After I read several times on Twitter through news sources that this was the 1st woman in 29 years I stopped, and I’m sure my expression read by my computer web cam told a story. Really? Twenty-nine years? This is most likely a reflection of society or management. Now, I’m not one to beg for equality; I do think it should be earned. I didn’t burn my bra years ago. Instead, I befriended people, both genders, and worked hard in the profession I chose at age 18.
Later I realized I was in a ‘woman’s’ profession and the term hand maiden was used frequently, mostly in jokes. I worked very hard, weekends, nights and holidays. I delivered patient care to very sick people, some died, some we revived, and others became my friend before they passed on to eternity. While doctors studied hard and longer, I did notice they were mostly men and most had female secretaries or office help.
They also made a lot more money. Money is power. They golfed on Wednesdays, drove fancy cars, had cell phones, pagers, and spent two or three minutes with their patient in the hospital. Yes, we nurses knew who took care of the sick patients and the patients did too. This was the way it was.
I almost went back to school to obtain a further degree as I hungered for more, not necessarily the monetary items, things of privilege, but I had knowledge and wanted to give more towards the input of treatment. It was a sixth sense, a real desire, and a caring attitude that governed my thoughts. I loved it actually but was limited. Several surgeons asked me to be their nurse beside them in the operating room. I was tempted but never did this. Then came family and the cards were dealt.
I would be a mom at age forty and if I couldn’t be a PA(physician’s assistant) or CRNA (certified registered nurse anesthetist) as becoming a doctor was out of the question while I pushed forty, then a mom I would be. I knew I wanted that, too.
As I look into the world for role models for my teenage girls, I’m perplexed. Women faces don’t jump out at me. We have beautiful, talented actresses and singers, but everyone can not do that. Maybe that’s why there is so much reality TV as everyone wants to be a star.
Where are the women? I believe it’s my role to encourage my girls and to do this fairly. There is gender bias and women have been suppressed for so long that they have not caught up to men as yet. You simply can NOT do it all at once. Frankly, I can’t wait to find out more about Angela Merkel, her rise and power on a global scale.
Women and girls are equally important to men. I believe it’s not about outdoing each other but coexisting with mutual respect! Women have children and should be admired for this role in the universe … the mother or mom. I believe the time has come to create jobs or job share, so that we don’t have to put children aside away from mothers. We need more than three months to bond for a lifetime. Not all women want to be mothers, and likewise not all men want to father children.
Instead of sacrifices for the career, why not allow them to be home more? Home is a great environment for children and women could work half the time at their profession and stay home with children half the time. This way they keep moving up that professional ladder to receive promotions or increases in pay. Women could still maintain the bonds of parenting by being at home where the schedule is 24/7. Time is elemental to a child. Presence is important but so is doing something we are rewarded for or gives us independence and income. Full time work for women deprives them as a mother because they are too tired and have no ‘me’ time. Rewards for parenting are unique and too many to claim, including raising children who feel loved and protected.
This could be done in professions like doctors, lawyers, policemen or women; possibly everywhere we work. I know because I job shared with another Registered Nurse in the 1990’s in the Post Anesthesia Care Unit for a couple years. It was our idea and the hospital loved it. Maybe companies should look into career sharing as viable options for their work force and especially women who are mothers or even father’s who want to nurture and stay home more with children.
By Kim Troike
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