We know what we are, but we still don’t know what we will be

The Pandemic, which has been raging on our world for a year, continues its course. While aseptic and cold numbers flow daily before our eyes to remind us of infections, victims and healings, we nurses try to understand what we are and what we will be. By now the glossy and cover images of professionals sacrificed in the fight against the virus, applause from the balconies, despite the people who thanked us as if we were partisans 2.0, seem to belong to the past, a past that in the perception of our body and mind seems much more a year long, as if what we found ourselves fighting and hindering had soothed the daily sensations and forced all of us to reinvent the very concept of time. And perhaps this is precisely the keystone of the whole issue: if on the one hand there is the terrible massacre of hundreds of thousands of lives broken by the virus, avoiding questioning about the now famous “previous diseases”, on the other there are thousands of professionals who every day did not spare themselves in bringing assistance to those who needed it. Many nurses, who daily, within Covid and non-Covid departments, have had to carve out a new space, a new method, new timing to extricate themselves from all that tangle of situations from the theater of the absurd that the Pandemic has created. But no matter how heroic or romantic it may seem, there is no Godot to wait for in our work. Our work is not a first work, it is not Shakespearean theater, in which the great tragedies, with time sifting them, become feats of heroic altruism and candid sentiments. It is not our work, it is real life, made up of suffering, of hands that surround others, of anger, of worries, of anxieties vanished in a cigarette or in the invigorating thoughts of the journey that leads home. It is the feeling of belonging to a category that until now has never received what it deserved, but which has always done what it has to do and, in the vast majority of cases, does it in the best possible way. And right now that we are tired, that, as many say, “we should not complain because we have a job”, right now that the virus does not seem to stop, right now that the struggle appears as a titanic effort, we need to understand where we are going? What will happen to our profession? How will all this affect our actions? Obviously making a forecast is absolutely not in my competence and perhaps it is not in anyone’s. Out of my natural aversion to everything that is not demonstrable or deniable, I rely on what appears and manifests itself in practice, and what is shown in front of us at this moment is a difficult and disconnected scenario, which will be analyzed point by point. not to run into a disastrous future for the profession.

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