By Pat Eshleman, RN, BSN, CCRC
As I get ready to retire after 45 years of taking care of my community as a health care professional, I look back on a wonderful career filled with sorrow and joy. My career has been peopled with phenomenal co-workers, a lot of family support and most of all the patients, who make it all worthwhile.
There are few careers that allow a person to make a difference in someone else’s life. Nursing is one of those. I’ve been with patients and their family at the most difficult times of their lives – times when they must rely on a stranger to take the best possible care of them. It has been so rewarding to be that person.
When I started working in health care, in the days before the food police, there were free donuts in the hospital cafeteria on Mondays and patients were allowed to smoke in their rooms. My how things have changed. We now promote health. No donuts and no smoking on campus anywhere near the health care facilities on the hill.
I have seen great advances in health care. Ulcers can be cured, and diabetes can be controlled. Many cancers are either curable or reduced in intensity to being a chronic disease. My one hope that has not been realized during my career is a cure for Type 2 diabetes. I will be watching closely for that advance during my retirement.
I leave my final and best job as Manager of the Clinical Research Center at The Corvallis Clinic in the excellent hands of Sheena Strohmayer, MHA. Sheena was my first research assistant. She has gone onto other jobs in management and now returns to the job she was always meant to have. I retire knowing that research will thrive under her leadership.
Thank you to all those who have been so important to me during the past 45 years. You all have made me the person I am today.
– Pat Eshleman, RN, BSN, CCRC, is the Manager of The Corvallis Clinic Clinical Research Center and a Certified Clinical Research Coordinator.