October 31, 2010
30 Minutes Before My Shift Ends
I looked at the wall clock, it says 5:30 in the morning.
In 30 minutes, my shift will end.
I told to myself as I sat on the couch of our department and felt very tired.
In that 3o minutes before my 16hours straight duty from evening to night shift ends, I received a call from the emergency room, the assigned colleague of mine needs help, he said an ambulance will be arriving very soon with two cardiac arrest patients...he cannot afford to assist on those two patients at the same time.
So I responded together with my friend and colleague Dan. We were joking around with the nurses as we wait for the ambulance to arrive.
"Hey Jen, I don't see any face book status update from you? Di kita nararamdaman sa FB!"
"you know me Mac, too busy, after work im dead tired!"
"atleast write something once in a while, a quick update you know....like "pepe maluwang...or perhaps... pepe maga..."
and we both laughed with my silly joke on her until we heard the "wang-wang" of the ambulance, we prepared ourselves for the worst.
There they come like a storm barging in... the emergency medical team, tensed, sweating, and busy rescusitating that 1 year old baby...Oh my gosh... a baby! with all smoke and dirt on his head and body....
"he is a year old baby, found on the floor, a possible case of smoke inhalation, fire on their home, he's non reactive, no pulse, no breathing, pupils dilated, and CPR going on for 15 minutes now..." the canadian nurse endorsed to all of us while shifting the patient to our stretcher.
I took over on giving the artificial airway and breathing for the baby, while the other nurse took over the cardiac compression from the ambulance guy who is soaked like crazy with his own sweat. I always admired them, I mean their job is just crazy! they are the ones who arrive on the scene and give the first aid until they could pass to the emergency room! How cool is that!
I had a heavy heart seeing this innocent baby lifeless while we tried everything to save him. I could see my nephew on him. I know he is someone's baby. I know someone is worried about him and praying really hard to God to save him.
I avoided looking at his face since then...I can't.
1o minutes later, the other ambulance arrived and the other team from the ER prepared themselves to received the patient...
I looked at the patient arriving on the stretcher and I gasped loudly as I saw a 7 months pregnant woman darkened by smokes from the fire, lifeless too, and heard from the endorsement that she is in fact this baby's mom...
Oh no, what happened to both of you and your mom? I whispered at him as if he is alive...
trying to be unaffected by what's happening around me and do my job, there is no time to be emotional at this moment. Every minute counts...
30 minutes before my shift ends...
The room became crazier than ever..I saw everyone running...getting something...shouting to someone...all for these patients on our hands.
3o minutes before my shift ends
Here I am still busy, ignoring the pain on my legs and my tired eyes. We are all tired, but no one complains. We are all doing our best for this baby and his mother and her unborn child.
The doctor run the ECG machine this time...
he paused and said: "time of death 6:05 am"
Every one stared at this baby boy's face and stopped from what their doing. The family came rushing and they became hysterical as they realized he is really gone.
"why... why.. you're just a baby..." his father.
I saw the pain on the old lady's face as she kissed the baby's feet...whispering at him. I assumed its his grandmother.
Its heartbreaking. My tears almost fell.
That was a difficult situation to be in.
I hate being affected by other's grief.
I'm sad. I'm down. I've never been affected by patients and relatives for a long time, death is a common thing for me. Ive been surrounded by death all the time. I don't know why now...
I heard another doctor's declaration on the bed nearby:
"time of death 6:10 am"
3o minutes before my shift ends ...
3 lives were gone...