OK, I can’t help myself. I’m in an incredibly silly mood as I sit to write my blog today.  And I was thinking about how we as nurses see the world differently from “normal” folks. We are a sister- and brotherhood of odd humorists. Because if we can’t laugh at it, we can’t be a nurse!

You know you’re a nurse when … :

… You totally get this: How many doctors does it take to change a light bulb?

Three: One to find a nurse to bring the light bulb; one to find a bulb specialist; one to bill it to Medicare.

… This note in the chart makes sense to you:

“Resident stated she had a long history of constipation until she got divorced.”

When waiting in line at the store where the person in front of you and the clerk are just chatting away, you find yourself saying, “It’s OK. I’m good at waiting. I have lots of patience!”

… This note in the chart makes sense to you:

“On the second day after the fall, her knee looked better. On day post three it was gone.”

… Your kindergartner tells their teacher, “I don’t think a timeout will work for Robby. He probably needs Ativan.”

… This note in the chart makes sense to you:

(For a resident in for short-term rehab:) “Resident lives at home with her daughter and son-in-law and pet turtle who is presently enrolled in a day care program.”

… You don’t even blink when reviewing the history in a new resident’s chart and see she has had a previous hip fracture and you ask if she had been bedridden and she answers, “Not since my husband passed.”

Lastly, you know you’re a nurse when it hits you: This isn’t just a job — it’s a calling, a way of life!

Please share your own “you know you’re a nurse when” in the comment section below. I know you’ve got something to share!

Just keeping it real,

Nurse Jackie

The Real Nurse Jackie is written by Jacqueline Vance, RNC, CDONA/LTC — a real life long-term care nurse who is also the director of clinical affairs for the American Medical Directors Association. A nationally respected nurse educator and past national LTC Nurse Administrator of the Year, she also is an accomplished stand-up comedienne. She has not starred in her own national television series — yet.