any rags to riches stories

  1. 10
    I'm looking for inspiration. Currently a cna in an impoverished neighborhood waiting to take my nclex. My only dream is to move me and my children out. I was wondering if anyone had a pretty hard time that was alleviated by becoming a nurse. Would love to know
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  3. 77 Comments so far...

  4. 1
    i wouldn't say it was hard because that is what i knew and even if i lived in one of thise neighborhoods i was one of the "rich" ones since both my parents worked and didnt have that many kids. i dont have children so now that i am making more as a nurse than my parents made together there is a difference! i can buy all types of food at the grocery store i didnt eat much of due to cost as a child ( things like ice cream lol) . i can buy a nice car and pay for it. etc. there was a post on this recently that got up to 20pagez or so. basically if you pay for everything now without any assistance you will notice a big difference. if you utilize food stamps or housing subsidies etc you wont he elligible for them as a nurse and wont notice a big difference as you will use your own income to pay for it. if you live in an east coast or west coast city you can make good money as an rn. probably at least $25/hr on the northeast coast (boston, washington, nyc, philadelphia, ) and their suburbs. i dont know what the pay rates are in the south outside of texas .
    joanna73 likes this.
  5. 5
    Yes I pay for food with cash money. Know the use of a good sale. Lol. I do pretty well compared to a lot if folks in this neighborhood. I'm just itching to move
    OhioTry, DawnJ, Tina, RN, and 2 others like this.
  6. 1
    Good for you!
    Violach likes this.
  7. 1
    Hmmm well I just passed my LPN boards & in the middle of looking for a job I live with my parents & my car was to paid off in march wellll life is crazy and about 2 weeks ago my car caught on fire (for no reason as a result of a recalled part that apparently wasnt correctly fixed) *thank God I wasn't in it* anywho as of right now I have to get a new car my plan was to keep my Forenza for about another year & bask in NOT having car payments THEN buy something REALLY nice BUT God apparently has a diff plan anyway what I'm getting at is...it feels good to know Ill be able to get a nice car and make the payments I don't have any kids so my money will be just for me & bills whenever I move out

    It's not exactly "rags" to "riches" but I'm very thankful I passed my test I know ill be straight

    God is Good
    anotherone likes this.
  8. 29
    I graduated from LPN school and 3 days later took my NCLEX.

    Within 40 days I was starting my first job at a prison. My base was $14.69 with $1.50 after 4pm. Hours were 6a-6p and they let me choose my own set schedule due to such a staffing shortage. Monday Wednesday and Friday. It was awesome!!! My average paycheck was approximately $863 after taxes.

    I bought a computer! I paid off my car 1 full year early! I have no student loans because I went through a cheap cheap community college and received and EXCELLENT education!

    However, I wasn't happy with my job. I felt like I did so much but was so underpaid. I then went PRN. I dropped my benefits and set schedule. My pay was increased to $18.50 with shift differentials still applicable. There was a dire need for weekend work which paid $1.00 more / hr. Eventually I picked up every saturday and sunday and then a third day as needed.

    The increase in pay really made the job much more palatable. The experience was invaluable and I eventually landed an ER LPN position at a local hospital. Even now I'm like "Shut the front door, I'm an LPN doing REAL nursing in an ER!!" I mean, have you seen my posts? I don't think I have even one post that doesn't have me talking about being an ER LPN! HAHAHAAHAHAH!!!!! FREAKING LOVE IT!

    The pay was actually even better at the hospital because the shift differentials are more and weekends are 20% more vs. $1.00.

    I now LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE my job. I am weekend option and make $20 / hr with all my differentials averaged into the 2 days / week. I gained like 50 lbs (not too happy with that, but man... that restaurant food is soooo good). I have ACLS, PALS, TB, and CPI certifications!

    Seriously... the year prior to becoming a nurse, I barely broke $12,000 for the whole year. It was AWEFUL! I did nothing but serve tables for mean, fat people who didn't know how to tip properly or teenagers who were so angst over their newfound faith that their version of a tip was to leave a card telling me how God hates gay people.

    Being an LPN has been amazing for me. I will be an RN soon and make even more money (hopefully not gain anymore weight). I figured it out, if I were a Weekend Option RN, it'd be like $36/hr. PHEW!!!


    Rags to riches!! YES! PS- i forgot to mention, i'm going to be making an offer on my first house tomorrow!
    Last edit by libran1984 on Jan 30, '13 : Reason: inaccurate hours
    HolisticRN2016, mcmcalla, Emergent, and 26 others like this.
  9. 2
    Quote from libran1984
    I graduated from LPN school and 3 days later took my NCLEX.

    Within 40 days I was starting my first job at a prison. My base was $14.69 with $1.50 after 4pm. Hours were 6a-6p and they let me choose my own set schedule due to such a staffing shortage. Monday Wednesday and Friday. It was awesome!!! My average paycheck was approximately $863 after taxes.

    I bought a computer! I paid off my car 1 full year early! I have no student loans because I went through a cheap cheap community college and received and EXCELLENT education!

    However, I wasn't happy with my job. I felt like I did so much but was so underpaid. I then went PRN. I dropped my benefits and set schedule. My pay was increased to $18.50 with shift differentials still applicable. There was a dire need for weekend work which paid $1.00 more / hr. Eventually I picked up every saturday and sunday and then a third day as needed.

    The increase in pay really made the job much more palatable. The experience was invaluable and I eventually landed an ER LPN position at a local hospital. Even now I'm like "Shut the front door, I'm an LPN doing REAL nursing in an ER!!" I mean, have you seen my posts? I don't think I have even one post that doesn't have me talking about being an ER LPN! HAHAHAAHAHAH!!!!! FREAKING LOVE IT!

    The pay was actually even better at the hospital because the shift differentials are more and weekends are 20% more vs. $1.00.

    I now LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE my job. I am weekend option and make $20 / hr with all my differentials averaged into the 2 days / week. I gained like 50 lbs (not too happy with that, but man... that restaurant food is soooo good). I have ACLS, PALS, TB, and CPI certifications!

    Seriously... the year prior to becoming a nurse, I barely broke $12,000 for the whole year. It was AWEFUL! I did nothing but serve tables for mean, fat people who didn't know how to tip properly or teenagers who were so angst over their newfound faith that their version of a tip was to leave a card telling me how God hates gay people.

    Being an LPN has been amazing for me. I will be an RN soon and make even more money (hopefully not gain anymore weight). I figured it out, if I were a Weekend Option RN, it'd be like $36/hr. PHEW!!!

    Rags to riches!! YES! PS- i forgot to mention, i'm going to be making an offer on my first house tomorrow!
    Haha aw cute good for u!
    ASPIRING2BGREAT and Tina, RN like this.
  10. 36
    I had to dig in the dump as a kid for clothing. I was dirt poor. I mean really really poor. I shopped for new clothes at the second hand shop. We ate squirrles. I grew up in california. Yup. For reals.

    Anyways, I had a kid when I was 17 and was getting welfare for him too, just like my momma got for me, when some school teacher told me that I could be anything I wanted.

    Well, some of my distant family turned out to be nurses and they encouraged me to become a nurse. I went for it. I finally graduated two years ago, dumped the food stamps and the medical and been working full steam ever since. I am astonished sometimes when I look at one of my checks for just two weeks work now, and its what I used to live on for four months a time.

    I like being able to buy the food I want, and buy the clothes I want, and live where I want. Its super nice.
    My very first check I went to a Macys and wanted make up, one of the ladys buying makeup looked at me and clutched her purse closer to her, like I was going to STEAL IT!!!! I was snubbed by the counter girls, and when I finally found someone willing to help me I spent 500$ on make up...hahahahah, it felt so good! I never bought that much makeup before... or since! lol

    And its nothing like being on assistance, I can go work and get extra money to do the things I enjoy doing, or buy the things I need. I never had so much in all my life. Its totally worth it. Totally.
  11. 27
    I kinda think I have one. I'm not special. I didn't do ANYTHING the way your supposed to. I was young when I had my first son. I married and had 2 more kids. I've been taking one class at a time forever. I kid that I'm on the 25yr plan to a degree. I am now an LVN...I have a ONE yr certificate after almost 20 yrs of going to school off and on. We were poor. I mean...we BARELY made it. There was no savings. It was literally trying to buy groceries with whatever we had left after rent and utilities. We ...a family of 5 never made more than 25,000 a yr..not ONCE.
    Now I'm an LVN...thanks to pell grants and a grant from another local program that helped us pay for childcare that year. The YMCA was kind enough to give my kids a partial scholarship for care and I actually worked there every weekend to get an additional discount for being an employee....
    the yr I was in school we made only $17,000. Nine of that went to housing costs.
    My parents bought groceries, paid for my kids school supplies, bought them shoes and coats...without all that help I would not be an LVN today.
    I just did our taxes.
    I had a hard time finding a job out of school. I took a temporary home health rehab position that paid VERY well...then nothing til Nov of last yr. Even so...I worked less than 3 total months and still made $15,000. With my husbands income...well...lets just say our income has more than doubled since last year.

    But here's what it's REALLY about. It's about that when I needed help almost 20 yrs ago and went to my county healthcare system...they were there for me. They provided a surgery I needed at no cost to me. They gave me vaccines. They cared for my son and I when we were sick. I didn't have a job. I was poor as dirt with no job. It was just me and him against the world and what they did for me...I never forgot it.
    I now work for my county. I work in a community clinic just a few short miles from the county clinic I used to visit as a patient.
    I am giving back. Sure I get paid to be there.... but what I represent just by standing there and saying "hello, I'm so glad to see you.."
    I give hope.
    I was once a patient and now I'm a nurse. I love what I do and where I work. I love that I can be an example for what can happen if you want it and work for it.
    Yes...I earn a decent living. Yes...I love what I do....but the real lesson is that what I give back is way more important than what I earn.
  12. 12
    When I was 16 years old I decided I wanted to become a RN, I had a meeting with my guidance counselor, to help me figure out what courses I needed in high school to apply for University, my guidance counselor looked at my grades and told me " You will never go to university and become a nurse with your grades" I believed her.... I graduated from high school and worked as a telemarketer for approx 1 year, and all the while had a gnawing feeling, that I wanted to become a RN. So I looked into college and found a pre-nursing program that prepared you for nursing school. I applied and was accepted. 2 months into the program I found out I was pregnant, I completed my pre-nursing and applied for nursing school, and was accepted. I had my son in the spring just in time to go back to school in the fall. During my 2nd year I became pregnant again, and had to drop one of my courses due to the delivery of my second child and during this time my children's father and I separated. So I was a single mother of two small children, I went back to school to finish my degree, thankfully I managed to be eligible and accepted into geared to income housing, I raised my children off of 1200$ a month at times it felt like there was no light at the end of the tunnel, some how I managed to make it through and graduate from nursing school in 2010. I'm grateful for all of the people in my life that helped me and supported me through that trying time in my life, and now that I am an RN and making a good wage, our lives have become easier financially, and best of all I'm doing the work I was meant to do. So my advice to you, futurenurseOB, keep your chin up and remember everything is going to be alright


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