By: Louise Allyn Palma
Every day, nurses take on a multi-faceted role in the health care system to deliver safe, quality and compassionate care to communities around the world. Michael Garron Hospital (MGH) is proud to celebrate National Nursing Week by speaking to different individuals in the nursing practice and sharing their stories and advice for the next generation of nurses.
Today, we shine a light on MGH Registered Nurse, Violeta Lopez.
MGH News: “What do you wish you knew back in nursing school that you know now?”
Violeta: When I first started nursing, I assumed it was simply about giving medications, changing diapers, charting and tasks similar to this. But nursing is so much more than this. I wish I knew how much there is to give as a nurse, and how much of a responsibility it is.
You are being relied on to take care of someone’s life.
I did not expect how much emotion was given to a patient as a nurse. You have to let the patient know that you’re not just being sympathetic, but also compassionate to how they feel and you’re constantly working to get that across. And it can be draining. But the rewarding part for me is when I’m being appreciated as a nurse, especially by the patient and their family. That is my lifeline as a nurse.
MGH News: “What advice would you give your 19-year-old self?”
Violeta: I’ve been in the nursing profession for 31 years. Yet every day, even until now I’m always learning. Regardless if you’ve finished your degree or four years of nursing school – every day is a process of learning. Even now, I remind myself of that. And so, I would say don’t go against change, embrace it and learn from that change. Try to have a positive outlook on any challenges you meet every day.