Check out a few of our favorite Modern Nurse comments and then share your own in the section below:
SMILE! smile at your patients. Smile at your co-workers, families, doctors and supervisors. They ALL need a smile. Smile at yourself when you get a break in the bathroom! Smile at what you accomplish. What you learn. Patients so-o-o need to see smiles.
I try very hard to never take things as they are said. I look at the persons current state and past behaviors, before deciding if they really meant to say something negative. I also try to remember that each person has different life experiences and some times that is why they react the way they do or say the things they say. And finally I follow this rule and I share the concept with others any time I get a chance…..each time before I speak I stop, I think to myself, what purpose will these words serve? Will tear the person down, will they build them up, will they hurt them or heal them, are the words simply to unload my anger or let them know they made me mad. Trust me your face and body already told them, and your relief of anger will not likely do anything positive to anyone around you.
First time using a retractable syringe. I was administering a B-12 injection. I gave the injection and pulled the syringe away and in horror saw that the needle was gone. My patient was cognitively impaired, so she didn’t notice the sheer panic on my face as i stared at her arm. I was mentally scrambling for an explanation of where did the needle go? I squinted at her arm….finally running my hand ever so lightly over the injection site…only to feel nothing. I squeezed on her arm…hoping to squeeze the needle out??? I was at a loss. Finally I began looking at the syringe. Yes, there was the needle. What a horrifying feeling…but hysterically funny thereafter.
I work in high end ALF and the night nurse was in her 60s. She was a good friend of mine. She worked long hours and would bring a night bag with her so she could freshen up. One day I was looking at the 3rd floor camera and noticed something large and strange laying on the floor. We both went up to the floor to see what it was. She leaned over and looked at it and said “oh that’s where it went, my underwear!!!
I am a man and a nurse, and I too have left home in dangerous weather because it’s what nurses do. Though there are praises, most of the time it is a thankless profession. Your overworked and underpaid and often get squeezed between families and the company as you try to give your patients the care they need. Most days you don’t have time to sit down let alone take a break. Nursing is not for everyone, it takes someone special and yes most other people do not nor will they ever understand. Hug a nurse today and thank them, we will all sometime in our lives be under their care.
I was inspired to become a nurse by one who took care of me 25 years ago–I was a terrified 20 years old having a cervical biopsy and even though she was busy setting up for the doctor, she made eye contact, squeezed my arm and handed me a tissue. I have no idea her name but she inspired me to become a nurse–showed me the kind of difference I want to make in the world. I am grateful to her and now I have that opportunity nearly every day.
A patient’s wife sent me a thank you note that said, among other things, she was grateful that I talked to her comatose husband and explained everything I was going to do beforehand. She said I was the only nurse who treated her dying husband with respect and like a human being. I still have that letter after 20 years. Caring and kindness go a long way.
After many years of working in healthcare where triaging and caring for patients in a rapid paced environment were beginning to take the wind out of my sail, I decided to flip the switch. I had to change my thought pattern if I were to survive; if I were to stay in the nursing field. And so I did. I began to see each patient encounter as my 5 minutes, 1 hour, or even 5 hours, of using my skills and expertise as precisely and effectively as possible with the tools available. It became my own personal challenge. It stimulated me in ways I hadn’t thought of, and it helped me get through many 12 shifts of feeling like I was spinning in circles. I gave it my all for that small window in time, to the best of my abilities, with the tools that I had and the knowledge and training I owned. Any service that I could provide the patient will always be better then any third world, battle ridden, civil unrest country. Do not shoot for perfection every minute of the shift. Do what you can and do it well. Touch the lives you can and leave the rest for the your relief. Smile a lot. It lets the patient know you care.
One of my most poignant moments as a hospital supervisor was dealing with a family whose 19 year old son was brain dead on a ventilator and needed to be removed from the machine. The father and sister listened very carefully and asked for a few moments to discuss things.
When I came back into the room where the family was the father said that they had reached a decision. He then said, I’m going to donate my brain. Needless to say, it took all my will power not to laugh and to very gently explain modern medicine had not reached the level of brain transplants!
One of my favorite dialysis patients who spoke with a soft little southern accent, said to me one day….”why I would never take those genetic drugs, they are not the same as the invented ones”. I just smiled and explained that “generics” would not be given if they were not going to work the same as the brand name, if that were the case we could insist on name brands. She missed my correction of the pronunciation, and was overhead telling her daughter what I had said about the “genetic drugs” only being used if they would do that same thing in her body. We did have a chuckle at the nurses station when I announced I might consider some “Genetic drugs” if it meant I get a better metabolism, long legs, and great teeth.
RN 1: I work all the time… I need a cleaning lady to keep up with the housework.
RN 2: then why don’t you hire one?
RN 1: I tried, but they all charge more money an hour than I make!
While in nursing school we were going over soap-suds enema procedure in lab. The instructors advice “Make it high, hot, and a heck of a lot!”