With the onset of nursing week, I feel it only apropos to define what Nursing has meant to me-humor me in this humble homage in my rambling reflections and ruminations of The Aging RN.
I nostalgically pondered as I pieced together the colorful collage of 3 decades in healthcare and what nursing has gifted to me. Simply stating that this is a career or livelihood would be downplaying the significance and power my vocation has spilled into all areas of my life. As a young nurse, stubbornly altruistic and naïve, I believed I could indeed save the world. I tenderly held the wrinkled delicate hand of a dying woman and sobbed when she passed. I feverishly and foolishly fought, cunningly campaigned, and piously pushed for safety, fairness, and equality for all.
I made cringeworthy mistakes. I felt the wretched, blood draining horror of a mindless med error followed by shameful humility. I have been heinously yelled at, called the vilest of names and been the target for an aggressively hurled prosthetic leg (that I later had to retrieve). I bandaged 3rd degree burns on a fragile woman that cried from the healing grace of my tender touch to her seared skin. I listened to the confessions of a remorseful alcoholic offering him compassion, benevolence and mercy.
I’ve witnessed the sickest of sick, unfortunate circumstances colliding with unforgivable fate. I have worked endless holidays; the lonely silent echo of a hospital hallway is louder than any festive Christmas carol. Contrastingly, the earnest innocence of a child’s laughter can singlehandedly drown out the harsh persistent dinging of an incessant call bell.
I have been provided with the greatest of opportunities that have led to a cornucopia of employment possibilities. Nursing has been a dynamic driving force in my life that has allowed me to see humanity through a majestic kaleidoscope. It has been a reciprocal relationship, not always harmonious- demanding a delicate balance of give and take simultaneously. Most importantly, what it has provided me with is the deepest of friendships, a family of dysfunctional ego driven brilliant souls that challenge, entertain, and continually test my fortitude and worth. I would not change one thing. Nursing has shown me the most profound joy as well as the deepest depths of intense sadness-but in the end, highs and lows-it has been the greatest investment of my life with the richest most magnificent payoff.
One thought on “The Aging RN-Nurses Week Edition”
Beautiful in every way. You capture the true nature of nursing, both the ups and the downs, and in the end the joy and reward.
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