In celebration of Nurses Week 2020, we asked our nurses to share their thoughts about the qualities that make nurses such beacons of hope for our patients.
Presenting… our proud JDMH nurses, in their own words:
When a crisis arrives, there are also heroes who will make an appearance. Each of them shows selfless acts of sacrifice. Like how firefighters combat fire, and how soldiers march to war. And now, in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic, healthcare workers, particularly nurses, show an exceptional bravery to care for each of us. They may be compelled to face danger every day, but they never fear it. However, if you will ask a nurse about their hero status, many will not acknowledge themselves as heroes. Some of them will simply say, “I’m just doing my job”. Nurses, after all, are heroes who run into the coronavirus war zone, while others are running away from it.
Growing up in a family with nurses, I got to see how happy and fulfilled they were going home after a long, tiring day at work at the hospital, but still looking neat and elegant, wearing the traditional white scrubs. I said to myself, I want to be like them when I grow up. Now that I am a fully-fledged nurse, I can say that this is the most rewarding job in the world. But then, I realized that this profession is not all roses. There are unpleasant things to deal with, as well as the pleasant ones. The profession of nursing has been long imposed with noble, breathtaking, vigorous, messy, and exhausting work of caring for patients, whether they are well, sick or suffering. Nurses have that huge entitlement of carrying the obligation of preserving human dignity in the middle of uncertainty. Together with the physicians and all the other healthcare workers, we work together hand in hand to look after our patients when we are at our most fragile. Giving hope to what, in some cases, may be the worst day of our lives.
With the coronavirus pandemic, the simple task of taking vital signs, as well as vigorous emergency life-saving procedures, must be done with extra caution. We must wear protective personal equipment (PPE) at all times in order to protect not just ourselves but also our patients, mostly the vulnerable ones. I came to think that nursing holds a very beautiful contradiction: to walk next to another person during their moments of vulnerability, it requires an extraordinary type of self-sacrifice and strength. Most of the time, this profession feels like it is a calling. Whether we’re fighting the angel of death for our patients or holding the same angel’s hand and helping the patient and their families through the transition, we love each and every day of it. But that’s also the reason why healthcare delivery has something to do with war metaphors. Nurses are on the front lines of care and in the trenches. We go off into battle and if we’re fortunate enough, we arise unscarred. But more often than not, nurses carry emotional and physical battle scars.
This battle is not the one we signed up for, but it is one for which we take up arms and fight regardless. Salute to all my fellow nurses who rush towards the line of peril and risk, while the rest of the world retreat into the protection and safety of their homes. We have chosen selflessness over self-protection, not only in this war against the unseen enemy that is COVID-19, but every time that we step into our scrubs. And no matter what, we still chose to serve and care for those who might be infected with the virus, even though the mere act of caring for them may put ourselves and mostly our loved ones at risk. During this unseemly period of time that most of us are marked with angst and fear, we’re still here. Few will understand why we still chose do it, but we carry on, ready to fight another day.
Indeed, God found some of the strongest men and women, and made them nurses. Working as a nurse made me realize that you may not make the most money or receive the highest recognition. At the end of the day, we still do what we need to do because we know we’ll be making the biggest difference, not just in our life, but also in the life of someone.
ANGELIKA FERNANDO, RN
Emergency Room Nurse
“To do what nobody else will do, A way that nobody else can do, in spite of all we go through: that is to be a nurse.” – Rawei Williams
What is it like to be a NURSE? Is it just a job? For us nurses, of course it is not only a job, but it is our life. We provide compassion and care like no other. We give and share the LOVE and HOPE to our patients and the people around us. We help those who need our service, no matter what their state or status are. We don’t choose who to provide our care for. We do it unconditionally. Being nurses gave us the opportunity to share what we have learned from our student days up to the present. Even as we grow in our profession, we still learn along the way. We become much more compassionate and by that, we also provide greater service to our service to our patients.
As an OB-GYN ward nurse, we learn a lot from our doctors and patients alike. As we grow and learn, we can share our love for our profession to them. For example, we’ve had some patients on the ward who are first time mothers and/or fathers who are unable to provide the proper care to their newborns on the first few hours of the baby’s life.
As a nurse, whether we have or haven’t experienced parenthood, we provide much care to them. When they are scared and have no idea on what to do. We are at their side, guiding them on what to do in different scenarios.
We are patient and provide them full support, even if at times, patience is the least thing we could do. We think of what is always best for them and provide care to them. Also, another example of being a nurse is the ability of a nurse to provide support. As a nurse, when our patient is at their weakest point, we are there at their side, providing emotional support.
Kharmela Tacuyan, RN
OB-GYN Ward Nurse
“Every nurse was drawn to nursing because of a desire to care, to serve, or to help.”
– Christina Feist-Heilmeier, R.N.
As a nurse, there are so many struggles and obstacles we must face. But with our heart, passion and perseverance, being a nurse can be fulfilling.
LOVE – a trait that we share to our patients, especially the mothers and roomed-in patients. It is not necessarily saying the words, but showing it in action. Actions speak louder than words, as they say. Love can be showed in so many ways, in ways that we can’t imagine, even a small gesture can give a big impact to a person. Loving our work can lead to giving good service to our patients.
HOPE – In life, we can experience so many things, happy or sad moments. In my experience, being a nurse, tending to the sick people, giving them words of encouragement and being a part of their recovery from their illnesses, can make a huge impact in both of our lives. In patients that suffered from a miscarriage, it was a sad moment from them. But as we give our care and love, hope arises from them to begin another journey in their lives.
CARE – As the word goes, care is what we always give in our patients, in everything we do, we always think of how to give everything that we can to our patients. It is not a matter of how big or small a gesture can be, but on how you express the care you want to give.
SERVICE – In my length of service as a nurse, I have experienced different kinds of patients. Being a beacon of health, we must always be ready to give our all in order to serve our patient to the fullest. Even though sometimes their request can be a bit challenging, we still do our best to be able to give good service to our patients for them to have a good experience under our care.
In life, there may be many obstacles that we may encounter in our line of duty as a nurse. But if we give our 101% compassion, together with love for our work, we can give care and service to our patients, and their hope to recover will soon follow.
Nurse – 1st Floor
The nurses’ oath is not just a pledge to memorize. Nursing is not also just a profession. To becoming a nurse, is to have an inner compassion for others, to treat others outside and inside the premises of the hospital as one of your family members.
Empathy is one of the keys to understand how to be more patient with people. As they say, only the individual can recognize their own pain. This pain needs to be assessed properly and given the right treatment.
Nurses also have pains to suffer, lessons to be discuss, and reports to pass, for them to be more equip with the knowledge that they want to gain.
Nurses are not perfect individuals. But one of their skills is having patience in persons suffering in pain. It is difficult to aid a person that you don’t know. Sometimes you might or they might get annoyed. But a nurse shows love and care for individuals. Nursing and nurturing your own self, family and community, is part of being a nurse. We give hope and service to our patients in need.
Becoming a nurse is fun and adventurous. And with the guidance of God and continuous education, a nurse can and will evolve.
Gypsy Toledo, RN
Nurse – 1st Floor