Friday, April 11, 2008
DON'T LET THE SHARKS TAKE A BITE OUTTA YOU
I read all the time ( and sometimes even experience first-hand) that old adage about "nurses eating their young". As an aging nurse (propped up by Botox and a possible future hip replacement), I realize that the future looks a little bleak if less and less people enter the profession as I get older. I realize that probably in less than 20 years, I won't be doing nursing in this capacity anymore. I know there's a shortage out there......I've been riding that shortage gravy train for YEARS.......but now I realize, what happens to me at 65 when I'm inpatient? Who's gonna take care of ME?
I happen to be in the position of having met several new grads and nursing students in the last couple of months. I've worked with them side by side. I have only good things to say about them. They are serious, mature individuals who have committed to learn as much as possible in this profession. They are diligent about asking questions, seeking advice. They need positive reinforcement from SOMEONE! I have appointed myself their fairy godmother and personal cheerleader. No question is too small, no situation is too acute that a little "splaining" can't be done. Most of all, support for when mistakes are made and high-fives when things are done well. Just someone to talk to when they feel scared, or overwhelmed, or just hating life and their career choice altogether.
I just wish that other members of the nursing profession would stop the cackling and the criticism on these young chicks. It's just as easy to be a mother hen as it is to be a rooster (this is KEY WEST philosophy at its worst.........) But it's true! Personally, it took years for me to find a nursing mentor that would encourage and stimulate me to be a better nurse. Years. My first 2 years were hell. It was only my fear of miminum wage and returning to teach JUNIOR HIGH that kept me in.
As far as I'm concerned IF YOU'RE NOT PART OF THE SOLUTION YOU ARE PART OF THE PROBLEM!
Be good to your new nurses. BE GOOD TO YOUR NEW NURSES. They're babies in this big bad world.....would you ignore, trip up or abuse a baby? Would you kick a new puppy? They'll be taking care of us one day, when we come in CHF, wearing our diapers, with our new onset Alzheimer's, not remembering our meds, stroking out with a droopy left side. We won't always be on this side of the stretcher......and I'm a great believer in KARMA.
Ok. Rant over. I'm off on a 6 day weekend, the weather is perfect in the Keys, and it's time to work on my tan. Happy FRIDAY!!!