Hi y'all. I was an RN on my way home from work in my 20th professional year when my van and a poorly fed horse collided in the midst of a state road. Dark horse, dark night etc. This was the beginning of my life-change.
I have done infrequent short-lived non-lift work with the elderly in the 6 1/2 years to follow, but I may rejoin the work force soon.
When I awoke from coma, my adult son said, "Mom, maybe you can get out of nursing now."
I was the patient: Six weeks trauma ICU, followed by six weeks in a rehab hospital and five months at a relative's home till I could rise, and walk more normally.
It will take all the courage the Lord and I can dredge up to work (non-lift) in what is really a young person's game. I am in mid-fifties.
I used to give 1-2 hours "free" per shift, finishing up charting and any positioning or treatments that were still outstanding....I attempted to do everything the state, the hospital or facility and the physician ordered for that shift.
I feel most of my nursing kindness as a young woman came back to me in the time of need, except for one near-to-retire lpn who would not allow a transfer-gone-bad to stop. With the help of a young (non-assertive) and horrified occupational therapist, she crashed me again and again into the wheel of the wheelchair, attempting to hold me by the lower arms and replace me into the chair. (No incident report was needed in that hospital
if "her butt didn't touch the floor.")
When she finished, I had three more broken ribs.
But for the most part, I was treated well, as well as I would have treated my patients.
After nearly seven years of my adrenal glands geared down like those of most people, I have to "pick it up" soon. I am no longer used to the adrenalin buzz of working in the nursing field at trembling speed for "crisis", where the true "crisis" is inadequate staffing.
I have two associate's degrees, one in registered nursing. The man who replaced my female vocational rehabilitation counselor in Indiana, has decided it is not in the state's interest to assist me toward a bachelor's degree to teach RN's.
(Years ago there was a nurse assistant program at "Clark College" which was a skills center--and I was an instructor there and became department head. So I know I can teach).
I hope I am up to the multitasking and assuming multiple roles simultaneously, the disrespect, being called a 'girl' by the physicians and administration, and the families' demands. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated. I live in Indiana, but am anticipating a move to Texas.
I am no longer a lifter--will need to find something to do which will serve and give back, with (I know this is hard to request) a minimum of disrespect. I'd like to get what I give in terms of respect!
(Guess this means respecting MYSELF!) As a young student I couldn't understand my fiftyish Director of the Nursing Program being so adamant about the concept that graduate nurses get CONTRACTS specifying hourly rate, benefits. Now I realize how quickly what is promised in interview can be disregarded once a professional nurse is "in".
Ideas appreciated. Money is needed--so must be prepared to return to work soon.
Last edit by preciousjewel on Jun 26, '05
Jun 27, '05
Thanks for sharing your story with us.
Best wishes in all that you do.