“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, and honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.” –Leo Buscagalia
When you have a baby, most people are surprised by the fact that their primary doctor is not present throughout the whole labor. In fact, your primary doctor is often not present throughout much of the delivery. He or she shows up at the very end, catches the baby, hands it off to a nurse, and then deals with any serious complications that might arise.
Throughout my 23 hours of labor, my doctor was in the room with me for all of 30 minutes. The rest of the time, it was up to my husband and the nurses to keep me calm, keep my morale up, and fetch ice chips when I started to complain about how dry my mouth felt.
The nurses I worked with did a great job of treating me with respect and dignity. They did a great job of listening to my concerns and providing me with honest answers in a nonpatronizing tone. When I was tired and wanted to give up, they encouraged me to just hold on a little bit longer. When I desperately needed some sleep, they made feel less guilty about handing my newborn off for a few hours so I could get some rest.
These nurses are the unsung heroes of the hospital. They work long shifts, do the least desirable of tasks, and unlike the doctors who show up at only the most critical of moments, they are with their patients day-in and day-out. They deserve some praise.
When Oliver was born I never got a chance to properly thank all the nurses that assisted me. Since I’m a “better late than never” kind of person, I decided to use my random acts of kindness project as the perfect excuse to show them my appreciation. I heard through the grapevine that individually wrapped edible gifts are always a hit so in the spirit of the Halloween season I purchased a large bag of candy. I dumped it into a pail adorned with my RAOK sticker and then included a message of thanks. I figure sine they helped deliver my baby, the least I can do is deliver them a gift of gratitude.
I’d be interested to know if any nurses out there have seen this done and how it was received. Was candy a good choice? Comment below!