Day Nineteen Challenge – How are you making the world a better place?
I am a nurse. I take care of the sick that’s how I make the world a better place. I have sacrificed time with my family especially my son and my own time doing multiple overtime shifts taking care of others.
I have mostly worked in the long-term care setting such as nursing homes and rehabilitation centres. I consider my job a privilege. Being a nurse is a very difficult profession. I remember one particular case that stands out in my memory. We received a gentleman at our facility who was falling at home and had become violent with his wife. She was no longer able to care for him safely in the home setting. This gentleman was of short stature with beautiful blue eyes the colour of the sky. He had dementia and he would become combative. He fell multiple times at the facility regardless of the safety measures we had in place. He would get sent out to the hospital for scans but always return. During his moments of happiness he had this infectious smile, he grinned from ear to ear. He loved the Dodgers and would talk incessantly about baseball. As the supervisor I tried everything to find his “happy” place where he was not violent. One day I discovered that he enjoyed a particular intervention, taking a bath in the Jacuzzi tub. When he smiled at me I was humbled. Those baby blue eyes glistening. This patient taught me humility and patience. As months went on he his dementia worsened. He stopped eating and the light in his eyes dimmed. The night he was dying I was present. As a nurse I am not allowed to show emotion I am supposed to be neutral in order to be able to be supportive towards the family and patient during this difficult time. Also showing that emotion would not be appropriate around my colleagues as I am their supervisor and must maintain my composure. However this particular patient had a profound effect on me as a person. When he died I stayed with the family and I kept my composure. I did my job. When the family left I locked myself in the bathroom and I cried. I couldn’t hold back the tears anymore. In the nursing home setting you see your patients every day and you form this bond. I genuinely care for them as I would my father or mother. To some nursing is just a job, a paycheque so to speak. Nursing is my niche, caring for others allows me to feel fulfilled in life.
I am no longer in the nursing home setting. To be completely honest I needed a change and losing my job was necessary for growth. I am now working in the home care setting. I have a permanent case working with a young girl with cerebral palsy and seizure disorder five days a week. I enjoy the change and a new setting along with a new patient demographic which is encouraging professional and personal growth. Caring for others is how I am making this world a better place.
artwork credit – “Japanese Scroll” by James Tissot and “A girl reads to a convalescent while a nurse brings in the patient’s medicine” by R.H. Giles