Sometimes, your true calling doesn’t make itself known until you have built the foundation.
Seth Marantz enjoyed a successful, 13-year career as a dancer before he starting thinking about the next chapter of his life. “I decided to go back to school for political science,” he says.
Marantz’s brother was sick as a kid, and he grew up taking care of him. When his brother had a relapse — resulting in a perforated stomach — at the same time Marantz was contemplating a return to the classroom, he took pause.
“I saw that the nurses made (my brother’s) mood better every day,” he says. “I took him home and remembered that at age 8, I was taught to take care of my brother by a nurse, and that stuck with me. I had figured I would take political science and some nursing classes if they fit and then I literally became obsessed with it. I wanted to do political science in an advocacy role, and once I saw what nursing did for my brother, I saw that you can advocate daily in that role with every individual.
“I didn’t realize I really wanted to work with pediatrics until the end of nursing school,” he says. “I met with the head of St. David’s Children’s Hospital when it was not even a hospital yet. And I am literally obsessed with my kids.”
Marantz connects with “his kids” daily, and often receives requests to stay in contact with his patients when they are discharged, frequently finding something to the effect of “Seth is my best friend” on the dry erase boards in his patients’ rooms. And the care doesn’t stop with the children.
“The family-centered care aspect is the favorite part of what I do now, and caring for parents is a huge part of what we do,” he says.
St. David’s Children’s Hospital encourages its nursing staff to be creative in its view of helping patients. And part of that creativity is their inpatient clinical practice council, which Marantz has chaired.
“We have come up with dozens of ideas of safety-related ideas to enhance our kids’ experience, to improve the moral not just for employees but for our patients. I really believe this is what has made us stand out from the rest.”
For this nurse, it is a simple thing: “I do my job like everyone else should do their job. I leave every day exhausted, but my heart is full. I get to take care of my kids, and I just love them.”