Congratulations on being a nurse!
I am honored to join you as members of the most trusted profession. Our road is not an easy one, but oh, the rewards!
Becoming a nurse is both painful and difficult. Remember how much we sacrificed and how hard we studied? As young people we confronted the realities of life and death daily and finally reached our objective: Graduation!
Next came NCLEX – or, as we once called it, “the boards”. We studied night and day to succeed in these high-stakes exams. How proud we were when our licenses arrived!
Yet that was our very beginning. We began the work of meeting needs, setting goals, and helping patients be the best they could possibly be.
Ultimately, everyone is a patient and Our Patients are our first priority. We care for them in ways no one else can. We care for people when they are too ill to be at home.
There is only one reason why a patient is admitted to a hospital: Our presence 24/7.
We care for people in their communities, in their homes, help them be born, to give birth, to live the best lives they can. And, when they are no longer able to live, to leave this life in comfort and with dignity.
Not surprisingly, there are too few of us. Nationally, there are 6 nurses to care for every 1000 people. In Hawaii, there are fewer than 2.
We are gifted in our abilities and are spread too thinly. And, sadly, in caring for others, neglect ourselves.
Nurses are notoriously selfless. Research shows that we sleep little, eat poorly, and experience stress, over-stress, and burn-out.
And so, my colleagues, carers and friends, as we begin 2020, the Year of the Nurse, I challenge you to care for yourself the way you care for others. Rest. Eat well. Take exercise. Love yourself as you love others.
World Health Organization declares 2020 is Year of the Nurse and Midwife! Join us and celebrate International Women’s Day and Year of the Nurse at our two day conference March 10 and 11, 2020!