Originally published on KevinMD
My anger rises when I see the TV “nurse” with her short white dress and her breasts spilling over her pronounced cleavage and her submissive voice speaking to this muscular male MD.
Her quick giggle and pretentious demeanor is a stereotype portrayed across the land. And the reality of what we really do goes unnoticed.
We have people shouting:
“Bring me a coke!”
“A blanket, hurry up!”
“The food is too cold … the food is too hot.”
“Hold my penis in the urinal because I can’t find it.”
“I’m allergic to everything but Dilaudid.”
Disrespect. Spitting. Yelling. Scratching. Hitting. Cussing.
And the waitress-like image comes across the screen and blends into reality — into our hospitals and emergency departments and intensive care units. And the degrading and harassment and the intimidation tactics and workplace violence scream at us.
And you want to end this incredible vicious cycle.
And you wonder why in the hell did you ever go into nursing?
And then there is that one person. That one patient. He’s old but not too old. And he’s just been given the death sentence.
And you want to hug him and hold his hand. Cancer ravaged his body, and he doesn’t have a chance. And he knows it, and you know it. But he’s thankful and appreciative and asks for forgiveness for “bothering” you.
And I want to give him a new lease on life — new body — because he is one in a million.
One in a million that makes you stop and think and cry
And say out loud:
“Oh, that’s why I became a nurse.”