Letter 1 of 10: To the Nurse Struggling Right Now...

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Letter 1 of 10: To the Nurse Struggling Right Now...

Intro from Erin Smital, Nursing Professional Development Educator & Nurse Residency Coordinator, RWHC:

I want to take a moment and share an incredible experience I have recently been a part of here at RWHC. We offer a Nurse Residency Program that is designed for the new graduate nurse. It is structured around monthly learning sessions, with a focus on providing an interactive, reflective and enriched learning environment. The program is designed to enhance recruitment/retention of the new graduate nurse and support their transition into a competent practitioner. I am proud to announce that we recently completed year 17 of this program and in doing so asked that our participants write an open letter to "The nurse struggling right now... ". The original intention of these letters was to share them with the year 18 participants. After speaking with the participants and reviewing the letters, I realized that these kind words of support and encouragement are meant for a larger audience... they are meant for every nurse, in every position, in every stage of their career.

    LETTER 1
Welcome to the crazy world of nursing. You joined at a time that was not ideal. It probably isn’t what you imagined it’d be. You walked onto the floor of your first shift greeted with N95s and gowns – not smiles and hugs. You have probably questioned many times by now what exactly you’re doing. What exact role you have. If this is the way it will always be. I want you to know that you’re valued by someone out there. It may not be your boss or your co-workers. However, there is someone. It may have been a past patient that you spent that extra 5 minutes with. It may be the family member you called with an update. It may even be the pharmacy tech who ran up a med for you and you were the only one who told them 'thank you' that day. Do not base your value on how many people openly tell you they appreciate. I just need you to believe you are valued, appreciated, and loved even when no one says it. This profession needs you. These patients need you. Take your time to cry about the shift you had. Let yourself fell the emotions. The next day I need you to show up with a fresh outlook on a new day. Don’t be afraid to talk to your peers because I PROMISE we’ve been there, too. You don’t always have to have a good day. But I need you to have some sort of a day. Please keep your head up. Please reach out. Please keep touching lives.

- A fellow struggling nurse

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