I never thought it would be like this, where the world basically shut down, and there is so much fear and doubt out there. Where we feel isolated and alone, and more disconnected than ever. But, here we are, and the fear and depression gives way to more of the same, which weakens our health and our immune systems, and makes it even worse.
So, why am I going to New Jersey to help out with the Covid response? Why am I sitting here alone with a mask on after just giving my family a tearful goodbye hug? Why would I risk my comfort, my “known,” and possibly my life? Why would I go across the country to help out in a place I have never been in a situation I can only imagine (and I am trying not to imagine the worst)? Why would I push myself and stretch myself, and put myself in danger? Why risk it?
I have had some ask if I am crazy, I have had some try to talk me out of it. I have had mostly positive support, and accolades of being a hero, although I don’t feel like a hero. I have had the flight attendants and workers come up to me to thank me for the sacrifice, and I can definitely feel the prayers and well wishes from everyone. But that is not why I am doing this.
I am getting paid a lot more than my regular rate to put myself out there. And I have gotten some help and free things along the way. I do like adventure, and am a bit of a thrill seeker. But that is not why I am doing this.
I am going because I know in my heart that I was put on this earth to do greater, to be more, to reach higher, and if I don’t follow this opportunity I will forever live with the regret of not taking this chance. I have a chance to go and do incredible good, to lift some spirits, to lend a hand, to give a smile (behind a mask), and to maybe be there so someone is not alone when they pass from this earth. And maybe to encourage that other nurse who is wondering why in the hell she got into nursing in the first place. And maybe to brighten someone’s day who is really sick, and maybe to be that family member who can’t be there with their loved one right now. And maybe, just maybe, to prove to myself that I CAN!
Yes, it is scary and a little terrifying and nerve racking, and filled with unknowns. Yes, I will miss my family terribly. Yes, there have been a lot of tears. But I know that I have been called to do this thing, and that I will come out so much stronger for it. So, here I go! Out of the plane without a parachute, into the deep end, all in. But. . . I wouldn’t have it any other way.