Michelle Higgins' story for NHS75
As the NHS reaches a momentous milestone of 75 years, this is an occasion to celebrate the dedicated staff and volunteers who have shaped the NHS into what it is today.
In the lead up to the NHS’s birthday on 5 July, LYPFT staff are telling their stories of inspiration and dedication that led them to join the NHS and what motivates them to continue their important work.
Michelle Higgins is our Head of Physical Health and Infection Prevention Control.
When I was a child, my great grandma spent a long time in hospital after a series of strokes and I visited her every Saturday. I vividly remember the ward and the nurses, so clearly it made an impression. My Nana (her daughter) used to make fudge for the nurses and take it in every week – so maybe the thought of a job where you were supplied with sweets influenced my career choice! I was also inspired by a teacher who had previously been a nurse and used to share stories.
My career has been really varied and I’ve been in roles that were right up my street and others that just weren’t for me, but the one constant has been the brilliant people that I’ve worked with. In every job I’ve had, I can honestly say that I’ve had great colleagues, who lift each other up when needed.
I am proud to say I’m a nurse, and even prouder to say that I am part of the NHS. It might be a difficult time at the moment, but those of us who’ve been around a while can say with some experience that things will get better again. There are so many opportunities for innovation now that make me optimistic for the future.
In this job, you meet people from all walks of life. I’ve even had tea with the King (when he was the Prince of Wales) when he came to open our department. Unfortunately, he declined our offer of a good night out!
All things considered, if the clock was turned back 31 years, I would still choose nursing in the NHS.
You do give a lot of yourself to the job, but equally you receive a lot in return. You will have great days and terrible days, but you will never be experiencing them alone.
It is an absolute privilege to care for people, from the beginning of life to its end, and I couldn’t see myself doing anything else.