Thanksgiving is the time to count our blessings. This month, I’ve been listening to your responses as many of you graciously answered the question, “What makes you thankful to be a nurse?”
Who knew this topic would quickly exceed the limits of a Pulse article? We could have published a book of answers.
When I talked to nurse Rose Pope, she asked for more time to think about it. Before I could answer, she said, “No, I think I can answer now.” About 20 minutes later, she was still coming up with reasons that touched on career fulfillment, respect, challenges, job security, pride in her workplace and co-workers, and the opportunity to learn and grow.
Imagine what she would have said if I’d given her more time to think about it.
Retired nurse Betty Daniels was thankful to still be “on the job,” giving advice to fellow residents in her retirement home. Gail Gibbs wrote about the joys of returning to the field after a long absence and discovering a new specialty.
New graduate Tina Martin said she was thankful to have made it through nursing school at Mercer University. She’s proud to say, “I’m a nurse,” and loves the excitement of working in the ER at Piedmont Hospital in Atlanta.
“I get to touch people’s lives and see them through a time when they are hurting and scared,” she said. “Many times I can fix their problems and see the result of my efforts.”
When I told Martin that I had heard from nurses who were still thankful 40 or 50 years into their careers, she said, “That’s so refreshing — and inspiring.”
Our brief conversations reminded me how much we all benefit from nurses’ knowledge and care. You touch our lives in quiet and sometimes dramatic ways.
When Clarkdale Elementary School in Austell was flooded in September, school nurse Sherry Farmer moved fast to help get her students to safety. As floodwaters rose, she went back into the building for essential records and medications. While her school family recovers, she continues to nurse and advocate for all her 442 students, many of whom lost much more than a school building.
As we count our blessings, we can all be thankful for nurses.
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