ST Special: A Day in the Life of Singer and Nurse K.Avett

Photos courtesy of K.Avett

[Publisher's Note: SoulTrackers know that we have been fans of Dallas-based singer and songwriter K.Avett for years, and we've featured her music often. But what you may not know is that she is also a Board Certified Registered Nurse, who is now on a traveling nurse assignment in Boston, working in a COVID-19 unit. She wrote for us a piece about what her days are like now, and the connection between her two careers]

It is 7am and I’ve just finished an overnight shift on a Covid-19 hospital unit in Boston, MA. Here, everyone calls me by my government name, Kande. As a Registered Nurse, my uniform isn’t glamorous, but it is crucial, complete with an assortment of PPE (personal protection equipment)- an N95 mask, a surgical mask, an eye shield, a gown, gloves and hair & shoe covers.  The smallest misstep could expose me to what we know is an extremely contagious and often fatal disease. 

[Publisher's Note: SoulTrackers know that we have been fans of Dallas-based singer and songwriter K.Avett for years, and we've featured her music often. But what you may not know is that she is also a Board Certified Registered Nurse, who is now on a traveling nurse assignment in Boston, working in a COVID-19 unit. She wrote for us a piece about what her days are like now, and the connection between her two careers]

It is 7am and I’ve just finished an overnight shift on a Covid-19 hospital unit in Boston, MA. Here, everyone calls me by my government name, Kande. As a Registered Nurse, my uniform isn’t glamorous, but it is crucial, complete with an assortment of PPE (personal protection equipment)- an N95 mask, a surgical mask, an eye shield, a gown, gloves and hair & shoe covers.  The smallest misstep could expose me to what we know is an extremely contagious and often fatal disease. 

In this space, my ears are tuned to the rhythmic beeping of cardiac monitors and IV pumps, always alert to the slightest status changes of my patients. Oddly enough, this same incessant beeping is reminiscent of the metronomes I hear when recording in the studio or at home in my music room and a thought crosses my mind, that I need to finish a song that I’m working on. I scribble some random lyrics that come to mind, hopping onto the Red Line train, glad to be off for the day. Mentally, physically, emotionally, and psychologically, it is a challenge – balancing this love of music and medicine. However, I find that they are often one and the same, swirling seamlessly into each other like rich cream in hot coffee. 

As the train moves through the city, the vibrations lull me into a sense of calm and a flashback of one of my overnight CMO (comfort measures, only) patients comes into view. All of us, her family included, are awaiting her quiet transition to the great beyond. During one of the instances I go in to check on her, something makes me linger awhile. I pull up a chair and begin singing a song that my Grandpa Edward used to love – “I Need Thee.”  As I hold her hand, she grips it tightly seeming to understand that this is all I have left to give. In this moment, I know that music is the medicine and I find comfort in being able to offer something that goes beyond an IV medication. My only prayer is that she feels the same. 

Later, as I enter my hotel room, peeling away the stress of the day, my keyboard is a welcomed sight. Not only is it a pleasant companion, it is a visual reminder holding me accountable to the project I have yet to finish. In this space, I have a whole other list of things to do. My inner Lioness tells me there is no rest for the weary, but rest is a must if I am to continue the journey I have chosen.

By K.Avett

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