Okay, so now it’s really cold! The high yesterday was 46 and it’s currently 27 at 08:00 am. It’s amazing how it was in the 110s when we first got here! I have to wear gloves now when I walk to work and the sun goes down around 4:30pm. So in order to keep warm, I have been going to the gym. I kinda plumped up the past couple months because of all the snacks from my care packages! Not that I didn’t enjoy every one of them, but it is time to stop. I have no excuse not to be in great shape. The gym is just outside the door! I have made it to the gym the past 8 out of 10 days. Hopefully I will be able to keep up my routine. On my nights off, I have been waiting until around 10:30 pm to go because it is not that crowded. I have convinced one of my co-workers to be my workout buddy so that we can help motivate each other and hold each other accountable.
As far as work is concerned, the night before last night, when I arrived to work, the charge nurse told me that the ICU doctor had specifically requested that either she or I be assigned to take a 9 year old boy who had suffered multiple injuries. I guess he didn’t feel that the other nurses on that night were strong enough in their pediatric nursing skills. This was very flattering, especially since I never even had any pediatric experience until I came here.
The boy had picked up a piece of unexploded ordinance and it blew up. He suffered a brain injury due to a fragment entering the front right part of his skull and exiting the lower left out the back. He had fragments to both of his eyes and one of his eyes was completely destroyed. He had multiple jaw fractures, hand fractures and feet fractures. Multiple fragments went into his abdomen as well, puncturing his liver, bowels and one up towards his right lower lung, causing it to deflate. I received him from the operating room after 10 hours of surgery during which the surgeons put a drain into his head, fixed his jaw fractures, removed fragments from his left eye to save it, put a tube into his lung to re-inflate it, resected his colon, and fixed his hand and feet fractures. They also had to take a vein from his leg and place it in his arm in order to restore blood flow to his hand.
Amazingly, this kid stayed stable for me through the entire night with a rock solid blood pressure, no bleeding and eventually woke up in the morning, moving everything purposefully. Despite a fragment rattling through his brain, he appeared to not have any brain damage. It is absolutely amazing how resilient the human body can be, especially in these kids.
On a lighter note, I bought an 8”x11” handmade Afghan rug today! I had been eyeing a particular one in the rug store here at the Boardwalk for about two weeks now. Most Afghan rugs are primarily dark red with either black or dark blue designs, but this one had more browns and olive green, like the color of my dining room walls and just stood out more than any of the other ones. The rug vendor said that they don’t usually use these colors, so this is a rare rug to find. Out of the 30+ rugs of that size that he had available, this was the only one with a different look to it. It is 260 knots per square inch which makes the rug very high quality. Used Afghan rugs of this size with half the knots per square inch are selling on the internet for more than what I paid for. I was able to bargain the vendor down by $650! I thought that was pretty good. I found similar rugs for sale on e-bay for $5,000-7,000! Even a machine-made rug of that size from Macy’s will run you $1800. Anyway, it doesn’t really matter what it cost, it’s the meaning behind it; it is something from here that I will always have and will be able to pass on to my family.