PLEN 3 PLENARY SESSION 3: Opening My Heart: Sharing Our Nursing Stories

Monday, 18 November 2013: 8:30 AM-9:45 AM
Description/Overview: By our stories you shall know us. Our nursing stories define us and shape the image of our profession. They contain our wisdom, knowledge, and achievements. They nurture our passion for nursing. They help us understand the ethical and moral dilemmas of our work. In our stories, we learn how a nurse thinks and how a nurse feels. Stories document our history and legacy. They contain our values and beliefs, even our jokes, dreams, and complaints. They capture our folklore and culture, both what is unique and that which is universal about nursing. Our stories connect us as nurses of the world. The stories we tell the public advance their understanding of nursing and its contribution to health and wellness; they advance the public discourse about health care reform. When we slip into a story - whether it’s based on a moment caring for a critically ill patient, or a street nurse’s account of caring for a homeless, pregnant teenager – we are given entry into others’ lives and it is here that compassion grows. Tilda Shalof is a critical care nurse, story-teller, and author of four books about her 30 year career as a front-line nurse. In 2014, A Nurse’s Story will celebrate its tenth anniversary and twelfth edition. It is a national bestseller, has been translated into four foreign languages, is frequently used as a text of nursing narrative in nursing schools, and was recently optioned for a television series. Nurse Tilda will share her personal story in the hope that in it, each nurse will find something of theirs. The theme of “opening the heart” in both the clinical sense in recounting her experience as a cardiac patient, and in the symbolic, figurative sense, is woven throughout this presentation.
Organizers:  Tilda Shalof, RN, BScN, CNCC (C), Self-Employed, Thornhill, ON, Canada
Moderators:  Dana Bjarnason, PhD, RN, NE-BC, Medical Surgical Nursing, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, TX, Galveston, TX, TX