Yes, it's nice that the world wants to recognize that nurses do a lot of hard work. We do! And we deserve people to recognize it.
That said: I hate nurses week.
What is it about a free lunch that turns people into raving idiots? Seriously, if our ED staff educator comes up to me one more time and says, "There's food in the back, you should make a plate!" I'm going to flip out. I think she told me FOUR times yesterday. Yeah, I'm going to rush right the heck in there and pile a styrofoam plate high with greasy bad lasagne and fried chicken cutlets. That everyone has already picked over. It's like as soon as the containers are opened, the vultures descend--and most of them aren't even nurses: unit clerks, techs, and transporters are the ones to get there first. If I DO make my plate, I have to put my haul into the fridge for when I go on my lunch break around three pm. Ew, no thanks. Not to mention that the LAST place I want to be on my break is in our stinky, windowless lounge with the TV blaring and people comparing bunions. I need some FRESH AIR and an actual nutritious lunch, thank you very much.
And then we had a Viennese Hour in the cafeteria with raffles and snacks and cheesecake. People came back from that thing with plates PILED with three and four pieces of cheesecake. What, are you stocking up for winter? At the raffle, they were giving away iPods and digital cameras and gift baskets and stuff like that. I hate raffles. The single most annoying and cantankerous nurse on the ED won a digital camera and then spent the next hour going up to everyone, shrieking about how she won and showing them her booty and visibly gloating. The nicest, sweetest nurse in the ED won a huge, ugly Christmas ornament in the shape of a house that sits out and gathers dust. She sighed and said, "well, it's nice that I won, but how am I going to get this thing home?" It's like two feet tall.
The worst thing was that the docs on the floor had been given roses to hand out to the nurses. GACK. That skeeves me on SO MANY LEVELS I can't even get into it.
Again, it's nice to be recognized. But how much money did the hospital spend on this weeklong fiesta? And they just laid off FIVE new nurses from the floor and are not renewing our four great travel nurses who work mid- and night shift. And they're not allowing any overtime. So next month when we're all working ourselves to the bone because we're short staffed, who is going to remember a plate of crappy baked ziti or a stale roast beef sandwich or even an iPod? I guarantee that all the money they spent for catered lunches and dinners every day for a week for every unit and six million cheesecakes and electronics and other crap to raffle off would have paid at least one nurse's salary.