Continuation of How I Became A Writer)
Much to my shock, the nursing magazine accepted my article. Jay enjoyed his steak. Also much to my shock, the magazine published it in a prominent spot with a picture of patients lost under tons of paper.
They titled it, “This hospital used paperwork to hide from their patients.” There was my name and the name of the hospital where I worked. While I had dreamed of becoming a published author, this was not what I had in mind.
By the time I got to work, it appeared not only nurses, but everyone in the hospital had already read the article. My co-workers who hated the new charting system greeted me with applause and cheers.
My supervisor looked like she was going to explode. She immediately demanded I come to her office and told me in no uncertain terms what she thought.
While we were talking, the chief nurse called and summoned me to an immediate meeting with her.
She had already had calls from various media sources wanting to know what was happening at our hospital. She said they wanted to interview me. She said this had the potential for going National.
She told me if I wanted to keep my job, I should talk to no one and just get upstairs and do my job. She paused and I almost sensed a smile as she added, “Your job is taking care of the patients first and then charting what you did.”
I felt slightly vindicated. So did Jay. Not only did he enjoy his steak, he also enjoyed seeing me dodging eager reporters for weeks, including The National Enquirer, who even sent me a telegram!
And thus I learned a whole new side of writing. Not only could good stories flow out of my pen, but also my opinions. I had the potential to be a change agent.
My supervisor finally started speaking to me again and there was less emphasis on charting and more emphasis on patient care.
But the day came when we would once again “butt heads.” This time, the battle did not start out as publicly, but where it led still amazes me.
I published in another nursing journal … and one thing led to another until there was another article in an international journal.
Stay tuned for the next leg of my journey to become a writer!