IT IS IN THE DARKEST of moments of one's life that the light is truly able to shine through.
IT IS IN THE DARKEST of moments of one’s life that the light is truly able to shine through. That light can come in many forms. Mine came in the form of my chemo nurse, Amber, whom I also lovingly call, Angel Nurse.
I WAS RECENTLY DIAGNOSED with a very aggressive form of breast cancer. Breast cancer is no stranger to women of all backgrounds. It usually chooses its victims regardless of many factors. I, however, am 24 years old. With all of my life in front of me, a fear began to take hold. Would I live to see the day I would marry the love of my life? Would I ever hold my baby in my arms? I was confronted with many questions such as these and had only my faith to guide me forward.
Walking into my first day of chemotherapy, I was both scared and ready; scared for the effects it may have on my ability to have children and ready to kill any remaining cancer that may be harboring itself in my body. And then I met Amber and my fears subsided until all that was left was strength and perseverance.
Amber has the two things that make a good nurse a great one, one that changes lives. She is so proficient and dedicated to her work that she makes one of the most horrific experiences (chemotherapy) absolutely bearable. This proficiency was just rewarded as she was appointed the nurse in charge of infusion therapy at the Susan P. Wheatlake Cancer Center. Secondly, and more importantly, she heals with her ability to care for her patients on a personal level. I learned how truly crucial this aspect of treatment is when my father, who recently received a heart transplant, was ill for many years, and again when my mother died suddenly only months later. The nurses that care for their patients on a personal level make such a difference that it is immeasurable.
I continued on with my treatments, and I understood fully that when people spoke of their “battle” with cancer, they were referring to the emotional and mental battle even more than the physical one. Amber helped to heal me physically, but her hand in healing me mentally and emotionally will last until the day I leave this earth. Her constant smile reminded me that there is beauty and friendship that can be found in the struggle. Above all, she made me feel safe. She allowed me the ability to see and plan for my future.
On one of my many rough days during chemotherapy, I lost consciousness during my appointment with my oncologist. I awoke to countless people surrounding me and could feel tears streaming down my face as I lay there. It was one of the scariest moments of my life thus far. And then Amber stood above me and told me it would all be OK and that she would never let anything happen to me. She wiped the tears from my face and kissed my forehead. Seeing her and knowing she was there erased any fears I may have had.
She truly was and will forever be my Angel Nurse. I credit her with saving my life in more ways than one. As I write this, I cannot help but to cry and smile all at once. My words cannot begin to describe this wonderful person, but I knew when I saw CURE’s question, “Do you know an extraordinary oncology nurse?” I had to write you and say, “Yes! I know the very best one!” i