Need ideas for return after 21 years!

  1. Well, guess the title of this thread sums it up... very lucky to have been at home with our 4 kids, ages 10-21...husband job change...need $$$...no confidence! Physically fit? No! Mentally fit? Depressed! Graduated magna cum laude eons ago... took a refresher 5 years ago... Scared me when I discovered during clinical I hadn't given meds all day! Was it my aging brain, or my depressed brain? Would I make another error like this and hurt someone? Any ideas on easing back in, or do I head to the local craft store for a job? Thanks in advance for any help!
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  2. 8 Comments

  3. by   GingerSue
    did you work in nursing for a period of time?

    can you find some help re: the depression?

    not sure what to say about physical fitness - it isn't described in your post

    we learn from our errors - any idea why you might not have given meds all day?
    maybe a system for remembering?
    {when I was a second year student I remember worrying that I would forget to give 10 a.m. meds, I would have dreams of this happening -- but you know - I never forgot to give them - and having the clipboard with the med sheet to check over first thing in the shift was a help to get organized}

    I see magna cum laude and a refresher course - the interest is there
  4. by   ILWannabeRN
    I am a first year ADN student...and I am in class right now with a woman who was a nurse for 8 years and then stayed home with her kids for 15 years...so it's been about 23 years since she's graduated, and about 15 years since she's worked. She got a job at a hospital doing on call nursing for the float pool, but realized that things had just changed too much in 15 years, and decided to come back just to do her clinicals. She'll be doing them for a year, and she's SO knowledgeable, but she had a hard time with meds becuase there are so many new ones, and the new procedures and machines.
    They hired her back...so obviously you should be hireable...but maybe you want to take a clinical or two first? I certainly ONLY know from her experience...but she said it was tough, but in the end it will all be worth it!

    As far as the physical fitness thing goes...I would NEVER dream of going into nursing unless I knew I could run up and down those halls, lift all the patients, and do the things I need to do. Give it a try! It never hurts to try! (Our hospital lets us use the Physical Therapy gym equiptment when it's not in use)....I LOVE the treadmill!

    Good Luck to you! Sounds like you still have the caring personality it takes!

    Claire

    Currently CNA, in school year #1 to be an RN
  5. by   kenny b
    I highly recommend taking yoga or something for the physical fitness aspect. there's no sense in getting a permenant injury over it all. Physical training has been known to help with the depression, as does volunteerism. Maybe volunteer at a hospital to ease back into the swing of things? If you need money, perhaps you could do something else until you're fit.

    Let us know how it goes.
  6. by   jjjoy
    It would great if more nursing programs could open their clinicals to re-entry nurses! The re-entry program I took only had a couple of weeks of clinical. I could have used a couple of months! I'd imagine most nursing programs won't allow re-entry students as they're already full up with their own students but it's certainly worth looking into because if you got lucky and could do that, that would be a great way to get back in to the swing of things.

    However, twenty years is a long time to be out of the field. So many changes, you really would be starting all over in many respects. And here something else to consider. Are you thinking of returning to nursing because it sounds exciting, challenging, and rewarding or because that's what you were trained for back when and it pays pretty well?

    Personally, I've found that clinical nursing isn't my passion. I look for jobs where familiarity with medical terminology and the health care system is useful (vs. clinical experience). The pay is considerably less than nursing positions but it's considerably more than the craft store - though if the craft store does pay well enough, why not? What fun!
  7. by   meanestmomever
    Thanks so much for your replies! A financial "expert" I listen to on the radio likes to talk about "Murphy moving into your back room" when times are bad. That's how it feels here! Please forgive the complaining.

    After completing nursing school I worked in several different areas of the hospital - med-surg, progressive care/telemetry, CT step-down, and ICU/CCU. I loved being where the action was and I wanted to be the best.

    When the kids came, I was able to "work from home" as they say... although 21 years ago that meant the paychecks had several big zeros! I'm so thankful for that.

    I took a refresher course 5 years ago when things started changing for my husband, in order to be prepared. I have to say it was a fairly good program with quite a bit of clinical time. I think the problem was that I returned to telemetry and ICU (during clinicals) without that same drive.
    I got scared off and felt like a failure.

    Since that time I have been fighting clinical depression. I found an excellent therapist, and with meds and some other techniques I do pretty well. Physically I need to lose about 75 lbs. and quit making excuses about exercising! The physical activity does help with the depression.

    I posted my question yesterday afternoon and last night while whining to my husband, (one of my better skills) I discovered I had not checked the job postings for one of the hospitals in our area. I couldn't believe it! They had 8-12 listings for clinic RNs! This is a reputable hospital... I had no idea they had so many clinics! Additionally, the scheduling options were all across the board!

    Now I feel very encouraged to talk to their HR dept! I think this could be a good fit.

    I appreciated your thoughts so much... Maybe Murphy fell asleep! Actually, I can't help but feel that there must have been some prayers said. Thank you all!
  8. by   SmilingBluEyes
    First off, WELCOME TO ALLNURSES.COM!!!

    I wish you the very best. I think your username must be wrong. You sound like the "bestmomever"!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! What a gift you gave your kids, being there for them. It's a decision you won't regret, nor will they.

    Welcome back to nursing; we need folks like you! Take it one day at at time. You will find your niche very soon.
    Last edit by SmilingBluEyes on Jan 26, '07
  9. by   nj1grlcrus
    I was working at home for over 20 years while my kids (4 of them) were small, and had been depressed for quite awhile. Got accepted into nursing school and was in a state of panic the month before starting, doubting whether I could handle 4 nights a week of school, working days and still being a mom. I started school and during the first week, my depression started to lift. Unbelievable! YOu could see the change in me, and I could feel it. You sound like the clinical area would be good for you, I say you mood is brightening already, go for it!!
  10. by   Bokyo
    I will be goin' back to Nursing after 12 years.... will start working on Monday....well...i know i will have at least a Month of Orientation and Training....just so BRaVE and CONFIDENT...that i can make it....GOD is w/ me always!!

    To think of it, that i never work after i graduated t'was year '95....

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