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ThePrincessBride, BSN, RN 44,784 Views

Joined Jun 13, '10 - from 'Somewhere'. She has '2 RN, 3 tech' year(s) of experience and specializes in 'Med-Surg, NICU'. Posts: 2,144 (61% Liked) Likes: 5,843

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  • Aug 22

    During my last week of RN school, I noticed there was this unspoken expectation for all RN graduates to become hospital nurses, apparently, I did not get the memo! At my pinning ceremony, I watched many of my fellow classmates holding up signs for the school Flicker account that said, “#PICU RN; # ICU RN; #MedSurg RN” and so on. I listened to how excited they were that they would be starting new grad internship programs at the local hospitals surrounding our areas-I shared in their excitement! We had finally done it; all the hard work, long nights of studying and writing papers were over-we were now RNs (well, until we passed the NCLEX, but that’s for a different story).

    My classmates would rush over to where I was and ask, “Hey girl, what hospital are you going to be working at?”

    I would reply, “Oh I’m not going to a hospital-right now anyway. I’m just going to stay where I’m at. I’m the nurse (I was a working LPN during RN school) at a day training facility for adults with varying levels of developmental disabilities.” My classmates would scrunch their faces up, then raise their eyebrows and force a smile, and reply with “Oh, that’s awesome.” Then just as quickly, they would scurry away. It made me think, what the heck was that?? I slowly started to feel like my classmates thought I was less of a nurse than they were but surely that wasn’t correct; unfortunately, I had this nagging sensation in the back of my mind. I saw no reason to leave my current job; even though my current job was more in the way of case management, fixing minor injuries, and paperwork-I had never felt like I was less of a nurse, than right at that very moment.

    RN pinning came and went. The ATI NCLEX review week and NCLEX Predictor came and went, yet I continued to have this nagging sensation. I went and got my hair done and one of the ladies in the salon asked, after I told my ‘life story’ as many of us do to pass the time while getting our hair done, “So what hospital do you work? I will definitely go where you work!” As flattered as I was, a mental rolling of the eyes occurred. So, as many times before and many times to come, I smiled and thanked the woman for the compliment, then proceeded to explain my line of nursing. The obligatory slow nodding of the head, the forced smile, raising of eyebrows, and the “Oh, I see…” comment.

    So, what is it? I was truly questioning myself at this point. It wasn’t just because of a few fellow classmates, or an older lady at the salon-it was everyone I encountered really. It became very frustrating to see people’s disposition change so drastically once they found out I was not a “real nurse.” You could almost hear the thoughts going through their minds, “Oh yeah, she’s a RN. Well thank goodness, I know her; or, well thank goodness someone at this very moment is qualified to save my life.” But, the second you mention that you work in a little clinic, take care of cuts and bruises-your automatically not a real nurse anymore??

    I couldn’t understand it. I could talk the talk. My friend from school would get onto me all the time. I would use words like, ecchymosis and erythema all the time. I would recognize meds-no I’m not a pharmacist/pharmacist student, but I recognized them, knew what they were used for and at times knew some of the regular doses and usual times for administration. I recognized abbreviations used by nurses in the hospital charts, e.g. ABT; VRSA; CTA; bil; the old way to write number 1 ( i ). I was getting good at interpreting, at a super basic level, certain labs or at least guessing which labs a physician would be more than likely to order for certain suspected disorders/diseases. When nurses would talk about having to handwrite in charts on Med-A patients, I too would scrunch my face and make that-UHH! face, because I knew how much information goes into that type of charting. So, I couldn’t understand why, when people-even some nurses, would give me that, oh-she’s not really a nurse look.

    I have met so many different types of nurses. I have met your “basic” (I use this very loosely) hospital nurse, case managers-who are RNs, LPNs and RNs that are MDS Care Plan Coordinators, mental health APRNs who have specialized in mental health/psychiatric clinical nursing, DONs in LTC facilities, schools, and IDD facilities. I have met RNs that work for the Department of Public Health, RNs that are nursing instructors, RNs that are CNA instructors. I have met nurses that work with patients that have intellectual developmental disabilities (IDD); nurses who specialize in wound care, I have even met a nurse that is a Parish Nurse-which I found awesome because it was a type of nursing path we had learned about approximately two weeks before I graduated and thought to myself-yeah, I will never meet a nurse in that field. The list of different specialty positions, settings, et, goes on and on, yet there was never one time did I look at these nurses and think: they aren’t real nurses. So, how does a nurse answer this question; the answer is: you don’t.

    The nursing profession has grown far greater than Florence Nightingale could probably ever have dreamt it could. There are nurses that perform triage over the phone, nursing informatics nurses-I mean honestly, how many nursing students (current) or practicing nurses actually knew what a nursing informatics nurse was before learning about it in school?!? So, how should you react when persons look at you and give you that, “Oh, they really aren’t a nurse.” Just smile, and do what nurses do best-educate. Nursing is by far the coolest career a person could ever decide for themselves! The different specialty areas to choose from, and sub-specialty areas in those areas, it is awesome just how far a nurse could go. I like to think to myself, is the APRN more of a nurse than the RN? Is the RN more of a nurse than the LPN? Is the CRNA more of a nurse than the GNP? The answer to these questions is no. All of these nurses are nurses in their own rights-they all struggled through nursing school some way or another.

    We should teach people that nursing is just a big umbrella with many different areas and sub-areas, et. We should remind ourselves, as nurses, that just because we are different does not mean one nurse is less of a nurse than the other. We should be proud of the nurses we have become, and the type of nurses we are. No matter what type of nurse you are: mental health nurse, LTC nurse, hospital nurse, female/male nurse, whatever the background you came from that made you the nurse you are-own it! Teach the community that we are many, and we are always evolving! So, to end, I will introduce myself proudly. “Hello, my name is Grace. I am a LPN, (waiting on my RN license to be sent to me) who proudly runs her own clinic at a facility that cares for and promotes those with IDD to be as independent as possible. It is nice to meet you; what type of nurse are you?”

  • Aug 22

    For acute care positions, acute care experience will be favored ...but experience in a different area is much better than no experience, at all. You are an "old" new grad having been out of school for two years without working. You should probably take anything you're offered and then start planning a path to your ultimate goal.

  • Aug 22

    Quote from Luckyyou
    "I've failed NCLEX 47 times, what can I do? Nursing is my dreeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeam!"
    "I failed NCLEX 11 times but on the 12th time Jesus helped me pass. Here is my advice on how to pass NCLEX..."

  • Aug 21

    How do I get a job in the ED/NICU/ICU/L&D?

    Um, same way that you get any other job...

  • Aug 21

    "It only took me 8 tries, and I finally passed the NCLEX - let me share my expert advice with you now on how to do it."

  • Aug 21

    For the love of Pete. USE DAMN PARAGRAPHS please. I will not read one long incoherent run-on sentence no matter what you say.

  • Aug 21

    Quote from Been there,done that
    " I would never want you to be MY nurse".
    Someone said that to me once on some internet forum, may have been here

    I said "thats fine, I wouldn't want to be your nurse either"

  • Aug 21

    The only one that annoys me is the "I want to be a nurse but I don't want to work weekends/holidays".
    To be fair, it annoys me in real life too lol. It's really not a big deal to work every third weekend and 3 rotating holidays a year. I have 3 young kids and a husband, if I work a holiday, we celebrate the day before.
    I guess I just don't understand the big deal is. They aren't many fields left that are a standard 8-5, no weekends/holidays left anyway.

  • Aug 21

    "Want to be a CRNA, what is the easiest way to do it, etc..." I'm not an elitist, but I don't want a fast-track CRNA. I'd prefer someone with several years of nursing experience, thanks.

    "What is the fastest NP school?" I don't know, the one that lets you print out your own diplomas? Again, doesn't sound like a good idea to me.

    "I have student loans from my first career, want to be a nurse ASAP, this program costs $80K, should I do it?" NO.

  • Aug 21

    10. Saying "any advice would be appreciated" and then losing your **** over advice you don't like.

  • Aug 16

    Nursing isn't really much of a scientific career. It is a service job.
    I am not saying this as a put-down to nursing, but careers like nursing, teaching and medicine are about selling our skills and services to people.
    If you have had a varied job history, you probably have worked some customer service type jobs.
    If you are looking at stability and income and already have a college degree, have you considered RN instead of LPN? There are vastly more RN jobs out there and more variety. In my area, LPNs are limited to nursing homes, some doctors' offices(often interchangeable with medical assistants) and home health.

  • Aug 6

    Presence of an ankle bracelet, and why, should definitely be passed on in report. The charge nurse and security should be made aware that a registered sex offender is on the floor, if they aren't already. If it's a small community hospital where patients of all ages end up on the same floor, or he ends up with a roomate who has minor visitors, there could be problems. You may also need to worry about vigilantees.

  • Aug 6

    Your circadian rhythm cannot take the switch. "I have been so drained on my off days."

    The only answer is to stay on your night shift activities/ rhythm 24/7.

    It's your choice, wonder what the hubby has to say about this. The differential is NOT worth your mental health.

  • Aug 6

    A lot of thoughts just went through my head, none of which were pleasant (as I pause getting dressed for work, knowing we are short and I'll have 6 patients again ...)

    Then I saw who the OP was.

    This again?

  • Jul 30

    yup. I only really like babies so I did not care. If you want to do FNP I think you need to at least branch out to PICU if not going back to adults. It'll be much easier transition. It's not impossible, but your learning curve will be much higher and as others have said, may be harder to hire depending on the saturation of the market for FNPs which is quite bad in certain areas of the country.