Today I am honored to share a story from my colleague, Tiffany Lang, a radiology technologist who works at our Burnet Campus.
Over 10 years ago, I was working on a Sunday when I was called to the Emergency Department to take x-ray pictures of a 2-year-old little boy who was a victim of an accident. Another technologist and I were in the trauma bay watching as the medical team tirelessly worked to save the little boy’s life. I remember seeing his parents standing close by, crying and hoping for a miracle. That day, the ED staff brought the little boy back to life.
He spent weeks at Cincinnati Children’s recovering and rehabilitating. Our radiology team took many x-rays to monitor his progress. Each time we entered the little boy’s room, we were greeted with smiles from his parents. They always thanked us for taking care of him, even if we were there for only a few minutes.
While the boy had suffered severe brain damage, he recovered enough to go home to his family.
Not long ago, that boy came back for an x-ray. His mom walked into the x-ray room, looked at me and my co-worker, and with a big smile on her face said, “Can you believe it has been 10 years? Ten years that you have been taking care of us. You were there in the beginning and saw us at our worst and here you all are still taking care of us!”
I was taken aback. I did not think that that she remembered us, remembered that my co-worker and I were the same two people in the trauma bay all those years before. The boy’s mom continued to talk about his progress and how well he was doing. She even talked about that life-changing day in the trauma bay, saying that each and every person had done a part to save her son’s life.
Over the course of my 15 years working at Cincinnati Children’s, I have met thousands of patients and families…some that I will always remember and some that I won’t.
I have learned over these years that we do not always see ourselves in the same way that a patient or family sees us. We are sometimes only in their lives for a few moments, but the way we treat them, talk with them, and care for them does not go unnoticed.
For that little boy and his mom, we made an impression that day. The boy and his mom come back for imaging periodically and each time the mom acts like we are old friends. While I don’t know this family outside of his care at Cincinnati Children’s, I understand that we are connected in a very intimate and specific way.
I honor that relationship and am grateful for the impact we have had in each other’s lives. This is a wonderful reminder for me that I make a difference with the care that I provide. It doesn’t get any more fulfilling than that!
Contributed by Tiffany Lang, RT.