Years ago, I was admitted into the PICU. I had hydrocephalus, which is how we found out I had a brain tumor roughly the size of a golf ball. I was only 10 at the time, so I wasn’t really sure about all the updates. With everything moving so fast, my family felt things were going nowhere. I’m not sure how to explain all the stress and emotion. Let’s just say it was hard to be bubbly for the beautiful nurse who had just walked in. She smiled and introduced herself as Nurse Tanya. Nurse Tanya talked to me about all of the things going on. She told me all of the physicians who would be overseeing me. We talked a while about my interests. She always made sure we got what we needed, what I wanted, and made sure I was doing what I needed to as the patient. She made sure I got out of my room and off the floor as often as possible. She was always acquiring art kits and toys to keep my mind off of all the stress of my situation and the tension of the ICU.
Nurse Tanya even got the doctors and prescriptions, for lack of a better word, expedited when I needed them. Shortly after a biopsy of my tumor and a VP Shunt placement, I was discharged, but shortly after readmitted for extreme disorientation. I don’t remember much, but I’ve heard the story plenty of times. I was put into the ICU again and a shunt revision was scheduled for the day after the day following. Sadly, Nurse Tanya wasn’t my nurse at that time. As I understand it my nurse and everyone else, except for my parents, of course, thought I was just fine. Tanya came to visit me that night and immediately noticed something was very wrong with me. After she called the doctor’s attention it, that shunt revision two days later became an emergency surgery scheduled for that very day.
Tanya thoughtfully acquires, accommodates, expedites, and advocates for her patients. After all, she practically saved my life.