A tribute to my patients

I have been a nurse for 15 years already, and I’ve been falling in love with my job every day. I have been an ET nurse for 2 years also, and this is the best thing that could’ve happened to me career-wise.

I made my family and friends’ ears bleed by constantly telling them that I’d be an ET nurse one day. One day, the stars aligned and I was able to achieve my dream. Being an ET nurse is a huge part of who I am now, and one of the things I’m proudest of.

This job made me discover a fascinating universe where I can play an effective role and really develop my professional autonomy. I meet fantastic people, my patients, who teach me and help me grow every day.

Each person is unique and has their own personal story. When my patients enter my office, they allow me to enter part of their hectic, uncertain but very precious lives. Disease and ostomy can unsettle your life. When a bond of trust is made, patients bring up very personal topics and share their feelings with you.

I think that taking the time to listen to their concerns and answering their questions are an important part of my job. It’s easier for me to properly advise them when I understand what their needs and their concerns are. The technical and physical aspects of the ostomy and its device means that the concerns are very specific, and I have a lot of teaching to do. Some situations are real challenges! I usually have to be creative to prevent leaks!

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Every day I question myself, I try to things and strive to do better. I continue researching and reading on different subjects, I have ongoing training and I attend different conferences. Every day, I become a better ET nurse thanks to my patients, because they trust me, and because they’re so precious to me.

Those who do the most work, however, are my patients. I am their guide and their reference. When the storm is gone and they have regained control over their lives and their ostomy, I let them go on their way. But I’ll always be there for them to answer any question or solve any issue they may have.

I have the most rewarding job in the world, even though it’s still fairly unknown. I remember my boyfriend’s grandma asking me with some disdain if I still like my job. And I remember telling her: “You don’t even know how much I loooooove it!”

Maybe I do my job because I’m a little bit selfish!

Isabelle Dionne
Clinical and ET nurse

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