What or who was your inspiration for becoming a nurse?

  1. When I was in second grade I had to have ear surgery. You know how when you are a little kid you have no perception of time, so I thought I was in the OR for hours waiting to be brought in for the surgery. I started crying and a nurse stopped and held my hand. She waited with me until I was wheeled into the OR and fell asleep. I have, and never will, forget that woman.
    My other motivating factor was dealing with doctors when I had a health problem in the late 1980's. I was appalled at the way I was blown off. Turned out my problem wasn't in my imagination as they had suggested and boy did I make them eat a little crow! I decided that I wanted to be like that OR nurse and help people who were also getting blown off.
    How about you? Why did you become a nurse and who was your inspiration?
    Regards to Jenny P for the idea from the thread What rules have you broken... Thanks Jenny!!
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  2. 32 Comments

  3. by   gypsigirl
    Hi fedupnurse.....I guess I have been inspired by several incidents...I first wanted to go in to nursing 16 years ago but the second prereq class I took, found out I was pregnant with No 3. Two months after she was born we found out my husband had glioblastoma multiforme grade 3-4. He died 11 months later. 3 months after that I started back to school full time. After about 3 weeks I came home one day and my 7 year old son was crying, saying I never spent any time with him or the other kids anymore and he missed me. He asked me to please stay home....I looked at him and made a choice. I said "Ok" and I didn't go back.
    During the time my husband was ill, I had a lot of questions about his treatment and checked out lots of books from the library. For instance, I discovered that the drug Decadron (spelling may be wrong) in some cases can cause distrubing behaviour to say the least... and my husband was horribly affected. I also lost my two grandfathers that year and just a few years later my grandmother whom I was so close to. I always felt so helpless during those times. I wanted to do more, to know more.
    Through the years I have taken classes but really kind of gave up thinking of nursing....thought I was getting to old. ha But I had come to the point, after 10 years of substitute teaching and knowing for SURE I did not want to teach, and having aquired almost 100 credit hours, I knew I had to make a decision. Prayed a lot. Checked into every degree out there. Then one day at an awards banquet in my daughter's honor, the nursing instructor came over and talked to my daughter who also wants to be a nurse, and I JUST KNEW right then. No doubts. So I am taking the sciences I was lacking for the nursing program and by the grace of God will be accepted next march. I am more excited than I can remember being in a long time. I have learned much already from reading post here. I want to be the kind of nurse that many of you are....smart, caring, capable, an advocate for your pts, and considerate to new nurses. I admire many of you already and intend to keep reading your post to encourage and teach me.
    Thank you, and God Bless
  4. by   KaraLea
    I would have to say that my inspiration was my grandmother. She was a RN and even though she didn't work as a nurse after marrying my grandfather, I always wanted to be a nurse like her. I started out as a CNA, then got my LVN, now I am working on my RN. My grandmother died a year ago and I will always cherish my memories of her. I have her Nursing cape that she wore when she graduated from nursing school back in 1930, also some of her Homework/workbook type material in her own handwriting. I like to think she is still watching over me.

  5. by   Previliaged
    There is really no one thing that inspired me to want to be a nurse or a health care professional. I was and still am, as I am a nursing student at the moment, drawn to this profession by the privilage of being able to share in, and contribute so much to complete strangers lives. That to me is really a priviliage. You really are given a great gift in being able to part of peoples lives on such a special level. I am also fascinated by the human body every day, and that fascination draws me to this profession. Maybe these are just words of student inexperience, and I would be interested to hear what you all think.
  6. by   canoehead
    All the women on my mother's side are nurses, it is hereditary.

    I also had several wonderful nurses when I was 9yo and in for an appendectomy. They answered all my questions and one stayed by my side for hours one night when I was terrified and homesick. I still remember and wish I knew who she was so I could thank her for the inspiration. Because of that experience I knew I could make a real difference as a nurse.
  7. by   joannep
    Yep, me too, my grandmother was a nurse, two of her sisters were nurses, my mother was a nurse, my uncle's wife was a nurse. I remember wanting to be a nurse from always. My grandmother made me a little red cape and nurses cap that I wore all the time. As well my daughter has wanted to be a nurse "like mummy, and grandma and my greatgrandma" since she was first asked at the age of 4.
    But it is worse than that really. My father was/is an engineer, my brother is an engineer, my husband is an engineer, his father and grandfather were engineers and my son has said he will be an engineer since he was two years old!
    Scary huh.
  8. by   delirium
    My auntie K is a nurse, but she's the only one in my family.
    The person who inspired me to be a nurse is my oncology nurse practitioner who is amazing in so many ways. So many people, and families, depend on her, she is constantly on call, and she does it all with such competence and grace.
    In me, she inspired the desire to fight my cancer and reclaim my life. She went above and beyond what she was obligated to do to ensure my comfort and mental health, and she touched my life in ways she will never know (even though I've tried to thank her).
    I aspire to one day transform another person's life the way she has mine.
    During my cancer treatment, I had several wonderful nurses that truly made a difference in my care, but she is the one who I'll always remember of what I want to emulate as a professional nurse and who I credit with inspiring me to go to school.
    Even now, when faced with ethical concerns in clinical, I almost always think, "What would ____ do in this situation?".
  9. by   catlady
    I had recently gotten out of the military, during a recession where it was very hard to find work, and I was visiting my grandparents. Somehow, my aunt, an RN, started talking about nursing. I don't even remember how the conversation got to nursing, but she made it sound so good and so rewarding. One day not long thereafter I suddenly decided to go to nursing school. It shocked my whole family.

    I still "blame" my aunt for getting me into nursing. She loved it for 40 years. I don't love it. Of course, it was my decision, not hers.
  10. by   nightingale
    I too remember nurses when I was a child and had minor surgery. My true inspiration came from a nurse who was the charge nurse on the Ortho floor I was a patient for many months after a serious car accident. She was a true advocate for me; she was gentle kind and very funny. I must have been (oh yeah) a ddificult patient becasue I remember the others nurses would ask her to come see me when I was uncooperative.

    Nice thread... it is good to know what motivates us.

    B.
  11. by   live4today
    My inspiration to become a doctor came from going to work with my dad when he would go pick up his paycheck at the hospital where he worked as a heart and lung technician. I wanted to become a doctor sooooooooo bad that I read "Elizabeth Blackwell - First Woman Doctor" at least a dozen times as a child.
    Then, 'LIFE HAPPENED' and I didn't become a doctor but a nurse. I love being a nurse, but always have felt that I would have made a damn good doctor, too. I still feel that way! I was a hospital volunteer in my twenties where I got to work with some really excellent nurses, and because of that experience, I came to love what nurses do, too.
  12. by   mario_ragucci
    ((Mario Ragucci + time) * (coordinarion - age)) = RN
  13. by   LilgirlRN
    There are some things that you just "know". Nursing just came naturally to me. Some things were kinda like de ja vu....like the first time I ever started an IV, I just did it, no problem. My instructor said are you sure you've never done this before? Maybe in a past life? I had no particular inspiration to become a nurse, I just went to school and did it.
  14. by   dbringle
    Like many of you, I did not have any family that were nurses. When I was little and would cut my grandmas toe nails, she would call me her little nurse. After high school, I was planning on going into architecture, started at our local comm. college doing classes to be transferred to one of our state supported colleges. While I was going to school, I ended up working at a Nsg. home in dietary (not fun work but fun people to work with). One day walking down the hall to collect one of the food carts, I saw this fella who always came in to see his mother, struggling to get down the hallway in his w/c, (he is paraplegic and was kinda sliding out of it, draging his feet). As I helped him, feeling very sorry for him, seeing his thankfulness, is why I decided to become a nurse. My step-aunt who worked there as evening shift nursing supervisor was also an inspiration, seeing her care for those old folks, I mean really care, she loved those people and they did her. She was also wonderful to her staff, never demeaning, always there to help them any way she could. She is now out of work due to health complications. Even though I am an ER nurse, and a lot of nights wondering, "what am I doing here?", I am gently reminded by some patients why I am. I think nursing is the greatest profession, we see people at their lowest, scariest, most painful times. Doing what we can to help them and seeing their appreciation is our real pay. Being their to reasure them, holding a hand, talking in the ear of a trauma patient, telling them that we are here and they will be o.k. This is a great thread- we need to be reminded of why we are nurses! God Bless all you nurses, and soon to be nurses :kiss

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