When Nurses Grieve

By Christine Jonas-Simpson June 27th, 2012

I watched the tears drop from my nurses’ eyes as they gently took my blood and when they hugged me goodbye at the end of their shifts. My sweet curly red-haired son died and was born still after his cord knotted when I was 37 and a half weeks pregnant – he was nearly 6 pounds. My nurses and family remained by my side, the specialist who induced me followed up on his day off and my family doctors cried with me at home.

I was deeply moved and comforted by my caregivers’ expressions of grief. While I was living my worst nightmare I could not help but wonder what it was like for my healthcare colleagues to grieve and bear witness to our devastating loss. As a nurse I experienced grief of my own patients as well as identified with their families’ losses – these moments transformed me.

When my son died in 2001, I could not find research on nurses’ experiences of grieving when a baby dies and how this changed them. Healthcare professional grief was and continues to be hidden and not often discussed. Given I was a nurse and a researcher, I decided [...] continue the story

Patient Stories at The Fringe

Two weeks ago we shared news on two patient storytelling events that will take place during this year’s Toronto Fringe Festival.

After a more thorough review of the festival’s listings, we’re pleased to announce that we found three (3) more. With the Fringe opening it’s doors tomorrow we felt it was an appropriate time to list all of the patient performances, whether chronic illness plays a starring role or is simply an undercurrent to the performance’s plot. Healing Through Theatre Host: Brian G. Smith (Second City Alumni) Panel: Zal Press (Patient Commando),  Dr. Jeremy Rezmovitz (Sunnybrook Hospital), Daniel Stolfi (Cancer Can’t Dance Like This)

Eat Poo Love  By: Paul Clement, Evan Mackay, Dan Mackay Cast: Dan Mackay, Evan Mackay, Paul Clement

Paul Clement survived Stage 2 Colon Cancer and went on to blog about it (selected blogs available here), and eventually co-wrote a stage version of the blog which will be performed at the 2012 Toronto Fringe Festival as “Eat, Poo, Love”.  He recently appeared on the RogersTV program ‘daytime Peel’ to discuss his journey through the illness, and his fundraising work with Colon Cancer Canada.

Mum And The Big C By: Lynne Kamm

Stamped: A Story About Daniel, Who Happens to Have Autism By: Sarah Magni

21 Days By: Tabia Lau, Music by Mary Lougheed

If you know of patient performances that we have [...] continue the story