Every year from May 6th – 12th the American Nurses Association celebrates National Nurses Week. The 2011 theme is “Nurses Trusted to Care.” May 12th, the last day of the celebrated Nurses Week, is Florence Nightingale's birthday! Since 1998, May 8th has been designated National Student Nurses Day, and whichever date the Wednesday of that week falls on has been designated National School Nurse Day as of 2003. Nurses week is not only celebrated in the United States, as May 12th of each year is International Nurses Day and is celebrated around the world!
With National Nurses Week only a bit over a week away, I would like to take this opportunity to remember and thank all the wonderful nurses that I have known personally this past year. It's been a rather tough year for my family, with more than one family member being hospitalized and for long periods of time, as well as my mother being cared for on a daily basis at the nursing facility where she has lived for almost exactly a year to this date. Without their expertise, kindness, caring, and general help in all areas I dont' know what we would have done. If you have ever had a loved one in the hospital you know how important the nurses and nurse aides are. They spend the most time with the patient, and are responsible for most of their care in every aspect.
My mom has some wonderful nurses and aides who tend to her needs every day. They not only administer her medications, help her with her meals, and help her to change and bathe, but they bring her smiles and friendship. One day lately when I went to see her, one of the nurses was helping my mom and my mom looked at me when I first got there and said "Oh I'm glad you're here, I should pay this girl for helping me and I don't have any money". (My mother has dementia and thought she should pay the nurse). The nurse immediately said 'Ohhhh no, you don't need to pay us. We just do it because we love you!" and she gave my Mom a hug. They both smiled and hugged and I felt the love. They were not words, she really does love my mom. That made me feel so good, to know that the people who tend to her on an every day basis actually care about her and love her, and are not merely doing a job.
So thank you! Thank you to all the nurses who I have met this past year, who have helped my family so much. I can't say enough or feel stronger about the importance of the job you do, and how well you do it!