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       Chicken Soup for the Nurse's Soul, p.1

           Jack Canfield
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Chicken Soup for the Nurse's Soul

  What People Are Saying About

  Chicken Soup for the Nurse’s Soul . . .

  “Chicken Soup for the Nurse’s Soul is a book long overdue. These stories cannot help but touch the hearts and souls of all who read it, nurses or not. Nurses will recognize their own experiences somewhere in these stories, which affirm the personal nature of nursing and the importance of personal touch involved in the care of others. The authors have done nursing a wonderful service in bringing to light the touching, funny, heartfelt anecdotes shared by those at the bedside.”

  Sally Russell, M.N., R.N.

  educational director, Academy of Medical Surgical Nurses

  “Written by nurses, this collection honestly champions the contributions, commitment and sacrifices endured daily by nurses, portraying the compassion, intellect and wit necessary to meet the dynamic, complex and ever-challenging demands of the profession. Chicken Soup for the Nurse’s Soul will be cherished by nurses and by everyone whose lives have been touched by a special nurse.”

  Mary H. McMahon, M.S.N., R.N.C.

  director of nursing, Maternal Child Services

  Salem Hospital, Salem, Oregon

  “Nursing, the gentle art of caring, is vividly reflected in this collection of stories. Each provides a snapshot of the caregiving, compassion and depth of feelings encountered in the daily activities of nurses. With all the challenges of workplace issues facing nurses today, this collection of personal stories brings focus back to the motivations for choosing a career in nursing, as well as nourishes the soul of the practicing nurse.”

  Linda Kubik Goeldner, C.H.E., C.A.E.

  executive director, Iowa Nurses Association

  “I was inspired and reignited about being a registered nurse as I read these stories. I was overwhelmed with tears, goose bumps, reflection and laughing out loud. In these challenging times we live in, I think these stories are a must for people interested in health care, receiving health care, and most importantly, for nurses of all ages, to be reminded of the importance in the work they do.”

  Jeannie Eylar

  director, Patient Care Services

  Pullman Memorial Hospital, Pullman, Washington

  “Finally! Chicken Soup for the ‘angels of mercy’ who have always been there for everyone else! Words of encouragement just for us! After that difficult shift at work when the patient load was heavy and the ‘moon was full,’ kick off your shoes, brew a cup of hot tea and relax in your favorite chair with some inspiring stories that remind us we are not only a blessing— we’re also blessed!”

  Joan E. Edwards, R.N.C., M.N., C.N.S.

  director, Women’s & Children’s Services

  Kingwood Medical Center, Kingwood, Texas

  “A powerful and inspiring book! The authors have captured nursing at its very best—demonstrating the art of caring for another human being. These nursing experiences vividly portray the integrity, compassion and intrinsic rewards of the nurse–patient relationship. This book will touch the heart and soul of novice and experienced nurses alike who share a common value of preserving human dignity—in health and in illness.”

  Martha G. Lavender, R.N., D.S.N.

  professor, dean of nursing

  Jacksonville State University

  “To my nurse colleagues: I urge you to read this book from cover to cover. It will inspire you to remember all those reasons why you became a nurse—an exercise that will result in a warm glow of happiness and the self-satisfaction of knowing you made the right career decision.”

  Mary Henrikson, M.N., R.N.C.

  chief operating officer

  Sharp Mary Birch Hospital for Women

  San Diego, California

  “These inspiring stories illustrate the incredible difference we, as nurses, get to make in people’s lives every day. Thank you for reminding me of the honorable profession of nursing.”

  Diane Sieg, R.N., C.L.C.

  “These stories gave me a wonderful sense of community among other nurses. I was able to relate to almost every story with a similar experience of my own. I was reminded over and over why I went into nursing and why I love what I do. I feel an increased pride in my profession and a great sense of belonging to a universal community of caring.”

  Susan Goldberg, R.N.

  “Why did I become nurse? I didn’t choose this profession for the big bucks or my name in lights! These stories convey the spirit of what it means to be a nurse!”

  Suzanne Phelan, R.N., B.S.N.

  “Nurses are the heart and soul of health care. In this book, our colleagues have shared brief glimpses into our profession, opening this heart and soul to the world. Chicken Soup for the Nurse’s Soul gives us all a chance to laugh and maybe even cry, as we see ourselves provide our unique brand of care and caring to those we serve. So kick back and enjoy this marvelous book!”

  Lynn Komatz, R.N., C.N.O.R.

  “These stories refresh my spirit as a nurse and inspire me to stay on in this great profession.”

  Kristina Winch, L.P.N.

  “As I read Chicken Soup for the Nurse’s Soul, I was reminded of the many adventures, challenges, joys and sorrows of the career. It has not always been easy, but certainly rewarding. It forced me to grow up and see the real world. I have always believed that nursing is a blending of art and science. This book certainly illustrates that profound blending of two essential pieces of ‘who we are.’”

  Jery Sigl, R.N.

  “Chicken Soup for the Nurse’s Soul reminds me why I am so grateful to nurses for supporting me in my work and helping me to become the doctor I am today. Decades ago, when I began listening to patients’ stories and helping them to heal, the nurses knew I was on the right path. They were into intensive caring while most medical professionals were into diagnosing and treating the disease, not appreciating the patients’ experiences. Nurses taught me that a good doctor is one who is criticized by nurses, patients and families. Their criticism polished my mirror. So, let me take this opportunity to say ‘thank you’ to all the nurses who trained me.”

  Bernie Siegel, M.D.

  author, Love, Medicine and Miracles

  “Chicken Soup for the Nurse’s Soul pays grateful tribute to nurses—those exalted and capable servants who selflessly tend the sick, injured, aged and downhearted with deep compassion and unceasing dedication. Containing more than one hundred true stories of service and sacrifice, this uplifting book tugs on your heartstrings and tickles your funny bone, while artfully honoring the noble profession of nursing. Anyone who has ever been the recipient or the provider of health care will be challenged, motivated and enlightened by these inspiring, true-life examples of exceptional courage, commitment and caring.”

  “Dr. Mom” Marianne Neifert, M.D.

  speaker, author and clinical professor of pediatrics

  University of Colorado School of Medicine

  “Each story will fill nurses with a sense of pride in their chosen profession, helping them feel good about the work that they do, enabling them to thrive, not just survive, in this health-care arena.”

  Mary Garlick Roll, R.N., M.S.




  101 Stories to Celebrate,

  Honor and Inspire the

  Nursing Profession

  Jack Canfield

  Mark Victor Hansen

  Nancy Mitchell-Autio, R.N.

  LeAnn Thieman, L.P.N.

  Health Communications, Inc.

  Deerfield Beach, Florida

  Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

  Chicken soup for the nurse
’s soul : 101 stories to celebrate, honor, and inspire the nursing profession / Jack Canfield … [et al.].

  p. cm.

  ISBN-13: 978-1-55874-934-4 (hardcover)

  ISBN-10: 1-55874-934-9 (hardcover)

  ISBN-13: 934-1-55874-933-7 (trade paper)

  ISBN-10: 1-55874-933-0 (trade paper)

  1. Nursing—Anecdotes. 2. Nurses—Anecdotes. I. Canfield, Jack, date.

  RT61 .C376 2001



  © 2001 John T. Canfield and Hansen and Hansen LLC

  All rights reserved. Printed in the United States of America. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without the written permission of the publisher.

  HCI, its logos and marks are trademarks of Health Communications, Inc.

  Publisher: Health Communications, Inc.

  3201 S.W. 15th Street

  Deerfield Beach, FL 33442-8190


  Cover design by Lisa Camp

  Typesetting by Lawna Patterson Oldfield

  To all nurses who,

  perhaps more than any other group

  on Earth,

  truly ease the suffering in the world.




  The Florence Nightingale Pledge

  Share with Us


  Working Christmas Day Victoria Schlintz

  Proud to Be a Nurse Barbara A. Brady

  Nellie Joan Filbin

  All in a Day’s Work Naomi Rhode

  Jack Kathryn Kimzey Judkins

  Olivia Heather Black

  A Matter of Believing Scot Thurman

  Wake Up! Kathleen Dahle

  The Night Al Heel Broke Loose Elizabeth Turner

  Jelly Hearts Joyce Mueller

  Boarder Baby Zaphra Reskakis

  What Day Is Today? Dennis Sibley as told to Allen Klein

  Fresh Sample Donna McDonnall

  Codes for the Holidays Jamie L. Beeley

  Christmas Magic Barbara Bartlein

  2. ON LOVE

  A Forever Kind of Love Christy M. Martin

  Happy Birthday, Grace Nancy B. Gibbs

  In the Arms of an Angel Elaine Gray Dumler

  The Greatest of These Is Love Roberta L. Messner

  You Held My Hand F. A. Thompson

  Love in Its Purest Form Maryjo Relampagos Pulmano

  A Single Act of Love Laura Hayes Lagana

  My Promise Linda C. Bird

  Billy’s Good-Bye Gift Susan Spence


  All Our Hearts Have to Offer Janie K. Ford

  The Touch of Kindness Tricia Caliguire

  A Part of the Team Viola Ruelke Gommer

  To Care for Them Christine Ehlers

  The Hip in 46B Linda McNeil

  I Baptize You . . . Beverly Houseman

  A Visit from an Angel Sarah Webb Johnson

  New Job Barbara A. Brady

  The Depth of This Career Diane Stallings

  How Could I Stay in This Profession? Kathleen Brewer-Smyth

  Women in the Military Janis Nark


  Diabetic Teaching Johanna Tracy

  First Injection Barbara Bartlein

  Peppy Lini R. Grol

  A Healing Truth Virginia L. Clark

  Finding Your Easter Sunrise Cindy Bollinger

  The Old Woman Mitzi Chandler

  Communication Is the Key Karyn Buxman

  Meeting Her Needs Judy B. Smith

  Rose Susan Pearson

  Where Do Babies Come From? Elaine Stallman

  Raspberries and Cream Marie D. Jones


  Now We’re Talkin’ Denise Casaubon

  You Can Do Anything! Susan M. Goldberg

  “I Am,” I Said Shirley McCullough

  One Smile at a Time Rita Kluny

  Do Your Best and the Lord Will Bless Marilynn Carlson Webber

  Pony Mary Jane Holman

  Sadie, Sadie, Special Lady Andrea Watson

  Lucky Charlene Vance

  Cast-Cutter LeAnn Thieman

  The Race Anne Riffenburgh

  He Conquered It Lance Armstrong

  Mr. Jackson and the Angel Pin Linda Apple

  Will She Ever Smile Again? Ana Wehipeihana


  Stormy Delivery Debbie Lukasiewicz as told to LeAnn Thieman

  Summons to the Danger Zone Joan Wester Anderson

  The Hand of God Jo Stickley

  Forgiven Bernie Siegel

  Afraid of the Night Nancy Harless

  And the Angels Sang Mary Saxon Wilburn

  A Cherished Angel Margie Seyfer as told to LeAnn Thieman

  Lori’s Wish Gwen Fosse

  By Accident Candace L. Calvert

  CPR Johnnie Dowdy

  Voice in the Night Carin Klabbers


  Impacting the Process Catherine Hoe Harwood

  Just What I Needed to Hear “Dr. Mom” Marianne Neifert

  All Pain Being Equal Corinne Pratz

  The Nurse’s Best Medicine Don Haines

  Always a Nurse Shelly Burke

  A Nurse Named Gloria Lisa Ray Turner

  Dumbo Laura Vickery Hart

  Bringing the Cows Home Susan Townsend

  The Crisis of Today Karyn Buxman

  The Assessment Rebecca Skowronski

  Taking Care of Joey Donna Strickland as told to LeAnn Thieman

  Pennies from Heaven Raymond Bingham

  Take a Number Please Naomi Follis

  Reasonable Resignation Sylvia C. Chism

  Black Stockings Elsie Schmied Knoke


  My Mission of Hope Cherie Clark

  The Heart of a Nurse Beatrice Sheftel

  Nurse Puss ’n Boots J. C. Pinkerton

  The Pinning Dawn Koehn

  Last Rites Jacqueline C. Hadeland

  Heroes Rhona Knox Prescott


  A Piece of Paper Sherri Sorenson

  The Call Virginia L. Clark

  Love in Your Hands Ken Cyr

  Silent Angel Duane Shaw

  Child’s Praise Dolores Curran

  Ministering Angels Allison Leigh Usher

  A Gift from Nana Terri Murcia

  Thank You, Mrs. Dickenson Georgann Phillips Schultz

  There for Me Carolyn Gavalas

  To the Nurses of the World John Wayne Schlatter

  More Chicken Soup?

  Supporting Nurses Everywhere

  Who Is Jack Canfield?

  Who Is Mark Victor Hansen?

  Who Is Nancy Mitchell-Autio?

  Who Is LeAnn Thieman?




  It’s been an honor to write, compile and edit Chicken Soup for the Nurse’s Soul. What a privilege to read such outstanding stories from such loving caregivers. So first and foremost, we must thank the nearly three thousand health-care workers who shared their hearts and souls. Scores of them thanked us for prompting them to write about their experiences. Many wrote sentiments such as, “I know this won’t be published, but thank you for the inspirational, healing journey of writing it.” What a gift you’ve been to us!

  To Peter Vegso, our dear publisher, we love you and thank you from the bottom of our hearts for publishing Chicken Soup for the Nurse’s Soul. Thank you on behalf of all of the Chicken Soup for the Soul family. We appreciate and love you, Peter!

  Bless our families for all of their love and support on this project: Inga, Patty, Mark, Kirk, Christopher, Travis, Riley, Melanie, Elizabeth, Christie, Angela and Mitch.

  We are grateful to the following people who read and scored nearly two hundred
stories and helped make the final selections: Helen Colella, D’ette Corona, Berniece Duello, Margaret Hill, Mary Hjerleid, Ellen Javernick, Sondra Keeler, Sally Kelly-Engeman, Barbara LoMonaco, Heather McNamara, Linda Mitchell, Linda Osmundson, Carol Rehme, Gayle Stringer, Christie Thieman and Mark Thieman.

  A special thanks to the nurses on our reading team who brought their experienced perspective to the selection process: Linda Beckwith, Jeannie Eylar, Bonnie Ford, Susan Goldberg, Lisa Heiney, Jackie Johnson, Holly Leo, Mary McMahon, Tonya Motley, Suzanne Phelan, Pat Richardson, Kay Rosenthal, Cheryl Roth, Diane Sieg, Jery Sigl, Bonnie Urie, Sharon Williams and Kristina Winch.

  Josephine Adams donated her skill as a college English professor to do final editing of the manuscript. Her expertise was invaluable.

  Thanks to Pat Mahan from who encouraged contributions in each monthly issue of his e-zine publication. And Kay Rosenthal, Ph.D., R.N., for sharing stories from her Rural Nurse Organization’s Anthology.

  Mark Victor Hansen’s entire staff: Patty Hansen, Trudy Marschall, Maria Nickless, Laurie Hartman, Michelle Adams, Tracy Smith, Dee Dee Romanello, Dawn Henshall, Lisa Williams, Kristi Knoppe, David Coleman, Laura Rush, Paula Childers, Tanya Jones, Faith Fuata and Shanna Vieryra.

  And Jack Canfield’s entire staff: Patty Aubery, Deborah Hatchell, Heather McNamara, D’ette Corona, Veronica Romero, Cindy Holland, Robin Yerian, Vince Wong and Geneva Lee. Special thanks to Leslie Riskin for her efficiency and kindness in acquiring the permissions. Leslie, we love you and cherish your friendship!

  A special thanks to Health Communications for their ongoing support: Terry Burke, Kim Weiss, Kelly Johnson Maragni, Allison Janse, Christine Belleris, Lisa Drucker and Susan Tobias.

  To LeAnn’s assistant and marketing agent, Amy Williams, who managed LeAnn’s speaking business brilliantly while she read stories and read stories and read stories. . . .

  And to LeAnn’s mom, Berniece Duello, who by living her life in compassionate service, taught LeAnn the virtues of nursing.

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