A young nurse was picking up a few essentials at a store after work when the cashier confronted her about her appearance.
Young nurse Mary Walls Penney, who works with patients who have Alzheimer’s and dementia, currently has colourful rainbow dyed hair, along with multiple piercings and tattoos.
While she was paying for her shopping, the cashier spotted her badge from the nursing home in Wyoming County, West Virginia, and asked her what she did.
‘I’m a nurse,’ Mary replied.
The cashier responded: ‘I’m surprised they let you work there like that. What do your patients think about your hair?’, before asking a lady in the queue behind what she thought of Mary’s hair.
She also commented that she was shocked that a nursing facility ‘would allow that’.
After the conversation, Mary went home and offered her thoughts in a Facebook post, that has now been viewed 220,000 times.
‘I can’t recall a time that my hair color has prevented me from providing life saving treatment to one of my patients,’ she wrote.
‘My tattoos have never kept them from holding my hand and as they lay frightened and crying because Alzheimer’s has stolen their mind.
‘My multiple ear piercings have never interfered with me hearing them reminisce about their better days or listening to them as they express their last wishes.
‘My tongue piercing has never kept me from speaking words of encouragement to a newly diagnosed patient or from comforting a family that is grieving.’
She concludes: ‘Please explain to me how my appearance, while being paired with my cheerful disposition, servant’s heart, and smiling face, has made me unfit to provide nursing care and unable to do my job!’