'Tell the world' project
The following poem was written by Bethany C. Bettis, RN, clinical unit leader for emergency services at Novant Health UVA Health System Culpeper Medical Center
We start out the morning with a personal pep talk and a “you can do it” attitude,
Making sure we do our best to encourage and uplift every patient’s mood.
We put on navy scrubs that we are proud to wear each day.
This represents the people we are and makes us ready for all that comes our way.
Our accessories aren’t earrings, bracelets and rings.
A stethoscope and wristwatch are what we call “our bling.”
The day starts out with checklists and stocking,
Because so quickly we have patients we are admitting and discharging.
Being a nurse is more than a job. It’s our career and profession.
Wearing the “RN” on our name badge is one of our greatest possessions.
We know we’re not a doctor and we certainly don’t have all the answers,
But holding a hand and comforting a patient are what we call “our glamour.”
We walk in with an introduction and a smile and ask, “How can I help you?”
Sitting down and attentiveness are the comfort that gets each patient through.
We start an IV, draw labs and give some medication.
The right to protect each patient is our biggest obligation.
To each patient, what they feel and see is their reality.
It’s our duty to provide exceptional patient care and protect their confidentiality.
Nurses have an obligation to assist each new nurse they encounter;
Because so many times, they feel in over their head, like they are going to flounder.
Some days there’s more time to give a helping hand;
And other days it feels like we are treading water or in quick sand.
We feel this way because we want to give each patient the attention they deserve,
But often times we are pulled to different places if there’s any other concerns.
We work 12-hour shifts and are given a 30-minute break.
However, normally it’s a bit of food here and there because of all we undertake.
We sometimes only use the bathroom once or twice;
As our patients come first and that’s what we choose to sacrifice.
In the emergency department, we see roughly 100 patients a day.
Each patient requires a nurse helping them put a little fear away.
Rainy days require a heightened sense of awareness;
Because we have no helicopter crew to assist us.
Nurses save a life each day or provide at least one person relief.
We are mindful and respectful of each patient and families’ beliefs.
Some days we do everything we can and still can’t save a patient’s life,
But nurses provide a sense of peace when the family feels this overwhelming sense of strife.
Compassion and integrity are a part of who nurses are.
Providing special, kind, and professional care in and out of the hospital is what makes us superstars.
Nurses choose this profession because it’s a part of their inner being.
The title of nurse gives us a chance to make a difference and that’s the most rewarding.