My patient, Marsha, is making gifts. She began weeks ago, creating gifts for her family. She notices the glass pebbles in my cart. Today she says she will be making gifts for the staff. I show her how we can make one word messages on each pebble. She decides she wants the words to be inspirational and characteristic of key traits in hospital staff: passion, caring, peace, etc.
Marsha's goal is to make enough to distribute them to each staff member, both day and night shift. She explains how she wants the staff to choose the pebble from a bag to keep on their desk or refrigerator as a reminder that "when times are tough, one can lose their way." Marsha tells me she's been in the hospital for many weeks, and though she knows it will be tiring, today she declares she will walk throughout the floor to have the entire staff choose pebbles.
The nurse manager picks the word PEACE; a doctor who is treating Marsha picks the word CARING. This was a touching moment because the doctor let his guard down and hugged Marsha as a result of her making something for him.
Later the same day, I returned to the unit. The staff were truly touched by the energy Marsha has for participating in this art piece and in personally delivering her art to them. Pebbles for thought.