A couple nursing stories

I really just wanted to share a couple stories from my nursing journey.  As we approach a few breaks from school, I hope these stories help you remember your “WHY”.

Happy Nursing!


Good morning, welcome to the NRSNG podcast. My name is Jon Haws, RN, and the founder of interest and G and today, you know, first of all, I feel like it’s been awhile since we’ve been on here since we’ve had a chat. So I appreciate you taking some time out of your day to come listen to me and to hang out with me and to talk with me. I really love doing this podcast. We’ve been super busy with a lot of things that we’ve been working on planning for next year in 2020 things to help your guys’s nursing journey be a little bit smoother, be a little bit better and help you guys find that success that you deserve and that you’re working so hard for. And actually I’m going to be releasing a show on December 4th, a podcast episode on December 4th, where I’m going to share with you this pretty huge announcement that we have coming up.

So be sure to subscribe, be sure to share that and be sure to check out the episode on December 4th today, I wanted to do something a little bit different. I actually just wanted to share with you guys a couple of stories from my time in ICU and without going into a lot of details and everything like that, I thought, you know, as we’re going into some breaks in school with Thanksgiving and Christmas and new years, I just wanted to share with you some of the stories that I have from my experience as a nurse on the floor, and you guys can listen to these and just kind of have these with you as you’re traveling as you’re taking time off and stuff like that. So I remember specifically one gentlemen earlier on in my career as I was a nurse I had just kind of been on my own and was done with my preceptorship and I was working in the neuro ICU and I was taking care of this, this older lady who had had a, an ischemic stroke.

And she had been in the hospital for a few days, maybe three, four days, something like that. And I worked night shift and this was getting close to Christmas time. And so, you know, during the night shift, all, you kind of get a lot of the lights out and you have just enough light to kind of see what’s going on in the room. And every night this lady’s husband would be there in the hospital. And the whole time he kind of sat in the recliner over in the corner and was just kinda writing away, just writing and writing and writing. And I never really knew what he was working on, but that’s what he was kind of just doing over in the corner. It was writing while I was taking care of his wife. And so I took care of her throughout the night.

I went home, came back the next night and took care of her again. So at this time she had been there, you know, about four days, five days, something like that. And then the same thing, he just kind of sat there in the corner and was writing now, as I was leaving to go home that second night, he knew it was going to be my last night on. And as I was leaving to go home, he handed me a card and said, thank you for taking care of my wife and Merry Christmas. So I went home and I opened the card and it was a very well-written long card. The whole front, the whole back was all written, just expressing his gratitude for me taking care of his wife. And that really meant a lot to me. I saved that card. I kept it, it was the most meaningful Christmas card, but I think that I’ve ever gotten because he took the time as his wife was going through this struggle as his wife was recovering from a significant issue.

He took the time every night to kind of sit there, know my name, know a little bit about me and to write just gratitude for what I was doing as a nurse. And so I really appreciate that. And, and that would always really stick out to me. And I think that all of our patients and all of our patients, family truly drew do appreciate what we do. And I recognize that, and I recognize that as they’re going through these traumatic experiences and as they’re going through this, that a lot of them don’t have the time or the ability to really think about expressing that gratitude. They’re very stressed and they’re going through a lot. And so but it was nice to get that card from him. And it’s a Christmas card and a, a time of working in the hospital that I’ll always remember.

There was another experience a little bit later on in my career. It was, again, it was an older gentleman and his wife who had suffered a very large stroke and she wasn’t really going to recover. She was either going to a nursing home or she was going to pass away. It was definitely a terminal stroke. This is what was going to end her life. And this guy was a much older gentlemen. And she’d been in the hospital for quite a while, right in the ICU for quite a while because she wasn’t recovering. He didn’t want to withdraw care and they were trying to determine where she was going to go. So she wasn’t responsive. She wasn’t doing much. And she wasn’t recovering, but this older gentleman has her husband would be there every single day, every single night. And he just stayed there in the hospital, would go down, eat in the cafeteria, come up and be with her throughout the day and throughout the night.

And he would just stand by her bed. And I told him one night when I was taking care of, I said, you need to go home and get some rest. You need to go home and, and rest up. And he said, I have nowhere else to go. This is my wife. And I want to be by her side. And that experience, it did take me back a little bit, you know, cause he had truly let go of all of his personal needs to be there with his wife and to be there with his loved one. And I think that that really meant a lot to me to watch him take care of his wife and to care for her even to the point of letting go of all of his own needs. And that, and that just was kind of a sweet experience to watch that that deep love that he had for his spouse. Even in this really dark time that he just wanted to be there with her.

Another one that I told multiple times before, but it really means a lot to me. And then these are, so again guys, I worked in neuro ICU. So a lot of my touching tend to have kind of sad endings, but these are the things that kind of stuck out to me and meant the most to me as I was working as a nurse. So another experience that I had was maybe a week or two after I had come off of orientation and I was taking care of this, this younger guy, maybe fifties, maybe late forties, who’d had a large stroke to the point that we were going to withdraw care. And so I’m about a week or two into my working as a nurse all by myself. And I find out that I’m going to be taking care of this, this gentleman and that we’re going to be withdrawing care shortly into my shift.

So I, I go in there and all the family’s starting to gather. They realize that we’re going to be withdrawing care. So there’s maybe 20 people there crowded into the room. And I begin to explain to them kind of what we’re going to be doing, that we’re going to be withdrawing care. We’re gonna be turning off the ventilator. And then he’ll expire. And we will you know, at that point they’ll say goodbye. So he actually had a pacemaker. So we got a little magnet to deactivate the pacemaker. We withdraw the ventilator, we turn off all the medications and about 10 minutes later, he passes away. And at that point, you know, we kind of shut the blinds. I kind of closed the door, clean him up a little bit and have him sit there so that the family can say goodbye to him for the last time.

So I kind of stand outside the door, just give him some privacy. And time passes an hour passes, a couple hours passed and all the family starts to trickle out. And the last person in there was his mother and his mother was, you know, probably in her seventies, a little older woman, couldn’t have been over five feet tall, very short, older lady. And I stand outside the door just kind of waiting for her, giving her time. And as she comes out the door, we, we shut the door and we leave her son in there by himself. And she comes out and she wrapped her arms around me and gives me a huge hug. And she looks at my name badge and she says, thank you, John, thank you for taking such good care of my son. I love you. I will always remember you.

And that moment truly stood out to me in that moment. She was entrusting her son in my care. That was the last time she was ever going to see her son. And she was leaving him in my care and she was going home and leaving her son with me. And I know that in that moment, she wasn’t saying, I love you, John. And thank you, John. She was saying, I love you nurses. And I love you for taking care. And I always remember you nurses in that moment, I was the only healthcare worker there with her. I was the one hugging her. I was the one taking care of her son and she trusted me in my role as a nurse. And so as you guys progress on in your journey and as you begin to move forward as a nurse, always remember that always remember that you’re representing every nurse you’re representing your hospital system. You’re representing me as a nurse. You’re representing your classmates when you work with these patients. And that means something. People always that nurse that brings light to them in their darkest moments and is there to share their, their greatest joys as well. So remember that as you go forward and work as a nurse,

You guys being a nurse is such an incredible experience. It’s something that, and we see things and we do things that so few people ever get to experience and it can be really hard to separate that. And I think that where a lot of you are right now in nursing school and in your nursing journey, it can get really hard to remember why it can get really hard to remember why you went into this, why you’re suffering through this and, and dealing with, you know, a lot of the politics and the difficulties of nursing school. But I want you guys to over these holidays over these breaks that you have from school, take your mind away from the stress of school, take your mind away from the stress of the INCLAX for a day or for two days, or for a couple of days, even.

And just remember your wide, think back to some of those clinical experiences that you’ve already had that have been life-changing for you. And I know you’ve already had those experiences, even if you’ve only done one clinical experience and remember that you chose to go into nursing because you care about people. And because you want to see you want to alleviate some of the suffering in the world. And I know that regardless of why you went into nursing, there’s a piece of you who went into nursing for that reason. And that’s incredibly commendable guys. That’s so incredible that you are doing that and that you chose to go into nursing, knowing how difficult it was going to be. So keep your heads up. Remember your why, especially at this time of year, you guys, we love you so much. We truly do want you to succeed because the world needs more nurses.

And our job here at NRSNG is to help you guys reach those goals. We make information more concise, more complete, and we explain it to you in a way that you will always remember. And that’s what we do [email protected] If you haven’t visited us, please check us out and share us with your buddies. And we want to help you succeed where the best place to learn nursing. Like I said, at the beginning of this episode, guys, on December 4th, there will be a new podcast episode coming out with a huge announcement. So please be sure to make a note of that and remember that. I think it’s going to rock your socks. It’s going to be exciting. So be sure to check that out guys now, like we always say here, go out and be your best selves today. Happy nursing.

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