I have spent the past few weeks at my ailing father’s bedside. Most of that time has been in the hospital. During that time I encountered healthcare professionals that were angels on earth. I also encountered healthcare professionals that made me wonder why they had chosen this particular profession.
One, a student nurse from Loyalist College, left an impression that is the inspiration for this letter.
You saw me in the hospital corridor and were the only person that asked if I needed something. You were not assigned to my father yet immediately came to my assistance. You asked my name and used it often. I was bewildered by the electric razor and you offered to shave him.
I overheard the gentle, friendly manner you spoke to him. You asked him his name, rather than immediately reposition him. You explained patiently what you were doing. You did not assume that, because of his age, he was incapable of understanding. I heard him laugh at your jokes and you at his.
Again, in the hall, when I apologized for being an anxious daughter and taking you away from your scheduled duties your responded with such compassion and understanding, ”Suzanne, he’s your dad.”
I understand that as a student nurse you may have had more flexibility with your duties. Whatever the reason, you made a difference that day.
I wish you success in your nursing studies.
I hope your career is always rewarding.
I hope that the overworked and short staffed reality of your career does not change your compassionate approach to nursing.
I wonder if you realize the impact of your kindness that day.