A patient with metastatic breast cancer credits her oncology nurse’s compassion for giving her the strength to persevere during her cancer journey.
Joyce Spitz, RN, has been my guardian angel from day one.
I was diagnosed three-and-a-half years ago with metastatic breast cancer. I was scared and apprehensive about what was to come: chemo, radiation, surgery, etc. I was expected to be sick, tired and all the things you hear about when going through all this.
Joyce is the most compassionate medical professional I have ever met. She is knowledgeable, walked me step by step through the treatment plan and answered my questions with knowledge and compassion. Most of all, she gave a lot of great tips on how to combat the side effects. Since she is a cancer survivor herself, she knows the importance of strong medical support system.
When the cancer returned 18 months later, she heard my cry in the exam room and rushed to my side with a huge hug and comforting words. She told me she will be with me every step of the way. Joyce holds my hand when I have meltdowns. Just when I don't think I can take any more, she puts on her Superman (woman) cape and gives a pep talk. She has a lot of patients, and she treats them all as if she was treating her own family member. I've never met anyone that cares so much about others and is completely selfless.
I am still her patient every 21 days for my immunotherapy. She was right; she has and will be by my side always. Out of everything I have learned from her, the most important lesson is staying positive and strong. All Oncology nurses can learn from this wonderful woman.
Editor’s Note: This is an essay submitted by Lynne Blom for the 2021 Extraordinary Healer Award. Click here to read more about CURE®’s Extraordinary Healer® Award for Oncology Nursing event on April 30, 2021.
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