The Spirit of the Heart: Stories of Family, Hope, Loss, and Healing is a collection of short stories spanning three-and-half-decades as Ismael N. Nuño, MD, endures many of the same sacrifices and hurts that the rest of us do as he rises to the top of his profession. He is even hospitalized after a medical student accidentally pokes him with an infected needle leaving him near death.
Each day is another emergency—a race against time where a family member’s life hangs in the balance. Will she die? Will he live? Facing life and death every day, how does he manage to keep going?
Something deep inside keeps him true to his own heart. Yet, when it all grows too much and he’s weakened to the core (sound familiar, caregivers?), he reaches out for the council of others.
Despite studying the medical sciences, Nuño offers remarkable insights into the spiritual realm. He remains open to phenomena such as the cool breeze blowing against his neck despite no air conditioning in an operating room filled with a dozen people. He hears later from the lady he operated on who relates her out-of-body experience circling the surgical team. He and his wife see his father shortly after he dies.
With exhaustion, his frequent companion, Nuño still gives his all and more to save patients who entrust their lives to his bravery and skill. A fan of bull fighting, each time he enters the operating arena, he draws inspiration from the bull fighter’s confidence to survive. Drawing on his inspiration and skill, he’s managed to save many patients who came to the hospital clinging marginally to life. Yet, survival operating room drama yields a humorous twist as he relates in Profanity in the O.R.
Worth reading to open our eyes and even inspire us to take care of ourselves so we don’t need to go to the hospital.
The Caregiver’s Voice reviewed The Spirit of the Heart to shed light on a medical doctor’s perspective as it relates to heart disease, which shares common causes with vascular dementia. Reading Nuño’s book gives caregiving families greater knowledge to better communicate with doctors.