Sigh...the dreaded day...advice needed

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    Greetings to all.

    I just discovered this site only hours ago through a friend of mine. I am absolutely overjoyed to have stumbled upon such an amazing site such as this one. I am writing this post because...I am seeking outside encouragement...or advice...from other healthcare professionals whom can provide me with an outside perspective.
    Presently I am an NP, however, I have never worked as one...in fact...I have never utilized any of my nursing licenses...neither my LVN or RN. I was inspired to become a nurse when I was 14 after being hospitalized for an extended period of time by the nurses who provided me daily care. When it became time for me to pursue a nursing education I soon realized upon the completion of my LVN program that although I loved nursing I was not yet comfortable practicing nursing yet. Eventually, after competing my RN program, I still felt the same way...and my fears and insecurities as a nurse prevented me from once again accepting any job offers and thus I refrained from utilizing another license which I worked extremely hard to obtain. I than decided to stay busy and further my studies which culminated in an APN degree...but sadly...my fears only increased because of the heightened level of autonomy, increased scope of practice, and responsibilities required of APN's. After fulfilling my educational goals and dreams...I never was able to muster the courage to secure any nursing job either as a nurse nor as a midlevel provider. With my education complete, income needed to be generated so I accepted a job not in the healthcare field and am making much less then I am capable of bringing in when considering the income scale of both nurses and APN's in my present location.

    In between my schooling I took some time off to marry my longtime partner, who has been my rock throughout my studies, and is the reason I have been afforded the opportunity to pursue my education. He has never pressured me to secure a job and utilize my education until recently as an injury has rendered him disabled which resulted in him leaving the work force until he makes a full recovery. I now feel it is my responsibility to secure a position where I can generate a higher monetary income and make up for the loss in finances, especially when I know I am capable of doing so. A week ago he told me as I was providing him care that perhaps I should consider securing a job in the nursing field.

    I am scared...I am discouraged...I don't know where to begin...and despite me being confident in the knowledge I possess...I still do not feel equipped to work as either a nurse or a clinician. I am looking for words of encouragement here I guess or any suggestions on what I could do to overcome my insecurities and fears...or possible suggestions on what work I could possibly do which would ease me into the nursing world.

    If you can make it through this long thread...and provide some words of wisdom regarding my circumstances...know that I would appreciate it more than words can express.

    Sincerely,

    PinkPinster
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  3. 57 Comments so far...

  4. 1
    Sounds like you have anxiety issues. You need to see a physician ASAP.
    kalevra likes this.
  5. 3
    Is your registration still up to date?
    Might try some of the public clinics to work as an APN, and tell them straight out you will need some orientation time.

    How did you handle your clinical rotations? The NPs I know had to do a great many hours before earning that degree. Are any of your mentors from those days available to you? Just a thought.
    sharpeimom, GrnTea, and netglow like this.
  6. 0
    As my first response on this site I thank you for the reply and your "advice", although that was not exactly the words of encouragement I was looking for. Anxiety in regards to working as a nurse is indeed what I have, however I do not believe that dysfunctional anxiety is what I am afflicted with. Nonetheless, once again thank you for your reply.

    Respectfully,

    PinkPinkster
  7. 0
    Greetings JBudd,

    Thank you for the response. It is immensely appreciated. All of my registration is current, and I handled my rotations exceptionally well. Unfortunately, I have not kept in contact with any of my preceptors as I was embarrassed of the fact that I was not working as a nurse or NP despite always receiving praise during clinical rotations. All of my batch mates secured jobs as providers upon completion of our program which also added to this feeling.

    I have a second interview for a small Urgent Care as well as a Family Practice, but to be honest...I am so nervous to accept a job as a provider simply because I am worried of not meeting the expectations of the clinical staff or Physician. I am interested in potentially securing a nursing job, however I am dreading the question of "Why are you applying for a bedside nursing job when you are an APN?" I also am unsure what area of nursing would be easier for me as an "old" new grad.

    Your advice would be appreciated.

    Respectfully,

    PinkPinkster
  8. 4
    I think the first response was a little flippant but not meant to come across as judgemental. I suffer severe anxiety, and I too am constantly putting off job searches d/t this. I'm saying this with the very best of intentions. You stated your anxiety isn't dysfunctional. However, due to the anxiety, you are not functioning as a nurse. So I very much agree with seeking help (I am, no shame in it; my psychiatrist even admits he takes Xanax lol). Now, onto jobs you can apply for. How about an NP at a Walgreens walk in clinic? Or a physician's family practice where the doc would be there to help you initially. I go to a clinic that has both an NP and MD, and I've heard her consult with the MD. Just a couple suggestions. Good luck!
    redhead_NURSE98!, wooh, GrnTea, and 1 other like this.
  9. 8
    Quote from SleeepyRN
    I think the first response was a little flippant but not meant to come across as judgemental. I suffer severe anxiety, and I too am constantly putting off job searches d/t this. I'm saying this with the very best of intentions. You stated your anxiety isn't dysfunctional. However, due to the anxiety, you are not functioning as a nurse. So I very much agree with seeking help (I am, no shame in it; my psychiatrist even admits he takes Xanax lol). Now, onto jobs you can apply for. How about an NP at a Walgreens walk in clinic? Or a physician's family practice where the doc would be there to help you initially. I go to a clinic that has both an NP and MD, and I've heard her consult with the MD. Just a couple suggestions. Good luck!
    Yes, sorry if it seems flippant but I didn't mean it that way.

    You say it's just about nursing but if its been holding you back for years, you do need to seek some help. Like the above poster said you're not functioning. Maybe you don't need medication but talk therapy to work out your issues with the profession. Finding the "perfect" job is an unlikely reality, so you are going to have to change rather than hope you find something that makes you feel comfortable. Your first job and your first
    Days at new jobs are going to be scary, whether or not you think the job is a good match.
    SCTravelRN, metal_m0nk, wooh, and 5 others like this.
  10. 8
    Quote from chrisrn24
    Sounds like you have anxiety issues. You need to see a physician ASAP.
    I agree and I don't believe that this answer was flippant, as another poster believes. It is simply the truth and sometimes the barebones truth is difficult to hear.

    OP, I feel for you, I really do. I once suffered panic attacks for the first time in my life (I was 40) because of my med/surg position. However, I sought treatment, and with counseling and medication was able to return to functioning as an RN.

    I disagree that your anxiety is not dysfunctional. From your post, I see that you have an advanced degree that you achieved primarily out of a desire to avoid the actual practice of your chosen profession. Now you have pretty much reached the pinnacle of educational opportunities (at least without clinical experience) and are having to face what you have spent years avoiding. That could certainly be labeled as dysfunctional since you are simply unable to do what you really, really want to do.

    I'm sorry that this response is not what you hoped for, but I sincerely believe that reaching out to a counsellor or even your PCP would do wonders for your state of mind. I also firmly believe that it is a failure of the nursing profession to allow a student to achieve an independent practitioner degree/license without actual experience.
  11. 0
    I didn't really mean "flippant," just short and to the point which the OP was obviously offended by. (I wouldnt be offended, I thought it was a valid answer) I just wanted to get OP to see the posters point. I agree full heartedly with the first poster
  12. 12
    OP, your anxiety IS dysfunctional if you have not been able to even take a first step as an LVN, and RN, nor an NP because of it. Have your other self read your first post. Both parts of you need to acknowledge this problem you are having, and you subconsciously have done this by coming here... but you are not allowing yourself to consciously do this (you're fighting yourself).

    Remember that many here are begging for a chance to even get an interview! So you may get some eye-rolling. Nursing is hard, it's scary and you are right to be scared. Being scared causes anxiety. But it may be that all you need is a swift kick in the pants - someone to burn your books and lock you out of your house so that the only place to go is to a job. Literally. Yes, you may hate it and quit. This is common. But you don't know until you pull up your big girl panties an get out there. Once you do, you might find that you step up in a big way, and all this over-worry was worthless wasting.

    I just kicked you hard in the butt. Get some help and give yourself a chance.


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