Moderator Pick
December 10th, 2020

I finally acknowledged my limits

Acknowledgment and faith sustain me. At this point, I have fully come to terms with the fact that it is not my strength alone that will get me through this challenging time. For whatever reason, I was in the habit of reserving God for the “BIG” things! This pandemic has reminded me of the importance to renew DAILY, to seek constantly grace and mercy. This has caused me to take a step back and reprioritize my self-care. Earlier in the year, life was hitting hard, fast, and I felt like my hair was on fire for about 2 months and wow, I lost steam fast. Physically and mentally overwhelmed, even my spirit was tired.

I am not always cheerful, but I do my best to remain optimistic. I struggled to admit that at times I felt forgotten, ill-equipped, or worn down because it brought up some toxic internal dialogue. To me, acknowledging those feelings meant that I couldn’t handle the pressure, I wasn’t strong enough to meet the challenge, and that I wasn’t a good nurse. All that those feelings really mean is that I’m a good human, I care, and, it takes the whole armor of God - just my stethoscope and an N-95 won’t do.

One thing that is incredibly encouraging is seeing the Chaplain during rounds daily/nightly. It is nice to connect and reflect on divine wisdom and strength. Those moments are nourishing to my spirit. Carving out time to move my body makes me feel strong and helps me feel confident that something went as planned. Work can be so unpredictable. That feeling of routine has been lost in some ways and so I’ve committed to giving myself a personal win every day.
Controlling the controllable, for me - that’s what I put in my mind, what I put in my mouth, and how I choose to treat my body, my vessel. I empower others by sharing my routine, acknowledging the wins and losses, and showing up the next day and the day after that, too. We empower one another by offering help, reminding each other to take lunch or even to go empty their bladder! Reminders that we have permission to prioritize our health is sometimes met with a bit of resistance and it usually starts with I would, BUT! We’re really great at taking care of everybody and everything else, first. With that said, it’s truly inspiring when I notice others honoring their well-being by staying home when they don’t feel well, seeking counseling, or openly expressing their challenges.

We are competent & capable. We are bearers of light. We are human BEings, not human doings.
Remember to be kind to yourself as well as to others.

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Comments (2)

Comments (2)

Hi Jennell:

I love that you have "committed to giving myself a personal win every day." And I also love the way you take care of the other members of your team.

Thanks for sharing your story with us!

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Thank you for moderating this space for our sharing, especially at such a critical time. I see that the University of Maryland is a part of the coordinating council. Are there ways to engage with this work at the local level there?