On Nursing and Mother’s Day

It’s no coincidence that Mother’s Day falls during National Nurses Week. Definitions of nursing include:

  • caring for the sick and infirm, especially as a profession
  • holding closely and carefully
  • taking special care of, especially to promote development or well-being
  • feeding (a baby) at the breast

My own mother is also a nurse — so too are my step-mother, numerous female relatives, and a large number of friends and acquaintances. Not all of them are mothers; not all of them are women. It’s an honorable profession, worthy of being termed “a calling”. In my limited, unprofessional, bystander’s opinion, it’s not for the faint of heart.

Neither is motherhood. Nursing children, whether that means literally feeding them from oneself or raising them up to be worthwhile adults, is work and don’t ever let anybody tell you otherwise. My inner teenage self insists that had I thought things through, I probably wouldn’t have had a kid of my own.

In the OR

She’s probably right. It’s hard. And messy. Sometimes gross. Frequently chaotic. So freaking emotional. And HARD.

But it’s also incredibly rewarding, which I hear said about the nursing profession as well. Motherhood has been profoundly satisfying and a greater source of joy than I have ever known.

So if you know a nurse or a mother, say something kind to them this weekend. If you know someone who is both a nurse and a mother, they deserve a cup of coffee at the least. (Chocolate or flowers are usually good, too. Possibly jewelry.)

Too often it’s a thankless job, but they keep at it.

Why? Beats me. But thank God they do.

P.S. Mom and Vicki, you’re the hardest working women I know. I don’t say it often enough, but thanks for everything you do. Love you.

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