Advice for a latebloomer needed

  1. I am over 40 and have spent my life taking care of everyone else.
    Now, finally, I am in a position to follow my own dreams. I am considering pursuing a 2 year nursing degree, which will actually take 3-4 years here in GA. I wonder about a lot of the practical realities of starting later in life. I'm not even sure what questions I should ask before taking the plunge.

    Is it too late for me?
    Are nurses still able to get decent jobs into thier 60's?
    What if I can't see well enough to start IV's or draw blood?

    Any advice you can give would be greatly appreciated.
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  2. 20 Comments

  3. by   researchrabbit
    IF YOU LIKE NURSING, GO FOR IT!!!

    I started nursing school at age 40 after a devasting divorce, while working full time and with 2 children at home (no, it wasn't easy but it was doable). I finished in 2000, I am now 45 and have better earning power and the knowledge I will always be able to get a job.

    You will find it a little easier as an older student -- you've probably experienced childhood illnesses, taken care of babies, learned all about pregnancy and helped with elder care. You've dealt with your own aging. You will find that you have a wonderful knowledge base to build on (so you won't have to study as hard as someone who just graduated high school).

    If you find hospital work too grueling, there are plenty of other jobs out there for nurses (telephone triage, research, the list goes on).

    Best of luck and keep us posted!
  4. by   shygirl
    I also say "GO FOR IT!"

    Those years are going to go by anyway. Might as well do something you'll enjoy! Good Luck, Shygirl
  5. by   Mkue
    i say go for it and good luck to you.. i'm over 40 too..., it's a great experience that you will not regret. the people that you meet, the sciences.. if you are interested in the human body and kinda anal about things..lol..what can go wrong and why, it's really interesting to say the least.

    best wishes !!

  6. by   joenp
    Do not underestimate yourself. We all get to be over 40, if we live that long. I am over forty and I can still start IV's and do all the things I did as a younger person. It is never too late to start, it is only too late not to start. Good luck and take care. joenp
  7. by   live4today
    Originally posted by Rosemary4126
    I am over 40 and have spent my life taking care of everyone else.
    Now, finally, I am in a position to follow my own dreams. I am considering pursuing a 2 year nursing degree, which will actually take 3-4 years here in GA. I wonder about a lot of the practical realities of starting later in life. I'm not even sure what questions I should ask before taking the plunge.

    Is it too late for me?
    Are nurses still able to get decent jobs into thier 60's?
    What if I can't see well enough to start IV's or draw blood?

    Any advice you can give would be greatly appreciated.
    Hello Rosemary and welcome aboard to allnurses.com!

    Go for it! Forty is NOT old today. If you think it is, go visit a senior citizens home or a long term care facility. You will always be needed as a nurse.....especially because this world is guaranteed to always have two age groups to care for: newborns and the aging. I'm pretty sure you will find your niche somewhere in between if not with one of those groups. I wish you well! Bravo for you for keeping on with your bad self. :hatparty:
  8. by   spineCNOR
    Greetings Rosemary,

    I second all the comments by the above posters!

    Believe me, 50-something is not too old --there is a tremendous need for nurses in this country, and there are many area of nursing for you to choose from. One advantage of nursing is that it allows many more options than other fields - many hospital specialities, outpatient and clinic facilities, etc, etc, etc. Once you finish school you will be able to find the right niche for you.

    Will nurses still be able to get decent jobs in their 60's? After graduating from school, you should be able to work as long as you want to-- one of my OR nurse colleagues at work is in her early 60's, and she works rings around many people 20 or 30 years younger than she is!

    Better late than never-- I just graduated from an RN-mobility program (RN to BSN program) at the age of 48, and plan to graduate with my master's at 50, so Never think that you are too old. It's not too late to follow your dreams!!!! As shygirl said, the years are going to go by anyway.

    Good luck-- you can do it!
  9. by   joannep
    Hi Rosemary,

    I agree, go for it.

    With the current nursing shortage looking at getting worse over the next 20 years or so, we should all be guaranteed work as we move through the 50's and 60's. I certainly intend to keep working part-time to keep a small income coming in to supplement my other retirement investments.

    Joanne
  10. by   nightingale
    I sya GO FOR IT! I graduated from my two year program when I was 45 and from my completion program last year when I was 48!

    (Yikes that menas I am turning 50 in a month) teheheh

    I love Nursing and wonder what the heck took me so long!

    The other posters are right. There are plenty of "alternative jobs" then hospital work. Hospital work is what I am doing primarily though (with LOTS of fun jobs in between).

    Research the over 50 thread... teheeh

    What kept pulling me through the long hours of study, care plans at midnight, and the many challenges of juggling school, family, and "life" is my love of patient care and unending curiosity of helath care issues. If there is some spark and excitement in this wonderful world of nursing; please join us and welcome.

    B.
  11. by   adrienurse
    Take care of your health and sanity, take care of your back. You should be fine. You'll definitly have the advantage over the other 60 year olds that have been nursing since their 20s.

    Good Luck!
  12. by   Youda
    Look at it this way: In a few years, you'll be just as old whether or not you get your RN or not. So, you might as well be older AND doing something you want! BTW: My Mom graduated from nursing school (RN) at age 65. She worked until she was 74. She still does some consulting so she has extra money for her "retirement." Darlin' GO FOR IT! You'll be younger than me when I got my RN!
  13. by   Ex130Load
    Too old?! You're never too old to start learning, we do a little each day.

    I'm 44, just finished summer term (in my junior year) which wasn't any fun, but is now behind me.

    I'm not the oldest in my class. A friend/classmate is 50 and another classmate in 49. My friend has intentions of going onto nurse anesthesiologist school in about three years if things work out for him. Me, I'm gonna do some sort of grad school too.

    If you've the interest, take the plunge. You may find the temperature is to your liking.
  14. by   oldgirl
    I vote yes! I was 44 when I started my 2 year program-same thing reality is 3-4 years with pre-reqs. Dropped out for a while to care for a dying parent, but graduated at 49. Once you are done you have a lot of options. Lots of part-time slots available, some with benefits, some not. Tons of different things to do. Of the 50 people I started my RN classes with, 1/3 of us were over 40, and everyone graduated. It will make you cry, make you tear your hair out, make you laugh, and it ain't NEVER boring!

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