Since I was a child, I had dreamed to become a successful medical practitioner or someone that works in the hospital or aid institution. But because my parents can’t afford to send me to medical schools, I’ve shifted to a more convenient and close to my passion of care giving. I have managed to finish my nursing assistant short course and had my certificate in no time. I had my first job at a prestigious hospice for cancer, and that was my most memorable all time experience. First day of my work, I was a little nervous and anticipated to future patients whether I can withstand their grief and troublesome. But I need to be tough and friendly at the same time, so I can easily build a rapport to them.
I was first introduced to a certain someone, who was in her middle-aged and has a terminal breast cancer. She is so thin and frail that doesn’t look like her age. As I look at her, she is deteriorating and hopeless in life. I was assigned to her, and I found out that she had difficulty in breathing. At first, I was scared on what will eventually happen to her. What if, she is going to die under my time duty, or accidentally grasping air to breathe. There are many anticipations occur in my mind, but I swallowed all-in. It is because I was trained to do this duty and sworn that I will do my very best to lessen their pain.
I took care of Miss Helena; she is 34 years old and has three months life expectancy. Way back a year ago, she had several surgeries and chemotherapy sessions. Until such time, her system was not responding to any medication at all. Enable to decide her, to see a hospice facility.
Part of my job was to follow-up her medical conditions and further comfort needs with a medical practitioner’s supervision. This will include the comfort advises on how to cope up the pain and manage the symptoms. I will also evaluate the family members and inform them that they were required to be involved in monitoring her conditions and other important customary activities. Secondly, I always make sure that Ms. Helena was in a good mood before I’ll start my medical session to her. It’s a routine for us to go outside and breather some fresh air. Then, ask her casually about her activities last night. If she had a good night sleep, or having trouble to take a nap. I also make sure that I’m polite and gloomy when I’m going to start a conversation.
After a week of casual conversation, Ms. Helena is starting to open up, and she’s also responding to my few advises. One of our guidelines for the therapy is to give them a full support and “palliative care” along with curative treatment. In palliative care, we make sure that the patient is physically and emotionally at ease to extra extend. We also provide counseling and spiritual advice to both patients and family because we believe a unit of care is the key to elevate any one’s perspective (DHHS and CMS).
I have a routine schedule for Ms. Helena from early in the morning to late afternoon. After she will have her breakfast, I walk her through the garden for fresh air and let her see how beautiful the world she lives in. Then, read her a very inspiring, daily devotional book to uplift her emotional comfort without emphasizing the pain she bears. I’ve notice that Ms. Helena has a writing skill.
Every time we get together and have our session, she always had this personal diary. She wrote our daily activities and special events. As I have observed, she is trying to cope up and slowly gaining strength even though there were instances that she had to throw-up.
Since, Ms. Helena loves to write I encourage her to draft a biography, so at least she had other outlets to lessen her pain. As I spend most of my time with her, I get to know her better. I have also managed to explain the dying process in a good way, and she seems to embrace it.
We also provide her a spiritual counseling by giving daily devotional services such as group prayers, worshipping, and group fellowship. This kind of spiritual support will help her to lighten up her distress. In addition, learning experience from other testimonials is one way of coping mechanism.
One day, when I had my day-off, I received a phone call from the hospice center. According to them, Ms. Helena was advice to check out because she is responding to the ongoing curative treatment. I was so happy and overwhelm that I did a very good job. It was indeed a helpful and meaningful task for me.
Ms. Helena and her family personally thank me for helping her to foresee the real meaning of life; the comfort and hopeful advice that I have shared with.
I have gathered more friends that are truthful and at the same time mould me into a better person, a better nursing assistant.
DHHS and CMS. cms.gov. 1 October 2010. 18 February 2013