10 fortunes any nurse might question at the end of a long shift


iStock | Scott Karcich

iStock | Scott Karcich

You’ve just finished a 12-hour shift (actually, it was really 12 hours and 48 minutes, but who’s counting, right?) and you’re thinking about dinner. Or breakfast. You’re not really sure at this point.

You open your fridge to discover salsa, milk (expired) and a bag of carrots. Needless to say, you’re ordering in. And what does that mean?

Fortune cookies.

Smug, completely-off-the-mark, mild-rage-inducing fortune cookies. For example:


1. Anything is possible with a willing heart.

Except when the new nurse on deck tries seven times to insert an IV. In which case, “a willing heart” is quickly swapped out for a more experienced heart. 

2. Imagination is more important.

Which is why you went to nursing school for fun, and for fun only (Tuition? Exams? Totally superfluous).

3. You never hesitate to tackle the most difficult problem.

The guy who treats WebMD like the New York Times returned after a sneeze today.


Now that’s a rock, paper, scissors kind of situation.

4. You will be surrounded by luxury.

You changed 19 bedpans today, and you’re pretty sure they weren’t gold-plated. Sooo….

5. Good news of a long-awaited event will soon arrive.

Vacation?!? Don’t you TOY with us, fortune cookie.

6. You are able to juggle many tasks.

Oh really? Tell a nurse something we don’t know.

7. Friends are like chocolate chips. It is good to keep them close by.

You had chocolate chips for lunch AND dinner today…if friends are like chocolate chips, then they need to be kept very far away.

8. Time heals all wounds.

You work in the ER and you can tell everyone right now: That is FALSE. So very false.

9. All your hard work will soon pay off.

For every chart that you fill out, there are 10 more. And you’re no mathematician, but….

And then, there is the rare occasion that you come across a fortune cookie (however stale) that seems to reaffirm the one truth you’ve always thrown your weight behind. That’s right—the reason you do what you do:


10. Sometimes a stranger can bring great meaning to your life.

You know what? Today was a good day.

Thanks, Confucius.

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