“I was only seventeen at the time. It was when I was doing my EN training. And we had a young girl - she was only six.
She used to come in. She had cerebral palsy. She used to come in all the time with respiratory problems. And on my last day of my training she passed away. And the registered nurse I was working with wanted me to put her into an adult body bag.
I had a bit of a ‘tanty’ and I wrapped her in a bunny rug and carried her down to the morgue - cause the morgue used to be separate from the hospital. And I carried her down to the morgue and I was bawling my eyes out. And I went from general nursing out to geriatric nursing for five years because I thought, ‘I never want to have to deal with a pediatric death ever again’.
And I guess it took that five years for me to toughen up; mature and to acclimatise to death. But yeah, that was probably my defining moment in nursing.”