It had been a lengthy procedure. I was still new to the trade of Surgical Technician, so the circulating nurse kept a close eye on me. She made sure that I didn’t contaminate the sterile fields, properly handled my suture material, and prompted me if I couldn’t remember the correct instrument to hand to Dr. Max.
Dr. Max and his resident appeared to be finishing. He looked up at the circulating nurse and me. ” Hey, Clair, it looks like we’re doing fine here. I’ll start closing as soon as I finish up these last bleeders.”
Looking towards the anesthetist, he said, ” Harry, how is she doing?” While that conversation was going on, I was getting my wound closure sutures lined up on my mayo stand. Soon Clair and I would start needle, instrument, and sponge counts before the surgeons began closing the incision.
Then Dr. Max looked up and said, ” Hey Lou, give me your hand. Now gently. Just place your hand on this.” Dr. Max gently guided my hand, just above the beating heart of the patient. “Now you know why our job is essential.”
All I could say was a rather inane, “WOW!”

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