FRIENDS of the Elderly, the charity which runs care homes, day care services and a grant-giving service for older people living on low incomes throughout England, honoured last month’s National Nurses Day by celebrating the commitment and dedication of its residents who had careers as nurses.
Josephine Kristiansen has been a resident at The Lawn since November 2021 after choosing to move to the residential care home, as she felt like she belonged there. Growing up in Inverurie in Scotland, Josephine was still at school when she decided that nursing was the career path she wanted to follow.
“I liked the idea of becoming a Nurse. I had no trouble with the exams and when I was 18, I enrolled in Nurses’ Training at The New Aberdeen Royal Infirmary.”
Part of Josephine’s training was in Midwifery. Josephine continued:
“I delivered 10 babies in the district, and they all arrived at different times – day or night. Babies can arrive at any time, they don’t stick to a timetable. I became a Staff Nurse and once I had finished my general training, I continued in Midwifery which meant I was a Scottish General Nurse with the State Certificate of Midwifery. I was very fortunate and worked in great hospitals. I worked at Aberdeen Hospital, The University College Hospital in London and Lady Chancellor’s Hospital in Salisbury. I loved my job, it was so rewarding and I got to meet so many different people from all walks of life.
“I had 11 marriage proposals during my years of dating, but I turned them all down until I met my Husband, Rene, and of course, I said yes. He was funny, so amusing and rather cheeky. Rene was also very intelligent, full of fun and so persistent.”
Josephine and Rene had two daughters, Catherine Elizabeth and Josephine Anne and Josephine is now a proud grandmother to her many grandchildren. She said:
“I used to enjoy needlework, knitting and I loved cooking, but now I just enjoy others doing the cooking for me. When we have singers visit The Lawn, I love to sing along with them. The care team here are so friendly and work so hard looking after us all, but they always make time to sit with me and have a good old chat which I look forward to every day.”
Alina Gutu, the Register Manager at The Lawn added:
“Josephine is a pleasure to be around. She loves to sing and laugh – and with her Scottish humour, she always gets everyone laughing too. Josephine doesn’t have a filter and says everything with such a cheeky grin, that’s why she’s so popular with the care team and residents. The Dining Room is Josephine’s stage and she’ll be singing and getting all the residents to join in at any chance she gets. She’s really a joy to have at The Lawn.”
In closing, Josephine said:
“I’m so very happy living here, the care team is wonderful and I have so many friends. We often chat about what makes us happy and I’d have to say enjoy your life, live it to the fullest and do whatever makes you happy. It’s definitely worked well for me.”