Certainly there are some similarities to what you described with what a nurse might do. Psych nursing is a wonderful, fulfilling experience. In nursing school
you are taught as a student nurse that you are a holistic caregiver. In practice, this isn't always the case in some medical settings. You barely have time to pass out meds to 7, 8, 9 patients, much less talk to them about their troubles, issues, problems, concerns. In the setting I am in (and the circumstances) I find myself able to get to take time in conversing with my patients as well as treating them on a medical level--since my ward does take care of chronically ill (and occassionally acutely ill) patients as well in terms of physical health.
Yes there are frustrations with those who know the system and abuse it to the very ends (often times axis II patients), and those who are chronic psychiatric patients. Conversely there are many times a patient comes in catatonic (or some other acute stage of their psych disorder) and leaves smiling, talking, walking and with a renewed outlook. I'm fortunate to be working in a setting where I do really see miracles happen on a somewhat consistent basis.
In my opinion, the only problem with a career in psych nursing (vs most other fields of nursing) is that there is less of a demand in general. I could walk into any hospital and have a job as a medical nurse (which would land me on a psych ward as a patient in a short amount of time). The same can't be said for a psych nurse. In addition, you cannot eliminate medical caregivers, but who knows what the future holds for the psycholigically ill patients of the world.
Bottom line...if you enjoy(ed) the 2 jobs you described, I could only encourage you to venture into psych nursing. I could go on about the virtues of this profession (as it pertains to me) but I've gone on long enough...it's now bedtime.
Good luck with whatever career avenue you take.