Kelley - Meaningul Work, Purposeful Life
After I entered college I became friends with a pre-med student. He was an orderly at the hospital and had amazing stories. I became fascinated and decided to try nursing. Nursing school was difficult in the beginning when we had to do the most basic nursing care -- bed baths and beyond! It required such intimate care right from the start. And I still had no idea what the complete picture of nursing looked like. Because I hadn’t yet had opportunities to deal with people so closely in my young life, touching people was new to me. Caring for my patients and entering the domain of their privacy was difficult. I didn’t mind doing it, but I had to learn to get comfortable with it.
Nursing is a huge responsibility and there is so much to learn. I have explored many areas of nursing and have appreciated each one. With each specialty I develop new skills and gain more knowledge. In addition to acquiring and practicing a variety of nursing skills, I have grown personally by learning to set boundaries and by taking care of myself. I don’t work five days a week anymore, and the parenting classes I’ve recently joined are great for learning to deal with all ages!
Aside from the education, my personal goal is to find a way to look more closely at the patients and co-workers I come into contact with; to really see them and to be present.“My spirituality and nursing go very well together. I am fortunate to have found nursing and it is my honor to care for people.” his was demonstrated to me while working in detox, my first nursing job. I will always remember and be thankful to Margaret and Wilma for being real. They were genuinely caring and present, not only for their patients, but for all of us who worked together. That job was home for me. I felt like I belonged there. Some days it’s hard to find enough time or energy to be close. There’s only enough time to care for physical needs and no opportunity to provide emotional support for the patients or their families, let alone for each other. But I want to try.
I truly love to learn what’s important to each person; what’s inside. I want to know what they are feeling and thinking, what they believe and are genuinely interested in. As a nurse I can only strive to meet people’s needs, but I wish I could do more. I would love to give people hope. I get my hope from God and I want to share that in whatever way I can.
I sense the fear patients feel that goes along with a loss or change in one’s body, or having to be in an unfamiliar place and at our mercy. There’s no escape from some of the physical and emotional pain in this life. The patients and their families need comfort and reassurance. They need someone to walk with them. My goal is to provide comfort, both from the pain they are experiencing and from the fears in their hearts. My spirituality and nursing go very well together. I am fortunate to have found nursing and it is my honor to care for people.
I am not just a nurse, I’m a person, and I need to know who I am and how to take care of myself. It’s important for nurses to know we are valued as more than just employees. If a hospital wants a healthy work environment, they will invest in their workers by encouraging and teaching healthy interpersonal and communication skills. I am content and everything doesn’t have to be perfect if I feel like I’m heard and trust that my work efforts are valued.
Nursing has given me a purpose and I’m glad I have something to give to other people. I serve God by serving people. I believe God gave me the interest and I’m thankful to be in a place where I love what I do and feel like I’m contributing at the same time. I’m honored and privileged to be a nurse. I love to tell people who are going into nursing that they can create the perfect life through this career. There are so many specialties and so many work environments from which to choose.
In 20 years I’ve worked in surgery, progressive care, emergency and detox. OB and Oncology are my next goals. My other interest for the future is medical-surgical missions. Right now I’m raising three boys, but one day I would love to work overseas and immerse in other cultures. The vision of being on a mission motivates me to continue to build my skills, knowledge and expertise so I have more to give as a nurse, whether it’s here at home or in other countries.
Power Strategies: Comfort, Hope, Service
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