No time for Christmas celebrations as an Intensive Care Unit nurse

A nurse in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) is often made to resuscitate patients who are at death’s door and it is for those circumstances, nurse Christabelle Fitzpatrick has to forsake the gathering of relatives at a Christmas dinner or other holiday festivities.

Nurse Fitzpatrick over the last six years has been charged with the responsibility of reviving the gravely ill.

Very often, the sick are taken to the ICU, gasping for breath, receiving oxygen or with some kind of gadget attached to his or her being. Sometimes, it is as a result of a serious accident, or a not too successful surgical procedure.

Christabelle Fitzpatrick
Christabelle Fitzpatrick

However for Nurse Fitzpatrick, it is not the time to think of personal family. “We think of patients lying before us and helpless as they struggle to hold on to dear life”, she said. She noted while others are celebrating the Yuletide season, the patients and their relatives are faced with a do or die issue.

At such crucial moments, Nurse Fitzpatrick said “we try to get them to focus on the sumptuous meal awaiting their recovery. We remind them of their slices of black cake, sorrel drink, ginger beer, roasted chicken, walnuts and pepperpot. We try to encourage them to hang in there, because nice things are ahead.”

For her, it is rewarding to see patients recovered sufficiently to walk away from the hospital which had been their home for the longest while. It is special, when the recovered patient says, “thank you” to the team.

Even those patients who may be fading fast, the nurses at the ICU never give up on them. Often, the patients are reminded of their loved ones just outside the ICU awaiting the signal to visit.

However, despite care given to some patients, they pass on saddening their families and the nurses who would have put a lot of effort into their care.

In all situations, nurse Fitzpatrick has however assured, their best effort is made.

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