Save One Life, You’re A Hero. Save A Hundred, You’re A Nurse.
written by Ruth M.
The global pandemic that we are currently living through is no joke. With U.S cases surpassing 8 million, and deaths rising past two hundred thousand, it’s difficult to visualize such a large scale. But frontline workers have witnessed these numbers rise firsthand. Unprepared for the sudden surge of cases, these workers placed the lives of their patients before their own, something that should be appreciated and respected far more than it now.
That Kindness: Nurses in Their Own Words by V, formerly Eve Ensler, gives voices to today’s nurses; who consistently offer their love, compassion, and attention to each of their patients despite the shortage of proper safety equipment and lack of support from higher officials. The compilation of testimonies captures the truth and humanity behind their profession, highlighting the frustrations that have urged them to become activists for Medicare for all. One nurse states that “anybody that needs any type of care should be able to have it without any barriers”. This is especially important as the virus continues to attack humanity, its easiest target being those who can’t afford medical attention.
These testimonies are brought to life through performances by Ed Blunt, Connie Britton, Rosario Dawson, Stephanie Hsu, LaChanze, Liz Mikel, Rosie O’Donnell, Billy Porter, Dale Soules, Marisa Tomei, and Monique Wilson. As they each take over the screen to recite these experiences, you become part of the performance as well. They speak to you face to face. You are on the receiving end of the conversation. Your role as the listener is essential to the reality of this performance. They are communicating their struggles, fears, and concerns for their own lives, the lives of their patients, and the lives of people like you.
Even in their hardest moments, nurses continue to serve their community. Apart from the difficulties within the field, they also express why they are passionate about what they do. Their genuine care for life and the human connections they build gives them the strength to continue to help people survive. They want to give everyone the opportunity to live, but this is becoming increasingly difficult as the situation worsens. These nurses feel as though “it’s almost up to me who lives and who dies… I don’t want to choose”.
The final portion of the performance, titled “What Would You Say to People,” highlights their requests from humankind. Having listened to these testimonies, this is our opportunity to decide how to respond. We each hold the power to help humanity and save lives, just as how these nurses have done. As stated by these nurses, the easiest and most effective thing we can do is wear a mask.
Through the organization of this performance, V urges us to place “help over profit, care over cruelty, [and the] well-being of all people over the extreme power of the few.” How might we achieve this? Simply put, by voting. By using our voices to speak up against injustices, we can educate each other, bringing more humility, love, and understanding into the world.
That Kindness: Nurses in Their Own Words
By V (formerly Eve Ensler)
Presented through BAM
This is a free virtual event that is also raising money to support nurses, doctors, and other healthcare professionals. All donations made during the event go to The Brooklyn Hospital Center.
The performance premieres on October 15 at 7pm, and remains accessible to stream through October 19 at 7pm. Access the event on YouTube here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aWk6bWlDWDs