Friday, 7 July 2017

Nursing-Some Final Thoughts


I was twenty when I started to nurse. It was 1983 and I was a gauche unassertive, shy character who looked awkward even in his nursing group photo where he should have felt comfortable amongst his friends and his mentor.

Psychiatric nursing taught me to act as an advocate and to care for the distressed and weak.
Spinal Injury Nursing taught me to nurse holistically and to trust my gut in how to handle people.
Nurse management taught me to believe in myself , voice my own opinions and helped me to develop the skill of taking a deep breath before speaking.
Oh, ...and Intensive care nursing has taught me the power of good team work.
Each area has shaped and sculptured me over the years.

Nurses have not really changed in my thirty five year experience. Most want to care the best way they can. It is the system that has changed and it is this system change that has complicated the issues and practicalities of care giving.
The "forces" discipline has disappeared from the workplace and a more academic/ assertive based training has replaced the old " learning by watching Nellie" approach to development.
Student Nurses are brighter than those of old which only can be a good thing, but boy don't they look sloppy in their badly fitting uniforms and lack of "starch"
That's an age thing!

Policy, protocol, HR, a computer full of e- fucking learning needs and the fear of missing something now replace common sense management and firefighting is par for the course for harassed middle managers who need to sell the corporate message to their peers without ever believing in the message.

Have I any advice for those bright eyed, energetic bods who are just starting out on their careers?
Well yes I have.
Grab every opportunity to see the best!
Move away from home, go to a good teaching hospital trust, soak up the special and learn to recognise good , innovative practice and management, there is plenty of it to see
Don't be afraid to question and to challenge
Be warm and thoughtful
And please PLEASE PLEASE develop a ROBUST sense of humour




84 comments:

  1. You have learnt a lot, but I am certain that you have given at least as much. To patients, their families, and other staff.
    I hope the next section of your life is wonderful.

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  2. I don't believe you were shy and gauche. I don't think any of us change that much. In fact if anything we mellow. You learned your skills and with it came confidence with managing people. Shy and gauche, I doubt it.

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  3. Sounds like good advice; and you should know!

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  4. I think that from 16 to about 25 we test out beliefs by pretending we believe them until we learn to recognise the difference between good ones and bad ones - hopefully.

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  5. Congratulations John! Now it's time for fun!

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  6. You are definitely an example of what makes a good nurse. I expect you will be sorely missed by the profession. But your future I am sure will be an example of the same caring loving person you have always been. xo

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  7. Congratulations to you! Kiss em all goodbye and don't look back...now the adventures begin. So very happy for you!

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  8. From our last 18 months experience we've found there are some lovely nurses who care and a few who couldn't give a damn.
    You, I guarantee were in the former group. Have a wonderful retirement.

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  9. Well done, John. I wish I had had the guts to be a nurse. I truly admire you and all the other people who do it. xx

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  10. Some pretty wise words at the end. While everyone loves a great friendly nurse, it is not a requirement but an extra benefit. As long as they give appropriate and sympathetic care, any more is a bonus.

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  11. awww, what a cutie!

    during my spouse's hospital stay last month, all the nurses/doctors/etc. were the best I've ever encountered.

    now hold your head high and stare the future in the face and shout I'M ME AND I'LL DO WHAT I WANT NOW!

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  12. Fortunately or unfortunately I have met many nurses in my lifetime. I only remember one that was unprofessional and mean; the others were angels. I trust them more than doctors as their patience and caring is always more reassuring than the rushed MDs. I would imagine that a sense of humor gets them through the day more than anything.

    Congratulations on your retirement, John.

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  13. Very Nicely Said! Loved the bit about "move away from home," smartest thing I ever did.

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    Replies
    1. me too; moved away from toxic abusive parents in 1977 and never looked back.

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  14. Wise words indeed.

    Love the photo :-)

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  15. Wonderful memories and words of wisdom. I hope your retirement blesses you as much as your career has.

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  16. Congratulations on your retirement John . . .
    I think "sense of humor" is the best . . .
    Passing your message on to a few of my nursing friends . . .

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  17. So many people have benefitted over the years from your nursing care! I'm sure you made a difference in many lives. Congrats on your retirement!

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  18. I imagine you were like the nurses that I spent too much time with a long time ago .. kind and caring do not describe those angels.
    I was not the patient .. my child, injured badly in a truck crash .. not knowing if she would live , the days after with worry and fear and always those gentle soft spoken nurses .. I totally love all nurses .. one in particular especially ..

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  19. Student nurses are brighter than those of old - really?

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    Replies
    1. We all had A levels in my group in 1980.

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    2. I had 4 o levels

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  20. What a wonderful summary of your long career. A good, caring nurse (and one who can put in an I.V. the first time round) is worth his or her weight in gold. I imagine you've had many patients that you brought back home with you in your mind, as nursing seems to be one of those professions that isn't just a 'show up do your job go home and forget it' kind of job. Enjoy your well earned retirement. -Jenn

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  21. No matter what you do for a living, that sense of humour will save your life. Good words of advice John. Now, on to the next eh?

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  22. Sage advice, from a soul formed by decades of adventures. Our work shapes us as who we are - who are we without it?

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  23. Are you end left John? Your advice is spot on - applies to any profession really but especially to one in the caring industry.

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  24. I love that you use the word "nurse" as a verb. It is, after all, what you are doing. Around here, people "go into nursing". Pretty passive and removed from the real activity involved. Congrats on retirement; I hope it's as healing for you as it has been form me.

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  25. Enjoy your retirement. You've certainly earned it. You were quite the handsome fellow back then weren't you!

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  26. Enjoy whatever comes next John!

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  27. This will be the only comment I make on this blog. Suffice to say that your theme today is one of the many reasons why I am proud to refer to you as my husband.

    The Prof.

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    1. Bloody hell xxxx

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    2. Now This made me cry :)
      The Prof has spoken.

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    3. Wow! Like a voice from on high!!!

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    4. One of the MANY reasons, I hope you noted John.

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    5. WOW! THE PROF! he really really loves you, john!

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    6. Great words John and great to see words of the Prof too! :)

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    7. Aw, that's sweet. Well said Professor.

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    8. I actually feel a little choked up now.

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    9. Wow! How wonderful!

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    10. Wow! How wonderful!

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    11. Bloody hell, you made me cry AGAIN !!!!

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    12. Wonderful words from The Prof.

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    13. Said in a deep Roger Moore voice as John blushes a slight rose pink, flutters his eyelashes and simpers .......
      Have a wonderful fun filled retirement x

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  28. And on to the next adventure! All the best. Your thoughts on nursing were so thoughtful. I would only add that I wish they were paid more.

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  29. Well done John, Now write a book please hehe x

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  30. Am too prone to hypochondria to ever do anything in the health field myself, and so have extra admiration for anyone that is in it.

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  31. There was a (older) man walking
    his dog on our street recently
    wearing a T-shirt which read.......
    "I'm retired, do it yourself !"

    Time to go play now, enjoy!!

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  32. Just lovely and so true. I'll share this with a cousin who has just begun nursing.

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  33. Congratulations John! You've had a great career, wonderful marriage, great friends and furry companions I say Karma does exist for those that give love and care. Now ......on to Chapter One!

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  34. Which young man are you, John? [sorry, I m very bad at faces...]

    lizzy

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    Replies
    1. The gauche one on the far left

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    2. Your younger self is so cute! Not gauche or awkward at all, you're very attractive, and look quite athletic and fit.

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  35. I admire anyone who goes into the medical profession immensely and have only ever had positive experiences where nurses were concerned (can't say the same for doctors sadly). I'm sure you will be missed by your colleagues and patients, but it's time for you now. Go forth and enjoy!! xx

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  36. Best wishes for a happy retirement, John.

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  37. Wise words from a wise man.
    You have a great future ahead of you, John.
    Enjoy every second.

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  38. Congratulations John!

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  39. Nurses are amazing people, doing a difficult job in often difficult circumstances.
    Respect.
    Now you've done your bit, it's time for a well-earned rest. Well, as much as the menagerie will allow....

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    Replies
    1. I have busy times planned ahead dave

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  40. I retired this week too John. Congratulations. I agree with your sentiments, and the sense of humour stops you killing yourself at times....it can be so stressful.
    Tonight the door bell rang, it was Shirley from across the road. She asked Barry if Bev could come over, Harry has a rash, and what is it??
    You will NEVER be retired.
    It was Urticaria, caused by heaven only knows!

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    Replies
    1. I never mind this advice asking.....it makes me feel needed... A fact that probably was a precursor for me becomming anurse in the first place

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    2. AGreed, I don't mind too. One day it will be a life saved.

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  41. They might have the university education but many are sloppy, uncaring and plain dangerous as I witnessed recently when my dad passed away. Bitter yes I have given my life to the NHS and when I need it it failed me. Thankfully there are still some good nurses around. I know I am a good nurse. I was educated to A level but haven't got all the academic stuff the younges have. But I have common sense.

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    Replies
    1. I am so sorry for your exoerience. Thank goodness the younger nurses i have worked with have been talented and caring

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  42. As a retired RN after 42 years working in all sorts of nursing areas, I would just add one thing: Look at your books and absorb all the knowledge you can....But more importantly...Look at your patient, listen, touch, observe and trust your gut instinct, always. Your patient reveals so much more knowledge than your book. :)

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    Replies
    1. Yes the first rule of itu...look at your patient not the monitors

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  43. Congratulations. I have found, nurses are remarkable people.

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  44. Congratulations on your retirement! I think for anyone in a high stress career, a well developed sense of humor is a must! I have a saying that you ever laugh or you cry and laughing is healthier! Enjoy this next phase of life, John!

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  45. I've said before (probably too many times) that I had the chance to see plenty of nurses in action during my dad's last eight years of life. Most were good, some were excellent, and some should not be working with people in any capacity. I think it reflects society in general. But I'm quite sure from your writing and comments that you were in the excellent category, and for those who are in such a vulnerable position as to need a nurse, it's a huge relief and blessing to be cared for by a great one. All the best as you leave your career and step into the future, John.

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  46. Thanks John it's something I have to deal with. At present on holiday in States. Funeral next week then I will decide if worth complaining . I dont want money just people to listen and learn. My grief is too raw.

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  47. Bearing in mind the extreme pressures NHS staff are now under, a sense of humour must be essential if you're not to go totally crazy.

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  49. This is good advice for us all!

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  50. Very Nicely Said! Loved the bit about "move away from home," smartest thing I ever did.

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