Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Things People Say in the Recovery Room

For those of you who are new to Warford&Wife, David is in law school. And I (the wife half of Warford&Wife) am a law student's wife. I am many other things besides a law student's wife, but being the wife of a law student is a HUGE part of who I am in this stage of our life.

David started studying for the LSAT just a couple weeks after we got married. I was working at a hospital in Atlanta as a recovery room nurse, and one day recovered a young woman from surgery who was married to a brand new lawyer.

It's funny the things people will say as they're coming out of anesthesia. The kinds of things that when they ask you later (when they're more lucid), "Did I say anything embarrassing when I first woke up?" you lie through your teeth and say, "No. Not at all." 

And then there were other patients who I cared for who, in their 30min-2 hours after surgery, managed to pass along meaningful, heartfelt words of affirmation that are affecting me to this day and in some cases will continue to affect me for years and years to come.

This one particular young woman passed on some incredibly touching advice in regards to being a law student's wife.

It's hard. It's long. Be patient. He will need you. 

One of the funny things about anesthesia is there's an amnesia effect. So, there might only be 2 patients out of all the hundreds of patients who remember I was the one who took care of them. And, I know that even if there are 2, they don't remember what we talked about. They don't remember what they said. In fact, they didn't remember 20 minutes after they rolled out of the recovery room. That's just how anesthesia works... (Trust me, it's a beautiful thing.)

So this little, blonde wife of a lawyer, has (and shortly after HAD) no idea that she told me, "It's hard. It's long. Be patient. He will need you."

But I'm so very glad she did.

Because even though I couldn't be prouder of my husband and what he's accomplishing right now, being the wife of a law student is hard sometimes. And the process of becoming an attorney feels long.

But those four short sentences really helped prepare my heart with the understanding that it would be this way. And that even though my smart husband is tough and strong and talks about things I don't remotely understand with confidence, that's okay.. He actually does still need me. And being patient through the harder, longer parts of this chapter of our life is worth it.

So, if you've ever had surgery, who knows what you said to your recovery room nurse. It could have been something cute like, "I like your eye shadow." (I got that one a lot.) Or maybe it was something a little more profound. You never know. Under the influence of heavy pharmaceuticals, you just might have greatly impacted someone else's life by passing on a tiny bit of wisdom.