When I started writing and drawing cartoons about my experiences as a registered nurse, I had some not so great (but made interesting writing) experiences. These experiences included: rude patients calling me mean names, dealing with a doctor that nearly killed one of my patients, and a bully nurse who made me cry (me, a guy) because I had not completed some tasks that I was supposed to have finished before ending my shift. I had support from my husband, Donovan, for which I am forever grateful for. But I also had Loretta.
Loretta is a special person and a fantastic nurse. If it was not for her helping me when I was overwhelmed I would have either given up or been fired from having a meltdown. Loretta is a charge nurse and when I was working in the med/surg area I had the opportunity to work with her.
Not only was she supportive but she made me laugh. She had two expressions that she declared many times. The first is: “It’s never too early. It’s always too late.” The second is: “A clean room is an easy room.” Loretta had a third saying but I did not include it in my book but I will share with you exclusively. “God made dirt. Dirt don’t hurt.” Maybe I should have included it in the book but I originally decided against it because dirt does hurt. Dirt has bacteria which can cause serious infections. That statement isn’t quite accurate but it sounds good.
Loretta also cracked me up when she spoke about these silly Lifetime for Women movies like, Mommie, May I Play With Danger, and whatever Nora Dunn book that had been made into a movie.
Loretta isn’t this RN’s actual name but I came up with this name because Loretta loves the movie, Coal Miner’s Daughter (and she loved singing the movie’s’ title song even though her singing was awful. But it was funny.)
There were so many times I was overwhelmed with work dealing with patients, doctors and other nurses. They say “Nurses eat their young.” Loretta is the polar opposite of that type of nurse. I talk about her more in my book where I attempt to compare her to rockstar, Madonna. Again another polar opposite but I have fun comparing the two of them anyway.
So Loretta if you are reading this, thank you. You don’t realize the depth of your strength. Below are some excerpts about Loretta from, Welcome To Nursing HELLo, a Graphic Memoir.