It’s been six weeks since I last blogged and, though I tried, I couldn’t think of a worthy blog topic. My mind had been as empty as a politician’s promises. That is – until yesterday – when I spoke at my nursing school alumni luncheon. Suddenly, in a room filled with nurses – those quiet heroes who walk among us – I knew I had my topic – nurses!
Whose life, after all, hasn’t been touched by a nurse? It is a nurse who will be with us in our moments of crisis, a nurse who will guide us through the confusing maze of modern healthcare. It is a nurse who will call a code, comfort a family, and sit with a patient who has no one to visit. It is a nurse who will cradle a dying baby, soothe a mother’s worries and tend to a child’s cuts and bruises. It is a nurse anesthetist who will put us to sleep for surgery, an OR nurse who will watch over us in the OR, and a PACU nurse who will gently wake us up. It is a nurse practitioner who will find the cause of that lingering cough, an ER nurse who will resuscitate your loved one, and a clinic nurse who will teach you about your diabetes. It is a nurse administrator who will see that your hospital runs smoothly, a risk management nurse who will explain the legal labyrinth to you, and a nurse epidemiologist who will track the source of your infection. And at the end of our days, it is a geriatric nurse who will remember that we still matter.
Nurse’s specialties are as varied as the populations they serve. And yesterday, it seemed that most specialties were represented. They are an impressive group and it is no surprise then that every year, it is nurses who top the most respected list in Gallup’s annual Honesty and Ethics Poll.
And yesterday, as I stood before them, these women who change the world every day, my words caught in my throat. I am one of them, I thought.
I am a nurse.