Personal experiences…

Nursing hasn’t always been my profession. I first became a practical nurse in my early 30’s, after having a career in accounting. Although I had a late start as a nurse, it was something I had always had an interest in. After graduating from high school, I went to an information session for enrollment into nursing. I don’t recall one particular issue that stopped me, but I’m sure it was multi-factorial with issues of money, self-esteem, and/or relationships at the time. Not long after going to this info session, I got married and started my family. In 1990, my 2nd child, a son, was born with a blood group incompatibility…

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At 8 days old, my child was dying from a rare blood disorder. His skin was grey, his breathing labored, and he was inconsolable. We had his 1-week check-up scheduled and although he started having symptoms the evening before, we delayed taking him to the doctor because we were thinking maybe he was just a fussy baby, or maybe it was colic. He had been born with spots of jaundice and his colour was never great, so we didn’t notice the gradual skin color change from yellow to grey. We, my 15-month old daughter, the new baby, and I, arrived at the doctor’s office and checked in. I had been a patient in that office since I was a child, so of course when I arrived with a baby the receptionist wanted a “peek” at the newborn. She glanced at my son and then swiftly disappeared, little did I know she was getting the doctor…I think I should have been more afraid when the doc took a peek at the baby and then went to get another doctor who also practiced in the building…

The next thing I knew I was receiving instructions about heading to the hospital. 1. Go directly to the ED! 2. Do not make any stops! 3. There will be a team waiting for you! Holy Crap?!? What!?! I was a few days away from turning 21, I had my daughter in tow, I was 8 days postpartum, and I had no idea what was about to happen. I loaded the kids in the car and headed to the hospital. As I drove past my mother’s work, I thought…I should stop and get her…NO, go directly to the ED! This was before everyone owned a cell phone, so no one would know that I needed them until I arrived at the ED. Later we questioned the Doc about his choice to send me directly to the ED verses an ambulance. He response was, he didn’t feel the child would live if we waited…fullsizeoutput_1e3e.jpeg

As I walked into the ED, a nurse with the most beautiful blue eyes met me, his name was Gordon, he took my child car seat and all, and disappeared into the back of the ED where I could not see or go. After completing the paperwork, calling my mom and mother-in-law, I was escorted to the family room, to wait. It was a very long day with hardly any updates, I was so thankful for my mother who consistently “checked on” the baby and came back with a few details each time she was “escorted” away. Eventually, we were updated but it wasn’t good news. My 1-week old baby had little to no red blood cells (those things that carry oxygen to our brains), he was requiring a blood transfusion to stabilize him, but he was critically ill and required transportation to children’s hospital. Our lives just took a detour…

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It was at the special care nursery (SCN) where those amazing nurses cared for both the baby and me. It was there that my son received an exchange transfusion, which was basically a flush and fill, and after almost a month of issues, he came home to challenge the predicted outcome of developmental delays and illnesses. He is an amazing young man, who defied all the odds! He is currently serving his country, and we are so proud of the man he has become!

Although my son’s illness was horrific, and this brief story does not tell it all; It was at the SCN I learned so much about myself and saw my own potential and my future as a nurse. Spending time in that space, I watched, learned, and began to understand caring. It was many years later before I would have the means to start nursing, but this is where it was planted in my heart. clpart-panda-free-heart-clip-art-5bbba22646e0fb002634bc51

And the rest is history…

Did you have an “event” that propelled you into your job? I would love to hear your story! Leave your story in the comments!

fullsizeoutput_1e3c.jpeg Trudi

some images have an unknown source, no copyright infringement is intended

4 thoughts on “Personal experiences…

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