Survey: Why do you want to be a nurse?

  1. I decided I wanted to be either a nurse or a respiratory therapist at a very early age. I was quite sickly as a child (severe asthma/poor immune system) and spent a great deal of my time in hospital rooms and ER's. I was always fascinated by the RN's and RT's and I knew that's what I wanted to do. When I graduated high school, I had to go to work instead of college, due to lack of finances. Eventually I started taking courses for a business degree at night. I hated it, but figured it was the most logical choice. Last year, my mother-in-law had open heart surgery and spent a week in CCU and Telemetry during recovery. Watching the nurses attend to her, I knew that's what I wanted to do more than anything, and I'd do whatever it took to become a RN. What about you guys...was it a personal experience, love of science, or other? I'd love to hear why you all feel nursing is for you.

    Valerie
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  2. 9 Comments

  3. by   SarahRoycroft
    I have wanted to be a nurse ever since I was a
    kid. I was hospitalized several times for
    childhood illnesses and remember being happy
    around the fast pace of a medical setting.
    When I was seven and had to have an operation, I
    was so excited that I packed my suitcase several
    days before I was to be admitted!

    I thought about nursing when I was in college,
    but at that time I was more interested in
    graduating than finding out what I should be
    doing in life.

    After I got out of college and tried to find
    my place in the "real" world, I ended up working
    in several corporate environments. This only helped
    me realize how much I wanted to get back into
    nursing! Now I'm entering my senior year, and can't
    wait to finish. I really think nursing is a calling
    you can't ignore.
  4. by   delirium
    Hi everyone:
    Isn't it funny that everyone who has posted so far has a serious illness that encouraged them to become a nurse? I am one of them. I didn't really know what I wanted to do when I got out of high school, I was kind of wild and rebellious so I moved out when I was 17 and moved to a different state. I did pretty well there, working and playing and stuff, until I got sick.
    I had malignant melanoma stage IV. I was so overwhelmed with everything that I dropped everything and moved back home to be around people who could properly support me through surgeries and treatments. It was during this time that I met the most amazing nurse. She is actually a nurse practitioner, and she is totally amazing. She is my hero; if it weren't for her, I don't think I would have made it through 18 months of treatment.
    (An aside: she said when they first started trialing the drug I was taking, all of the nurses were required to take it for a week, kind of to increase their sensitivity to what the patients were going through... in that sense, I think she really know how horrible it was for me/us)
    I had never ever thought about nursing before. I was not one of those who always wanted to be a nurse, but when I saw the difference that she made in my life, I knew I wanted to be that person for someone else. When I told her I was thinking about nursing school, she was so excited.
    I'm not sure she even knows how fantastic she is.
    Take care all,
    Rebecca
  5. by   cheri2
    HI:

    I think most people have some inclination that they know they want to be a nurse in their early lifetime. I always knew since I was in Kindergarten. I never persued it out of fear I was not cut out to be one. I am a very compassionate, sensitve person and dealing with death was my issue.

    Until, My father passed away. I sat by his bedside for weeks, watching him slowly slip away. On behalf of my family, I was the one who talked to the doctors and nurses out of having dealt so much with them through my own problems with asthma. As I watched my father go through the different phases of death, I realized just how much of a privledge it is to be by someone during their most intimate and private moment...death. I learned that death is not always nice..but at some point, it is very peaceful. I was honored to have witnessed it. I also said..if I can do this with my own family member, I can do this with others. The next day after he passed, I went to my local campus and registered for nursing. I love it. The more I learn, the more I want to learn. I have not doubts I have made the right choice. Like they always say..follow your gut instinct...more likely than not..it is right.

    Good luck to you
    cheri2
  6. by   Focker76
    The realization that I had to go into Nursing, happened several years ago. My mother, who had been diagnosed with polycystic kidney disease shortly after my birth, was going through standard tests that are performed on potential candidates for kidney transplants. It was after an MRI had been performed on her that doctors discovered several aneurisms of the brain. After many consults with doctors and family, my mother decided that surgery to remove them was the best alternative. The surgery went very well. Before entering the unit in which she was recovering, I was greeted by a nurse who had said that she had been present during my mother's surgery and that everything went very well. After visiting with my mother I was also consulted by various nurses within the I.C.U., who let me know that my mother was doing extremely well and that she should be able to go home shortly and should make a full recovery. Now I know that the nurses were just doing their jobs, but I still felt as if they really went out of their way to comfort me and let me know that everything was going to be alright.
    It was shortly after that point that I realized that I wanted to become a nurse. I want to try and help those people that will go through what I went through, by comforting them and letting them know that they are not alone, and that I can truly relate to how they are feeling.
  7. by   Meghan Gilmore
    I just think that nursing is about the coolest thing ever. I'm still in school, and I have alot of friends that are business majors. I couldn't even imagine! I think I would die of boredom! Nursing is great because even if you get bored on one floor, you can float, and if you get fed up with hospitals, you can work in an office, and if you get bored in an office... Well, you get the picture. I am in love with the flexibility of the job. I am also endlessly amazed with all of the technology and the new drugs and treatments. Oh yes, it's also in my blood. My mother, my aunt, my godmother and me are all (or will be) nurses! My little sister has also recently decided to become a nurse. I firmly believe that nurses are a different breed, you're either capable of being a nurse or you're not. I am proud to be one of the ones who can do it!
  8. by   lyndalous
    Why I became a nurse?...

    I was 6 years old and my mom had a fever. (She was ok, just a flu bug)... and she layed on the couch to just rest. I kept taking her temperature... giving her ginger ale.. and putting a wash rag on her head... my mom told me she was ok and said go ahead outside with your sister and play... (my sis was 15 mths. younger.. we are like twins) and I said "no mommy I am not leaving you because you are sick and I am your nurse". My mom told me from that moment on I always wanted to be a nurse. My mom is a nurse too. But my mom said she just saw it in my eyes and knew I WAS going to be a nurse one day....

    My mom and I were just talking about that story today b/c we are all anxiously waiting for monday to come so I can find out my boards results......!!!!!!!!....

    One good advice for all the nursing students: Since I just graduated I have one special tip for you all that always helped me:

    Never give up! Nursing is very challenging and you need to keep your faith and believe in yourself that you will I repeat YOU WILL pass all the obstacles along the way. God planted that special see of "Care" in your hearts and he is going to let it grow so you can share it with others.

    When you are down; belive me I felt like there was no way out sometimes, and the stress is so high, just turn to him and he will help you out!!!!!!!!

    God Bless
  9. by   shyviolet78
    These are great responses! I know a few L&D nurses who chose to become nurses after the birth of their first child and most RT's I know were asthmatic as children, etc. This is why I love the profession of nursing - it's something you can relate to in a real and personal way. You can't say that about a business degree!!
  10. by   JenKatt
    I'm sorta the same as the others in here who became nurses because of childhood experiences. Mine is slightly different. When I was hospitalized at 12 for severe bronchitis/ pnuemonia, I had the WORST nursing care you can imagine. Halfway thru the first night my IV pump went off, the nurse came in, took my bag off the pump and closed the slider clamp half way and left the bag like that. A half hour later I wake up to my mom lying across me frantically pulling on the bag and my arm. She told me to go back to sleep, I did. She told me later that the bag was empty when the nurse took it off the pump, hence why it was beeping, and slide the clamp to KVO, or so my ma thought. Turns out she didn't, she barely closed the clamp. By the time my mom woke up enough to realize what happened, the bag and tubing were empty and about to infuse into me. Yep, one big air embolism. Anyways, when my ma, a nurse, went to the nurses station to tell them, the nurses were there, feet up gossiping. They told my ma they would get to it, I could live without some fluid. My ma nearly had a coronary and started to raise all hell. The charge nurse told her that she shouldn't expect special treatment just because she's a nurse.
    AGHHHHH
    Anyways, throughout that week I was made to feel like a burden. That's a really nice thing to do to a kid who can't even walk to the bathroom. I remember my ma fighting tooth and nail to get me a dinner I would eat, permission for my friends to visit, and other little things to make me feel better, hell this was 2 weeks before Christmas and a week before my 13th birthday. The nurses treated us like burdens. For the most part of that week I was the only fricking patient.
    Anyways over the next 10 years, until now I've had cruddy care to great care. In nursing school I vowed that every child I take care of would feel love and feel like he or she was a joy to take care of.
    And also the other reason I became a nurse. My ma. After 35 years in nursing, she still loves it. She's smart, compassionate, and a great teacher. She is the poster child for nursing and the best nurse God ever saw fit to place on this earth.
    Thanks ma
    Last edit by JenKatt on Jun 23, '01
  11. by   Robin61970
    I have always been a "caregiver" I have taken care of my mother brother and sisters because of my mothers alcoholism. When I was a child it seemed that was the one thing I knew I could do well. I have always wanted to be a nurse, I don't know if it has to do with my childhood or not....

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