One of the greatest events in my practice of nursing was and continues to be…meeting people from different walks of life. Being raised in a predominately black neighborhood where everyone in my elementary school looked like me, only a handful of my junior high class were different from me, and my senior experience was a totally new experience with people who were different from me. Nursing showed me that we are not different at all; that we share similar hopes, dreams, and aspirations. Nursing showed me that we share similar love and hurts, happiness and sadness and how we can share our tears while embracing one another in support of those life changing events that seems unbearable… Nursing has been understanding.
Nursing has been for me, an introduction into the most intimate and personal aspects in the lives of others. It has been an introduction to foods, cultures, and beliefs of others. It has been a journey of soul searching and self-awareness; as well as a reality check of what is real or what really “matter” in this life; importance. It has been a spiritual journey, especially when illnesses takes a turn for the worst. It is that thank you for listening to me, I needed a smile today, or I am glad you are back tonight…Nursing is relationship.
Nursing has been, holding a sick and crying toddler who seem to have no solace yet rocking him until he quietly falls asleep nestled close to your heart. Or, cleaning up after a 26 y/o stem cell patient, vomiting episodes triggered by smells alone, who one day noticed that you are unhappy, got out of bed in his weakened condition (skeletal frame prominent) and say “No, I need to give you a hug”. Or, consoling a daughter because she just lost her 96 y/o mother and when co-workers ask “why are you crying, she’s 96 y/o?” you respond, I am crying because a daughter just lost her mother (age doesn’t change that fact)…Nursing has been compassion.
Professionalism has always been my goal which included appearance, mannerism, and knowledge. I realized early in my career the appearance is very important. In those years where nurses wore white and it had to be white. Patients responded differently to a nurse who was well groomed, which may have been the…