Sarcoma.

I volunteer for a children’s cancer camp for an organization that works with families of children battling brain cancers, sarcomas, and leukemia. Each volunteer is assigned a family to counsel for the weekend. It’s in a forest next to the beach where the weekend is dedicated to believing and hoping. The kids get to play…

Impostor Syndrome as a Baby Nurse

We take a minute to interrupt the currently streaming blog to the reality of the author. I have accepted an offer to work as a nurse apprentice until I finish my RN degree. For those of you who are unclear what a nurse apprentice is: they are essentially unlicensed nurses who may perform skills that…

Pancakes

Some of my best memories I have of growing up with my dad are making pancakes. My dad and I were both early risers and found ourselves in the kitchen in the early morning whisking egg whites until they were firm and folding them into batter, only to make the fluffiest pancakes. National Geographic had…

Diagnosis

You know how once you get your life back on track something comes and knocks you down again? Same. Remember that hand pain? Me too. It was still there and getting worse. My dad and I went to a hand specialist in Santa Barbara to have the cyst removed right before Christmas. I was awake…

Initial Spark

I had a math tutor to catch me up in my trigonometry course and everything else I gradually had to make up. I was tired all the time but I took myself off the big drugs and convinced myself all I needed was Ibuprofen. Mind over matter. Withdrawals from morphine aren’t that bad right? Wrong….

The Broken Heart

I like to think that I handled it maturely. That August 21 I was scheduled for a bovine valve replacement. My mom joked that the surgery would make me into a real cowgirl-hilarious. My hand still hurt. That summer my mom insisted I get an x-ray and nothing appeared wrong. Finally my dad concluded that…

Foreshadowing

As the summer season ended and I prepared for high school, I started to notice a pain in my hand. It wasn’t like any pain I had experienced before but instead, excruciating. The pain started in the palm of my right hand and shot up into my arm. I would lay in bed at night…

Impending Fate

Have you ever known something was coming to you? Or known that no matter what you did, you’d never be perfect. I’ll start right off by saying I’m broken-not in a depressing emo state. Hear me out. When I was a kid I was convinced I was the Grinch because my heart was three sizes…

This One’s For You

I suppose this is the part where I have to grab you in and convince you that this is worth reading. Well. I’m not good at that. To be completely honest, this took me years to write and even longer to convince myself that my story was worth even telling. It took a whole lot…

Background

Dear nurses of cardiac pediatric intensive care unit at UCSF, My name is E and I was a patient in August 2009. I underwent open heart surgery to replace my pulmonary valve for tetralogy of Fallot and was taken care of by you on the Parnassus campus. I’m writing to you because I’m currently about…