Heading to work day in and day out can oftentimes lead to a roller coaster in the morale department. Although I love my job, the night before a shift just the thought of having to get up and spend 13 hours of the next day cooped up in a hospital sounds less than appealing.
I think nurses can easily get lost in a degree of job apathy or career burnout, if you will. Realistically, a rather poignant stigma found throughout our profession is that of burnout — the old wives tail that “mature” nurses are crabby and overworked.
I frequently get asked the cliché question, “So why did you become a nurse?” and decided to finally compose a list of the reasons why I so love this profession. I feel so very fortunate to have the letters RN behind my name. And I may even print a copy of my “love notes to nursing” to keep with me at work when the going gets tough, just to remind myself of how fortunate I really am.
Love notes to nursing
- What other profession allows you wear the most comfortable uniform known to the professional world? Does it get any better than scrubs?
- There is nothing more special than becoming attached to a sick patient who recovers and returns in their robust form for a visit with words of gratitude for the care you provided at their most difficult time.
- Three day work week. End of story.
- Opportunities in the field are remarkably endless. Interested in oncology? Pediatrics? Rehab? Mental health? Critical care? Infusion clinics? Cardiology? Orthopedics? I could work in some/all of these specialties if I so desire.
- One of my favorite moments is praising and supporting new parents as they bathe their post-surgical infant for the first time.
- My metabolism never gets bored of all of the goodies that families bring to the nurses station.
- Ever cried at the mailbox? I did, after opening up a handwritten thank you card from the parents of a child that had passed away. They were thanking me for the care I provided their child. What they don’t know is that I thank them daily for the life lessons I have gained through their experiences.
- Thanks to night shifts, I now consider getting a full night’s rest one of life’s greatest pleasures.
- I have adopted a rather large, loving extended family consisting of patients and families that have lengthy hospital admissions. I am thankful for each of them and treasure the Christmas cards I receive from these “family” members.
- There is nothing more gratifying than being deemed a patient’s favorite nurse.
- I have successfully adorned my entire refrigerator with art and pictures drawn by my little hospitalized Picassos.
- There are plenty of professions where you get to advocate for your client, but there is something different, and something special, about advocating for someone’s life.
- My work does not go unnoticed, sometimes unbeknownst to me. The greatest flattery as a nurse? Being nominated and featured in a publication, Atlanta Hospital News, and not seeing it until after print.
- The working relationship between doctors and nurses is superb, and I feel strongly that my suggestions and concerns about care are taken into account with each decision that is made.
- I work in a profession that puts no cap on learning, each day is filled with new and exciting learning experiences.
- Nursing and medical research are strongly correlated, and I love my organization’s commitment to striving to provide the best practice of care based on evidence-based practice.
- I will forever be convinced that children are the most resilient of all human beings.
- Most importantly, I love my profession because as long as I have made a child’s day a little bit better, I know I have succeeded.
Thank you, fellow nurses, for all you do!