Nursing is a high-stress job, ranking in the top ten professions likely to divorce. Psychologists think that long hours caring for sick patients creates tension at home which is compounded by lack of empathy from a spouse.1
Twelve-hour shifts are normal but frequently run longer. The job requires constant focus and mistakes can be life-threatening. Patients and families can be difficult. Losing patients can be gut-wrenching. It is hard, if not impossible, to leave it all behind when coming home.2
Wonderfully, Jessica Urtz has a husband who not only understands what his wife deals with as a nurse, he has taken to Facebook to share with us why she is his hero and at the same time helps us remember that nurses everywhere are unsung heroes.
Phillip Urtz was inspired to write the following after seeing his exhausted wife come home from a long shift, have just enough energy to munch a sandwich for dinner, and fall into bed.3
“This is my wife Jessica having dinner after a 14 hour day. She comes home from work, has enough time to eat and get ready for bed and it’s back to work the next day for another shift.
She is up early to get ready for her day. She doesn’t like to be bothered in the morning and I respect that. She showers throws her hair up, grabs her lunch gives the dog and me a kiss and heads out the door.
At work, she takes care of people who are having the worst days of their lives. Strokes, Car accidents, motorcycle accidents, falls, breaks, brain damage and more. She takes care of mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, friends, and families. It doesn’t matter who you are or what happened. She will take care of you.
She works through lunch and rarely has time to sit. She comes home after 14 hours, takes off her shoes that have walked through blood and tears, and just wants to sit down. I don’t ask her about her day because She doesn’t like to talk about work when she is home and that’s fine.
If she does want to talk, I will listen. Sometimes she comes home happy and sometimes she comes home sad. But no matter how she feels, she is always on time for her next shift.
I love her with all my heart. My wife is my hero. My wife is a Stroke Nurse.”
If you would like to see Phillip’s video that he made that goes with many of their personal photographs and the letter, please watch here:
Whether you share your life with a nurse or encounter nurses for your own care, we hope Phillip’s words will make you feel a deeper appreciation for what they do and give of themselves each day. If you happen to be a nurse reading this, please know that you are indeed a hero in our eyes!
1Wiser N. Nursing stress can lead to high divorce rates. Nurse Choice.
2Jones P. 22 reasons being a nurse is really hard. The Job Network.
3Newsner. Husband pens emotional Facebook message to his nurse wife – it’s spread around the internet like wildfire. 7 January 2019.
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