I challenge you to take a moment right now to list every nurse you have encountered in your life…whether personally or professionally. I’m confident the majority of people do not have a sufficiently detailed memory or a sheet of paper long enough to document the associations!
I hold nurses in my heart with esteem and gratitude …. especially during the pandemic. I see nurses as the angels who are carrying the sick and the families of the sick down this road to recovery.
Being a nurse means you carry immense responsibility and very little authority. You step into peoples lives and make a difference. Some bless you, others curse you. Nurses see people at their worst and their best. Nurses see life begin and lives end. They see humanity’s capacity for love, courage and endurance.
Without any forethought or planning other than marriage, I moved to a smaller town of 15,000, give or take, in the heartland. It was a predominantly white town of blue collar Maytag workers…lots of union workers…my first impression as an outsider…kind of a clique town. I finally landed a well paying job for the county sheriffs office, made a lot of friends, helped organize labor union representation for county workers, volunteered in the community and raised 2 successful daughters. Through most of my life in this small town/county, my only real political problems involved going up against the old white men republicans that sat at the head of the county board of supervisors when we negotiated union contracts and my hatred of these same old white men every winter when my gravel roads became impassable. Rather an idealic life, wouldn’t you say?
Then Maytag up and left the community for Mexico and was later sold to the Whirlpool Company. A state prison was built south of town, crime increased which I will always believe had something to do with the inmate population being in the back yard, we acquired a more significant drug problem, I have no facts or figures on the percentages but I maintain we spent a lot of time, money and energy on a lot of lost souls whom I referred to as dirt bags….unless you have worked as a public service employee……law enforcement, health services….you just don’t know what is out there…..and you really don’t want to know.
Now 40 years later, I have been changed. I look at the plight of these dirt bags differently, I maintain their lifestyle is the result of years of poor, broken families who just gave up on their kids and their kids, etc. I believe they escaped their hardships with drugs and everything else to make themselves feel good in the moment and this cycle of survival began. I understand this lack of compassion and hatefulness pouring out of our conservative D.C. Government….the dregs of society draining our coffers because they are lazy and refuse to work. For the most part I understand it….I don’t agree with it because I have become one of those bleeding heart liberals….. but I understand the mentality.
BUT ISNT HEALTH CARE….LIFE AND DEATH…..A RIGHT WE SHOULD HAVE AS AMERICANS…..AS HUMAN BEINGS ON THIS PLANET….especially in contrast with the billions and billions of dollars available for everything else? Don’t we deserve a right to LIVE above and beyond every other perk in the United States of America?
Until next time….