As LPN's age

  1. As an LPN who's now 60 and been doing mostly longterm care for most of the last 30 years, I find my body wearing out. Well, my tolerance for the intense pressure and stressful, and overworked conditions wore out a long time ago.However, I perservered, having developed a taste for shelter, food, electricty and all those other pesky little necessities of life
    Isn't it amazing how programmed we become to keep pushing ourselves with a back full of spinal stenosis, scoliosis, bulging disks, arthrtic feet, and now degenerative joint disease of the hands and wrists, and yet, doggedly I continued to care for others. (ironically, probably in better shape than I'm in).lol When my doctor said I couldn't use my right hand and put it in a splint, I thought Hmm, how can I continue faking an able bodied person??duh! and then all of a sudden bling a lightbulb moment... could it be, that my turn had come to take care of myself... Whan an odd idea...:smackingf so now, with one working foot, a wrecked back, and 2 trashed wrists I'm going to try for disability......wish me luck folks. Its been a long painful 30 yrs. thanks..Twilite
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  2. 13 Comments

  3. by   traumaRUs
    Hi Twilite and welcome. I admired you - 30 years in nursing and still going! Wow! I became a nurse in my early 30's and I've been at it for about 15 years all total. I do expect to work until I'm 68 (I have $$$$ student loans to repay).

    Good luck with the disability.
  4. by   ginger58
    Twilite,
    When people wonder why people are leaving the field I think you have hit the nail on the head. I'm so sorry that you will spend the rest of your life probably in pain. I'm nearing 60 and have worked the past 5 years on a medical ward and I've got a few of the conditions you've mentioned. It isn't pleasant. More and more demands on nurses and they want it now.
    Thank you for your thirty years.
  5. by   dmarie (GA)
    God bless you.
  6. by   tiroka03
    I really feel for you. I am in my 50's and somedays I end up taking 800 motrin for my back, so I can stand to work. I hope things go alright for you. In nursing, it feels like we are still in the 1800's, and we are working in a factory. The demands are so great, and facilities get away with working us short, and then when you factor in that people are larger now a days. It is wrong, but like you say, you grew too dependant on having shelter and food.

    Lately, I am refusing to do things without help, sorry the patient will have to wait, because my back can't take much more. Even the younger nurses should be careful, and get help when you need it, because it only takes a second to have an injury that will last a lifetime.
  7. by   ginger58
    Quote from tiroka03
    Lately, I am refusing to do things without help, sorry the patient will have to wait, because my back can't take much more. Even the younger nurses should be careful, and get help when you need it, because it only takes a second to have an injury that will last a lifetime.
    Yes, everyone be careful. We have to slow down as a group. If a patient has slipped down in bed they're not going to die from it. Everyone's in such a hurry to scoot them up that they often forgo their own safety.
    When I herniated a disk the PT said if you feel like the pt is too big, unsteady get enough help. Even if the pt is on the fall and unhurt, get enough help and do it safely. The patient can wait while you gather equipment and help.
    God bless all of you who continue to work in pain because of economics. May we all have a healthy 2007.
  8. by   pagandeva2000
    I have just become an LPN in June, 2006, and I often wonder if I will spend the next 25 to 30 years being mentally and physically exhausted...but I refuse to totally let this happen to me. I am working in a clinic and have a side home case, which is very fulfilling to me. If worse comes to worse, I will leave the hospital and work homecare on a fulltime basis. I enjoy giving care in a less formal, less rigid atmosphere.
  9. by   Fiona59
    I'm nearing 50 and feeling it. I refuse to move someone unless there are enough staff to do it safely. I've had family say "oh, you can do it by yourself" and replied, "yes, but I'd like to have a back when I'm retired". They look at me funny but get the message.

    Congratulations on 30 years of service.

    Taking care of ourselves is something that we should not have to be reminded to do.
  10. by   Simplepleasures
    Yup, Im one of the OLD LPNs too. Almost 28 years in the LTC dungeon.I also have DDD, DJD multilevel of spine DJD knees, starting cataracts both eyes, new diagnosis of inflammatory arthritis hands, trying to r/o RA, whew. Nursing has done a number on our health.Hypertension and hypothyroid too , almost forgot. Ive appleid for SSDI and believe me that is no fun either, but I do need to keep a roof over my head. All my savings gone , family supporting me, thank God for my wonderful kids.I actually got out of nursing by being fired for reporting unethical/ illegal practice to the state, now in the middle of a law suit, was protected by a state whistleblower retaliation protection law, thank God for my excellent lawyers too, have not paid them a dime. PM me if you have any questions about SSDI.
    Last edit by Simplepleasures on Jan 2, '07
  11. by   blueberrybon
    I'm going into the field as a second career. I know better than to expect myself to be able to work anywhere where I will be using my back. I'm going for dr. office type stuff.

    To the rest of you who have subjected yourselves to the wear and tear for the love of people; I applaud you.

    Close your eyes, picture a woman in scrubs, admiration in her eyes, raising both hands in the air and clapping. That's me

    Nurses are such wonderful people! I'm glad I joined the likes of you all.

    Blue
  12. by   rsslpn
    Quote from tiroka03
    somedays I end up taking 800 motrin for my back, so I can stand to work.

    I'm with you there but it doesn't seem to touch the pain anymore! (and I am still pretty young yet!)
  13. by   Simplepleasures
    Quote from rsslpn
    I'm with you there but it doesn't seem to touch the pain anymore! (and I am still pretty young yet!)
    Hi, I had to switch to two Aleve, I think the Naproxen really helps. I am in the process of waiting to be approved for Social Security Disability, our government does NOT make this easy.I have complaints about all those folks out there who just dont want to work and get SSI, well I dont know HOW they were approved.Some people actually die waiting to be approved!
  14. by   new_grad06
    That's so admirable. I'm 19 years old and just started as an LPN.And actually working "in the field" has made me realize how "green" I still am-it is so different from clinicals in school...
    Stand proud in being able to say I been nursing for 30+ years!!

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