I don’t usually use this blog to rant about high profile stories. But the discussion held on The View and their ridicule of Miss Colorado really ticked me off. For Kelley Johnson to share her talent on stage in front of millions of viewers was an extraordinary act of courage and one that I hope will change many of the fallacies about this profession.
Misconceptions about nurses and nursing abound, and I vowed years ago that I would do what I could to help educate the world about who and what we really are.
I vividly recall the day when my book, Reclaiming the Passion – Stories that Celebrate the Essence of Nursing was born. I was 19 years old and in my sophomore year of nursing at the University of Wisconsin—Madison. I was sitting in a lecture where one of my professors was talking about how nurses were portrayed in the media. The images depicted ranged from the subservient handmaiden to the naughty nurse. Seeing her slides and hearing her talk about my profession like this honestly outraged me. I knew then that I needed to share our story in a way that would speak to the heart.
Dozens of nurses shared their stories with me, revealing not only the work, but their connection to purpose. Some of their stories were heartwarming and uplifting while others were heartbreaking. Some made the reader laugh and others made them cry. But all of their stories leave the reader with a richer understanding about what makes the nursing profession great.
When the women on The View made their disparaging remarks, it was clear to me that they have no concept of the amount of brains, courage, and heart it takes to be a nurse. Although I no longer do bedside nursing, I am and always feel proud to call myself a nurse. So to all the nurses who were also outraged by their comments—keep reclaiming the passion.