Mothers and daughters share common bond in nursing
MAYWOOD, Ill. -- As a child, Angie Kelly, RN, BSN, used to dress up in play scrubs, tuck her toy nurse kit under her arm and tend to her father - her prime patient. It is no wonder she chose this form of make-believe over any other. She had witnessed the value of the nursing profession firsthand from her mother, an accomplished nurse, researcher and educator.
"I remember being at a baseball game where my Mom rushed to the aid of victims from a nearby car accident," Kelly recalled. "I thought she was so brave and always wished that I could be like that."
Despite this early interest in nursing, Kelly decided to pursue a career as a pastry chef. However, as she packed up her life and arranged to move cross-country to school, something tugged inside of her that prevented her from going through with it.
She decided to stay in her hometown of Joliet, Ill, and found a job as a patient care technician at Loyola University Health System (LUHS) in Maywood, Ill, where her mother, Pam Clementi, PhD, APRN, BC-FNP, has worked since 1986.
"I was very honored that Angie was interested in nursing," Clementi said. "With all the opportunities that women have in the work force these days, the fact that she chose nursing was so special to me."
Kelly has since become a registered nurse who works primarily in the neonatal intensive care unit while her mother serves as the manager of the Nursing Education Department at LUHS.
"Not many people share a profession with a parent," Kelly said. "I think it is a bond that cannot be explained. We understand what we see every day as well as what it took to get where we are."
This bond grew even stronger when Clementi stopped in the neonatal intensive care unit one day to see her daughter in action.
"I was so proud to see Angie caring for a delicate baby, displaying confidence in herself and excitement in her role as a nurse," Clementi said.
Clementi has spent a great deal of time listening to patients and studying their expectations in how they would like to be treated when receiving health care.
"Listening to and being present for patients, and in Angieâs case, the parents and family of the babies, is the most important advice that I have given to my daughter and other nurses," Clementi said. "The greatest gift of this profession is being able to be there for patients. I have the added bonus of being able to do this alongside my daughter."
Clementi and Kelly are not the only mother-daughter duos at LUHS. Nurses Carla and Patricia Cavaliere and Annette and Anna Jenero all work at Loyola, which contributes to the familial atmosphere for patients and employees.