Doubts that went to your core and haunted you relentlessly through nursing school
about whether this was what you were really meant to do? So much so that you said, "Well, if I'm in THIS much doubt it can't be right!" But you just kept going b/c you didn't know what else to do, and you were invested in it, and you didn't want to let people down? Were there other things you KNEW you were better at, had more affinity for, but you desperately needed the job? Did it just all seem so complicated?
Anyone have doubts like that in nursing school, but just kept going anyway? And now you have survived becoming a nurse and years later, still love it?
PS. It's not patient care that I feel funny with. It's Nursing Culture (perfect!! SuperNurse!! Achieve!! BetterBetter Best!) and feeling like I don't fit into it..I'm artistic and introverted and very deep. It all seems more like an extrovert's game. Is this just nursing school?
I do like patient care.
Happy nurses: do any of you see yourself in me?
It's not just about becoming trained so I can get a "job." My decision to do this was the product of some profound spiritual logic in the center of my soul that took many years to unfold. Yes, the status of the professional role appeals to me, but the BS of it repels me. And more importantly, underneath all that, I associate nursing with service and humility, bordering on religiousity... and the hyper-reality of--(...god?...). Which is what I think my deepest self is after.... It IS complicated for me. Strong egos are rewarded in thenursing school environment. Maybe the nursing school experience is forcing me to confront my ego? I feel so invisible, so insecure...in my former job, which I was very good at, my ego was absolutely fed. Comfort zone all the way... Yeah, this IS therapy stuff, I know...but I want to hear from nurses.
What do y'all say? Hold the snark, b/c it is really scary to ask this.
Sep 19, '12
Hi, I've been a nurse for six years. Like you, I'm an introvert's introvert, and I also connect nursing strongly with religious feelings. My doubts about nursing didn't come in school, but after I'd been on the floor for a few years. The complications of doubting my calling vs. needing a job and not wanting to let my family down -- I've been there. For a while I was desperate to leave the profession forever, but I stuck it out, and the doubts passed. Today I can honestly say I made the right choice to become a nurse.
I do know that nursing school
by its very nature makes you feel insecure and incompetent. There were lots of times I had to force myself to get through a clinical day; it was tough just walking in and talking to people. For me, that faded with time, as I got out on the floor and learned a little more about what I was doing. So (and I'm sorry if this sounds hollow) just give yourself time to learn and don't put pressure on yourself to do everything absolutely perfectly. You'll hit your stride once you hit the floor, if you pick a good place to work.
As for the Supernurse culture -- forget it. A lot of it is just management trying to get their patient satisfaction scores up. You can't do everything at once, you can't fix people who refuse to be fixed, and you cannot be all things to all men. For a while I struggled with a great deal of guilt because I couldn't be the perfect nurse, until I learned that it isn't our job as nurses to be perfect. Our job is to be the best nurses we can be, using the unique talents and outlooks that are ours. The textbook "angel nurse" has never existed.
You're right that the nursing field, especially school, is complicated. And there is a lot of false cheer and hollow concern (especially from management); but there is also a solid core to this profession, a wholesome heart that makes it a thing worth doing. If you really feel drawn to this and know it's what you want to do, you will be the nurse a lot of hospitals and patients are looking for. We introverts excel at listening, which is exactly what a lot of scared, nervous people in the hospital need more than anything.
Easy for me to say? Yes, because I'm not in your exact shoes. But I can identify with a lot of what you're saying, and a lot of what I posted I had to learn the hard way. Treat yourself gently -- this is a big project, becoming a nurse! Stay well, and please don't give up on yourself.
Last edit by Clementia on Sep 19, '12
: Reason: refining thoughts