Kaitlyn was so much more than “just a nurse” for our son during our stay in 4 Sutherland. She had us for half a shift on our very first night on the floor, and by the end of our second shift with her, I knew we needed to put her on our consistent care list. She was so cheery and chipper; I could tell she had an absolute passion for her job. She was prompt with medications and even labeled his IV pump so that the process of administering his two antibiotics was smoother for herself, and the rest of his nurses. Frequently during the morning shift change, I overheard her tell the day nurse that she had already pulled his morning meds, and had them prepared as necessary. She would have happily completed all of the “tasks” required to care for my son each night, but she understood that we were very involved in his care and liked being hands-on. She provided insight to ensure we were properly educated and comfortable to complete all of these tasks once while in the hospital, and when we were home.
We had a six-week stay on 4 Sutherland for my son to receive antibiotics, and I believe Kaitlyn was assigned his room every time she worked, other than two shifts. During those six weeks, she went above and beyond in caring for our son and us as a family.
She was the first person to allow my son to go “cord-free” for a few minutes so we could walk freely in the halls with our son. This may not seem like much to the naked eye, but having had him “plugged in” at all times since birth, it brought tears to our eyes.
Since we were there through Christmas, she decorated our room with artwork with my son’s hand and footprints and made homemade holiday signs. She even brought in her own “arts and craft bag” so we could do some additional decorating of our own. Our son had been in the hospital since birth so the night before our discharge, she made us a beautifully framed sign about “finally going home". During those six weeks, she frequently kept me company while I was up feeding my son his bottles in the middle of the night. When my husband and I were both there, she would always return to our room after her other patients were “settled in” and taken care of, just to chat. It made the time pass by much more quickly and made it feel more like we were home chatting with an old friend, rather than “stuck” in the hospital. Her sincerity and generosity showed in so many ways during our stay. For instance, when a toy with cloth was donated to the floor playroom, she offered it to our son since it couldn’t be left in the toy room. We were allowed to bring it home, and he still plays with it daily. When the floor nurses were going to have an “ugly sweater party” she invited us to participate along with them. This meant so much to my husband, as his friends have a party each year, and he had to miss it due to our son’s hospitalization.
Even when Kaitlyn isn’t brightening her patients’ and their families’ days/nights while working the floor, she can be found giving tours to nursing students and volunteering at the Snowflake Shop. Kaitlyn is the epitome of a fabulous nurse. She is, by and large, in a class all her own. We will never forget how amazing she was with our son, and how wonderful of a friend she was to us as parents during his stay.