It’s been a tough few months. Tonight I have been sitting here trying to find a clever way to introduce the topic of gratitude and Thanksgiving in my blog post.
Over the course of three nights my patient, after being in the ICU for over a month, began to have the haze of delirium lift. While he was never a combative delirious patient, he did take any opportunity he was left unrestrained to pull everything out; his feeding tube, IV’s, or catheter. As the delirium fog slowly lifted his interactions and our conversations over those three nights became more appropriate. It was rewarding to see the lightbulb go on and the realization of where he was and how long he’d been there wash over his face. He said thank you after every time I turned him and give him his medication. My last night with him I got him out of bed to the chair in the morning after he had a good night’s sleep. I wished him a good day and thanked him for his hard work over night. He replied. “You’re welcome.”
I have been thinking about him and how in kindness and appreciation gratitude comes back. As Thanksgiving approaches I will continue to think about him as he will still be in the hospital without any family able to come see him.
Thinking about all the losses he has overcome enables me to reflect and be aware of all that I have been given this year.
I’m thankful that I have a challenging and secure job to go to every night. I’m thankful for my great friends who I know I can call when my life falls to pieces. Hopefully someday I can return their many kindnesses as they face challenges in their own lives. I’m thankful for rainy Seattle nights that give me the time to write. I’m grateful that my health allows me to work as hard as I do, that the health of my family will allow them to celebrate and enjoy the day off, and that the Packers Football is returning to Thanksgiving Day. I appreciate that for every patient that doesn’t say thank you there is at least one that says you’re welcome.
It’s important to remember this feeling of gratitude throughout the year. I hope I can remember to bring it full circle as this year ends and 2012 begins. Happy Thanksgiving.
Please share for what or whom are you grateful for?