“… the problem is that you haven’t realized how much your stories matter. You may not realize every story you tell is important … Nothing is more important than the stories you tell yourself and others about your work and your personal and community life.”
~ Annette Simmons, Whoever Tells the Best Story Wins
This is a quote from a book encouraging us to tell our own stories. Nurses, especially, need to let others know what we do, how we do it, and how it affects us and our patients. The public and our loved ones need to hear and feel the scope and reality of our work. How the unrelenting pain of a post surgical patient tears at our composure and heart, how the desperate fear of the unknown can be felt in a patient’s damp grip, how we soar to heights of joy when we catch a problem before it gets really bad for the patient, how hard it is to get some patients out of our mind at the end of a day.
But, the outside world needs also to know how analytical and cerebral nursing can be. The nurse is responsible for knowing the condition of the patient, the likely complications and how to avoid them, the homeostatic condition of the human animal and how that becomes disrupted in illness or insult. She must recognize the indicators: chemical, physical and behavioral, of impending doom. She must know how to respond to each, and when to call in the cavalry. (more…)