81-year-old UW Health nurse thankful for decades of service

81-year-old UW Health nurse thankful for decades of service

At 81 you wouldn’t think Marian Ehernberg would still want to be working, but according to Ehernberg, her job is one of the things that keeps her going.

“It’s just a fascinating journey with life. If you can use your career and have an experience like that, that’s good,” said Ehrenberg.

Nursing looked very different when Marian graduated. Back then, there wasn’t even a cardiac monitor in the emergency room to help patients. Now, as a part-time nurse at UW Health Urgent Care at Union Corners, there are a few more gadgets to keep up with. While computers are not Eherberg’s favorite thing, it’s not her technical skills that matter. Her experiences after being diagnosed with lupus in her 20s has shaped the way she cares for patients.

“There was a time at age 27 that I didn’t think I would live to see 28. I know what it is like to be on that side of the bed, which makes a difference,” she said.

In a fast paced age of medicine, her co-workers are thankful to have her decades of skills to help bring a personal touch to people in their time of need.

“Everybody loves their grandma. Marian actually kind of fills that role, being the person we respect and look up to. She is just a great person all around; you can’t help but love Marian,” UW Health nurse Becky Harrison said.

UW Health Urgent Care at Union Corners is more like a family than a job. And with decades of experience, Harrison said both the new and old generations can learn from each other.

“Marian is one of the kindest, sweetest, passionate, caring people. She’s one of those people who you look at and say, ‘You are in the right profession,'” Harrison said.

Ehernberg plans to work as long as she is healthy. If there’s one lesson 55 years of helping others has taught her, it’s to be thankful for every day.

“Gratitude for the ability to live and serve and so doing, define gratification in your own life,” she said.