Head of Children, Young People, In Patient Services and Therapies
The people I meet, both colleagues and patients. I’ve made good friends and cared for some amazing people.
People and service management, ensuring safe operational delivery of clinical services, building and maintaining links with other services, planning for future service provision, supporting and developing staff, direct nursing care
I do a morning routine called SAVERS every day, Silence (meditation), Affirmation, Visualisation, Exercise (yoga or pilates), reading (even if it’s just a page of my book), scribing (writing how I feel that day, how I slept, goals for the day and then I add gratitude bullet points at the end of the day when I go to bed.
I started this in January this year and find it really sets me up well for the day, it’s all very brief on a work morning and doesn’t take more than 15 minutes maximum. It’s nice to start the day with a little time for me. Weekends I spend longer and do more yoga or Pilates if I have time.
A lot of the time I go straight from work to kids clubs and making an evening meal, I unwind after the kids are in bed. Generally just by having a cup of tea and watching TV or spending time on my phone, on social media or shopping online. I do a short Pilates routine every night before bed too.
Busy, Happy, Positive
I’m proud of a lot of things I’ve achieved at Hospice from academic study to building clinical skills and developing management skills too. Probably the thing I’m most proud of is pushing myself out of my comfort zone. I came here as a children’s nurse with no intention to work in other areas or move away from clinical practice; over the years I’ve reached points where I’ve been ready for new challenges and Hospice has given me the opportunity to branch out and be challenged.
I’ve worked in the adult in patient unit, and loved it, which I never thought I would do. I’ve become a manager, which I never thought I would want to do but enjoy equally as much as clinical work. More recently I’ve worked in Hospice at Home, community is definitely not my comfort zone but I’ve enjoyed my shifts there too.
I’m proud that I can, happily and confidently, work outside of my comfort zone.
In the short/medium term to carry on as I am, developing in this post and leading the services I manage. In the long term I aspire to go back to more direct nursing care full time.
There’s so many, I could tell you hundreds of stories. I’ve shared so much joy and laughter with colleagues, patients and families – even in very difficult situations.
The year we had a summer event in the Hospice gardens with stalls and games is a special memory. The lovely teenager I was caring for had an amazing afternoon, he enjoyed it all, from racing toy pigs to hula hooping. He very sadly died suddenly a few days later, but his last day at Rebecca House could not have been filled with any more joy.
Children’s Hospice Week in 2012 was a fundraising highlight, the Rebecca House team ran a busy schedule of events and had a great time.
There are 2 adult patients who really stick out in my memories.
An elderly gentleman we cared for at end of life who had been in the Army as a young man, he had a strong emotional attachment to his Army blanket and told me the weight of it was a comfort to him he kept it on his bed throughout his stay.
The second is another elderly gentleman who was in for respite care near Christmas time, he required full care as he was bed bound but was very stable in his condition. I went to his room with a colleague to provide personal care and while my colleague was preparing things he took my hand and thank me, and the team, for everything we had done for him. A very short time after this, while we were providing care, he tapped me on the shoulder, gave a small shake of his head and died – very peacefully.
Since becoming a manager my highlight has been building relationships with the non-clinical team, developing my skills in a new way and making good friendships.