by Vickie Jenkins – Writer/Photographer
Grace Living Center, The Grand is located in Bethany, OK. The staff and nurses are very welcoming to all that enter. One particular nurse that shows genuine love and compassion to the residents here is Danyelle Miller, LPN.
Growing up in Oklahoma City and the Midwest City area, Danyelle had a desire to care for others. She attended Platt College and was determined to get a degree and become a nurse. “I started out as a CNA, and shortly became a CMA, and was promoted to medical records and central supply. It was then that I knew I was headed in the right direction and wanted to get a degree in nursing. Since I had a baby at that time, it was very challenging,” she said. “Having my son just added to the reasons that becoming a nurse was the right thing to do,” she said.
Danyelle tells about her first job in the medical field. “My first job had been at Grace Living Center and this is where I gained a tremendous amount of knowledge. I was able to attend training classes and mentorship programs that included documentation classes, IV classes and later, MDS classes. I was promoted in office administration nursing and became an MDS coordinator for long term care. I completed one full year in MDS before I decided that I missed the resident care and the one-on-one care. I was so thankful to have the opportunity. I became a floor nurse once again and worked at a skilled nursing facility with sub acute patients and administered IV antibiotics and medication with advanced training. It was rewarding to work side by side with a nurse practitioner, hospital nurses, and the other medical staff. I have been a nurse for a total of nine years and can’t imagine doing anything else. I truly believe being a nurse was a true calling for me.”
According to Danyelle, her biggest reward of being a nurse is knowing that she is making a difference in the elderly residents. “I have always gotten a great peaceful feeling when I care for people, especially the elderly and it seems second nature when I am working, making a difference in someone’s life. I will continue to learn and be thankful for this job. It really is my dream come true.” Danyelle considers herself a true leader and wants to learn as much as she can in the medical field.
When it comes to mentors, Danyelle mentioned her cousins; Carla and Alvin. “They were always there for me with lots of encouraging words. Plus, they helped me by caring for my son when I needed a baby-sitter. My son is thirteen years old now,” Danyelle said. “My nursing mentor was Sylvian D. Jackson; an LPN of twenty years. She has been an inspiration to me and I look forward to continuing my education to receive my Bachelor in Nursing and becoming an RN.”
“With COVID-19, being a nurse has been bitter sweet for me. I am sad when I think about all of the people who have lost their lives and I feel sorry for their loved ones not being able to see them on a personal basis. It has been rough for everyone and I don’t think a lot of the residents fully understand what is going on. Just having someone come visit them, giving them a hug and letting them know that someone is thinking of them is so important. The residents need that touch and that company,” Danyelle explained.
When I asked Danyelle if she had any family members in the medical field, she replied, “My mom was a CMA and my sisters and my niece are CNAs. I guess it all kind of runs in the family.”
Danyelle has been recognized as Employee of the Month and Employee of the Year from Grace Living Center. “My biggest reward comes from the residents when they give me a simple thank you,” she said. “All of the residents are nice to everyone around here. We love all of the residents here and they think we are kind of special too,”she said with a smile.
Spending time with her two children, Ellis, her thirteen years old son and Nori, her three year old daughter, is Danyelle’s favorite thing to do. Describing her life overall, Danyelle says her life is complex but blessed beyond expectations.