Friday, May 8, 2015

Nurse's Week 2015

Well here I am celebrating my first nurse's week.  It was just about a year ago that I was wearing my cap and gown celebrating with the rest of the field house my hard earned diploma.  Now here I am waking up at 5pm from my night shift last night and on call tonight.

Having had diploma in hand for about a year and working as an RN for about 6 months has been incredibly challenging and rewarding.  I have the privilege of taking care of families as they welcome new life into the world.

I get to hear first cries and see dads as their eyes well up with tears when I hand them their first born and say "here is your son".   I also vigorously rub a fresh newborns back praying for her to just cry and start turning pink.  Some moms come in nervous and I can do my best to help ease their worries and help them have a beautiful birth experiences.  I help keep moms and babies safe and healthy when the labor process is less than perfect and ideal.  

I hold women's hands when they get their epidural as soon as they walk through the door and sway with them when they enter their 15th hour of natural labor. I footprint, ID band, and weigh these babies often before their moms have held them for more than 10 minutes.  I help women breastfeed and encourage a long breastfeeding relationship.

Beyond all these beautiful things that people imagine L&D nurses do I also grab ice, clean areas...down there that are less than clean, change my scrubs multiple times a shift because they have blood, urine, amniotic fluid, meconium or a combination on them, handle annoying family members, advocate for women, and tell women yes they did progress but not as much as they were hoping.

Nurses are supposdely the most trusted profession.  Honestly most days I don't understand why and more often than not I leave a shift feeling like I didn't give my patients the best care I could have.  Being a L&D nurse I can honestly say it is one of the hardest and one of the best jobs I could ever imagine doing for all the reasons listed above and 100 more.

To all you other nurses, kudos.  Thank you for holding dying hands, having a smile on your face when a patient first opens her eyes and saying "I think the surgeon has some good news for you",  helping a man detox from his cocaine addiction, singing a bedtime song to the little boy who has been sick for so long that his parent's have no other choice but to go to work, passing another pain pill, not giving up on a man who is in cardiac arrest, and infusing another day of chemo.  Happy Nurse's week, enjoy your free coffee, hospital emblemed gift, and posters posted around the hospital.  Keep on caring!
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