I think it's nurse's week, or nurse's day, or some such hokey celebratory crack pot. If you haven't gathered by now, I don't like nurse's day. This is what I used to think, courtesy of Life & Times:
Did you know that this week is National Nurse Week? May 6th is the official Nurse's Day but it is now a full week. I've always wondered the history of Nurse's Day. Did it come from Hallmark much like Mother's Day, Father's Day, Grandparent's Day, etc? Or did it come from an advocacy movement to make the public more aware of nursing?
I must say I have a love-hate relationship with this holiday. I love that perhaps someone will acknowledge what nurses do and what we have to offer. And I hate how hokey it all is.
My first Nurse's Day as an RN consisted of the Director of Nursing standing in the lobby of the facility handing out bandage scissors. I got to choose which color handle I wanted. I chose purple and still carry them around in my pocket at work, so it was clearly a useful gift. But I remember the look on the DON's face as she was passing these out: Ya, I know this is really cheap but it would be cheaper if we did nothing.
The next few Nurse's Day come up blank. I can't remember any of the festivities surrounding the holiday at subsequent places of employment. The only one I can remember outside of my current job was during my mental breakdown of 2002 when I decided I was all done with nursing. Of course, as you know I am still a nurse, but those 6 weeks I decided to make an impromptu mental health vacation was probably one of the better Nurse's Day festivities I've had.
Oh wait, I just remembered that I did get a plastic cup one year saying I am a valued employee. And yes, I still use it.
My current job hangs a big banner saying "Nurse's Week" at the main entrance. They offer us a free continental breakfast one day during the week, which many don't make it to for the obvious reasons: we are too busy to take the break to leave the unit.
I admit that as a new nurse I was guilty of owning a few of these items. I had a syringe pen; I remember it totally sucked. The ink was blotching and the "medication" in the syringe dried up. I even had a co-ed naked t-shirt that said something like "Nurse's stick butts" or something like that while I was in college (they were big back then, what can I say?). I guess my enthusiasm for my fledgling career needed to be expressed in hokey items.
But not any more. I cringe when I get scrubs catalogs in the mail and see Tweety Bird and Scooby Doo. I cringe even more when I see nurses wearing these scrubs, especially when they don't work in pediatrics. This shit is so unprofessional. If we want to better the profession of nursing, uplift it's image, we need to stop looking like we are wearing our teeny bopper pajamas to work. We could use nurse's day or week (or whatever we want to call the time frame) to show the public the value of nursing and that it takes a professional to do the great nursing things we do.