I am so grateful for all the good nurses out there. I know what you do for a living because I’ve done it myself. I know many of you will be seeing patients and taking call over the holidays. You will give up time with your own families to tend to the needs of patients whose own families couldn’t be with them.
When I originally got my license I worked every single holiday for 23 months. It broke my heart to leave my child and my family to go to work. It just didn’t seem fair. I know that patients are sick seven days a week, 52 weeks of the year but every single holiday? You would think that by putting all of your heart and soul into your job you would at least get a little respect but patients do not think of the nurses who be taking care of them on thanksgiving when they eat a steady diet of fast food and the occasional steak for 20 years running.
I was close to just quitting my first nursing job in CICU when I was scheduled to work on Thanksgiving for the third consecutive year. That was 21 years ago. My cousin, Sandra, had been diagnosed with stage IV breast cancer and because my family is half Jewish and half Catholic, Thanksgiving was always our big family gathering. I did not want to miss the last Thanksgiving with Sandra.
Right before I did something stupid while feeling sorry for myself, I had an epiphany. If we wait until thanksgiving to show our gratitude, we will miss too many opportunities to be with our families and to let them know we care.
Research shows that people who express gratitude regularly are happier. I keep Thank You notes on my desk and try to mail at least a couple every week. They are constant reminders to stop and consider what a wonderful life I have.
I am thankful for all of you who stay with my ramblings throughout the year. I appreciate the emails and the comments – even those that do not agree with my position. Y’all make me think and reconsider my opinions on a daily basis. That makes me a better nurse and consultant.
I am thankful for the humor in my job even when the source was not intended to be funny. If you don’t find a referral to a paleontologist documented in a clinical record funny, you probably don’t have a sense of humor.
I am thankful for the Zone Contractors, oddly enough. It is good business and it gives me an opportunity to really be of use to clients who want to do well. They also shut down the agencies who have no desire to do well. That works well for my clients.
My Dad loaned me money eleven years ago to start my company. I appreciate him, too. If you happen to see him, please do not tell him. I haven’t paid him back yet.
Two thanksgivings ago, I did CPR on my son. It was like every code I ever attended had prepared me for that moment.
He got a new dog a few weeks ago. With God as my witness, neither one of knew that American Bull Terrier was the official name of Pit Bulls. I am thankful Priscilla doesn’t know that either. So, if I seem a little chipper sometimes, a little too optimistic, a little too happy, look at the picture above taken in my office a few weeks ago. You will understand why I wake up grateful every morning.
Oh, and I just talked to the fam. Sandra is busy directing all the chaos that we call Thanksgiving. She is good at that. I am good at hiding out in my office while all that commotion takes place.