I think you're totally overwhelmed and confused. That's pretty common at this stage of the game. I don't think the College lied
to you though. I believe what they told you is that you could apply for a temporary license so you could work while you were waiting to write the exam, not that you'd BE ABLE to work - as in find a job. Schools
are very unrealistic when it comes to employment opportunities and the Colleges of nursing aren't any more up-to-date on what's really going on. I can totally empathize with you about having kids, bills and lots of stress on top of being the only breadwinner right out of the gate because I was in the same place when I graduated as an RN 23 years ago. It took me 5 months after I graduated to even find a casual position and 3 more years to get into a permanent. I worked short-term temporary for those years. But I DID get a job, I DID make it work and you can too. Your focus right now needs to be on the exam. Only worry about one thing at a time - things you can control, and try not to panic. Don't make any significant decisions while you're so stressed. We don't make good choices when we're too busy worrying about everything to think things through.
The situation in your local hospital is a turf war that will sort itself out over time. The staff mix scenario has been played out multiple times in every province. Change is difficult and uncomfortable if it's YOUR status quo that's being shaken up. If you look at it from the perspective of someone whose work place is changing without any consultation, with the fear of the unknown that accompanies that, it's easier to relate to where they're coming from. The nursing world is totally cyclical and eventually things settle down again. Write and PASS your exam. Then pound the pavement until you find a job. Don't plan to get into your perfect position right away, just concentrate on getting a pay cheque. Try not to add to your debt load until you've started whittling away at what you already owe. It will get better, but it's going to take time.