This feature first appeared on New Sarawak Tribune.
Being a nurse is not a profession for the faint-hearted. Nurses deal with life, death, and everything in between. But the job is also considered to be one of the most satisfying, in-demand, secure, and overall best jobs in healthcare.
Helping others physically, mentally and emotionally
Mother Teresa was a respected, Nobel prize winner, nurse and a nun. During her time, she managed to help, touch and inspire countless lives. She once said, “It is not how much you do, but how much love you put into what you do that counts.”
For Pavithra Janarsan, being a nurse is not only a career path, “But it is a way of life. Becoming a nurse is like a blessing in disguise.” Currently in Kuantan, Pavithra explained that she became a nurse not by choice, rather she was advised on the good prospects that a career in nursing could provide her.
After graduating, she worked in numerous hospitals around the country. Facing an unexpected future, Pavithra admitted that she never regretted her decision. In retrospect, it was an exciting and adventurous ride for her.
She believed that all experiences and challenges were life coaches, always guiding and directing an individual towards the right action and path. And being a nurse had taught her many life lessons.
“These experiences has given me a sense of maturity to deeply understand others. It taught me to be empathetic about another person’s experience and this acts as the guiding principles in my communication and relationship with others,” she shared.
To her, the adventures she went through after becoming a nurse had made her realise that life is not limited to ‘us’ but also the welfare and well-being of people around us. “This awareness reminds me to be heart-centred and always act from this place.”
As a nurse, Pavithra was able to help others not only physically, but also mentally and emotionally. “I am happy to be here, and it is truly a blessing to be ‘a blessing’ to another person,” said the humble lass.
Attached to the Homage Care centre, Pavithra’s typical day starts as early as 6am when she goes for prayer and meditation. Then she would go for her regular nursing care visits.
She revealed that before every visit, she would meticulously go through the patients’ diagnosis, to understand their overall condition. “Keeping that in mind, I also do some reading online or revisit my nursing textbooks in order to refresh my knowledge about diseases and to learn new information, as the medical field is evolving every day.” To her, being well-prepared is key because it gives her an overview of what to do during her visit, “And of course it helps boost my confidence too!”
Pavithra’s working hours usually ends at 6pm. Then she will head home to complete her report for submission.
Initially, Pavithra explains that being a nurse was challenging once she saw the world beyond her nursing textbooks. “There were diseases that I had not even heard of. I had to learn and work at the same time!” she exclaimed. To her, it was very challenging, as learning was taking place at an accelerated pace.
“Every day, there will always be something new to discover. What kept me going was that I had the opportunity to be of service, to make patients feel comfortable and attending to their basic needs; that gave me a sense of joy and personal satisfaction; and that the struggles and challenges were all worth it.”
Through her personal experience as a nurse for numerous hospitals, Pavithra said that working long hours was physically challenging for her, “Especially due to the lack of manpower. It can be very exhausting when it happens for an extended period.”
Furthermore, there was another daunting experience during her time working in a team. “It was the inability of some members to appreciate the diversity of opinions and perspectives — that was the most difficult part throughout my career.”
However, Pavithra said it can be a blessing when everyone in the team embrace the differences and put them to good use by coming together, supporting and encouraging each other.
Being in this line of work for many years had taught her about the ‘art of living a fulfilled life’.
“Sometimes we tend to fret about the future and be obsessed over what we do not have — until we meet someone who has lost his or her limbs and become confined to the wheelchair, someone who is bedridden and someone who is chronically ill and on palliative care.” That got her thinking that life was very fragile and every moment should be spent appreciating what we already have.
Pavithra also realised that when she served with love and intention, “the service will be greatly received and can impact a patients’ life in many amazing ways.”