Not Always What They Seem

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    Story about how two different nurses handle the death of a patient.

    I didn't know nurses drank and smoked. Okay, call me nave but hey, I was young and stupid, I actually bought the hat. I was also under the impression that all nurses were Christians. WHAT KIND OF UPBRINGING DID I HAVE? WAKE UP NUN.

    Her name was Heidi. Man did I hate Heidi. She represented everything in life I was NOT. She flirted with every doctor and drank like a fish. She did have spunk though, I'll hand her that.

    Some nurses have no class. She was one of them. Don't ever trust a loved one with this girl, especially a dead one. One day I was in the room of her patient who had just died and she was dancing and laughing with her gloved hands swinging washcloths around. I was horrified. How disrespectful. This nurse went out for FLUID ROUNDS much too frequently and it damaged what brain she had left. I knew I never wanted to be that kind of nurse and I knew that nurses were NOT always what they seem, or what they appear to be.

    I grew up a Christian girl and out of naivety, I thought all nurses were God's little helpers; who took on the cares of the world and loved people. Never gossiped. And smoking? A nurse would never smoke, I was doubly sure of that! Wow. I must have been very sheltered.

    Nurses do smoke. A lot. Nurses do drink and party. Nurses do gossip every chance they get. They do complain about their patients. They do get upset when someone wets or poops their bed. Of course, they are not going to tell you that, but it will be discussed. They will discuss it because they can. That's right. They are human. So are doctors and dentists. Just because they are so-called "professionals" does not mean they act the part.

    Do nurses do the best that they can? Of course they do. We all do. Humans are funny. We all mean well, but like with everything else in life, we make mistakes and screw up. There is only one perfect person and no matter how hard we try, we will never measure up.

    Therefore, if you ever need the bedpan, look out. Hand it to the nurse, smile, and say, " Here sweetie, enjoy" Then just leave it at that. You "will" be discussed, you can bet on it.
    Last edit by Joe V on Jun 28, '11
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    About didi768

    Lpn with over 25 yrs of nursing experience currently working in pediatric home care. Mom to three boys ages 20, 16, and 13.

    Joined: Mar '06; Posts: 347; Likes: 113
    Homemaker/babysitter; from US
    Specialty: 25 year(s) of experience in VA ortho med surg, medicine, home care

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  3. by   No Stars In My Eyes
    As a brand new nurse, working in a large-city teaching hospital, I think I walked around with my eyes huge and round for about a year.Ooooh, the things I saw and heard! The most shocking to me was the Christmas party for the staff of the particular bldg. I worked in ( there were nine bldgs; it was a BIG place!)There was a large 'function' room on one of the top floors, with a lot of thick support posts throughout.....and it seemed like behind every post was a couple, who were NOT a 'couple', who were , as my mother would have said....."canoodleing", and who I would say were drunkenly feeling each other all- over-more-than-any-place-else. I was amazed by my co-workers behavior, and that was the day I decided I would never date or marry a doctor!
  4. by   imintrouble
    I was a nursing student in the operating room observing, during my med/surg rotation. The surgeon was having a hard time with the lap chole as the incision wasn't big enough. I think that was it, not sure as I was still a student.
    I was SHOCKED when the surgeon started commenting on the "fat ***** on the gurney, and the rest of the OR staff either chimed in or kept silent. The pt was sedated, naked under the drapes, completely vulnerable and helpless. And the people in control were ridiculing the way she looked. What an eye opener. I have since discovered that yes, there are some things we laugh about inappropriately. There are some oddities that we can't allow to pass without a snarky comment. I am human also, as the OP said. But I'll never forget that day in surgery, and remember thinking that pt could be me.
    Last edit by dianah on Jun 30, '11 : Reason: Terms of Service: use all *s
  5. by   didi768
    No Stars..that is disgusting. Wow.
  6. by   didi768
    OMG...the lap chole made me so sad. I had that surgery and am not thin. You never know what they are saying when you are asleep. But to say that in front of you was totally innapropriate. Wow.
  7. by   No Stars In My Eyes
    When I was in my early 20's I had to have my wisdom teeth out. Because I was so freaked about dentists (another story for another post ) my oral surgeon decided it would be a good idea for me to have the procedure done through the Out-patient / one-day surgery center. I was not the best one for taking care of my teeth and had gone something like 6 years without going to the dentist and had a mouthful of cavities; the oral surgeon just couldn't believe I never suffered from toothaches, but I didn't. Fast-forward to two weeks after the procedure: I received a bill from a doctor dated for the same day as my surgery. It was a small hospital and I worked there at the time. I was very upset about the bill, so I went to this doctor's office to demand an explanation. Since I was the only person in the waiting room, I was quite frank with the nurse at the front desk. I said, "The only thing I can figure is that my oral surgeon saw this doctor in the OR suite and said "Hey, Dr. So+So, come here and look at this " (My oral health was that bad.) And after he looked in my mouth, on his way out, he checked out my chart outside the door and decided to write that up as a consult. I think it stinks!" A half-second later, that doctor came out from behind the room-divider where he'd been lurking, took the bill from his nurse, looked at it, and looked at me, and ripped up the bill and walked back into his office. I must have hit the nail right on the head; he would never even look at me after that.
  8. by   cherryames1949
    We have high ideals but we are still human. We are not immune to human failings. These stories are horrible. No one wants to think that the people we work closely with would behave this way. It should inspire us to remember that the next time we make a nasty comment about a patient or colleague that it diminishes us personally and our profession as a whole. We will never be perfect but we can try. When we fail we should try harder.
  9. by   *LadyJane*
    When I was a student ages ago, I saw a surgeon remove a uterus, and toss it like a football across the room, and when he finished closing the incision, he looked at the clock and clapped his hands together and said " a new record! X minutes this time!" (I don't remember how many minutes X was, but he was trying for speed, I guess.