Bedpan Betty, RN

When do we get to stop listening to people telling us it’s going to be alright?

When will they stop telling us to keep smiling and to remember our blessings or to be grateful.

As if all We need to do is make a list of everything that’s good and suddenly like magic or medicine there is no pain.

When will it be all right that it’s not all right!

When do We get to hear the door slam because someone is coming versus the door slam because someone is leaving?

When do We get to cry without having to apologize or explain?

When do We get to be loved and not left?

When can we stop doing and just be?

When can We stop listening and finally be heard?

When can We cry and not be shamed or shushed or told to go inside and “get it together”?

When can We stop helping and ourselves be helped?

When can We cry and be held and told, “Yes, it’s not all right. It is shit. I feel it too. Do you want someone to cry with you?”

When can we stop crying alone?

When is it okay to not be whole?

When will our scars no longer need to be hidden?

When will our trauma be seen as a chapter but not our whole story?

When will our suffering be embraced as universal instead of a singular moment in which we are alone?

When will it be alright to not be alright?

When can we breathe in our imperfections and know we can still exhale?

When do the nurses get to be nursed?