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What Re-ignites You? December 7, 2006

Posted by manthey in Creative Health Care Management, Inspiration, Thought for today, Values.
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This past week I’ve had the pleasure to work with nurses in Arkansas and Missouri. I continue to be amazed at how simple truths about the nature of our work touch nurses deeply. At no time have I been with hard-shell attitudes or cynical skepticism.

Not that skepticism and resistance isn’t there. It’s just that when we strip away the “problem seeking” approaches we customarily use, there is an incredible source of positive energy waiting to be tapped. I don’t remember this positive energy being so apparent in the past.

There seems to be a much stronger recognition of the values that form the base of our profession. I sense a belief that we have solutions to problems caused by dysfunctional systems but we just aren’t sure how to go about implementing them. I hear a clear appreciation of the importance of our intellect and our compassion

I am encouraged by the whole notion of Re-igniting the Spirit. I want to hear from like nurses whose spirit has been re-ignited. Tell us how it happened and what it means to you on a daily basis.

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1. Heidi - February 3, 2015

What a great way of stepping back, Marie!

“When we strip away the “problem seeking” approaches we customarily use, there is an incredible source of positive energy waiting to be tapped…I hear a clear appreciation of the importance of our intellect and our compassion.” I couldn’t agree more!

I was working for a case management company in 2007 when I received a call from my office asking if I would please drive to a town 50 miles north of the city to meet a young boy and his mother. This young boy’s family was awarded a special needs trust after a birth accident and was in need of a Special Needs Case Manager; his trust management company out of Colorado arranged for four case managers to meet the young boy’s mother that week, the plan being that she would select from those whom she met.

I called the young mother and arranged to meet her and Charlie that week. I arrived to find a very pregnant 21 year old mom and Charlie. Charlie was a 3year old who had suffered an anoxic brain injury and, as a result, had spastic CP, a developmental delay, a seizure disorder, and a feeding tube. All that aside, he was clearly able to communicate with and acknowledge the love of his young mother.

I joined the young mom and Charlie for the bulk of the afternoon on the floor of their family room, learning from mom Charlie’s story. After hearing about Charlie’s complex history and observing how well mom was managing things and seeing the barriers she faced, we talked through what next steps might look like if I partnered with her. We also talked about how she was feeling about her impending delivery and her fears for “what will I do with two?”

As I was leaving, I asked her to let me know after she met all of the case managers her decision and we would go from there. She said, there wouldn’t be any more case managers visiting, I was it.

She said she had other case managers visit who told her everything she was doing wrong and she always felt at fault. She said I was the first one to play with Charlie, ask her to tell her story, ask her about how she was doing, to tell her everything she was doing right and offer her whatever help she wanted to make her and Charlie’s life better.

I served the family as a case manager for four years. Mom and I advocated and received a stander for Charlie, a new fitted wheelchair, a bath chair that rolled in and out of the shower, a handicapped van, diaper delivery, medication delivery, a sleep study, more PCA hours, and advocacy at all hospital visits. I was but a phone call away, and it was a lovely partnership with mom as the leader of Charlie’s team.


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