As my time is winding down and I am getting ready to start the next step in my nursing career I've been thinking about the time I've spent in the unit and here are some of the things I'll miss once I leave.

The people. As with any job, the people you work with can make your job more or less enjoyable. Overall, I worked with a great group of nurses, respiratory therapists, physicians, and support staff. We really have a team environment, 2 weeks ago we had to "crack" the chest of a post-op cabg and that potentially chaotic situation went smooth. Except for when the surgeon suctioned some blood and the temporary pacer became disconnected and a replacement setup wasn't in the cart as it should have been (imagine that).

Not that I look forward to bed baths, but I do enjoy the look of calm and refreshment of a pt after a bath and linen change. Even better is the pt who is not on a vent who can tell you "thank you", "I feel better", "I've been her x amount of days and that's the 1st bath I've gotten" (really, it's part of the nightshift daily responsibilities)

The look of amazement and shock when the family comes in and sees that post-cabg out of bed and sitting in a chair for the 1st time.

Patients that death seemed like it was right around the corner, make a recovery, and are the crabbiest people you've ever met. The family says, "Oh yeah, he's back to his old self."

I remember the 1st IV I started where something clicked and I actually "got it"; bed 9, family found him unresponsive in the yard, 20g to R forearm. I remember the 1st pt who coded on me; 3-day post cabg who was doing ok at best. 1000 on a Monday morning, had just wrote my 1000 vitals down and still today I've never seen somebody go from NSR to asystole so fast, one of the two times my usual calm demeanor went out the window.

I could go on and on about some wonderful moments, but I'll keep them in my memory bank (until Alzheimer's sets in) and look forward to creating new memories in a new environment.