Four years ago, a resident came into my hospital room to check on my surgical drains. See, I had just had a Distal Pancreatectomy and Splenectomy. A distal pancreatectomy is the removal of the end of the pancreas while leaving the pancreatic head attached, with splenectomy (removing my spleen). As she was talking to me (before ripping out the drains) she said, one day, you will be brilliant. I've been trying ever since - striving to be open - striving to brilliant - striving to be brave.
I am writing from a hotel in Indianapolis on the night before Thanksgiving. Last year I decided to figure out ways to give back to the University Hospital of Indianapolis. I put together "care packages" for the patients and their families. I tried to think about what I really wanted when I was a long-term resident (patient) at IU and put that together.
I am doing the same thing tomorrow. I hope tomorrow goes better than last year. Last year I focused on the red blazar and photos by the bags.... I did not focus on the patients, the experience, the environment and I paid dearly for it. It wasn't my first time back to the hospital, so I (arrogantly) thought - no big deal - I've got this. Disaster. Period. The triggers I experienced last year caused an unexpected spiral of angst, dismay and depression that took days to dig out from.
**Now a week later - it was a wonderful experience** I was exactly where I needed to be when I needed to be there. KPT will expand and live on. In the world we live in today, healthcare can be a very lonely and scary place. We need to extend grace wherever we can, sprinkle grace like glitter - let it cover everything. If I helped one patient or one family member feel even a smidge better on Thanksgiving it was worth it. It was worth it for me, I continue to heal and learn and grown from my experiences four years ago, something I will carry with me the rest of my life. And I am forever grateful. Remember keep pushing through.