To the nurses and health care providers that I have had the privilege to work with,
You are a remarkable group. Your adaptability, passion and empathy are exceptional. Nursing has afforded me many opportunities and as my career and knowledge continue to grow so does my admiration and respect for the people I work with.
To many families and patients you are a tour guide through the abyss of medical terminology, procedures and tests. You share in the hope and promise that comes with good news and you share in the disappointment and fear that bad news and sometimes even devastating news brings. You tour them through this uncharted territory with dignity and respect. This safari ride has stops they never thought they would see and has taken them places they never knew existed. And as their tour guide you help them cope, you teach them adaptability and you show them compassion.
I have seen the delight you share as a new father sees his baby for the first time. I have also seen you celebrate with genuine pride when a premature baby finally meets the milestone their family has been wishing for.
I have seen you shed tears of joy when a patient finally leaves the icu after you worked so hard to make sure they had a future. And I have seen you band together and rally when things fall apart. They do fall apart and they will fall apart but you know that and you face it every day.
I have seen you hold the hands of families when they learn there is nothing more that can be done and I have seen you hug a stranger like they were part of your own family.
I have seen you advocate, persist and demand for your patients especially when they could not do so for themselves. And I have seen you go above and beyond your job description even in the small confines of a helicopter.
I know you lose sleep sometimes and I know you go home and wrack your brain looking for something you may have missed.
I know you go home and cry sometimes for the lives lost and suffering you have seen endured. I know you sometimes have to step away and that is ok.
What is the most remarkable thing about all of this is that you go home to your families where you are a parent, a partner, a sister or a brother. You care for them, love them and lead full lives and then you get up and do it all again because you love your job. You are passionate about your job and you are good at your job. Your job is important even when you are sometimes made to feel like it’s not and even when you feel like no one sees how much you give to so many people.
You are selfless. You are strong and you are brave. You don’t just save lives, you save the future.
So to the medical professionals that I work with, that I have worked with and the ones that I will work with, I am so proud to have seen you don all of the many hats required of you with such grace. My respect and admiration for you grows every day and I hope you know how important you each are to so many people. Happy nurses week.