“Could you pass me that urine bottle so I can have a wee young man?’ the elderly patient had asked me.
“Of course I can, there you go mate” I had replied.
This was back in 2008 at Crawley hospital, in West sussex. The scene above happened on my second day working on the Stroke rehab unit and I hadn’t even learned how to take a manual blood pressure yet. But I knew one thing was for certain after hearing these words which formulated probably the most profound question that I had ever been asked.
The moment that older guy had asked me to pass the bottle, and the very fact that I was able to help in such a simple way that was enough to generate a smile from him, I knew I wanted to be a qualified nurse.
After what happened to me 5 years ago, some people might decide that justice can only ever be partially achieved if I win my court case. But they’d be wrong.
I have already won
Here’s why I’ve won. And yes, you can read this out in court.
I started my first university placement a bit earlier than other people, it took me a bit longer. Whereas most student nurses started nearly three years ago back in 2014, It had (officially) started in 2012 for me.
Everything that’s happened has led me to where I am today. I knew the odds were stacked against me, I have put my family through a lot. But they have stood behind and supported me every step of the way. Through all the loss, tears, pain, suffering and struggle that I have put myself and consequently them through, they never stopped believing in me.
It has been a rollercoaster of emotions and a seemingly never-ending struggle that often left my soul feeling utterly destroyed time and time again. I also doubted my ability for such a long time, but I promised myself to keep trying and never give up believing.
Every memory lapse, every fatigue attack, every extreme dizzy spell that left me barely able to walk in a straight line, the torture of my nightmares, every person I thought of as a friend but chose to betray me instead and the loss of time which I could have spent with my daughter.. the list was growing by the days, months and years.
Today, my mum and I agreed that had I of just kicked in the nursing when I was advised to, we would all have settled down a long time ago.
But I am completely myself when I am nursing. Although there are shit loads of really crappy symptoms, I still feel that the passion and love I have for children is being put to use every moment that I’m proudly wearing my uniform.
I said I‘d die trying to be able to call myself a nurse, so fate heard me and tried to arrange it back in 2012. After I survived that I then I said I’d go through hell again to be a nurse. So fate arranged that for me too.
Heck I’d even give Donald Trump a kiss and tell him he’s doing a great job if it meant I could get to be a nurse. Let’s just hope fate doesn’t arrange that one for me though.
Whether it be nursing, working as a doctor, playing football, working as a plumber, rocket scientist, vet or even picking up rubbish for a living.. if Reese enjoys doing it, I’ll tell her you need to know in your heart that you’d do anything and stop at nothing to get it.
What about the pain, loss, betrayal and struggle you experience along the way?
Use it to turn yourself into a torpedo heading for it’s target. Keep believing and when things get tough just remember why you started.
My last placement is on a children’s neurosurgery ward. Fate is a wonderful thing.
Some of you guys have been supporting my blogs from the start, and I’m truly thankful for your support, it’s appreciated more than you know. You know how much this means to me and how I’ve held on by the skin of my teeth during some pretty rocky moments over the past five years. But when all is said and done, it all comes down to this.. just one more.