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This is for all CNAs.

Posted by on May. 7, 2007 at 7:13 PM
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I'm Only A CNA...

I am the one, in many people's lives, who provides them with their basic human needs. What others may take for granted; washing, dressing, bathing, eating -- some people are unable to perform these tasks for themselves anymore and they depend on me. I am the one who goes to great lengths to maintain their privacy and dignity while helping them do things that only a few years ago they were doing on their own. I am the one they rage at, venting their frustration, anger, confusion and fear. I am the one who performs care, even though doing so will often put me in the position of being physically and verbally abused at the hands of those I care for.

I am the one who rides out the storms of my Alzheimer's patients right alongside of them. I am the one who searches high and low throughout the building for a misplaced item that one of the patients is desperately looking for. I am the one who hears "I want to go home" from the lips of my patients sometimes several times a night, and comforts them the best way I know how.

I am the one offering hugs and smiles in a dark and lonely world, where many times, the staff becomes the only family a patient has. I become their source of love, acceptance and friendship. I am the one who tries to quell loneliness and depression in the people I care for, sometimes resorting to singing, sometimes just acting silly to coax a smile. I am the one who makes them know that someone still cares about them.

I am the one who listens when no one else listens. I listen as my patients repeat stories from their past over and over again, and offer my words of amazement or encouragement over their accomplishments and memories. I am the one who validates them as a person, who ensures they know they still have a great worth as a human being, even though they may be physically or mentally ill and their lives have changed, I always try to offer hope where it is needed.

I am the one who comforts and holds the hand of my patient as they slowly slip away. I am the one who has been there by their side, when no one else was, so they were not alone when they left this world. I am the one who offered a prayer and words of peace, while gently stroking their head and reassuring them it was "ok to let go".

All these things and more, that is what we are, not just myself but nursing assistants everywhere.

Hold your head high and realize there is no greater calling than to provide compassion and love to those in need.


Copyright 2001, Rachel Giarrizzo

by on May. 7, 2007 at 7:13 PM
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Replies (1-5):
by on May. 7, 2007 at 8:55 PM
Yeah especially when you work in a mental hospital like me!! Just when I get to retire I will have to take care of MY parents which I like to say they are going into a home!!!! But I will print this out and give this to them in the future.....No seriously that is really nice and very true.......
by New Member on May. 7, 2007 at 8:58 PM
Ohhh so true so true -- I was a nurse's aide - and now I'm an RN -- so I can totally relate.
by on May. 8, 2007 at 12:39 AM
Thank you so much for that. Sometimes I feel like nothing I do matters to anyone...that was just the uplift I needed.
by on May. 8, 2007 at 8:17 AM
That was really inspiring.  I was a CNA for some time and always felt that I needed to be higher up in the ranks.  I always knew in my heart that my job was the most important part of it all, because when I finished my day, I always had the good feeling that I made a difference in someone's life.  It's exhausting, frustrating and doesn't pay well at all, but I never regret that I am a CNA and always talk with pride about it.  Thanks so much.

by on May. 9, 2007 at 6:25 PM
  I have had the blessing to not have to work in a "home", but rather a Pediatrics hospital. And I as probably the rest of you to, consider it an honor to go home at night making barely enough money, but feel good about what I have done through the day.SO, congrats, to all of the continuing CNA's. May the Lord bless you in all of your day 2 day activities.
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