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Lisa Bonsall, MSN, RN, CRNP
Thanks for sharing your experience and for the reminder that nursing truly is a privilege. Please keep me posted about your book - would love to read it someday!
Lisa Bonsall
6/24/2015 2:52:13 PM

Debra Culver
January 3. 2013 02:25
As a heathcare professional of almost 40 years I have seen many many patients pass away. So many stick out in my memory and though I may not remember every name I can't forget each face. Two simple words will always stand out at me. One very special pt. looked at me with the sweetest eyes and said thank you before he went to be with God. As I held his hand and watched the last p wave flicker I knew he was gone after a long long struggle with cancer. At that moment I was so thankful for the privilege of being a nurse. To all reading this-please remember Nursing is an art and a science but never forget it is a pri
6/24/2015 2:51:53 PM

Lisa Bonsall, MSN, RN, CRNP
October 19. 2012 16:23

Kathy & Michele,
Thank you so much for sharing your stories.
6/24/2015 2:51:16 PM

Michele Brookman, RN
October 7. 2012 16:42

This past March, my brother died in the hospital from complications of pseudomonas pneumonia. He had ben bed-ridden for 16 years due to TBI, and my mother who is also a RN, cared for him at home with my help. HE was 48 when he died due to the M.D. assigned taking advantage o the fact that he had been made a "No Code" 3 years prior, and failing to order appropriate antibiotics for which to treat the virulent pseudomonas. After 3 days in the hospital, 2 of which were with ZERO Abx, his lung began to hemorrhage, and by day 3 when I arrived at the hospital after working at another hospital, I witnessed the worst possible case scenario from which he would not recover and advised the rogue MD to cease intervention and begin comfort care. He would have exhausted himself in trying to breath with one lung filled with blood. I could not take the day off the next day to sit bedside with a Dilaudid drip running, and asked that I be notified when the nursing staff though it was close. I arrived at the hospital the next evening with my 11-year old daughter and kneeled beside him in his bed with my mother's 80's white nursing dress on. The Chaplain came by, and a very chatty nurse which I resented as she was commenting on my retro dress and was inquisitive about me while I was cherishing the last few hours I would ever spent with my brother, who had also been my first patient in a home care setting for the past 16 years. He took his last great an hour after I had arrived, with me holding his hand and hugging him. 16 seconds after what seemed like the final breath, was just one more and his eyes rolled back. Two days prior, before the lung began to hemorrhage and before comfort measures were even a remote option, my 11-year old daughter felt angels in the room and began to cry. I thought that she was crying because she was tired and frightened,but she said that she was overwhelmed by the presence o angels. At the time when she felt this my brother lie sleeping and smiling in his sleep, which I attributed to the Morphine given hime for the pneumonia, and did not correlate to my daughter's tears. When I asked her what the angeles were doing there she said that without speaking directly to her, they told her without words that he was going to be all right. Apparently, he was also aware of the angels and knew where he was going, hence the immense smile on his face while he slept.

Disappointing is the present state of medicine, where the caring aspect is down played by level of reimbursement or the costs of care. The healing art of nursing ought only be practiced by those who truly care and not sought by anyone who seeks job security and recognition.
6/24/2015 2:49:34 PM

October 6. 2012 23:33
These were not last words, but last moments, so I appologise for not sticking precisely to the question, but it was my most profound experience in caring for dying geriatric patients. I was working on a dementia unit and a favorite patient of both staff and residents was actively dying. My shift was over and I was at the nurses station doing my documentation, when from down the hall I heard the most beautiful baritone voice singing Amazing Grace. I stood and walked toward the dying patients room where I found one of the CNA's from the day shift and her daughter, a volunteer, sitting at the residents bedside. At the foot of the bed was one of our new residents. He was a tall and strapping man, very fit as his was a sudden change in mental status that took him from his life of freedom and brought him to our unit only a couple of weeks earlier. I walked to the other side of the bed and took the patients hand. As "Charlie" finished the hymn, "Gertie" took her last peaceful breath. I went over to the man and told him how lucky Gertie was to have him there. Without skipping a beat, he looked up at me and said "God gave me this gift, and he told me it was time for me to use it".
6/24/2015 2:48:16 PM