The Ripple Effect

Yesterday I received a heartfelt email from a previous student of mine that just reminded of the ripple effect. So, though I have not written a blog post in a while… I go. 

I was asked to guest speak in an Ethics nursing class. I spoke about addiction, specifically, the addict suffering from the disease of addiction. The professor asked me to speak to the class because she felt as if her class really didn’t understand addiction. We certainly don’t teach nurses or doctors during their education process much about addiction, and more importantly how to care for patients and the families that suffer.  I spoke to the class with all my passion and knowledge and tried to stimulate discussion. The class engaged very little and I wasn’t sure I made much of an impact. I wrapped up my presentation and was packing up when 3 students approached me privately with questions. One beautiful, innocent young lady approached me with tears in her eyes and shared with me that her family struggled with alcoholism and she wanted my advice on what to do.  I gave her my suggestions and also gave her my business card and told her she could call me if she had any other questions.  To my surprise my next group of mental health clinical students included this young lady. I was able to teach clinical to my students which included many group discussions on dealing with people with mental health issues.  This student was very engaged, and though we weren’t at the best clinical site I hoped she and the other students were able to get something beneficial out of their experience.  I received quite the heartfelt email yesterday that inspired this blog.  She shared with me that she was able to use what she learned in clinical and from my presentation in her ethics class to show compassion for her father whom recently went to treatment for his alcoholism. She is very hopeful for her future with her family to live in acceptance, love, and compassion for her father and her family.  So, the ripple effect…..where did it start? Not important ….but how far will it go, for that I pray….. 

Be Inspired, 

My student inspired me to write this post. This post is dedicated to her and her family. I pray for continued recovery within her family.  

Lisa Marie Walsh


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