chapter  2
18 Pages

Pat’s story

ByViv Martin

Pat had been a nurse for many years and was working as an experienced renal nurse when she was diagnosed with kidney failure. As a nurse who had undergone renal failure, Pat had experienced a major disruption to her life and a profound upheaval to both her personal and professional identities. As a renal nurse, Pat knows the implications of her diagnosis, and the impact it will have on her life. Interwoven with Pat's primary narrative—her illness story—are other stories, such as, stories of friendship, of being a woman, of age and of motherhood. Pat's diagnosis and treatment also affected her relationships with patients. Pat's experience of moving between the role of nurse, with responsibility and professional knowledge, and that of patient, whose responsibility is to be the passive recipient of care, is forcefully conveyed when she reflects on her relationship with the doctors, who were predominantly male.