Monday, May 10, 2010


Ugh. This weekend is just one more reason to add to the list of my pedi-patient phobia.
Saturday an ambulance rolls into my room with a little 5 year old boy in a c-collar and on a backboard. He's been out on the BMX track (at 5! what a little badass!) with his dad when he ran into a wall on his bike taking a hill too fast. He's whimpering a little and I ask if he's in pain. He says no. I ask why he's crying, to which he responds he's afraid we're going to laugh at him. I tell him that no one's going to laugh at him because he's the coolest person here. The doctor clears him and sends him for a head and c-spine CT.
I talk to him for a while as he hangs out and watches TV. He's pretty much the most adorable little boy I've ever seen- he's super tough but really shy and sweet, too. I start thinking about how I hope my kids act like him whenever I have them. He sits through his CT like the brave kid he is. Then we get the results back.
No bleeds. No breaks. But there's something there. A tumor. A pretty big one. Instead of giving him a popsickle and sending him home like I knew we would, now we're sending him to a pediatric oncology unit. I was completely crushed. I wanted to puke. I managed to keep it together for him and his parents. On his way out, I told him what a good job he did and how I wish he could show all our grown up patients how to act. He just smiled and blushed.
I know we're not supposed to take stuff like this home. But I can't leave it. I can't. I can't stop thinking about him. About whether he's gonna be okay. About how he's gonna do with the hell that he's about to be sent into. About why it's happening to him. It's so shitty. It's so unfair. How can all these horrible assholes who come in looking for drugs, who contribute nothing to anyone, who make everyone around them miserable and seemingly live forever, with no consequences, no pain, when this awesome, sweet little kid has brain cancer and is about to get thrown into at best, months of suffering, and at worst, death? Why?
I'm sitting here bawling wondering about how the two people who deserve it the least get diagnosed with brain tumors in the same week. I wonder how parents do it. I'm so sick over this and I don't even know this kid. How could you even get up every day when that was your flesh and blood, who you've known every day of his life, who is suffering or dying? It makes me absolutely terrified at the idea of having children.
All I can do is say a prayer for him. Hope that this accident is some serendipitous event that allowed us to catch it before it was too late. Because I can't see much sense in it right now.


  1. That is terrible. Hopefully it won't be anything.

  2. Peds patients are really the hardest. Second only to NICU. Its hard to imagine a child going through something so Adult.

    I hope that you are able to find some peace with it. But I think that the fact that they stick in your brain is what makes you a good Nurse. If those things didnt phaise you at all, I think we would all be concerned.


  3. Sometimes I want to go back to school so bad to be a nurse (I'm a paralegal), but then I read a story like that........and I don't think I can. I give you so much credit - a case like that would probably have me quitting nursing the next day.