Unrealistic expectations of LTC, should I just hang in there?

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    Hello all,

    I am new to nursing, especially LTC. I've been licensed as an LPN for nearly two years but have just begun working in nursing 2 months ago. LTC just really wasnt what I wanted to do so I spent a year taking pre reqs for RN programs and a year searching for a nursing position because I needed a break from school. All I've gained from this job is a quarter life crisis and motivation to go back to school to get out of nursing. I was hired for full time evening shifts and told there would always be 2 nurses on my unit which has 60 residents. This place is constantly short staffed so I end up being the only nurse on the unit. I'm completely overwhelmed as a new nurse to begin with and now just completely burnt out. I'm having to stay 2 hrs late to finish charting & from what I hear will probably be getting in trouble for that since overtime is not allowed nor is late entry charting. I also have to carry a pager for emergency calls from the assisted living side so on a bad night I spend at least 30 or more min off the unit during treatment times if not more. Every day I go into work to find new rules and more paperwork. Last night I had to do 6 head to toe skin assessments, one full assessment, 4 sets of vs & nerurochecks (one of which was q15minx4 & then q hr), had to get vitals on everyone receiving abx, and on anyone who had abnormal lab results. New orders on 3 residents had to be charted, noted, entered into the MAR, meds ordered and labs scheduled, specimens collected, labs reported, more new orders received, calls to families, an apartment call for which an ambulance had to be called, AND treatments for 60 residents. I want to quit desperately but am afraid I can't find a job better than this with my license. Is this the normal load in nursing? Will I have the same problem if I work as an RN in acute care? I'm so frustrated, this is a horrible first impression of nursing and quite frankly dream crushing - which I realize is dramatic but nursing is all I've ever wanted to do since I was just a kid so at this point changing careers makes me feel lost, I don't know of anything else I would want to do. Advice please?!

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