As my name says: I am an older RN, but new at it as I graduated 18 months ago.I spent 6 months on acute care/ortho floor until autoimmune issues kicked up and slowed me down. With as many as 8 and no less than 7 patients during the day shift, I had to resign. In short order I landed new job at a mental health day facility where I had done my clinicals, in the area I had hoped for. The only site RN with one Dr. on staff, four ten hour days, my own office with my own bathroom. I felt I could work there till I was ready to retire. Such a perfect set up! But things got all shook up when the dr. quit, leaving me the only licensed person on site. I was being asked to do things I was not trained to do as well as things that were putting my license at risk. After 2 months of functioning pretty well...I thought, I had a TIA. Well it is called a mini-stroke, but the end results have not felt so "mini". I was in hospital for a day, off of work per PCP for a week, then back full swing. I thought I was fine: no residual physical effects. BUT being back at work showed me the cognitive deficits: memory issues (I had to relearn a new EHR program I had just learned the week before), I've typed since I was 15, here at 55 I do not remember where keys are and spend time fixing errors; procedures, processes I had known and used left me loopy and feeling like an idiot. I had some speech issues even though speech therapist had passed me off in hospital. I found under stress it was much worse. I would look at forms as though it were the first time. Needless to say all of this slowed me down...a lot. In addition, the site administrator, one of my bosses, asked if I was ok giving meds. I said, "of course, I will not make a mistake...I follow habits long established." Well, number one rule: don't accept the word of someone who has cognitive issues!!! In my second week back, I had a consumer come for an injection, which I gave after following protocols and policy...I thought. So two weeks later when he returns for the next injection, in going through proper steps of reading dr. orders, I see he is one week early; not every two weeks but every three weeks. So I send him back. But this caused me to double check previous appointments including when I was out of commission. I do not know why he was in the system to come for the injection at the two week mark when it was not supposed to be for another week. I do not know why I would not have caught that by reading dr. orders and sent him back, but being in the state I was, I gave him his injection. After finding the mistake from two weeks earlier, I reported it immediately, to all I was supposed to including the Head Dr. Head RN. The dr. asked for all info on patient, which I had done the VS and assessed when I had him in my office before sending him back without the injection. All was WNL. I reported all to the dr. he said b/c the patient had been on the med for over 20 years, he doubted there were any problems and there were not. I asked for medical leave and then have since resigned. My confidence completely shaken and now wonder is there any future for an older RN that is new but is slowed by health issues, in particular post-stroke. True I am getting over the cognitive deficits, but still run into walls, and even prior to the stroke I have had the sense that I am losing intelligence and ability to think clearly. My Dr. is running gamut of tests to see what it all means. I can't really make a decision on employment till all results are in. I will be sad to lose my earning potential; the plan we had in place to have home and debts paid off and retirement lined up by the time our baby, a sophomore, begins college. I will be sad that my 40 year old dream and hard work to become RN at the age of 53 is for naught. But I certainly do not want to put patients at risk. What job can I do as an inexperienced, ADN degree of nursing. Education would be ideal, but it requires so much more schooling, which I do not have the money for at this time. I need the income now or we will slide further into debt. Am I done? Or is there something I can do safely, within time constraints facilities place on us now, etc.? Right now the way I feel is that the stress and effects on my health have been so intense, and since I still need an income, I would be happy, truly happy being a greeter at Walmart, rather than the politics and games and stuff that goes on where ever RN's work and doubt my abilities anyway. Any insights would be appreciated!