Journal of Nursing Jocularity

Journal of Nursing Jocularity

Archive for 'Columns'

That Reminds Me…How Nurses Can Use Humor to Establish Relationship

Being a nurse is not unlike being an air traffic controller: there are dozens of things to keep track of at any given moment. Each patient we encounter is a new adventure. Just like a flight taking off, we may know where we think things are going — the patient who comes in with a blood sugar over 1000, potassium levels through the roof and only a tenuous grasp on consciousness likely isn’t headed for Labor & Delivery, after all. But, as every air traffic controller knows, the destination the plane reaches doesn’t necessarily match the one listed on the ticket.

Our patients have a disconcerting tendency to not perform as expected, to withhold critical information, and to come accompanied by a bevy of friends and relatives all determined to help and support them as they get better — while doing everything possible to prevent us from making that recovery possible. (more…)

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Really A Nurse?

How long does it take before you feel like you’re a “real” nurse? Orientation may be long behind you, yet you’re still not 100% confident in everything you’re doing. We seem to be missing that official rite of passage or seminal event that allows us to recognize ourselves as fully competent, skilled professionals. With that in mind, I thought I’d share the top ten signs you can use to determine if you’re officially a “real” nurse yet: (more…)

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Suck It Up

Okay I just got say to pretty much everyone I know, suck it up!  I don’t want to hear that anyone complain that they are tired, working too much, or especially that they are “getting too old for this.”

Today I had 76 year old patient who had just had triple bypass surgery and was starting the Cardiac Rehab program.  I asked him what his goals were for Cardiac Rehab.  I expected him to say the standard, increase my energy/stamina, get back to my needlework kind of thing, but no! He says he just wants to get clearance to go back to work.

It turns out that until his recent heart operation he was working not one, but two jobs: one full time in laundry services and another part-time lawn maintenance.  Really?  Lawn work, in Florida?!  I have to take issue with the person who hires a 76 year old man to do their yard for them.    I can only imagine this person sipping a nice iced latte in their climate controlled house, while their lawn man, a man who has been receiving AARP for twenty years, trims the hedges in the 100 degree summer sun.  There is lazy, and then there is just down right sadistic.

I am afraid I may no longer have the right to gripe about, well anything.  I just stepped into the 40s and I only work one, not especially labor intensive job. (And not even full time!)  While the hospital may not be the most glamorous place to work, it is air conditioned.  Nursing may not be the easiest work there is, but I do make enough money not to have to take a second job.

From now on, if someone pulls out their line? I will start another.  Code brown?  I will roll up my sleeves.  My patient is hitting the call buzzer like he is on Jeopardy and knows all the answers? Okay, then I will probably hide the damn thing, but I won’t complain.

After seeing someone pushing 80 happily working two jobs, grumbling will only make me look more like the cream puff that I am afraid I may really be.

Contributed by CristyAnne, RN

Posted in: Columns

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I’m Not Going!

296716afvfcsnegOne of our older patients really couldn’t safely live alone anymore, yet she was really resistant to her daughter’s plan to have her move into the local senior living center. I asked her why she didn’t want to move, expecting all the usual answers about loss of independence or not wanting to give up her home. You could have floored me when she said, “I’m not going over there because that place is full of AIDS! I don’t want to get AIDS!”

“What do you mean, AIDS?” I asked her.

“Hearing aids, band aids, walking aids…they’ve got all of that over there and I don’t want no part of it!”

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Nursing Limericks by PD Singer

A nursing home patient, demented,
Catheterized and stented,
Combative with staff,
Would not take a bath,
And was avocado-scented.

It was horrid – his urine was cloudy
With E coli? and other debris.
One lone C and S
Couldn’t sort out this mess
Of bacterial anomaly.

The ID response was chaotic,
Giving random antibiotic,
With learned conjectures
And Grand Rounds lectures
They made diagnoses exotic.

The nurse who changed out the Foley
Screamed, “For love of all that is holy –
You don’t need ciprofloxacin
To kill off the toxacin
That bag contains guacamole!”

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