Yesterday I had the pleasure and privilege of witnessing the graduating class of 2012 from the Nursing program at Merritt College. The speakers imparted their last words of encouragement and wisdom as these new nurses-- men and women--would go out into the world to help care for people and to put people at ease when they need it the most, inside of sterile hospitals, that though filled with people, can feel like the human element is missing. I was so proud to be a part of the applause, the tears, the joy, the celebration of these new nurses.
The human element was held high. Don't forget that as you're charting and dealing with instruments--don't forget that there's a human there sitting or lying in the bed. Take the time to ask how they are doing. Take it slow, be mindful, compassionate--and be flexible. These were some of the words of wisdom that were imparted to these nurses. And all the while I was thinking YES. Not only yes, but why aren't these simple human principles practiced in daily life? Too often were in a hurry. Too often smiles are nonexistent. Too often we grow impatient.
As I sat in the audience amongst the families and friends of these graduates, I felt proud and for a few moments I wanted to be a nurse. I wanted to be part of a profession that touches lives. I know nursing is not my path, but being a part of this celebration affirms for me that helping in some way is in me--it always has been--and that I'm no longer able to feel this joy in my own job--at least not to my capabilities and desires.
A week ago I began a process to go in that direction--on a voluntary basis--in the direction of being helpful in a small way, to hopefully brighten someone's day. I hope that along the way, I gain the courage that I need to find a new career path or find a mix that will allow me to both make a living and make a difference. For now, if the process goes well, it will be enough.