Zou Meihong, head nurse at the First Affiliated Hospital of Nanchang University, in East China's Jiangxi Province, works in the ward of the Respiratory Medicine Department. [China Women's News]
Zou Meihong has kept a diary since she joined the fight against the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) last month.
Though what she experienced and thought during this period was recorded in a diary, the words are more like letters written to her two children, a high school student and a 2-year-old toddler.
Zou is the head nurse of the Respiratory Medicine Department in the First Affiliated Hospital of Nanchang University, which was designated to offer treatment for patients infected with COVID-19 in East China's Jiangxi Province.
In explaining why she keeps a diary on her tight schedule, Zou said she hoped her son and daughter will be proud of her and understand her sense of responsibility and love.
Zou submitted her petition to join the battle against the virus on January 24, the beginning of the Spring Festival holiday, China's biggest one for family reunions.
In her petition, she wrote, "I signed up voluntarily to join the nursing services for the COVID-19 patients and I am willing to give up the vacation, without consideration of payment, risk and death. Please allow me to fight on the frontline."
On January 29, her petition was approved. Then she began to prepare new quarantine wards with another 24 nurses in the Xianghu branch of the hospital.
They attended training courses to better adapt to the new environment and take care of the patients and themselves.
Though she was a little nervous and afraid, since it was her first time to have direct contact with the patients, Zou encouraged herself by remembering her responsibilities and duties as a Party member and a medical worker.
She also offered encouragement to her colleagues and reminded them of protecting themselves well.
On February 3, the sixth day on her post in the quarantine ward, she felt sick after days of high-intensity work and huge pressure. After taking some pills, she cheered herself up and got herself prepared for the tough battle.
In her diary, she expressed her deep affection to her younger daughter at 5 a.m. on February 5, recalling the times when she told bedtime stories to her.
As a skilled nurse with more than 26 years of experience in the department, she felt obligated to fight on the frontline, she wrote. She hopes her daughter will understand her decision when she grows up.
On the Lantern Festival that fell on February 8, Zou and her colleagues did not have family dinner at home. Instead, on such a typical occasion of reunion, they had traditional Chinese food tangyuan (glutinous dumpling balls stuffed with sweet fillings) at the hospital.
However, Zou does not regret that. She said she will stick to her post and fight until victory in the battle so more families can reunite soon.
(Source: China Women's News/Translated and edited by Women of China)
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