Maybe it's my advanced age or the Sinemet I'm taking for uncontrolled spasms, but I have this recurring dream. I'm called in to scrub on a messy trauma case. When I show up in the tiled temple with overhead lights ablaze, everyone is glad to see me. Dr. Slambow greets me with that subtle grin and says, "Boy am I glad to see you, we have a real doozy here. Open up a thoracotomy set with your usual general surgery paraphernalia. I suspect we're going to need it." Trouble was always around the corner with this request because Dr. Slambow was a general surgeon and the administration determined that he did not have privileges for chest procedures. I always thought that my job was to do what's best for the poor soul lying there bleeding out on the cold table. Office sitters be damned.
About this time I wake up and realize it's all a dream. I'm just an oldster huddling under the covers with knees aching so bad that I would be lucky to crawl out of bed, much less stand at a Mayo stand for hours on end.
OR nursing was difficult to say the least, but I had people who really appreciated my efforts and made me feel important. Maybe a bit too important for my own good. The difficulties made everything seem more worthwhile. At least I was trying to help someone and was grateful for the opportunity. I don't know what I would have done without it.
I'm grateful for a different sort of life now. I never thought I would outlive so many of my contemporaries who were more fit and much healthier than my foolish self. I was marveling at my longevity with my internist and he summed it up by saying, "Well you never know when your time is up." How true, and I'm thankful for all these years whether I deserved them or not.
Thankfulness has opened up my soul to humility and the realization that it's not necessary to work in the OR to have a purpose-driven life. I'm grateful for a day unburdened by obligations with freedom from time constraints. The ability to reflect on all my foibles and foolishness. It's difficult for me to believe so many folks read my foolhardy reflections and memories. I am especially thankful that so many of you read my blogging foolishness. Gratitude brings about an all encompassing feeling of peace and satisfaction and I will always be thankful to those who indulge in my foolishness by perusing this blog.