“I had just had my 12th birthday. During the day I had been outside playing with my friends. That night I had a slight fever and an itchy back. My next memory was being delirious and being driven by ambulance to the hospital. When I woke up the next day, I was in a room with one other younger child. I was scared and frightened. A young nurse explained to me that I was sick and would not be able to have any visitors, but she gently reassured me that I was being taken care of.
I was in isolation in the Belvedere Fever Hospital. For the next couple of weeks, I saw no family. The nurses and doctors were my only contact with adults. I watched them care for other children. They made me feel safe and cared for in this hospital environment. They took time to answer my questions. They took me to where I could see my parents through a glass door, no hugging or touching allowed. My only touching, human contact, and kindness was from those nurses.
I was hospitalized over Christmas, the nurses decorated our ward, we had a Santa Claus, and the nurses sang carols, distributed our gifts and shared our excitement that day. They made what could have been a terrifying experience one I still remember with fondness. Those nurses and how they made me feel, how they took care of me, stayed with me. I got better and eventually got to go home. Those nurses and my reading about Florence Nightingale started me on my path to become a nurse.” Anne Clark, Retired Nurse