Hi, Everyone, this is Sandi with The Nursing Podcast from NURSING.com
And the title of today’s podcast is Be That Nurse! So what do I mean by that… You are about to enter or maybe already have entered the ranks of one of the most trusted professions out there.
The Gallup Poll published in Dec of 2020 Noted that Nurses, doctors and teachers received their highest ethics ratings to date. Still, nurses remain the undisputed leader, as they have been for nearly two decades.”
So as I just mentioned “entering one of the most trusted professions” out there. If you are thinking about nursing school or have already begun the journey, you have probably heard that nursing school is hard. Yet you have decided to enter this profession anyway.
Each one of you has your own reason why you decided to go to nursing school. Maybe you remember a specific experience that you had receiving care from a nurse. Maybe it was the interaction with a nurse of one of your loved ones. Nurses help patients and loved ones navigate one of the scariest challenging moments of their life. And the older we get the more frequent those interactions often are.
We are our most vulnerable around nurses, and the care that you will be providing will become etched in the minds of so many.
A quote by Maya Angelou has always really resonated with me. She said “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
I believe this is even more acute with interactions between nurses and patients, because patients are in such a unique and vulnerable position when they interact with you. Whatever they are going through that is bringing them to the hospital is likely paramount in their life. This is not just another day for them. They are sick, in pain, scared. And for better or worse you are there with them.
When my son was born, they discovered something wrong while they were getting him cleaned up right after he was born. They said I could hold him for a minute but then they needed to send him off to the ICU (my husband with him). I held him in my arms, but that minute passed way too quickly and soon my husband and son were both gone. My son was born at 8:36 in the morning, and by about 1 pm (4 hours later) I was finally told that he was ready and that I could be taken to his room in the NICU. It had felt like forever, but now that it was finally time we tried to track down my nurse so that I could be taken to the NICU. Unfortunately my specific nurse had just gone to lunch and they said she would be back in an hour. And that was that, and I should just wait…
For me, at that moment I was devastated. The hours had felt like years and I was confused, and emotional. This was my very first child, my very first hospital stay and I needed so much to see my son.
I had no frustration with my specific nurse, more a frustration with the process. Why would I have to wait an entire hour to see my son, couldn’t anyone else arrange transport so that I could go sooner….
In my state I would have just laid there in tears, however, my mom helped work out a faster solution.
As I finally made my way across the hospital silent tears streamed down my face as the tech rolled me along in the wheelchair. I was sooo scared and so unsure.
After a very long walk, I finally made it to my sons room where my husband was waiting. My son was inside an incubator with a tube coming out of his nose, and IV going into his foot.
And as I rolled up next to him, I had no idea what to do… could I reach in and touch him…
My husband said it was fine for me to touch him, so I reached in the little circles and I held his small hand.
A minute later a nurse walked in. In minutes my state of confusion, fear, stress, anxiety, melted into hope and contentment. She asked me if I would like to do kangaroo care with my son, which she quickly explained, and within in a couple minutes I was seated comfortably with my son in my arms, and I never wanted to move from that spot again.
She seemed at that moment to know EXACTLY what a new mother would need walking into her son’s NICU room for the very first time.
There will only be one of those moments for me in my whole life. And I will never forget how she guided me through that fear and helped me feel peace.
If you haven’t had one of those moments yet, someday you will. And as a nurse, YOU will have an opportunity to guide someone through their scariest moment. To be the light in a very dark room.
Nursing is a calling. Nurses are looked up to as beacons.
As you go through your journey to becoming a nurse. Which is riddled with so many things to learn, difficult tests, hours or reading, etc. Remember why you chose to go into nursing in the first place. Remember the impact that you will have. And Be THAT nurse. The one that is a light in the darkness. The guide on an unsure journey.
And I just want to say thank you. I may never see that special nurse that helped me again. And although I told her thank you at the time, I wish I could keep telling her to thank you every day. So I will tell you. Thank you for what you are about to do. Thank you from all your future patients. We couldn’t get through those times without you.
Now go out and be your best self today and as always, Happy Nursing