When people who are not nurses think of scrubs, they often comment on how lucky we are to be able to go to work in “our pajamas.” And although it is nice that our scrubs are sometimes made of super soft material (and p.s. this comes at a price) there are many, many more reasons nurses appreciate their scrubs. After all, a nurse’s scrubs have been to hell and back (on multiple occasions)!!
Anything and everything gets spilled on our scrubs. When blood is the worst thing we find on our scrubs, it’s been a pretty good day. Patients have bled on me, I’ve kneeled in poop, someone peed on me (more than once), I’ve been splashed with amniotic fluid, and I’ve been too close to vomit too many times to count. And so far I’ve only mentioned bodily fluid betrayals! Somehow we manage to get food, medicine, and all sorts of drink splatters all over our scrubs.
Our scrubs are really stretched to their limits. People tend to become nurses and then slowly gain weight. Our poor scrubs are literally stretched to their limits until we will finally cave and buy a new set. If we’re pregnant, we will wait until the very.last.second. before buying maternity scrubs (which, by the way, are more expensive).
Scrubs really know how to handle a wash. We either know everything our scrubs have been through for the day, or we can think of all the possibilities. Either way, when we get home from work our scrubs go into the hottest wash cycle possible, for the longest time possible, with massive amounts of any-kind-of-soap-that-won’t-bleach-our-scrubs.
Scrubs are subjected to all kinds of sweat. That’s right, I said it. We sweat in all kinds of places, and our poor scrubs hide that fact very well.
Our scrubs are exposed to every disease under the sun. We are constantly touching our patients, hugging our patients, leaning over our patients, and holding our patients. We don’t think about what are patients are sick with, or what they could potentially be sick with…we just touch them. Because of this, refer back to #3!
Many scrubs have wiped up tears. I can’t count the number of times I felt someone else’s tears seep through my scrubs as a patient or their family member have cried into my shoulder. I also can’t count how many times my own tears have fallen down my face and onto my scrub top!
The pockets of our scrubs have been forced to hold many things. Like many, many things. I don’t even know how it’s possible, but sometimes I feel as if our scrub pockets are like Mary Poppins handbag. They seem to be endless, able to hold everything from a pen, to alcohol pads, to our cell phones! Our poor pockets are like a treasure chest!
Our scrub pants have had to endure a temporary hem a time or two. Nurses can Macgyver a scrub hem! We have used tape, staples, and paper clips for a temporary hem when we’ve realized too late that our scrub pants are too long.
Our scrubs aren’t retired until we find a hole. Our scrubs are put through the wringer, and we will continue to allow them to take a beating until the dreaded discovery happens: we find material somewhere on our scrubs that is so worn it begins to make a hole. This is usually a) somewhere near a pocket or b) in between our legs.
Until my next delivery. xx