Friday, April 03, 2009

Nursing: A license to serve

Nursing, in essence, is all about service. Service for other people, the ill and the well. We all know that, especially us nurses. But sometimes we forget that essence, and so practising our profession becomes a little more difficult and challenging. When we remember the ultimate aim of nursing, our tasks become lighter, because we know why we do what we do. Even though many times during the course of our work we may experience all kinds of negative emotional experiences and stress, it helps to be reminded that since nursing is all about service and providing care, our emotional responses and personal gripes don't really matter much. In other words, it's not about us, it's about them, our clients.

Every one of us, including those who are not in the health care profession, have the ability to serve. We have the ability to fulfill our obligations to one another. But nursing, since it's a profession, gives us the ability to provide high-level care. That gives us the opportunity to help more people, especially those who have more unique health needs. If all professions are noble, how much more is nursing, which is all about giving direct care to clients? Other non-health care professions help people in many ways, more often indirectly, but the health care professions, including nursing, give hand-on service. It is service which is so personal, since a nurse can actually interact with his or her clients eye to eye while serving them.

I really believe that as nurses, we are in a very privileged position, because we have the ability to help so many people. We have the ability to fulfill our obligation to other people on a daily basis, in the course of our work. We have the ability to practice what Jesus preached when he told the story of the Good Samaritan. In the eyes of God, those who are great are those who serve others. Therefore, we as nurses, together with those in the health care profession, have the tremendous privilege of practicing greatness.
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