I'm Not Going To Be A Nurse!

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Specializes in around 25 years psych, 15years medical. Has 43 years experience.

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ClaraRedheart, BSN, RN

Specializes in Med-Surg. Has 8 years experience. 358 Posts

The first time I thought about nursing was when my aunt, 40 yo with 4 girls aged toddler through 8 years came down with breast cancer. After she had her mastectomy, I was so impressed with the hospital and those who cared for her. I thought that maybe being a nurse and being a cog in the wheel would help. She eventually passed at 42 from the cancer.

At that time, I went to community college and was taking pre-nursing courses at age 19. Sometime during that year, in my psychology class, for some reason they showed a video of a guy poking a needle deep in his arm. I couldn't look at it. I decided that if I could watch that, I could never poke someone else (even if it was for their own good) so I would never make a good nurse. I then pursued computer science. 

Married a Navy man after that, moved all over the place my course changed yet again to business (totally lost career wise) finally gave up and worked photography, big box stores, whatever I could do. 

When he got out, I found out I was pregnant on the way to where we chose to live. I rode on the back of a motorcycle to my part time (best I could get at the time) job to Target 20 miles away (we were dirt poor). When baby was born they called me back and asked when I could come back to work. I looked up daycare costs and said I can't afford to. I decided I can go on welfare or go back to school. 

I called my mom (a nurse) and told her that I wanted to go back and had decided the most family friendly options was nursing or teaching. I told her why I could do nursing... I hate needles, puke, poop, pee are all gross. I can't deal with it. She asked me "Do you like people?" I said "I love people!" she replied "Then you can get over the rest." She was right. 

I nearly fainted twice when needles were involved on my first few clinicals (stars and everything...  had to go somewhere and sit down until it passed). My moms words "You can get over it" were burnished on my mind and I persisted. I got over it 🙂 I'm now the most experienced sono IV/lab draw nurse on my floor and I'm SO glad she encouraged me to do what I really wanted to do all along ❤️ I've also done an EBP study and promoted a practice change to help our mastectomy patients, so I guess I'm fulfilling what I wanted to. I hate covid nursing, but still have hope that this will pass. 

SmilingBluEyes

Specializes in Specializes in L/D, newborn, GYN, LTC, Dialysis. Has 25 years experience. 20,878 Posts

I became a nurse as a 2nd career after 10 years in the military. It was not a calling. It was a way for me to ensure I could support my family and myself in case something happened to my (Still military) husband.

It was a wake to make money and keep food coming and a roof over our heads and keep the kids in all their various activities.

If I had had my way I would have gotten a fine arts degree and become a graphic artist.

But my parents told me how "stupid" that was and being the pragmatists they were, forbid me to get a degree in art (they were paying for school at the time).
 

So I dropped out, joined the military and became a nurse for practical reasons. I guess the art side of nursing is what kept me interested. But I Don't find it's much of an art now. I just find we are filling out squares and paperwork to satisfy other entities who have no idea what we do.

After I retire, I will go back and get that fine arts degree for ME. What will I do with it? Probably nothing but I will enjoy it immeasurably more than I am now.

Lynker, LPN

Specializes in LTC, Rehab. Has 3 years experience. 221 Posts

This is a very interesting thread!

I had a job at Dunkin' Donuts for awhile. I worked there, and finally got my driver's license after my boyfriend taught me how to drive. Being in school for journalism, I eventually stopped going to my school because I got depressed. And so, I got another job: a front store manager (trainee) at CVS.

It was going alright, I guess. I had "manager" capabilities, although I was still training, when I was asked: do you want to transfer to the pharmacy?

Instinctively, anyone would say yes. Cool medical experience, why the hell not? So I did! I did mostly pickup and drive thru, although I did more with time.

Then, I had an epiphany. I loved helping people. I had most of my prereqs done. Why not go into nursing school? And so I applied to that same college's LPN program, and got in due to first come first serve basis.

Got through that, became a working LPN and loved it. I was working for about 2 months when I was told: "all you need to do is pass the NACE exam and the TEAS test (again) and you're in. I had to retake the TEAS test twice, since I failed the first time. But I got into the program, two weeks before classes started! I entered in semester 2/4.

Passed that semester, entered third semester. Ended up failing because of exam grades.

I had surgery about two weeks after finding out I failed the class. This meant that I couldn't enter the Spring semester due to doctor's limitation (open heart surgery), so I was pushed back two semesters.

In the meantime after healing, I got a COVID vaccination job, as well as a pediatric clinic job. Both which I were let go from, due to inexperienced reasons. Lessons have been learned.

So, now here I am, redoing third semester while working as an LPN per diem. I'm doing very well clinically and exam-wise so far.

 

RN loading....

Edited by Lynker

Emergent, RN

Specializes in ER. Has 29 years experience. 2 Articles; 3,860 Posts

My son had a bike accident and required surgery and a short hospital stay. I was working doing finishing in a cabinet shop at the time and also selling some artwork. I observed the nurses and thought, 'this might be interesting work', and there is always a demand. I had never been in the hospital, I even had my kids at home, and was totally unfamiliar with the environment until then.

I have always lived in rural areas where there are fewer job opportunities, so I thought nursing would be a good fit. It worked out well, but covid really made it too stressful for me, so I retired from nursing and got a job in a farm store that doesn't require us to wear masks while we work. Wearing masks turn me into a full-blown claustrophobic.

middleagednurse

Specializes in nurseline,med surg, PD. Has 50+ years experience. 554 Posts

If I weren't a nurse, I would be a teacher. Like another nurse said, used to be that kids did what their parents told them to do. My parents said "Be a nurse", so I am a nurse. However, when I see misspelled words or grammar mistakes on here, I am screaming at the computer "How can you be a nurse and not know how to spell!!" FYI "affect" and "effect" do not have the same meaning. OK, rant over. Have a good day!

NotMyProblem MSN, ASN, BSN, MSN, LPN, RN

Specializes in Med/Surg, LTACH, LTC, Home Health. Has 36 years experience. 2,690 Posts

3 minutes ago, middleagednurse said:

If I weren't a nurse, I would be a teacher. Like another nurse said, used to be that kids did what their parents told them to do. My parents said "Be a nurse", so I am a nurse. However, when I see misspelled words or grammar mistakes on here, I am screaming at the computer "How can you be a nurse and not know how to spell!!" FYI "affect" and "effect" do not have the same meaning. OK, rant over. Have a good day!

THIS!...a million times over! My love for English was the reason I was able to breeze through my MSN program. I can produce a quality paper like nobody’s business...just give me a topic!😁

In defense of some of these postings, though, I’ll credit ‘some’ of the errors to modern technology. Autocorrect can be a BEAST at times for smartphone users. But yes, grammar on social media can be like fingernails on a chalkboard!😬

Davey Do

Specializes in around 25 years psych, 15years medical. Has 43 years experience. 1 Article; 9,487 Posts

On 10/10/2021 at 11:51 AM, Davey Do said:

I came up with an alternate reality on how I got into nursing, based on actual facts. 

 

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Emergent, RN

Specializes in ER. Has 29 years experience. 2 Articles; 3,860 Posts

6 hours ago, middleagednurse said:

 "How can you be a nurse and not know how to spell!!" 

How can you not know how to use spellcheck at the very least. 

I've even seen the affect/effect mixup in news articles. So annoying. And, don't get me started on loose/lose!😱

Kitiger, RN

Specializes in Private Duty Pediatrics. Has 43 years experience. 1,600 Posts

I was going to be a music teacher, but when I graduated high school, I was DONE with studying, for the Summer, anyway. 🙂

My Mom told me that she had talked to one of her classmates - who was now DON at a nursing home - and I was hired to work as a nurse's aide.  All I had to do was go apply for the job, so I did. Why not? I needed to find a job.

As it turned out, I found out that I truly enjoyed the work, and - for the first time - I considered whether I would want to be a nurse. I knew that I enjoyed music and I enjoyed working in healthcare. I also knew that music teachers were the first to be let go when the economy tanked, and nurses had job security, so I chose nursing.

I don't know how to do crowd control with children, so I probably would have struggled as a teacher. I'm also not especially good at multitasking, another ability that teachers need. I found my niche in private duty home nursing. 

Davey Do

Specializes in around 25 years psych, 15years medical. Has 43 years experience. 1 Article; 9,487 Posts

On 10/10/2021 at 11:31 AM, LibraNurse27 said:

unless time travel really gets invented one day I guess we'll never know!

Richard Bach wrote something along the lines of, "We are always free to choose a different future, present, or past".  When I first read Mr. Bach's quote, I thought, "How in the Sam Hill can we choose a different past?!" when the concept of perspective came to mind.

For example, LibraNurse, you appropriately gave me empathy for having experienced that MVA and I appreciate that. However, the experiences with that MVA were some of the greatest of my life. I truly shudder to think what I would have become had I not experienced, and had to deal with, all that trauma.

Being a rather self-centered individual, I look at and compare myself with two of my genetically closest self-centered sibs. One had to deal with some rather major life crises, and the other has not. The one sib who has not had to deal with any major stumbling blocks in their life is J. R. Ewing incarnate.

I could have been J.R. and J.R. could have been me. There for the grace of God go I. So, in essence, the MVA was a blessing because I had to deal with both the physical and emotional pain.

 I had to proactively choose to not allow my physical  injuries to get the better of me and set my limitations. I had to work through the hatred I felt for the intoxicated driver who plowed into me. I had to deal with the humiliation of lying for an extended amount of time in my own soupy feces, and being stripped naked and given daily bed baths like I was a piece of meat hanging in some slaughterhouse.

I obviously had the intelligence to become a nurse. However, I did not have the empathy to become a good nurse. In choosing a different past, other than playing the part of a victim, I gained the ability to get outside of myself and see & feel how others could feel.

Had I not experienced all that pain, I would have experienced no gain.

Davey Do

Specializes in around 25 years psych, 15years medical. Has 43 years experience. 1 Article; 9,487 Posts

On 10/10/2021 at 11:08 AM, JBMmom said:

My initial career path was medical school.

I had been told numerous times throughout my career, "You should have become a doctor" and, sure, I may have possessed the intelligence to do so.

But say I had chosen that career path and not experienced the MVA? I could have become just another pompous, more neurotic & self-centered than I already am, holier than thou physician.

If we allow The Fates to lead us where they may, we will travel the path to which we are intended.

So very many times on this forum we read where new nurses "hate" being a nurse and seek guidance here after the plane has already crashed into the mountain.

I specifically remember one who asked for guidance, and @NurseBlaq flatly told the member that nursing wasn't their path, good luck with other endeavors, and was criticized for her guidance. The member wrote that they didn't know why they chose nursing as a career, didn't like nursing school or dealing with patients, and hated working as a nurse. What more signs from The Fates does one need? NurseBlaq was merely playing the part of Captain Obvious!

I heard The Fates say to me, "Look, Dave, you've gained some empathy, shown you are interested in human anatomy, and possess the potential to become a medical professional. You start out on this path and we will guide you".

I listened to The Fates throughout my early career, and sure enough, they led me to becoming a psych RN, for which I spent successfully and relatively happily working the majority of my career.

To paraphrase Plutarch, "The Fates lead those who will. Those who won't, they drag. And sometimes it's through the mud".

Davey Do

Specializes in around 25 years psych, 15years medical. Has 43 years experience. 1 Article; 9,487 Posts

On 10/10/2021 at 12:11 PM, CalicoKitty said:

Nothing I would do to change the "reason" for my choice in becoming a nurse. It meant everything to allow my grandmother to die peacefully.  ~10 years in, I still like nursing. Still have not reached my 'goal' of hospice, but the awesome thing about the career is variety. And I like where I am right now.

 

3 hours ago, Davey Do said:

If we allow The Fates to lead us where they may, we will travel the path to which we are intended.

CalicoKitty, obviously, you allowed The Fates to lead you and you like where you are right now. Not having reached your goal doesn't mean you won't experience a successfully satisfying career.

I wanted to be a Paramedic, got my EMT-B, and two years later, my NREMT-A. From there, I naturally assumed I'd get. my EMT-P, but The Fates had something else in store for me. Certain forces converged and I was guided toward nursing.

There are those who probably think I'm talking metaphysical new age nonsense, but please consider this:  The proof is in the pudding.