I spent the early part of mother’s day in the ER with my son who suffers from severe allergic reactions to Red dye’s. (Although he wasn’t given anything with red dye, it is not clear if licking a Popsicle that he shared with his brother caused this reaction. To be safe we are waiting on a referral to see an allergist to eliminate guessing. He was never formally diagnosed with being allergic to red dye. It was the conclusion I made when investigating the food he ate when he first got this reaction at 2 ½ years old. I share custody with his father and I had him do a food diary of the things he gave our son for the prior days and I did one as well. I then looked up everything and all ingredients in the food that was processed and what colors were in the ingredients, the only thing that stuck out was the red dye. Fast forwarding years, my hypothesis has become a theory, as unfortunate as it is it has been tested and he gets worse with each reaction, when he eats anything with red dye 40. To be safe we do the best we can to eliminate and stress he can not have anything red, or anything that makes red, nothing that is orange, purple, pink, etc.) He was started on a breathing treatment after giving him shots and medication. The breathing treatment kind of made me nervous, I thought it was more serious. I was told his breathing wasn’t where they wanted it to be however it was just a precaution. Those words reassured me.
We also got a dose of wonder while at the ER. Her name is Nurse Judy I have never seen her before in the ER, I am not a regular, but with three boys and my own health issues I have gotten to know a few doctors and nurses. Nurse Judy is the reason I want to be a nurse. It was an encounter I had with nurse a long time ago that made me want to give back and years later I found that spark in this nurse. I couldn’t believe how kind and patient Nurse Judy was don’t get me wrong I have had other wonderful ER nurses. There is a difference in doing your job and being great at that, but also knowing your patients are human and not just number. Doing the little things make a huge difference. I figured she was just a new to nursing and that is why she had the spark and loved her job. I had to ask her how long she has been a nurse; she smiled and said over 20 years. I didn’t see that coming.
Nurse Judy sat on my son’s bed and held his hand and talked with him and made him feel comfortable. She brought him a warm blanket to put on my son, without me asking or flagging an employee down.
She kept the room less tense with starting conversations and really listening and taking in what my son was saying. When it was time to go, my son was getting the IV taken out and she gently rubbed an alcohol swab on the bandage for a few seconds, stopped then did it again. I asked her what she was doing; she smiled at me and said it reduces the pain when taking the tape off. I just smiled at her. It’s the little things like that. Normally they just rip it off my son and tell him he can go to the treasure box after for being a brave boy. He didn’t even cry when she took the tape off. As we were leaving, she got another nicely toasted blanket for my son and got a wheelchair and personally pushed him to my car. He has never gotten this treatment before. Usually I am stuck carrying him out or he holds my hand while trying to walk with swollen feet. She helped him into the car and placed the blanket over his lap. I had the baby to get in the car and my older one. I have a feeling even if I had an extra hand to give; she is the kind of person who would do this anyway. I didn’t even ask her to help us to the car or any accommodation. If I wrote everything little thing down that she did that made a big difference I would get a huge writers cramp and it would be a very long blog post.
Nurse Judy is someone who loves what she does and it was such a blessing to have her as our ER nurse. I am most confident that everyone who gets the pleasure of having Nurse Judy will be given a dose of sunshine. We thank you Nurse Judy for all that you did, I want to emulate you as a nurse your bedside manner, disposition, knowledge and kindness. When I struggle with going to school and want to give up, I will remember you and will want to make a difference in someone’s’ life. Its not just a job for you it’s a passion and it shows. Thank you! You were a huge blessing and it was by far the best ER visit we have had because of you! I would also like to thank you for following up regarding the epi pens. We were able to get two! Thank you, you certainly made a lasting impression on us. I wish more Nurses had your spark and passion.
Five days out and my son is doing much better, this is the first time in 4 ½ years that we haven’t had to go back to the ER after the first visit. Usually we have to go two or three times because the rash gets worse. He is responding well to medication and prayer. Overall this has been the least severe reaction he has had. We appreciate all your prayers and well wishes. His Class sent him get well cards and he was so touched that they took time to do that for him and cared so much for him.
He also enjoys reading the emails, texts, and FB comments asking how he is doing and how much they care for him.
I have amazing people in my life. Thanking God that my son is doing well, he has been out of school this week and he is looking forward to going back on Monday.