I wrote this and read it today, at our inservice which celebrated National Nurses Week........
Interested in others stories.........
As you look around, and see the familiar faces of your fellow nurses today, look past the image that you see everyday, look past any conflicts that you may have, and think about what defining moment in that person's life, made them decide to become a nurse, to decide to care for people everyday, day in and day out, working long hours, sacrificing their families for their education.
My defining moment came when I was working as a nurses aide, with an LPN, unlike I had ever met. She would hardly sit down her entire shift. Her face would be red, and she would have sweat dripping off of her, because she had been helping me on the floor when we were short staffed. She never cut corners, and always went the extra mile for her patients. I had asked her, why she wanted to work in a nursing home, why hadn't she wanted to be a real nurse and work in a hospital. I found that answer out for myself. One evening, I had brought all of the residents out of the dining room, and had laid all of them down, but one. This particular resident was a frail little lady, that was everybody's favorite. She had been gradually losing weight, and had been refusing to eat. This LPN was still out at the table, feeding her, I remember her saying," Come on Leta, one more bite, just for me," and Leta would take another bite, just for her. I knew at that moment that she was a REAL nurse, one with compassion, one that cared about the individual residents that she had built a rapport with. And at that moment, I knew I wanted to be a nurse, I wanted to be just like that nurse that had enough patience to sit and feed a little old lady, a few more bites, knowing that she still had things that needed to be done before she could go home to her family.
That nurse was my sister, she passed away in 2001 with breast cancer. I am still striving to be that nurse, any time I want to take the easy way out, or take a short cut, I hear her voice saying, "Come on Sherry, go the extra mile, just for me."
Think back to your moment, remind yourself everytime that you are feeling burnt out, why you became a nurse, what got you to this point in your life, and celebrate the fact that you are a nurse and you are appreciated.
May 7, '03
Great story! Happy Nurses Week!
May 8, '03
this is going to sound awful................my mum and gran are both nurses. didnt think about anything else really...........but became a nurse because it meant I could leave home to live in the nurses home!!!!!
sorry I dont have a deep and profound reason!
May 10, '03
Nursie30..great story...mine is not so inspiring but it's a bit funny (to me at least)...My Mama had always wanted to be a nurse...her brother, Harold, was an Army medic in WW II...he told her that he would send her to nursing school with his own money when he came back from the war...unfortunately, Harold was killed when he threw himself on a grenade while protecting his commanding officer...so, Mama went to work in the cotton mill and never thought another thing about it...
Many years later, I was attending college, pursuing a teaching degree in English...my counselor told me that I should pursue another field because at that time there was a glut of English teachers...soooooooo...a friend of mine called one day, wanted me to ride to the local community college with her...she was taking the entrance exam for the nursing program and wanted me to just ride along...I discovered the exam cost nothing so, wanting to keep her company, I sat for the exam also...a week later, my friend called me and told me she had not passed the exam, I went over to her house and helped her cry out her dissappointment...poor thing...she was absolutely destroyed !!!
By the time I got home, Mama had been to the mailbox and she almost attacked me !!!! "open this letter, open this letter"...I told her I didn't wanna because my friend had failed and I just took the test to be doing something... well...Mama opened the letter...
she jumped with joy, told me my score was 96% and then started making plans for me to enroll in the program...I was FLOORED !!! Ewwww...hospitals made me sick...!!!!
But I went along with her...was fitted for my clinical uniforms and shoes...paid the tuition ($122 per quarter!!!) and bought the books...
AT first, I was "just there"...and the first clinical was absolutely frightening to me...my first changing linens on an occupied bed took me an hour !!!
I just could not unuderstand how some of the students were through so early !!! Then I found out...ahah!!! They were LPNs and knew all about that stuff...so I befriended them and told them I needed all the help I could get...they agreed !!!!
We had taken a lunch break one day and I was asking them about skin breakdown and referred to it as " deck-u-bite us" ulcers...I thought the driver was gonna wreck and we had a big laugh ...they then gave me lessons on the pronunciatuion of medical terms...I shall forever be in their debt ...
After a while, I became very interested in the subject matter...I was no brainchild but by golly, I was actually beginning to love the stuff...
I graduated and my Mama was so proud of me...passed boards and she was delighted...went to work making a little over $3/hr...
After all these years, I still find myself wondering what I am doing in this profession...threaten to be a welcomer at Wally world...but I am a skilled, caring nurse...always an advocate for my patients...and for my fellow nurses...
May 10, '03
Funny story Suzzannasue!
I became a nurse because I was bored working in a grocery store and saw what nurses were being offered in the Sunday papers....wow! Plus, I loved science....I enjoyed chemistry and micro very much but kept that to myself because most people HATED it.
May 10, '03
I majored in Social Work after high school. Something in the "nurturing" field had always appealed to me. I was a year away from my Bachelor's when "stuff happened" and I had to drop out. Three kids and one divorce later, I was thinking about doing something to help out financially and saw an ad for an EMT class. When I mentioned this one night at dinner at a friend's house, her husband (who is a CRNA) said "why don't you just go get your RN instead?". I thought he was crazy. But I started to look into it and here I am 7 years later. I started when I was 38. It was the hardest thing I've ever done and I have lots of second thoughts about the toll it took on my family. But, here I am.
I never thought about being a nurse before that but I do remember reading those "Cherry Ames, Student Nurse " books when I was a kid. Funny . . ..