GIFTED Spotlight: Whitney Davis, RN
We are always proud to share the inspiring stories of our GIFTED nurses, and today we are featuring Whitney Davis, RN, in our GIFTED Spotlight series.
Whitney is a GIFTED RN that is currently working in Arizona at a Level 1 trauma center and the “organized chaos” of the emergency room is what she loves most about being a nurse. Read on to hear more about Whitney’s story.
Before becoming an RN, Whitney worked in the Air Force for eight years. In 2007, Whitney enlisted into the United States Air Force as a public health medic and provided care for multiple chain of commands in and out of the country. The high stress and trauma situation became a part of everyday life for her, but not once was it ever hard.
“I was set on my entire career being with the Air Force. I enjoyed what I was doing and was able to adapt to the difficult situations. I never expected to become a nurse but in 2012, when I was pregnant with my son, one nurse shifted everything.”
Whitney had a healthy and happy pregnancy until she went into labor and had an amniotic fluid embolism. It traveled up to her heart and caused DIC (disseminated intravascular coagulation). Whitney was in a coma as a result and spent the next two weeks in the ICU.
“This was a life and death situation. I remember having to write a will while I was in the bed because they did not know if I would make it out of the surgery. My heart was only pumping at 35% but I was a 26-year-old, active, and very healthy female so all of this was a scary surprise.”
Whitney eventually woke up from her coma, but immediately panicked, wondering how her son was doing.
“When I woke up from my coma, I was in the ICU. I started to panic because I knew I had been pregnant, but I no longer had a pregnant belly. I remember the nurse gave me meds to calm me down and knock me back out,” said Whitney. “What I didn’t know at the time was that she went down to the NICU to take a picture of my son, drove to Walmart to print it out, and taped it next to my bed so that when I woke up, I could see my son for the very first time.”
Preston was a happy and healthy baby and this moment Whitney shared with her nurse, as well as the incredible care she received from her entire medical team, inspired her decision to transition to a career in nursing.
“I separated out of the military not even a year later and started Nursing School. I only want to be able to provide the same care for my patients that I had received.”
Throughout her five years of nursing, Whitney has relied on her resilience and adaptability to thrive as an ER Nurse. For the first two years of her career, Whitney worked night shifts because she was able to learn a lot more from the cases that would come in during night hours.
“Emergency and Trauma have been my only specialty and I don’t plan on ever changing that. I work well through the organized chaos and enjoy the rush of an ER shift. You never know what will walk through the door next.”
One memorable patient in Whitney’s career that has stuck out to her is an 80-year-old woman who walked through the ER doors with an infant in tow.
“I was in Montana last year when she walked in with a newborn baby. She said that neither of them had been sleeping and we were not sure of the parental situation,” said Whitney. “I gave her some money for food and sent her home. While she rested, we watched the baby for the entire day, picked up diapers, food, and other necessities to send her home with.”
“For me, this was a more rewarding feeling because there are days that I help save five patients having a heart attack and that is great, but sometimes patients walk through the doors in distress and the simple answer is that they just need a break.”
The Ideal Nurse
We asked Whitney for her opinion on the ideal qualities of a nurse and to her, personality was at the top of the list.
“You have to find some sort of enjoyment from working with your patients and it cannot just be about the money,” said Whitney. “Being a people person is so important in this field. You have the ability as a nurse to make someone else’s day good.”
Whitney has been a nurse for five years and is back in school working on getting her master’s degree. Travel nursing gives Whitney the flexibility to take ample time off to spend with her son. She takes travel contracts during the summer and then takes local contracts during the school year to accommodate her son’s schedule. She also spaces her contracts out so that she can spend the holiday months off of work and get that extra family time in.
Thank you, Whitney, for being an inspiring GIFTED Nurse and sharing your story with us!
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