April Books

Here I am on July 17 writing about the books I read in April. Lol oh well. It’s never too late to find a good book.

Hikertrash: Life on the Pacific Crest Trail by Erin Miller. It took me a few months to read this book. This is a personal account of a married couple who thru hiked the 2659mi Pacific Crest Trail 5 years ago. It was interesting but it was more like journal entries instead of actual chapters. When I started getting tired of it, I read other books and came back to it when I wanted an escape in my head.

Weekends at Bellevue by Julie Holland. This book is a true story and details the experience of the nine years Dr Julie Holland, a board-certified psychiatrist spent working in the psychiatric emergency room at Bellevue Hospital in NYC. If you are not medical and easily offended, don’t read this book. This is this woman’s personal EXPERIENCE. It is not to be judged or psychoanalyzed. I was extremely angered to read the very first review from 4 years ago listed on Goodreads and the several reviews that follow. The first review was written by a “psychology major and a human being”. All I can say is Bitch, don’t judge until you’ve walked in that person’s shoes.

I’m sorry but I have to stand on my soap box for a moment. I am a Board Certified Emergency Nurse with 13 years of Emergency Nursing under my belt. The general public has no idea of the experiences at work that we have on a daily basis that either harden our hearts, break our hearts or both. They have no idea how each one of us has experienced burn out at some point in our careers. Burnout that makes us feel like we are in an uncontrollable downward spiral as our own sanity circles the drain. Sure, burnout heals and can lay dormant for a spell until we have another experience that triggers it and then we pray that we don’t snap and circle the drain again. Burnout was one of the reasons I left the Emergency Room. The Emergency Room that I was able to refine my knowledge and skills as a registered nurse. The Emergency Room where my intuition came alive and I could tell someone was going bad by looking at them. The Emergency Room where I saw lives begin and end. The Emergency Room where I saw people bleed out and swallow their brains. The Emergency Room where I cleaned up more shit, piss, blood, snot and puke than I care to recall. The Emergency Room where I used to puke in the sink if the stench got to me too much. The Emergency Room where I was threatened with physical violence and sexually harassed on multiple occasions. The Emergency Room where hospital security frequently had to physically protect us when  there were dangerous patients that we had to sedate and restrain. The Emergency Room where I took care of murderers and rapists. The Emergency Room where I made lifelong friends. The Emergency Room that I shared weekends, holidays, and snowstorms with my ER family. The Emergency Room where we as staff shared each other’s triumphs and defeats. The Emergency Room that built a foundation for the rest of my career and gave me the confidence to try any other nursing afterwards. The Emergency Room that I was proud to work at. I remember shortly before I transferred out of the Emergency Room, one of the ER Attending Physicians said to me, “Nurses are lucky, they can leave when they want to and when they need to. Physicians have to stay.”

So I say, thank you Dr Julie Holland for sharing your experience.

The Pilot’s Wife by Anita Shreve. I started reading this book years ago and returned it to the library unfinished because I wasn’t feeling it. Shortly before I read this book in April, I’d read Anita Shreve’s latest book and decided to give it another go. This book is about the after effects of the death of a Pilot who perished in a plane crash. The Pilot’s wife uncovers his secret life. It was good.

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Author: jachristofersen8

Registered Nurse. Writer. Local Hiker. YL Essential Oils Educator.

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