The Cape: One Nurse's Personal Reflection


In honor of Nurses Week, NARMC hosted a vintage uniform contest. One nurse wore a cape that had been worn by a hero during the WWII era. She may or may not have seen a battlefield of war, but I am sure she battled. I’m sure she fought many battles for her patients. No one knows the many difficulties that she faced. She was a nurse.

Sheila Hurd, RN, worked alongside that particular nurse during her first job after nursing school.

“She took me under her wing,” Sheila recalls.

This nurse had been a nurse a long time when Sheila started working with her. She protected her from making mistakes at times. She encouraged her. She shared valuable knowledge. When she was diagnosed with cancer and knew her time on Earth was almost over, she gave her vintage WWII cape to Sheila as a keepsake. This cape was more than just a cape. It was a mantle passed from one brave woman to another. This nurse had made sure that when her work was done, Sheila was prepared to carry on the work of caring for people.

This made me think of my interaction with young nurses. No one may see the cape, but it is there. All of us wear one. Whether we plan to or not, we pass on a cape.

I hope that my cape is made up of words of encouragement, patient teaching, guidance and a love for people. I hope that young nurses capture a sense of pride in what they do because they see people, their mentors, passionate about the job that they do. I hope that they strive for greatness because they see people of excellence all around them. I am proud to be a part of a team that cultivates such a positive, uplifting environment. I hope young nurses know that at NARMC, they are surrounded by people who are invested in their success.

I was a young nurse once. I remember the people who took the time to invest in me. I knew they were busy, but they still let me place the IV or the foley catheter. I remember being so excited when I was successful and the encouragement they gave when I failed. I am beyond grateful to those who chose to invest in me. I hope I can carry on the work that they began.

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Photos on this website are provided by Vowell Publishing, Inc. and NARMC.