After Nursing: Is There Life Out There? - page 2

I knew it was too good to last forever. Today, in a meeting with my company's regional director of operations and the corporate nurse consultant, my Executive Director and I learned that we will... Read More

  1. by   VivaLasViejas
    Wow, you guys have some GREAT ideas!

    I would love to teach CNAs. One of my friends was a CNA program instructor for years, and she turned out many fine aides (one of whom is my youngest son). I don't know how I would do walking up and down halls all throughout the clinical day, but if I keep losing weight the way I have been lately it might not be that much of an issue. That's one alternative.

    Consulting is another option I'm considering. If I had my druthers, I'd just as soon work only part-time, and consulting would probably offer that flexibility.

    I also like the suggestion about working in psych (though working with adolescents would be the job from Hell as far as I'm concerned. I like my old folks.) I especially loved the one about helping other nurses with mental illness. I don't know if there are nurses who do that and get paid for it, but it's worth researching. The only caveat is, what happens if I become too ill to be of any use? I'm pretty good at figuring out what's wrong with everybody else and helping them straighten out their lives; fixing my own stuff, not so much. LOL

    In the, it was my director's turn to let me know that a) he's seen me at my best, and b) I'm not at my best. Well, yeah, I knew that. I'd never try to claim otherwise. But what was I to tell him when he asked me what he can do to help me get my (brown word) together? Somehow, I doubt he has a cure for burnout, bipolar, or late middle age.....all of which factor into my current malaise. He wants me to think about that this weekend and get back to him on Monday, and for once I'm flummoxed. I really don't know what to say.

    I want to keep my job as long as I can; that much I do know. After all, I don't hate it like I came to hate every other job I've held over the years. But the very least I've got to do is try for an Ativan salt lick in the lobby, because 95% of my problem is anxiety. I'm always afraid of what I'm going to find when I walk in: a stack of incident reports that require not only an investigation but six pieces of paperwork that I have to either examine or generate. Three falls and a 911 call before breakfast. Angry staff members and insanely PO'd families who want to know why I can't force Mama to take her vitamin pills. An even more PO'd floor supervisor who worked all weekend because of call-ins, and now virtually exudes attitude. And then Corporate does a surprise site visit, and the panic washes over me like a flood of garbage. Ya know?
  2. by   prmenrs
    You know I'm always including you and your family in my prayers. You deserve all the best things, and sometimes it gets tiresome to feel like you're pushing a boulder uphill ALL the time.

    I think you have a book in you--you've already written quite a bit of it already. Your anecdotes of your beloved pts are beautiful and you bring the reader right to the bedside.
  3. by   joanna73
    Hopefully, the worst case scenario will not happen. But, maybe this could be a blessing in disguise. You have great nursing experience, so you could probably find work in case management, home care, or a clinic part time or full time. Polish up your resume just in case!
  4. by   Vespertinas
    You may find it beneath you but I don't see anything wrong with hitting up some of the contacts you've made over these years. I'm sure you already work with people who have a great impression of you. Those kinds of connections make transitions the easiest... you get to bypass the stress and annoyance of doing series of *real* interviews. Lets say it's not so much for the favor as much as it is for the job opportunities that you may not know exist! A woman I know of knocked on the door of her supervisor after she got divorced and that supervisor catapaulted her into a handful of interview for positions that woman hadn't dreamed of (namely, transplant marketing coordinator). Time to make your years of networking work for you!

    Quote from NurseCard
    Starbucks...So stress free
    Girl you haven't been a barista during rush hour
    Last edit by Vespertinas on Feb 9, '13
  5. by   Beth385
    Be proactive and an advocate for yourself. Smile sweetly at your meeting with corporate, take an action plan you will start immediately in IPDCA format & start looking for a new job now. Teaching CNAs or med assistants or something might work. Or even working for a doctor might be good. Don't beat yourself up over this job. Middle mgmt in healthcare is always overworked. I mean it's CRAZY what is expected. I think if you have a plan, then it will help you feel empowered and see a way out.
  6. by   Vespertinas
    Also, you can be my own career guru since my goal is to be the director of an assisted living facility. I pay good dough but it's mixed with pecans and is better known as "cookies".
  7. by   Ruas61
    I am unsure of what your economic needs are but perhaps case management or telephonic nursing or acting as a consultant nurse per diem with a firm?
  8. by   mariebailey
    I worked with some ADNs at a local health department. Nurses with varied experience often thrive in public health. I was on an interview panel, and a colorful resume was a plus, even if none of the experience was in public health. My supervisor was an ADN in my last position.

    Best of luck.
  9. by   newrnltc
    You can also consider utilization management. When we need to request prior approvals from health insurance companies often it is a nurse that I have to discuss the case with to prove medical necessity.
  10. by   NurseGuyBri
    I agree with one thing here- Once a nurse, always a nurse. Maybe you just need a new venue. TRUST ME when I say there is still a place for you. I know an ADN who is a Nurse Consultant, mainly because of her experience and not education. Perhaps it's time to go back to school? Lots of online RN to BSN programs, so your feet can still rest.

    I'll tell you this, too.... I don't care if someone gets a quadruple PHD in nursing, WE NEED NURSES like you. There is **NO** substitute for experience. No new nurses will be successful without you. I mean this because the newer nurses are being churned out so fast and are not as prepared to do these important jobs like you are. This is no disrespect to new nurses, I'm just saying you can't leave the profession. I won't allow it.. :-X

    Now for some recommendations. I bet you could find a great ADON job- That's what a LOT of DON's end up doing in my area once they decide they don't want the stress anymore. They get the experience and adjust and move on. It's NOT a step down!! As you know, the ADON really is it's own position, not really an "assistant don" but more of a "do everything nurse" Your staff become your patients, you still have the ability to nurse, but the responsibility levels out better and you can live a little.

    Thought about going to a doctor's office? The pay is not great but it's liveable. If you find a specialty office like Arthritis or Diabetes education you can work as an ADN and make an ok wage (at least here in VA).

    How about DON at a smaller company? Sounds like you are at a pretty big place. I'm a DON at a medium size company (25 facilities in 2 states) and although it has it's own challenges (budget), it's easy to talk to the higher ups and be part of a team. Maybe that's what is missing?

    I hope you decide to stay in nursing. Imagine a world full of new nurses without some good leaders...
  11. by   OCNRN63
    Quote from crazy&cuteRN
    My heart goes out to middle age nurses who are too young to retire but experience ageism. If this is what I have to experience 30 years from now, then I rather have no part of it.
    My preceptor has been a nurse for 30 plus years and have a ADN. She runs circles around the 20 something BSNs in the floor, she said the day she is forced to get her BSN, she'll retire... I don't blame her. However, what happens whe you don't have that option and you still need bennies and income for the family. I don't expect any middle age nurse to go from making a decent income to being a walmart greeter. I stick to my original advice: Viva, find a job in teaching. My mother did a three day "train the trainer course", she has a few contracts and makes 45/hr. She loves it. School nursing is an idea except the pay may not be great. Grntea, had an excellent idea as well!
    My prayers and thoughts are with you.
    Bless you for saying this.

    Viva, it seems like the consensus is going with Grn Tea as an expert witness. I know how you feel to a certain extent. I had to leave nursing due to a health reason, and in the unlikely event that I would be able to go back to work, I would have no idea what I would be able to do. I'm just not up to running around with my hair on fire anymore.

    Good luck to you.
  12. by   echocat
    Have you considered hospice nursing -- you like old folks, and you have a proven record of dealing with off-the-wall families -- you could end up loving it. Another idea is insurance nursing, as others have said, UR or CM. But when my ex and I applied for health insurance a RN came to the house just to do a blood draw. She said she liked it and got paid pretty well.
  13. by   VivaLasViejas
    Up until about three years ago, I dreamed of becoming a hospice nurse.....I'm good at taking care of the dying and supporting their loved ones, and I am very much an advocate of a holistic approach to end-of-life issues. In fact, I know so many home-health and hospice agency nurses and directors that I could probably walk out of my current position and land a job with one of them tomorrow morning. There are a few roadblocks, however; one being travel after dark and in bad weather conditions, and the other being I'm forbidden to work nights, thanks to a medical condition that precludes shift work.

    But the bottom line is, I still care about my job and the people I work with. I'm not so burned out that I can't muster any feelings for them, and in fact I'm going to go into my boss's office tomorrow and tell him he deserves better than what he's been getting from me, and I'm going to do my best to provide it. No excuses. This is my last stand.......I've never held the same job longer than 2 1/2 years, and I want to get past that. Yes, a lot of it had to do with the aforementioned health problem, but that's no reason to give less than my best, even if my 'best' is only 75% on a given day.

    However........I do want to keep my options open, so please keep the ideas coming. It's always good to have a backup plan in case the fecal material collides with the oscillatory ventilation apparatus. Thanks to all of you who've posted so far.