In my life, I have been blessed to know a LOT of nurses.
My Mother in Law, a nurse. She gives us our flu shots, is the first one we call when there is a health question, she has talked me through many a diagnosis, and given me a lot of practical advice over the years. She tells us when it’s serious enough to go see a doctor, and when we can just hang back at home with an ice pack.
Labor and Delivery nurses: I have seen a lot of you. While I may not know all of your names, trust me when I tell you that you have helped me keep my sanity. Through three harrowing surgeries, you held my hands. You talked me through the scariest moments of my entire life, telling me that it would be okay, distracting me with questions about my dogs, my daughter, my husband. You have cleaned up my most embarrassing messes, you have cried with me, you have given me the hope I needed when I felt all was lost.
NICU Nurses: You have been my best friends. You have helped me untangle medical jargon with which I had no idea what it meant. You taught me how to change my 1 lb daughter’s diaper and encouraged me to touch her and to hold her when I was afraid to do so. You were a shoulder to cry on during my hardest days. You saved my daughter’s life over and over and over again, by knowing what to look for-even when it didn’t show up on the machines, or on her charts. You became the family I never asked for but needed more than anything. Even three years out of the hospital, I still think of you daily as an inspiration for not only me, but for my daughter. I hope she grows up knowing you, and hearing of your bravery and friendship.
Nurses at my doctors office- you somehow remember my story every time I’m there, you help relieve my pain, you help to make my visit more bearable. You make the trip to the doctor’s office that much more friendly.
If you are blessed to know a nurse, don’t just thank them this week, thank them always. They do an often thankless job- a job which they can’t leave behind at the end of the day.
If you are blessed to be a nurse, please know that what you do changes lives. What you do shines a light in the darkness for so many. On days you feel like giving up- someone needs you- and might just be speechless with gratitude.