Wednesday, December 19, 2012

I am a school nurse...Just a school nurse. Just...


Somehow, I found my way to school nurse. A job I was sure I never wanted...but it was a chance to work in both ministry and nursing...'cause nursing in and of itself is not ministry enough for an over achiever like me, don't you know.

...and last week, we saw another shooting, another massacre, another horror...Except this one was babies...first graders and their teachers and administrators. Working in a school this week means practicing safety drills, directions on new places to park, new rules for parents and students and school nurses.

First reports had the school nurse in Newtown CT as dead. The thought that she was killed just made me weep. Not that the slaughter of the children or the teachers was any less tragic...my word, I cannot quite wrap my brain around this...these babies. I cannot mediate on the killings or the heartache of an entire town, state, nation.

But it was the school nurse that got to me. I kept going back to it. It was two days before I learned the school nurse survived by hiding in the closet, hiding that is, after seeing the killer's legs from under her desk. She and one of the secretaries where able to make 911 calls and hide for four hours in that closet...

I have never met her, I have no connection to her at all, except that I too am a school nurse. Is this how teachers feel about their fellow teachers who were lost or survived? Are there school principles asking what they would have done in the same situation and mourning more deeply one of their own? Are there cops and firemen and medics out there sharing the grief they know their fellow cops and firemen and medics are facing?

Sally Cox was "just a school nurse" who ran a health office like an emergency room with no equipment. I presume to assume she hated lock down drills more than fire drills. I presume to assume she practiced in her head all the "what ifs" any nurse could...knowing she could be a first responder on a day of horrors. I know she was ready in skill and heart...that part I don't have to presume.

I am keeping Sally Cox RN in my prayers and thoughts this week. The challenge will be to keep her in prayer for the months and days and years to come. Lets not forget to pray...the funerals have only just begun but I can assure you so has the nightmare for those who survived.

Come, oh come, Emanuel.