Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Published Article

St Joseph's Perinatal Hospice Program is being featured in "Working Nurse" magazine...For those of you who don't get the magazine you can check it out here on line. (just click on the link and look for the 'My Speciality' "Part one - Neonatal Hospice Nursing Outpatient")
And then...continue to scroll down until you see Part Two...which features the inpatient side. I was interviewed for part two. I've seen/read the online version and am awaiting the actual printed version. I just think it will be fun to see myself in a magazine. Though the subject is not an easy subject for some to read about it is a part of my job that I do enjoy and that I think is a valuable service to our families.
And while I'm on the subject of perinatal hospice...click on the video at MSNBC - they did a good job telling about the job that we do.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Patients as Friends

Going through nursing school, I can remember being taught - "Don't make friends with your patients. Don't give them your full name nor any contact information. Remember - this is your job, not your personal life".
Well, I of course did not take that fully to heart and I am glad that I didn't. If I had, I would have missed out on some relationships with some really awesome people. Women who have touched my life and who I now see on a regular basis. It is fun to be invited in to people's lives, to watch their children grow up, be invited to birthday parties, dedications, and maybe some day weddings!
One such person that I met as a patient, is my friend Giselle. I met her about 4 1/2 years ago when she came in laboring. After our initial introductions - I checked her since she looked like she was in pretty active labor. Giselle says that one of the very first things she remembers me saying to her is. "Oh, that is not a head that I feel....I think your baby may be breech". Yes - I was the first one to touch her babies little butt!!
The following day I went to visit G - we had bonded and I wanted to check on her...only to have her tell me with tears in her eyes, "They think my baby has Down's Syndrome...will you please go check on her?" So - off to the nursery I went - only to have to agree with the doctors and to have to go back to tell G that.
That was the start of our friendship. I actually even helped take care of Emma for awhile at home when she was little.
So -fast forward to 2008. Giselle and I still see each other. She came to my wedding, we go to lunch, visit and talk about all kind of things.
Giselle was blessed with another pregnancy and we had planned the whole delivery this time. I was to take care of her again with the delivery scheduled this week. We had the day planned, the anesthesiologist picked out, her MD lined up before he went out of town and another person to document the delivery in pictures. But as life sometimes happens - our plans fell completely apart when she ended up delivering early!
Giselle delivered little Abby Rose on April 9th at 0844 am. She was only 32 weeks and only weighed 3-12, and was 16 inches long. She spent a little time in CHOC's NICU but is now home and doing so well! I got to play with her this week and snuggle that cute little body of hers. She is just so sweet. Congratulations to both Giselle and John on their newest arrival!!
And now on to some photos:
Giselle and I - a patient that is now my friend!!Welcome Abby Rose! Little Abby Rose - home and now 6 pounds
The infamous Emma - the one who started our friendship :)
Big brother Jack and baby Abby

A special thanks to those other patients that have come in to my life and enriched it by their presence...Heather, Trishe, Lori, Tami, Kathy, Annette, and many others. I am so glad that I met you and got to be a part of your special day and that I chose to break the "rule" of 'never make friends with your patients'!!

Saturday, May 17, 2008


Erika qualified for Nationals in the steeplechase! She has to take her finals early, get moved out of the dorms and then they leave for Edwardsville, Illinois later this week.

Not too bad for a freshman....ran nationals in cross country, ran nationals for indoor track and now nationals for outdoor track!! I'm proud of you!

Saturday, May 10, 2008


This week was Nurses' Week.
St Joseph's does a great job of giving us nurses special treatment during the week - from a fabulous luncheon, to the blessing of hands, to raffle prizes, to special recognition. I just so happened to be nominated for two awards this year. I was nominated for the Nancy Berardino Award (which has to do with clinical excellence) and the Roy Family Award (which is for service and compassionate care). The Roy Award was established by a family who felt they received excellent care at St. Joseph and wanted to turn around and honor nurses each year. This award also has a monetary gift with the award.
Well...I was awarded the Roy Family Award this year. What an honor to receive this award! It came at a good time for me for I was feeling a little burned out and now I am rejuvenated to keep on working :)
Here's me receiving my award:
Katie Skelton talking about me (ok - that is a bit embarrassing! I hate being in the spotlight!)
Here's the actual excerpt:
"Debbie Bolton is a very special nurse and a worthy recipient of the Roy Family Award for patient service. She has been an employee here at St Joseph Hospital for 20 years and the majority of them have been in the labor and delivery department. Debbie was raised in the area which gives her the unique ability to know several of the families that present to L&D, which is a connection that Debbie takes in stride. When patients see her in Labor and Delivery and are greeted with her friendly smile, no matter how hard their contractions are or how busy Debbie is, they seem relieved to know a familiar face. Frequently she will be requested by these patients to be cared for by her, which she gladly accommodates. When she is on the unit this is fairly easy, but when it is the middle of the night and this request comes in, Debbie frequently will get up and come in. That is dedication. One patient wrote, 'Thanks for your caring, you are fabulous and God bless you for being so caring, patient and loving. You made my delivery a memorable one'
Debbie is very active in our Perinatal Comfort Care program which cares for patients that are expecting a baby with a lethal diagnosis. She takes great care in capturing their requests for delivery to make sure these families, who may only have a few precious moments to celebrate their child's life, find comfort with their birthing experience. She frequently cares for these patients in labor, which at times is emotionally draining but Debbie treats each family with love and compassion even though her own heart is breaking. What a comfort she is to those who have such high needs. She excels in providing expert nursing care while attending to the complex social, and spiritual needs of her patients.
Thank you Debbie for delivering perfect care and providing sacred encounters along the way, you are an inspiration to all of us"
My L&D friends!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008


I am so far behind in my blogging...but it is for a good reason! Jon and Kim have been out of town so I've had the pleasure of having Lily at my house and we have been so busy!!!!We have gone to track meets, shopping, out to dinner with cousins and to the American Girl Doll Store in LA. Plus I sort of forgot how much work a 3 month old is...feedings every 3 hours, awake at night and all of the extra stuff you need to pack to go anywhere. But, I'd watch her again in a heartbeat for she is just so sweet! I can't even write all I want to right now for she is squirming in my lap but I promise to catch up soon...

Please can I have that doll??

Fun with cousins.
Shopping at The Grove with Auntie Shel

One has to cover up in the sun at track meets!

Visiting Auntie E at Biola

Bath timeWhew! I think I need a nap!