54: I Am a Nurse and I See Spirits

54: I Am a Nurse and I See Spirits

From Chicken Soup for the Soul: Inspiration for Nurses

I Am a Nurse and I See Spirits

God made Truth with many doors to welcome every believer who knocks on them.

~Kahlil Gibran

I have a bachelor’s degree in Nursing and a master’s in Religious Psychology. I am a registered nurse and an ordained minister. And I see spirits. I prefer to think of them as angels. Whether it’s a gift or curse, I think I inherited it from my father’s mother.

My grandmother used to talk to bullfrogs and hummingbirds. On the morning my father died, his spirit visited her hundreds of miles away. At the moment my mother discovered Dad’s body, Grandmother said she heard his voice behind her. That was my first experience with anything I would consider odd.

Naturally, as a teenager, I was not going to believe in such things. It just wasn’t cool. It wasn’t until years later, after I became a nurse, that I began to have unusual experiences. The moment my first patient died my eyes flew up to the corner of the room. I realized I saw the person’s soul leave his body. Naturally, I never told anyone.

Over the years my favorite place was the terminal children’s ward. Yes, it was heartbreaking to watch the children in pain and the suffering of their families. However, the children inspired me. They could see angels and they were not afraid to talk about them to anyone who would listen. One small blind child told me she could see an angel named Candle and that Candle was there to help her die. Although too weak to move her mortal body, I could see her reach up and take the hand of her angel and smile.

Over the years I witnessed the dying process over and over. If not for the time spent with the children I would have become deeply depressed. Because of them I remained hopeful as my experiences expanded. I could sense a spirit hovering as we worked to revive a critical patient. I could see a puff, a mist, which I knew was the soul leaving as a person let out his last breath.

One evening, in the emergency room, a seventeen-year-old boy was brought in with chest pains. He’d been playing in a church basketball game when he collapsed. He was placed in one of the two glass rooms directly across from the desk where I sat using the computer. He was alert and talking while being given a full cardiac work-up.

A few minutes later, a trauma was called. EMS came rushing in with another seventeen-year-old who had sustained multiple gunshot wounds to the chest while committing an armed felony. He was placed in the glass room to the left of the first boy. The trauma team went to work on him and, although they didn’t expect him to make it to surgery, the surgery team was notified.

Even though the first boy couldn’t see what was going on next door, he started praying out loud for that person’s life to be spared. It was then that I saw the death angel. He looked just like the many pictures I had seen but without the sickle. Then I saw the young basketball player close his eyes and lie back. His spirit came out of his body and stood between the death angel and the other boy. I clearly heard his words. “Take me in his place. I am ready.”

Just as all three vanished, the cardiac monitor alarmed and straight-lined. Instantly the code team was in the room working on the young basketball player. All the emergency heart equipment, code cart and medications were already at his bedside. His cardiac specialist was right there at the desk. He should have made it, but he didn’t. The young criminal with multiple gunshot wounds should not have made it, but he did.

I, like the other workers in the emergency room, was stunned. I wasn’t about to tell anyone what I had seen. However, when I was asked to minister to the grieving family of the young basketball player I found myself telling them what I saw. The mother listened intently and she actually smiled. “Thank you,” she said. “Just before you came in, I was asking God why. Why He took a boy as good as my son, so young. He sent my answer through you.”

Now you see why I rarely tell these stories. I’m a nurse, and I see spirits.

~Debbie Sistare

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