Credit where credit's due: Chris Wallace can give a pretty tough interview when provoked.
Have you ever wondered what drives nurses to do what they do? We took a walk in one nurse’s shoes to get a better understanding of what makes her truly remarkable.
Emily Danz of Fort Lee, New Jersey, grew up watching her Yiayia (“grandmother” in Greek), battle heart disease. As a child, she listened with curiosity and amazement as the doctors explained cardiac procedures and outcomes to her family.
Then, when she was old enough to drive, Danz became responsible for taking Yiayia to and from her doctor’s appointments and hospital visits.
Inspired by all she learned about her grandmother’s journey, Danz decided to enter nursing school after graduating high school—a decision that made her grandmother burst with pride.
“She told me when I graduated nurse practitioner school that it was one of the greatest things she witnessed in all 89 years of her life,” said Danz. “She knew I’d go far and do well.”
Courtesy of Emily Danz
And she has. Nurse Danz has used her childhood experiences as an onlooker to her grandmother’s care as a springboard into caring for others. The very first patient she cared for after graduating nursing school in 2014 was suffering from an active tuberculosis infection. Although tuberculosis is curable and preventable, it’s also highly contagious and transmittable by air. It takes the inhalation of only a few of these germs to become infected.
“I remember being petrified to walk into that room,” said Danz.
Fortunately, an experienced nurse mentor gave her a pep talk that she will never forget—in fact, she says, it shaped the entire trajectory of her career.
“[She told] me not to be afraid and that caring for a tuberculosis patient is like caring for any other patient, but just with a special mask and gown. From that day on, I realized that there was no reason to ever be afraid or scared of a patient, and I actually took care of that patient every time I worked for the entirety of their stay — which was over three months.”
Emily | Heroes Behind the Masks presented by CeraVe www.youtube.com
Years later when she found herself working in a hospital during a global pandemic, Nurse Danz channeled that early experience to get her through the fear of caring for patients infected with COVID-19.
“When I was assigned [my first] COVID patient, it was like my very first day of nursing all over again … my mind quickly traveled to the pep talk I was given and reminded me of the oath I took to care for patients no matter the situation,” said Danz. “I continue to carry this empathy with me every day for every single patient I care for—it is something instilled in me.”
Danz, who has also become an instructor to nursing students in their last year of nursing school, recognizes the importance of seeing every patient as an individual and not just a number. She teaches these students bedside clinical skills and medication administration, focusing clearly on arming them with the confidence to interact with patients comfortably, no matter the situation.
Courtesy of CeraVe
“From day one, I learned not to be afraid and it has helped me tremendously throughout my career. In every single class, I make sure to tell my students stories, events and real-life scenarios I’ve been through to prepare and engage them. It is imperative that the new nurses coming into the field are confident and empathetic. When you’re afraid, patients sense it and it affects their healing,” said Danz.
The goal of CeraVe’s Heroes Behind the Masks Chapter 2: A Walk In Our Shoes campaign is to highlight exceptional nurses like Nurse Danz and recognize the profound impact they have on their patients and communities. Follow along this week for more stories and to learn about CeraVe’s ongoing commitment to the nurse community here.
It only costs them a little more than $30,000 a year.
Imagine retiring early and spending the rest of your life on a cruise ship visiting exotic locations, meeting interesting people and eating delectable food. It sounds fantastic, but surely it’s a billionaire’s fantasy, right?
Not according to Angelyn Burk, 53, and her husband Richard. They’re living their best life hopping from ship to ship for around $44 a night each. The Burks have called cruise ships their home since May 2021 and have no plans to go back to their lives as landlubbers. Angelyn took her first cruise in 1992 and it changed her goals in life forever.
“Our original plan was to stay in different countries for a month at a time and eventually retire to cruise ships as we got older,” Angelyn told 7 News. But a few years back, Angelyn crunched the numbers and realized they could start much sooner than expected.
“We love to travel and we were searching for a way to continuously travel in our retirement that made financial sense,” she said. They looked into deals they could find through loyalty memberships and then factored in the potential sale price of their home and realized their dream was totally affordable.
The rough math makes sense. If it costs the couple $88 per night to live on a cruise ship, that’s $32,120 a year. Currently, the average price of a home in Seattle, Washington—where the couple lived—is $958,027 which would come with a mortgage that costs around $50,000 a year.
Plus, on a cruise ship, the couple doesn’t have to pay for groceries.
The Burks are able to live their dream because they’ve spent a lifetime being responsible. “We have been frugal all our lives to save and invest in order to achieve our goal,” she says. “We are not into materialistic things but experiences.”
Angelyn says that cruising takes the stress out of travel. “It is leisurely travel without the complications of booking hotels, restaurants, and transportation while staying within our budget,” she told 7 News. The couple travels lightly with just two suitcases between them and if they need anything, they just buy it on the ship or in the next port.
One thing the carefree couple should be concerned about on their never-ending cruise is COVID-19. The coronavirus is easily spread in close quarters and a cruise ship that recently docked in Seattle had 100 people on board who tested positive for the virus. The CDC recommends that people get vaccinated before going on a cruise and that immunocompromised people should consult with their physicians before traveling.
Since leaving their jobs and the mainland behind, the Burks have been on a 50-day cruise around the Adriatic Sea, taking in the sights of Europe as well as a 51-day cruise from Seattle to Sydney, Australia.
The Burks really love cruising to Italy, Canada, Iceland and the Bahamas but their favorite is Singapore.
Looking to give it all up and go on a permanent vacation just like the Burks? Angelyn has some advice for those wanting to get started.
It takes a special type of person to become a nurse. The job requires a combination of energy, empathy, clear mind, oftentimes a strong stomach, and a cheerful attitude. And while people typically think of nursing in a clinical setting, some nurses are driven to work with the people that feel forgotten by society.
Michelle Santizo is a street medicine nurse working in Los Angeles, California. For her, the field of street medicine requires providing lifesaving health services in unpredictable and sometimes uncomfortable environments, but is where she is most passionate about her work.
Nurse Santizo credits her parents for teaching her resilience, a necessary trait when providing care in places like tents, under bridges, in alleys, vehicles, at libraries, on the side of the freeway or even at a bus stop.
“Every corner of Los Angeles needs our services,” said Nurse Santizo. “It can be in a pristine, abandoned, trashed, or graffiti-filled neighborhood.”
Michelle | Heroes Behind the Masks presented by CeraVe www.youtube.com
Santizo prepares for the workday by loading her backpack with supplies before heading to a section of downtown L.A. known as “skid row” to care for her clients, who are typically people experiencing homelessness and living on the fringes of society without regular access to healthcare. As the child of immigrant parents, she experienced firsthand a lack of healthcare and basic necessities. Her mother fled from El Salvador as a young woman, arriving in the United States alone and without shelter.
“My mother told me that the only people that acknowledged her while sleeping outside on a bench [were the people going in and out of] the church that was across the street,” said Nurse Santizo. She said her mother instilled in her that there are many reasons why people are homeless and that each individual has their own story. “[She] taught me to never judge someone’s struggle … my mother’s inspiring upbringing taught me if you have the time to help the broken or disadvantaged, then take a moment to acknowledge or help in some positive way.”
Michelle and her mother on a beachCourtesy of Michelle Santizo
Growing up, Nurse Santizo watched her parents struggle to earn a living wage to keep up with the family’s needs. “My father worked nearly seven days of the week and my mother worked as much as she could in jobs like babysitting, cleaning homes or caregiving. Feeding our family was my parent’s main concern…healthcare and all the other important aspects of life became secondary or non-existent. My parents could barely make enough income to buy fresh fruit or vegetables,” she said.
The Santizo familyCourtesy of Michelle Santizo
That upbringing is what drove her to pursue a career in medicine, with the goal of giving back to underserved communities. “[Access to] medicine should not be determined based on your socioeconomic status. It should be a right for someone to seek healthcare when it is needed and important, especially for children and adolescents who will be the future of our generation,” said Nurse Santizo. She credits her lack of access to healthcare as a child for empowering her to keep pushing for change.
When the opportunity to practice street nursing arose, Santizo knew instinctively that it was the right fit. Every workday she has meaningful interactions, but one experience in particular had a lasting impression on her. She encountered a middle-aged man who had lost his job during the pandemic and was forced to live on the streets. Nurse Santizo approached, and he asked if she wouldn’t mind examining his feet. As she gently inspected the condition of his skin, she explained that he needed a thorough cleaning and a special ointment and offered to wash his feet and patch them up.
Courtesy of CeraVe
“This kind man stared right into my eyes and nearly cried, as he shared ‘no one has ever cared for me like this ever since I’ve been forced to live on the streets, nor has anyone ever acknowledged my existence,’” recalled Nurse Santizo. “I remember squatting on the side of the street while cars were driving by … my only mission was to devote that moment in time to servicing a person who needed my attention and love. As you can tell, I love what I do, and I could scrub feet for days when servicing the most vulnerable populations.”
According to the most recent report, approximately 580,466 people were experiencing homelessness in America in January 2020. Most were individuals (70%) and the rest were people living in families with children. The full effect of the pandemic on the homeless populations across the country have yet to become clear, and hard data will not be fully known until late 2022 or early 2023.
“Bringing medicine to people who are not able to seek medical assistance due to their inabilities whether it be homelessness, chronic illness, or mental health has always been my true calling … to serve the broken, the sick, the vulnerable and the ones who really need a second chance at life,” said Nurse Santizo, a reminder that no one knows what another human is battling.
To recognize the healthcare professionals that are so often giving to others before themselves, CeraVe seeks to spotlight those that go beyond the call of duty for their patients and communities. The brand is honoring nurses such as Santizo in the second iteration of a docuseries titled Heroes Behind the Masks Chapter 2: A Walk In Our Shoes.
Follow along in the coming days for more stories of heroism, kindness and love.
Ah, the Goodwill. Thrifting has become even more part of American culture since Macklemore’s mega hit “Thrift Shop” was released 10 years ago. You can find just about anything you want, from formal dresses to large furniture items and antiques. Walking out of a thrift store with goodies haphazardly thrown into crinkled recycled plastic bags makes you feel like you’ve just struck the jackpot, but for one woman, a jackpot is exactly what she struck. In 2018, art collector, Laura Young of Austin, Texas, was doing her usual thrift store run to look for hidden gems when she stumbled across a sculpture. The sculpture caught her eye, especially since she looks for undervalued or rare art pieces while thrifting. The sculpture was a steal at $34.99, so taking it home was a no-brainer.
She strapped the bust into her car seat with the seat belt. Safety first, even for old heavy sculptures of heads. After getting a closer look at the dirty sculpture, she realized that the bust looked quite old and this piqued her interest enough to start searching for where it could’ve come from. After rescuing the bust, Young consulted with experts in art history at the University of Texas at Austin and experts at auction houses around the country over the next couple of years.
To Laura’s delight and surprise she finally found an answer. Jörg Deterling, a consultant for Sotheby’s a fine arts brokerage, identified the bust as one that was in a German museum decades ago before putting her in touch with the German authorities. As luck would have it, the art collector had unwittingly bought a sculpture from the late first century B.C. to early first century A.D. You really can’t make this stuff up. The bust likely depicts a son of Pompey the Great. Yes, that Pompey, the one that was defeated by Julius Caesar. At least that’s what the museum believes, on the other hand The Art Newspaper reported that the bust is believed to be Roman commander Drusus Germanicus.
In 2018, someone decided they didn't want it \u2014 maybe the owner died or gave it away. \n\nThey took it to Goodwill.\n\nWhich brings us back to Laura Young. Now she's got a looted artifact she can't sell, can't keep and getting it back to its rightful owners is harder than it sounds...pic.twitter.com/JEhFa3vPiQ— Matt Largey (@Matt Largey) 1651686508
Either way, the bust is old and existed in a time where someone had to pose for a ridiculously long amount of time while someone else chipped away at rock to memorialize their face. The ancient bust once belonged to King Ludwig I of Bavaria who lived from 1786-1868. It was part of a full scale model he built of the house of Pompeii, called the Pompejanum, in Aschaffenburg, Germany, where it stood for nearly 200 years. The full-scale model was severely damaged in WWII by Allied bombers.
No one’s quite sure how the bust made its way from Rome to Germany and then shoved under the table at an Austin, Texas Goodwill, but it sure makes for an incredible story. Whether the bust is the son of Pompey or if it’s commander Drusus, it’s back in a place where it can be honored and cared for—a museum. The Bavarian Administration of State-Owned Palaces agreed to the bust staying at the San Antonio Museum of Art until May 21, 2023, before it makes its way back to Germany.
A pelvic floor doctor from Boston, Massachusetts, has caused a stir by explaining that something we all thought was good for our health can cause real problems. In a video that has more than 5.8 million views on TikTok, Dr. Alicia Jeffrey-Thomas says we shouldn’t go pee “just in case.”
How could this be? The moment we all learned to control our bladders we were also taught to pee before going on a car trip, sitting down to watch a movie or playing sports.
The doctor posted the video as a response to TikTok user Sidneyraz, who made a video urging people to go to the bathroom whenever they get the chance. Sidneyraz is known for posting videos about things he didn’t learn until his 30s. "If you think to yourself, 'I don't have to go,' go." SidneyRaz says in the video. It sounds like common sense but evidently, he was totally wrong, just like the rest of humanity.
on vacation and remembering #vacation #tips #bathroom #travel #tipsandtricks #todayilearned #todayyearsold #islandlife #traumabrain #roadtrip #inmy30s
“Pelvic floor physical therapist here, and I work with a lot of people with overactive bladders, stress incontinence, urge incontinence, the whole nine yards,” Dr. Jeffrey-Thomas began her clip. “And here's why you shouldn't go ‘just in case."'
In the video, Dr. Jeffrey-Thomas explains the three levels of feeling the need to pee.
“The first one is just an awareness level that tells you that there's some urine in the bladder,” she said. “The second one is the one that tells you to make a plan to use the toilet, and the third is kind of the panic button that says, ‘Get me there right now, I'm about to overflow.’”
Then she made her case by giving a visual explanation of how going when we don’t need to teaches our bodies to prematurely send signals that it’s time to pee. The simple explanation has a lot of people wondering if their pee sensor is still working correctly.
#stitch with @sidneyraz I know it sounds counterintuitive and goes against everything your momma taught you - just out here trying to save your bladder 🤍
In a rare display of humility on the internet, Sidneyraz saw the video and thanked the doctor for the correction. "Oh hey thanks for correcting me!" he wrote.
The video shocked a lot of people who feel like their entire lives have been based on a lie—at least when it comes to something most of us do six to eight times a day. “TikTok is basically just a bunch of videos telling me I'm doing life wrong,” joked one commenter. “Like Jesus, really? I'm peeing wrong?”
Yes, you are.
"Who else hears their mom in their head say 'go just in case' when you’re out and about and near a bathroom?" another commenter asked.
The good news is that if you’ve always been the type to go “just in case” and you constantly feel like you need to go pee, there is hope. With the help of a doctor, you can retrain your bladder so that you only feel the need to go when it’s time. Now, who’s going to be the first brave person who doesn’t go when they feel the need, just to see if their body’s pee sensor is off?