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Posts Tagged ‘letters’

My first duty in the OB ward was a day I’ll never forget, thanks to you. Our night duty was supposed to be placid, irenic..free from strife; til you came along and derange everything.

This is not a resentment Rosalie, if that’s where you think this letter is heading. I do not want to add insult to injury for I know you’ve already suffered too much. When the DR nurse called upon your admission, the horrified look on our faces was indescribable.

Let’s dissect your diagnoses, shall we? Muriatic acid poisoning, 21 weeks pregnant. Now, it doesn’t take a genius to know that muriatic acid is a highly corrosive liquid not taken by mouth. I am perplexed as to who you were trying to kill. Was it yourself? Your baby? Or both of you? That was the mystery I wanted first to find out.

As soon as we received your admission, we transferred you to the bed nearest our station. With cases like yours, an hourly monitoring is critical which includes an hourly documentation of vital signs, IV flow, and urine/stool frequency. I have yet to discover the reasons for this malady. I know for every decision you make there is a story behind it. But first things first and I have to save your life. Yes, I have to save the life you wanted so much to end.

In between nursing intervention, I found out that this suicidal attempt happened three days before your hospital admission. I also found out that the baby you are carrying in your womb does not share the same DNA with your husband. I could only imagine your pain, Rosalie.  You wanted an easy way out but failed in finding your escape. You wanted your problems solved only to find out that taking one’s life is not a solution. If you’re going to ask me why drinking muriatic acid didn’t end your life abruptly, I have no concrete answer for that. Perhaps you have one more lesson to learn before you leave this world.

Throughout the shift, you were vomiting and excreting incessantly. More IV fluids were ordered to compensate for the fluid loss and a blood transfusion was added with urgency. You kept us alert and busy all night. Although we knew how poor your prognosis was, we did everything to keep you and your baby alive. That’s our job, Rosalie..to revive people even if they had given up on life.

You survived my shift, Rosalie..but died the next day. I realized that during the entire shift I had not exchanged conversations with you. All I remember was that your thoughts seemed too far away. Were you thinking of the three children you’d be leaving behind? I already felt sorry for them the moment I heard of their existence. But do you know who I truly feel sorry for, Rosalie? The little angel who died with you.

I could only wish for a different ending in this story, but not all stories end in beauty. You will never hear of this letter I wrote for you, but someone else in the same dilemma might.  May your mistake be a lesson for someone.

Rest in peace.

Sincerely yours,

Your OB nurse.

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On this particular morning, I woke up deciding to be my melancholic self.

Strange isn’t it? For we have been taught to wake up and pursue happiness each day, and here I am chasing the opposite. I don’t know what made me think this way. It’s probably my lack of plans for the day that had stirred me to be reflective for a little while.

For the past several months, my life has been trailing a get-up-and-go routine. I wake up at 5:30am, leave the house at 6:45am, and arrive just in time for work at the hospital. After 8 hours (and maybe even more) of taking care of sick children, post-partum mothers, and frail elderly…my energy inevitably reduces to nothing which makes it impossible for me to live a little after work. The next day, the same scene happens. But this post isn’t about my life as a nurse, or the lives of the patients I’ve tendered to. I have written no letters for my patients today. This day is for the people who took the time to write me letters of thanks, encouragements, and forgiveness.

On a specific corner of my dresser is a box that draws no particular attention. It has been there for as long as I could remember. What I couldn’t remember was the last time I opened it. And today, I felt the moment it has been waiting for finally arrived. 

Inside the box is a pocketful of memories. It consists of letters from high school friends (some I am no longer acquainted at present), college friends, family members, and even previous lovers. Some are not even letters. They were just post-it notes that have special messages on it. I kept it anyways because regardless of how short the messages were, I believe the person who wrote it put aside a precious time from his/her precious life to write it.

I couldn’t quite well recognize whose signature this is…good thing I know your handwriting too well, Aimee 😉

Yes, brother. I managed to stay single for the rest of my high school years, thanks to you.

The most adorable find in my memory box!

You are a true friend, Jannel! Lol.

Thank you for sending me one of the longest and most touching letter I have ever received :’)

You know you’re in trouble when the guidance counselor starts giving you letters like this.

Rummaging through the 194 letters made me wonder if I was able to write every one back. Was I able to return to them the same special feeling that I felt when they gave me the letter? My heart says “I hope I did,” but my brain thinks otherwise.

It has been a long, long time since I last received a letter. I guess technology snatched away that opportunity to make people feel they are somebody to someone. Reading the letters allowed me to feel an assortment of emotions I cannot even make sense of. It’s like laughing so hard yet tears start to gush from your eyes and you cannot tell apart if you’re sad or just extremely happy. And though I am thankful for technology for making it effortless to communicate with friends, I believe handwritten letters are still a novelty.

Some people are withdrawn to writing their special someone a letter. They are afraid that laying them all out in a piece of paper might diminish the true meaning of what they really feel. But I believe otherwise. I believe it is important to let people know you love them, or that you are sorry for what you did, while you still got a pen and paper on hand. The seasons may change and the years will surely go by, and the people who wrote the letters may not even stay the same, but the letters will remain true till the end of time.

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