National Nurses Week is from May 6 to May 12, 2018.
It’s a perfect opportunity to say thank you to the nurses who have made a difference in your life or the life of a loved one. Nurses are an essential part of the healthcare system. Without their endless compassion, tireless work and friendly companionship, the timewe all spend with doctors and hospitals for both regular care and critical emergencies would be infinitely more difficult, for doctors and patients alike.
Nurses turn mere treatment into real care. They let us know that we’re not alone when we’re feeling isolated. They encourage us when we feel like we can’t go any farther. They calm us when fear gets the better of us. They make bad situations better for us, often sacrificing more than they should.
Consider celebrating National Nurses Week. You’d be surprised how much it can mean to a nurse to receive something that confirms they’ve made a difference. You don’t have to have a large budget to participate. In fact, there are many things you can do that won’t break the bank. Here are a few to consider.
Buy Breakfast, Lunch, or Dinner for Nurses Week
Saying thanks could be as simple as stopping at a local bakery and buying fresh donuts for the members of the nursing staff or department where you received your care. No time for breakfast?
Try dropping off a meal for lunch or dinner.
Coffee for the Staff
Nurses often work long hours, and as anyone who works a job that requires shifts upwards of 12 hours will tell you, coffee is often a big part of working life. There are several ways you can use coffee to say thanks to the nursing staff.
Taking the time to go to a specialty coffee shop and select something unique for your favorite nurses can be a great way to show your appreciation. The fresh ground thank you cup can be brewed at home or work for everyone to enjoy.
It might be a bit more expensive than just buying coffee, but if you’d like to say thank you in a big way, giving a good coffee machine to the staff where you received your care will very likely be appreciated. It’s something that will keep on giving for a long time to come.
Moisturizing Hand Lotions
Many nurses will tell you that they’re constantly fighting a losing battle with dry skin on their hands. Their job requires constant sterilizationand hand washing, which takes its toll on the skin. A great way to say thanks with a not-so-common gift is to give your favorite nurse a few bottles of quality moisturizing lotion or perhaps a home hand-care kit.
Food or Fruit Baskets
A food or fruit basket might seem a little bit cliché, but things become cliché for a reason; people like them. A basket full of tasty treats will bring a smile to almost anyone’s face. Of course, you can always include a card to help express your gratitude.
Handwritten Card or Note
Saying thank you doesn’t necessarily have to be expensive or even cost you anything more than your time. Something as simple as a handwritten letter or a short note that expresses your feelings can go a long way.
Flowers or Gifts
Gifts, gift cards, and flowers make great tokens of appreciation. Perhaps a gift card for the book lover will come in handy off shift or during breaks.
A Hug and a Handshake
With most patients, once they’re done dealing with whatever brought them under a nurse’s care, the nurse doesn’t see them again. This is the life of a nurse. The people they care for drift in and out of their lives, often never returning once they leave. This part of their job can sometimes be difficult to deal with.
If nurses helped create a particularly good experience for you, returning to say thank you in person when you’re feeling better will dowonders for their spirit. It lets them know that their work was noticed and they’ve not been forgotten.
Nurses don’t do what they do to be thanked. They do it because they’re the kind of people who want to help others. Their work is far from glamorous and often done anonymously. Even though they may sometimes feel forgotten or underappreciated, they show up day after day and give their all to make the lives of other people better. It’s not a job suited for everyone.
If you or a loved one have ever gone through a healthcare experience that was made easier because of a caring nurse, consider taking some time during National Nurses Week to let them know that you appreciate what they’ve done. A small gesture or a few words will mean a lot to someone who spends their days selflessly helping others.