When I retired as a nurse in 2011, I never thought about missing the feeling that I was contributing to making the world a better place. I helped patients recover from their illnesses, assisted in healing wounds, taught them how to care for themselves by giving them the tools they needed to be independent, but mostly listened to them. I listened to their complaints, their goals and their feelings of helplessness and we together worked on plans for achieving their success.
About 6 months after I retired, as I was sewing my umpteenth dog dress, I started feeling that what I was doing was not important to the whole scheme of things. I started to remember comments made about how selling dog clothes was trivial and much like putting lipstick on a pig. I started to feel quite useless.
But....yesterday something happened that has changed my outlook.
I received a message from a previous customer.
Her precious puppy had died unexpectedly.
She wanted me to know that she buried her pup in my dress.
It made her smile a little.
I still know that making dog dresses is certainly not as important as nursing.
I want to send accolades and hugs to all nurses everywhere.
May you all keep being awesome and some day retire with the feeling that you have changed the world one patient at a time.
I now plan to change the world one precious puppy at a time.