How I react when someone interrupts my lunch with a ridiculous issue that has gotten their panties all in a wad…
Hi! First off, I love your blog! I found it awhile ago and enjoy scrolling through often! I’m in a senior in high school and getting ready to pursue a premed education with the intent to specialize in peds. I’m currently in outpatient treatment for an ED and I’m extremely close with my doctor. (She’s my mentor) I see her interact every week with nurses, MA’s, receptionists, phlibotimists, and other doctors. She treats each with equal respect, kindness and gratitude. I’ve never understood when doctors are rude to nurses, and I hope to mirror my doctor in the interactions and friendships she’s forged with her colleagues. What do nurses appreciate/desire most from the physicians they work with? I think we need to start a nationwide shakeup of the health care system, and a great place to start is work place relations. Thank you for taking the time to read this, :)
[So someone asked this from their blog and I wasn’t sure if they were okay with me publishing a response with a link to their page so I’m re-posting this way and hope that’s okay to the awesome person who took the time to ask this.]
First of all, as always, thank you for the kind words! I’m glad you’ve enjoyed reading my blog. And I’m glad to hear that you’re in treatment for your ED. You must have an incredible amount of strength. Keep up the good fight, okay?
Yay for future doctors! (and peds especially!) I’m so glad that you’ve had a positive experience and role model with your doctor. I agree that workplace relationships have to improve across the board. And I appreciate you realizing that there are some docs out there that aren’t quite so nice. But I want to let you in on a secret… sometimes us nurses… well… we can be equally if not more guilty of perpetuating the cycle. (see blog posts that make fun of interns on my own blog for example)
I’ve heard nurses bully their own and bully new doctors who are just trying to learn. And of course I’ve heard doctors walk away without giving the nurse the time she/he deserves (especially when I know that they’re right!)
Speaking for me personally, everyone I work with, every single person you mentioned in your question, plus so many more just want to be treated with respect and to be treated like they matter.
We’re all equals. I can’t do my job without the docs and they can’t do their job without me. But we both can’t do our jobs without the care partners, or the supply coordinators, or the person who makes meals, or the person who answers the phones, or the person who signs my paycheck at the end of the week. Every single person working in a hospital is an essential piece. If one goes missing we can’t continue to do what we’re all there to do: care for our patient.
Kindness, humility, a good sense of humor, a willingness to collaborate and teach and know that we’re always learning… those are the qualities in my favorite doctors that I work with. I’m pretty blessed to work with quite a few… way more than the other way around. And those that I do run into that have an “attitude problem” well… I’ve come to learn that maybe they’ve just had to give some parents some pretty terrible news, or maybe they just haven’t had their morning cup of coffee yet. We’re all human and all imperfect and we all just need to give each other a little bit of grace sometimes. I know I’ve received it when I didn’t deserve it. All I can do then is pay it forward.
I hope this answers your question! Thanks for asking as always and good luck with achieving all of your goals! Maybe we’ll even work together one day…
The National Association of Neonatal Nurses (NANN) Conference starts tomorrow…
… and I’m so freaking happy to be going! Three days of instruction and learning and being with so many neonatal nurses and neonatologists! I could scream!
I am a nerd, this was always me in school:
And it’s only gotten worse as I’ve gotten older and had experience teaching myself. And I love conferences and workshops…
So I’ve spent the last couple of hours mapping out my schedule and looking at all my handouts and generally, just looking like this on my couch:
Yeah… it’s going to be a great three days.
I’m going to start volunteering at the local hospital this week in their NICU. I’m really excited, it’s what I’ve wanted to do since I was in middle school, and I’m a senior in college now. But I’m really nervous and scared. I’ll be (hopefully) going to graduate school next fall for nursing with a track in NNP. Do you have any words of wisdom or advice? And I’m afraid I’ll experience it firsthand and then for some reason I won’t want to go for my NNP and I’ll have no idea what I’ll want to do.
That’s great that you’re going to get to volunteer in the NICU and get a sneak peek of what that nursing specialty has to offer.
If you’re going to actually have the opportunity to do some nursing related tasks, click here for a post with some information that I typed out for another student.
As far as advice goes, I think for your situation I would tell you to just enjoy the ride. You’re either still in nursing school now or about to start it (sorry I couldn’t tell from your post) which means there are still a lot of experiences to be had. I truly hope that the NICU is everything you wish it to be, but it’s okay if it’s not. (Repeat after me: It’s okay if it’s not.)
The hard thing about nursing is that for so many of us it is a calling. It’s not just picking some major and going out there and getting any old job. It is a lifestyle. It has the potential to affect our lives just as much if not more than the patients who come under our charge.
So when you worry about not liking the specialty, it’s not the same as saying, “Hmm… I really don’t like working in retail. Maybe I’ll get an office job instead.” It’s saying, “Dear god, is this thing, this dream I have for my life a possibility? Is it going to be as beautiful and meaningful as I’ve worked it up in my mind to be?”
Maybe you’ll like it, maybe you won’t. But remember with any nursing job there are going to be days where we turn our eyes upward and shake our fists at the heavens and scream, “Why the hell am I doing this???” But most days, when we’re where we’re supposed to be, we are filled with the peace of knowing that what we do makes a difference for our patients and for ourselves.
You’ll find your niche either way. I promise! I know this first-hand. When I started the nurse residency program I was just sure that I wanted to work in pediatric hematology/oncology. And guess what? When I had my shift rotation through that department, I didn’t like it! It wasn’t what I thought it was going to be. But I fell in love with the NICU, (ironically enough, my first nursing love way back to the days of high school), and fortunately for me that’s where I landed.
Sure, I was surprised that I didn’t like heme/onc. I was already a member of the Oncology Nursing Society and I had volunteered in an adult oncology clinic before, so I felt I had a realistic expectation of what I would see. I had in my mind that I was going to work there.
But I didn’t know what I didn’t know! I didn’t know that I love being in a critical care environment. I didn’t know that I would love working with infants. I didn’t know that I would love the dynamic that is created between the families and the NICU team.
But getting out there and experiencing it with an open mind… keeping your eyes and ears and heart open… taking everything in… that’s what this experience can afford you. Many people don’t have this type of opportunity. So enjoy it for what it is. A glimpse into what your future may be. Learn what you can while you’re there. Talk to nurses and ask them what it is about their job that they love. What do they hate? What makes them come back shift after shift?
Stay in the moment, anon. Everything else can fall into place afterwards.
I really hope this helps. Write back and let me know how it’s going!