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MissHaleyDawn, BSN, RN 3,162 Views

Joined: Jun 24, '10; Posts: 88 (27% Liked) ; Likes: 34
Staff Nurse; from US
Specialty: 4 year(s) of experience in Nephrology, Oncology

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  • Dec 20 '17

    I'm in the same boat. I've been a nurse for 4 years. While I do like the nursing aspects of things, I did not sign up for all the drama between management and pettiness of staff and favoritism. This isn't high school, yet everyone sure acts like it. I've worked in a nursing home as an aide during school, and have been at 2 different hospitals in 4 years. Was the same everywhere; toxic, not feeling appreciated or heard, trying my best but still not good enough for some people...just a body to fill the payroll. It makes me sad, because when we are properly staffed, management isn't on a power trip, and no one is squabbling or ******** about someone on the unit...it's a very enjoyably day and I enjoy my patients. But most days I just feel like the life is being sucked out of me.

    I've considered going back to school for a masters of nursing in management or education. I do like to teach. Students actually brighten my day because then I'm distracted from everything else for a few hours, but pay would be a concern for me. Management I feel like I would be good at, but again pay concerns (salary vs hourly with OT options) and I have a fear I'd eventually turn in to the machine I feel like I'm at odds with everyday. I've also considered just going back for an MBA, but have no idea what area of business I would even want to venture into.

  • Dec 19 '17

    Why did you choose nursing?
    My mother passed when I was 15, I watched my father struggle with pancreatic cancer from the time I was 17 until he passed away when I was 19. I was inspired by the wonderful care provided to my parents.

    What school did you attend for nursing and did you find it challenging?
    I went to a private nursing school, won't put the name here due to privacy. It was challenging and I would honestly never do it again. LOL. I feel like a missed out on the college experience by choosing nursing. I have fond memories when I actually had time to hang out with friends, but those times were few and far between. My psychology and drama major friends probably had x100 more fun college times than I did because I lived at the library, skills lab, and clinical for a majority of my time.

    What high school or college course did you find most beneficial or helpful for nursing?
    I took a healthcare career path/track while in HS. You're school may be different or similar. Basically I was able to obtain my CNA while in HS, on HS time. It enabled me to start work as a tech and get my feet wet.

    How long did it take you to become a nurse?
    My university is an oddball. They still have an ADN course for nursing, as well as BSN all the way up to PhD now. I chose the ADN program because it got me to my degree and license faster and was cheaper. While working as an ADN nurse, I enrolled in my school's online RN-BSN program and got that with a 1-year bridge course. Overall I saved close to $30,000 taking this route to BSN.

    In what type of environment do you work in?
    I'm a floor nurse for a hospital in my city. I work primarily oncology and end-of-life care, but also do med-surg.

    What is your favorite part of nursing?
    I enjoy my patients, I love oncology and oddly enough I find great satisfaction in providing the dying patients with good deaths. I've seen some bad ones, they aren't pretty and they are heartbreaking. But something about coming in to shift with a very restless dying patient and grinding out a few hours to get them settled and peaceful and them being able to pass quietly is just satisfying to me.

    What does a regular day look like for a nurse?
    Chaotic. Morning medication pass is the worse part of my day usually. It's very hectic. Between doctors and other disciplines calling you (PT, OT, Speech, different departments sending for tests, etc), family members either coming to desk to ask questions for for things, family calling the unit to ask questions and trying to pass meds to 5-6 patients (my record is 30 pills to one patient!)...I sometimes just want to pull my hair out.

    Is your schedule flexible as a nurse?
    Yes and no. We pick our own shifts, but most times it feels like a rat race. So many weekends and holidays must be picked up depending on your work status (full vs part time). I'm not joking when I say I see my co-workers more than I see my own family.

    What is your biggest challenge of being a nurse?
    Being at odds with managements expectations and the reality of what can feasibly be accomplished within a 12 hour time period with patient load we are expected to manage. I am actually considering going back to school and exploring other career options because in my area it doesn't seem like anywhere has reasonable expectations and I am getting burned out on it, my mental health is more important and I cannot see myself working like this for another 30 years.

    Does nursing provide the time to balance work and a personal life?
    Yes and no. I love working 3 days a week, but at the same time I am home a lone a lot. My husband works 5 nights a week and is also a night shift worker, so I'm left to my own devices a lot. We're expecting our first child, so I will be exploring other options for our growing family.


    Any words of advice?

    Think long and hard about what you are committing yourself to. Nursing can be wonderful, but there are a lot of downsides to it as well. Find a specialty you enjoy, you will be dead inside working an area you do not like. If you are in an area where there are multiple job opportunities don't be afraid to explore them. Find an employer who will listen to your concerns and not brush you off, a place you feel appreciated. Where I am there are not many different places/employers to switch to without having to commute a ridiculous amount of miles or compromise pay severely, so I have burned out pretty quickly.



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