New Student, Old Bag going back to school! Could use some encouragement!

  1. Hello everyone!

    I'm going to be 52 years old sometime this month, and am proud, pleased and excited to announce that I am in the midst of completing my prerequisites for the ASN-RN program at my local community college.

    This isn't my first time around. I entered an RN program back in 1990. I was doing fabulously well, but had some personal issues going on in my mother, who was a severe alcoholic, was dying, plus, by luck of the draw, my clinical rotations were scheduled at a hospital about 100 miles from my home. I ended up withdrawing from the program.

    Before and after that time, I've worked as a medical assistant, most of my experience in OB/GYN. Then in 1999 I became self-employed (I started making jewelry, then progressed to selling beads on the internet)

    Well, my business did beautifully for awhile but it's starting to become a victim of this recession. I recently realized that my best option at this point is to go back and complete the program I started. I'm currently working on establishing "recency" for my A&P and microbiology courses which I took 20 years ago. I NEED to do this-not so much because we need the income, but because, more importantly, I need to experience the sense of self-respect I would (will!!) get from finishing what I started. I believe my age and my experience as a medical assistant will make me an asset to the world of RN's....I love interacting with people on a very personal level and believe I have a good head on my shoulders. I also have been through many dire medical situations myself (already had breast cancer and a heart attack, at my age!) My patients as a medical assistant would often seek my advice before they would actually ask the doctors, because they knew they could trust me and that I cared.

    I know just enough about the RN program to know that while academically I think I can handle it, I know for a FACT that it's hard work, early mornings, lots of physical activity and a fair amount of stress. I'm scared to death that a bad week or month might derail my enthusiasm. That's why I joined this seems very supportive and I already feel at home here. So I hope to meet a lot of you, and greetings from yet another new....old....hopeful student!!!

    Last edit by DewB on May 9, '09 : Reason: text out of place
  2. 40 Comments

  3. by   crnawan2B
    Good Luck!! It sounds like you know the challenges and will do a great job!!
  4. by   steves2009

    You'll do fine. I'll be 52 next month and just completed my 3rd semester - Maternal/Child. Each semester will prepare you for the next semester, one builds on another. I won't sugar coat this either - it's going to take some dedication, discipline, and passion to get through it, but you sound like you will handle it just fine.

    good luck - steve
  5. by   caliotter3
  6. by   Silverdragon102
    Welcome and good luck

    Sounds like you will make it and have a good understanding
  7. by   3boysmom3
    At least you're old enough to know what you want! I went into nursing school straight out of high school. I'm 49 years old now and in that entire time, the longest period I have had off at once was my one maternity leave. I'm tired!!! lol.

    Anyway, in my nursing class was a lady who was 62. We went through the two years of school, so she was 64 when we graduated. Being a 'child' myself at the time, I wondered why someone her age wanted to go through the stress of a nursing program. I never heard her say, until we were just about to graduate. It turned out, she was not planning to get a job as a nurse, and never had planned to. She had just longed all her life to be a nurse, and she did it to fulfill the dream and be able to say "I AM a nurse." I was awestruck and just thought, "well you go, girl!" (or something like that- that phrase wasn't around in 1981!) I was a kid and took things for granted, hadn't really experienced a big dream yet. I'm still proud of her when I think of her and what she was willing to go through to feel that sense of accomplishment of her dream.

    Of course you're not in the same position she's in, but your post just made me think of her. My point is, go for it. I admire anyone who goes for their dream!
  8. by   3boysmom3
    (You've heard of cradle Catholics- I guess I'm a cradle nurse, now that I think about it! I was practically a "baby" when I started...)
  9. by   poppimiguel
    hi andrea,
    just wanted to let you know that you are not the only "new....old....hopeful student". i am 47 and just this last semester, completed my prerequisites for an asd-rn program at my local community college. i plan to enter the nursing program this august. i spent 22 years in broadcast television, and started to feel that it was no longer emotionally satisfying and that i was not serving a better purpose. during the last 12 years of my former career, i always had the thought of nursing rolling around in the back of my head so, i decided, better late than never. while i lack your medical experience, i agree with you that our "maturity" provides us with a stronger base, from which we can empathize better with patients and to know in our hearts that we are strong enough to take on what is asked of us.

    when my wife asked me why i didn’t pursue this while i was younger, i thought about it and came to the realization that back then, i did not have the mental fortitude, the “stick-to-itedness”, that i have now. it simply would not have worked. with her blessing, support and understanding, here i am today.

    so, "greetings from yet another new....old....hopeful student!!!" and i congratulate both of us on our decision to become nurses.

    best of luck!
    “our only limitations are the ones we impose on ourselves”
  10. by   sparky99
    Dewb, nice to hear from you here! Sounds like you do have some great gifts to bring to nursing.

    I'm finishing up pre-req and will be 48 when I graduate. I get some interesting reactions to going back to school at my age. People seem to be either very positive and encouraging or they seem like they feel sorry for me. I mostly try not to think about age a lot. I wish I had furthered my education when I was younger but can't undo the past.

    I'd love to hear more about the classes you're taking, what kind of schedule your program involves etc etc.
  11. by   3boysmom3
    A friend of mine was considering going to college for something, I can't remember what, wasn't nursing, but I remember her trying to decide and saying " but I'd be 45 when I graduate!" I told her Guess what, you'll be 45 anyway that same year, whether you have a degree or not- wouldn't you rather have one?
  12. by   Lucky0220
    You Go Grrrl!! I just graduated in December, second degree RN. I turned 59 one week before graduation and I am working on a med/surg unit. I had a job before I graduated, but it was going to be in critical care, 12 hr shifts, from 7P-7A and I knew that I'd be miserable. So I persisted til I found a hospital with 8hr shifts and will work 3-11. I have worked 5 days a week my whole life, so that does not matter to me. I think it will easier on my old body!! Just started 2 weeks ago, so I am still sort of in orientation and not doing real floor work yet. This week it will be some more training, computer modules, etc. and the week after...away we go! Best of luck to you.
  13. by   MaddieRN
    I wish you the best as you return to school, it'll be great! Give us an update after you start, I would love to hear how it's going!
  14. by   DewB
    Hi again everybody!

    Thanks so much for your words of encouragement. I'm sure I'll be back for more. Big ((((( all of you!))))) and please feel free to contact me for whatever reason. I think being involved with this forum can be nothing but good for me and I'm already finding that it feels just like home here.

    One of the things I'm doing in preparation for nursing school itself is trying to get myself into the best physical shape possible. I was unfortunately sedentary for many years....long story with lots of medical problems at various times in my life. :vlin:But the good news is, I'm still alive and kicking.
    I'm walking anywhere from 3 to over 7 miles daily, and trying to even get a little jogging in. It's not only helping me physically, but it's doing wonders for my confidence and state of mind.

    My best hope is to get into the actual RN program for next spring....I am having no problem with my A&P "recency" requirements, but I haven't even figured out who to contact for the microbiology "recency" challenge. If I can figure it out and get it done by end of summer session, I can apply in the fall-I have everything else I need. Otherwise, I'll have to apply in spring for fall of 2010 entry (and they take a lot fewer students in the fall than in the spring, due to the LVN-RN students they accomodate) Not a very big community college-there is another about a 40 minute drive away, but I know from my experience 20 years ago that they use hospitals which could add eons to my commute. I'd rather not have to do that, naturally.

    Anyway, thank you all for being there, and a very happy Mother's Day to all you moms out there!

    Andrea (DewB)