I’m focusing on Florence Nightingale who was an inspiring woman from history, despite illness and injury, who lived an exceptional life. She revolutionised nursing practices and helped to make great changes in the care of patients. Florence challenged the status quo of the time…
Florence was born on May 12, 1820, in Florence, Italy, after which she was named. She was the youngest of two children.
Florence was born into a wealthy family and was expected to get married and have children. Florence rebelled against this stereotype. She had always helped to care for sick people and started working as a nurse.
Florence was sent to nurse injured soldiers during the Crimean War. She proved to be a very dedicated nurse; visiting the injured every evening on a regular basis which started the phrase ‘the Lady with the Lamp’.
Because of her influence in nursing practices unsanitary areas were improved which increased the survival rate of patients.
Florence wrote about her nursing techniques from experience, which formed the basics for standards in nursing care adopted for the profession.
During 1860 St Thomas’ Hospital and the Nightingale School for Nursing was opened.
Florence and fibromyalgia
Florence suffered from an invisible illness after she returned from nursing solders in the Crimea War.
Her symptoms are reminiscent of fibromyalgia; which was not a recognised condition at the time. Florence spent prolonged periods in bed, due to her illness. This was probably triggered by excessive stress carrying out her duties nursing in terrible conditions.
In recent years soldiers from the Gulf War have gone on to develop fibromyalgia after they returned from war. The unbearable stress they were exposed to at that time triggering fibromyalgia.
Florence died on August 13, 1910; she received the Order of Merit in 1907 for her contribution to modern nursing practices. Florence was an amazing woman who cared for others and put others health before her own.
Florence was quoted as saying
“There is no part of my life, upon which I can look back without pain”