Nikki Fenner Honored for Extraordinary Patient Care, Inspiring Poem

LIVONIA – Nikki Fenner, an RN on 4 West, recently cared for another colleague’s very ill grandmother. The patient had been diagnosed with COVID-19, and was declining quickly. Nikki provided extraordinary patient care to the patient and her family, with Nikki’s colleague noting that her grandmother had been treated with compassion and love in her final hours. For her dedication to caring for patients during this challenging pandemic, Nikki was honored with the BeRemarkable Award.

Nikki was nominated by a colleague, who wrote, “Nikki is a wonder nurse from 4 West and patients and coworkers feel that she deserves to be recognized.  Nikki has received multiple caught caring cards for her excellent care that she gives to her patients and their families.  She will go out of her way to make sure that her patients are safe and getting the correct care that they need.”

The colleague whose grandmother Nikki had cared for also shared, “Nikki updated me all night and made sure grandma didn’t struggle one bit. She sat with her, prayed with her and talked to her… I feel relief that she had amazing nurses and techs taking great care of her.”

Nikki wrote a poem describing her experience as a nurse caring for COVID patients. With her permission, the poem is printed below.

12 Hours
The fear that runs through your body when…
You see a Covid positive lab result on your new admit…
The dread you feel thinking of being exposed…
Or taking the virus home… to your family…
The panic-stricken sensation you get when you…
Watch your patient struggle to breathe…
But know that you have to be strong for them…
Because we are all they have in this hospital…
The hopelessness you endure when you know your patients’ existence on this earth will be ripped away from them… and wonder, do they know…
Yet you stay strong… for the family that will be faciing a tragic loss…
The sadness that consumes you when you…
Watch your patient take their last breath…
The ear-shattering silence in the room as you work with the team to prep the body for family to pay their last respects…
The heaviness in your soul as you lay your patient in a bag…
The shudder that overcomes you with the sound of each notch of the zipper as you zip it up…
The defeat you swallow as you watch the body bag gently follow the contour of the patient’s body… while you continue to pray for them and their family
Knowing… these feelings will be repeated more times than you can handle…

Yet… we come to work with our smiles blazing…
Our best foot forward at all times…
With hopes to make them crack a smile or chuckle…
We may be tattered and torn… But…
It’s just what we do… It is embedded within us…
We ARE the backbones of these hospitals…
Making a difference… 12 hours at a time…

Congratulations, Nikki, and thank you for bringing your heart and soul with you into work each day.