICU, he basically knew that once he got on the ventilator, there was the potential of never coming off of it. The last call he made was to his mother, and it was heartbreaking to hear him say, ‘I hope I see you again.’” He ended up passing away.

Some of the most heartbreaking moments of this pandemic are when a nurse has to hold up an iPad to a patient’s face so they could say farewell to their loved ones.

I like to quote the words of a naval nurse about this pandemic. “I’m a retired Navy reservist. Most of our advances in health care and surgery and trauma come from war. This is war. We are at war.” How true these words are as we fight this invasion of an invisible enemy. All this was not part of a nurse’s training.

For now there are no more backyard barbecues, concerts in the park, etc. But I have faith and the optimistic foresight and vision that we will see tomorrow. This pandemic has upset life as we know it. Everyone has felt the pandemic’s impact. We have seen how this virus ravages the human body. Like our nurses, we have all felt the stress in our everyday life. I reflect on the fact that most of the young ladies my son has dated over the years have been nurses. These young ladies are my heroes as are the male nurses and all nurses. Because without them, where would we be?

As we go forward with this dreadful COVID, we have no idea when it will stop. This reminds me of the biblical plague of another time in our history books and Bibles. How many of us have asked ourselves, “Am I next?” So what can we do? We can use the greatest medicine known to man: prayer! It doesn’t matter what your religion is, it’s your faith. The memory we will have from this is a masked nurse looking you in the eye and saying, “Everything is going to be OK.”

Ken Dean

Santa Clarita

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