Am I Too Old For This?

  1. Hello everyone,

    I have been an RN for 23 years...I was an LPN before that; before that Medical Assistant, EMT, nurses' aide and candy striper! I've been working in hospitals/clinics/physician offices since I was 15 (hence the candy striper). I'm 60 now; working nights on a busy oncology-med-surg floor. When I graduated with my RN, I had interviewed and accepted for a part-time ER position (.8 FTE). My husband at the time wasn't keen on me working in the ER at my hospital because of the instances of occasional violence he would read about in the paper (at the time, none against staff; more like gang activity; police activity and the like). So I didn't take that job to keep the peace.

    I am feeling somewhat stifled of late in my current position. Much of it seems rote; I frequently feel like I'm just putting in my time, which of course, makes me think "Oh God I have to work tonight" and that's not the attitude I want for me, my coworkers or my patients.

    There are positions at my hospital in the ER for nights. I'm very good in a crisis situation; I can think clearly; answer questions correctly and rapidly; I'm a very quick learner and I'm not afraid to ask questions. I'm often "the one" my coworkers come to when they're thinking of calling an RRT or to ask questions about calling the doctor, etc.

    I'm not perfect by any means. I can be b***** at times; I'm great with new grads, new nurses on the unit but I know I can be short when someone who has worked with me 6+ years asks the same.question.over.and.over. I'm very good with family members but also know when to put the kibosh on the partying/visiting in the room when the patient has had enough--do with love!

    What do you think? Honest answers please--I need a change to something more stimulating. Thank you.
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    About TheOldestNurseOnUnit

    Joined: Aug '09; Posts: 58; Likes: 119


  3. by   Pixie.RN
    I worked with an ED RN who was in her 70s. If you want it, go for it! Can you shadow for a shift to get a feel?
  4. by   CrunchRN
    Go for it. I would love to work with you.
  5. by   JKL33
    Quote from Pixie.RN
    I worked with an ED RN who was in her 70s. If you want it, go for it! Can you shadow for a shift to get a feel?
    Me too. And that person worked circles around many, and did it with compassion.

    OP, I say go for it. "Life wisdom" and solid nursing experience goes a long way in the ED and if you're already working in acute care, you already know most of the types of situations and obstacles that make it challenging.

    Good luck!
  6. by   AnnieNP
    I believe you will be fine, but you won't know if you don't try. Good luck.
  7. by   amzyRN
    There are people in their 60s and even one nurse who was 70 who was in the ER and they seemed to be able to handle the intensity. One thing I noticed when I worked in the ER was that my body hurt more that on the floors though, so take care of yourself and don't hurt your back.