I’m often asked this question, and I thought I would share it here on the blog.
Prior to my nursing clinical rotation on the pediatric unit, I never considered myself to be a pediatric nurse. I was always afraid of ill children; for, the thought of a sick child was mentally and emotionally encumbering. I complained about the semester before it started, and I sat in class wishing I didn’t have to complete the rotation. One of my professors became aware of my fear of ill children, and she met with me after class to inquire about my fear. I stated, “Its just not for me.” Seeing that I wasn’t able to fully verbalize the reason of my fear, my professor suggested I get over that fear by confronting it.
I reluctantly obliged.
On January 29, 2014, my view of pediatric nursing was changed forever. I will never forget the patient I was assigned to—a three week-old neonate who was suffering from a urinary tract infection and oral thrush. Immediately, my instinct was not to only be this patient’s advocate, but to also care for him as if he was my own child. I barely left his side, and I made sure to keep him comforted during my nursing interventions. At the end of that clinical, I cried. My tears weren’t of sadness; they were of joy. Out of all of the units that I had experienced for clinical, the pediatric unit filled me with a positive spirit that I had never felt before. It was at that moment that I knew what type of nurse I would be—a pediatric nurse. My instructor was proud of me, and I was proud of myself. I also learned a valuable lesson; never let fear prevent you from trying new things. Too often we fear what we don’t know, and that fear could be hindering us from living in our fullest potential.
I’m now living my dream as a pediatric Registered Nurse, and it’s wonderful. To watch children go from illness to wellness is amazing, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.