No Jeep, No Love: I'm Out Of Here!

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In this article, I discuss the reasons why I am leaving a 20 plus years nursing career.

Are you quitting Nursing?

No Jeep, No Love: I'm Out Of Here!

So, I own a Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT. It is my toy. It is fun to drive and super-fast. It has all the bells and whistles and is black on black with carbon fiber trim. I bought it used, on impulse when looking for a second vehicle to continue my travel nurse career. Before I test-drove it, I did not know such a vehicle existed.

I drove it exactly 104 miles and had catastrophic engine failure. At that time, I was pursuing my nurse practitioner degree and was informed by the medical director of the facility I was working at that he did not like me. I replaced the engine in my jeep and determined that that facility was not where I needed to be. I packed up my life in my jeep, found a travel contract and continued my journey.

Then the pandemic began. No one in healthcare knew what this new virus was but there was a tremendous amount of speculation by the media experts and the political parties. I was on a contract at a cath lab in South Dakota and was on call for Stemi for the weekend for the first time at that facility. I was called out at 0050 and had 30 minutes to get to the hospital and get the patient on the table. The nice officer asked me if I knew why he stopped me and I responded with, “because I let you”. He started to laugh, and I showed him my beeper and badge, explained why I was doing 55 in a 25, and he was kind enough to let me continue on my way. The patient had a good outcome and was discharged several days later.

Then the rules started coming out about appropriate PPE and the media decided that the virus came from China and was transmitted from bats. Government-appointed healthcare officials determined that healthcare staff was to wear surgical masks at all times, with N-95 masks and visors, plus gowns, gloves, and shoe covers when doing procedures or entering a patient’s room suspected of Covid-19.

Then the hours and staffing changed for the cath lab because it was determined that only emergency procedures were to take place because so many people were contracting the Covid virus. The contract ended and I packed up my Jeep and headed home to wait and see what was going to take place next.

New York City made the news for being overwhelmed with Covid patients and the lockdown truly began across many states. The lockdown affected every business in many ways. I waited for as long as I could before obtaining my next contract, packing my Jeep, and heading 1500 miles South. I chose to not work Covid contracts as there were still too many unknowns about the virus. The media was declaring that the virus was manmade in Wuhan, China and released into the general population on purpose.

Then there was the development of the PCR test for Covid-19. Now all patients were screened through the emergency rooms before permitting entrance into the hospital and family members’ visitation was limited. There was and continues to be a severe shortage of nurses and the government is funding and deploying nurses to where the shortages are critical. Masks were now required for the general populace when in public with restricted hours in bars and restaurants and essential shopping limited. Schools were closed, elective procedures curtailed, and “non-essential” businesses shuttered. People were becoming afraid as exemplified by the lady who snatched the loaf of bread from my hands while in the check-out line in the grocery store. I won’t even talk about the toilet paper shortage.

Next came the hints that the development of a vaccine was on the horizon. The media was continuing the fearmongering and hate-promoting while the political parties used the pandemic as a football to sway their constituency to one party or the other. I had arrived at my contract facility in record time because of my speedy SRT to recover open hearts as the restrictions for “elective” procedures were being lifted. These patients were much higher acuity as they had developed complications due to their surgeries having been postponed because of the restrictions imposed by the government secondary to the pandemic.

Fast forward a year while continuing to work with restrictions now being handed down related to mandates regarding the vaccine and encouragement for continued social distancing and masking while out in public. As a working nurse, I wear my mask for 12 to 14 hours a day, wash my hands continuously, wear appropriate PPE when caring for Covid patients and disinfect surfaces. I care for my Covid patients (vaccinated or not) as I would for any patient in my care with expertise, kindness, compassion, and empathy.

As I am finding less joy in driving the Jeep and have been offered a substantial amount of money for it, I think I will sell it as I leave the nursing profession. The divisions, animosity, anger, and hate that have been promoted in my “profession” have exhausted my emotional, mental, and physical resources. I’m finished hurrying from assignment to assignment and patient to patient. 

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26 Comment(s)

SmilingBluEyes

Specializes in Specializes in L/D, newborn, GYN, LTC, Dialysis. Has 25 years experience. 20,870 Posts

I feel your sentiments here. I find myself wanting less and less stuff in order to be able to retire in less than 4 years.

I just want to retire and be done. I am very tired of all the BS that goes with simply trying to be a nurse and care for my patients.

Tweety, BSN, RN

Specializes in Med-Surg, Trauma, Ortho, Neuro, Cardiac. Has 30 years experience. 30,508 Posts

Quote

 divisions, animosity, anger, and hate 

Strong words.  If that's how it is, then you're making a wise decision to make changes.  All the best in all you do.

 

Edited by Tweety

Therese Pingatore, RN

1 Article; 9 Posts

Thank you for your comment. I am glad you are having positive experiences. All the best to you also.

londonflo

Specializes in oncology. Has 45 years experience. 1,673 Posts

I am not going to comment on your covid statements but can I say I just love my Jeep? I have a secondary income for selling antiques, especially Victorolas (old phonographs with external horns) and vintage clothing. My Jeep gets me into old homestead fields, auction houses and sites, and back to my home. Snowstorms don't faze me and I can load everything into the Jeep. In 2016, I couldn't get the hood up on my 1995 to check the oil. I was thrilled with my knew one - I didn't have to "roll the windows" down by hand, heated steering wheel and seats etc. 

BostonFNP, APRN

Specializes in Adult Internal Medicine. Has 11 years experience. 3 Articles; 5,539 Posts

I have a 15 minute commute to work, about 3 exits up the highway. Both ways there is a long straight entrance ramp. That 5 seconds of the drive to work starts my day with a grin and that 5 seconds of the drive on the way home leaves most of the stress behind. 

2020 Trackhawk

toomuchbaloney

Has 44 years experience. 7,905 Posts

I got rid of my jeep and now have a more dependable 4 Runner. The media that I consume didn't engage in fear mongering or hate promotion. I don't understand why people want to make such media a foundation for their information. 

Therese Pingatore, RN

1 Article; 9 Posts

The media wasn't the foundation for my information or why I made this difficult decision. Unfortunately, it was where most of the general public (my patients) get their information. 

morelostthanfound, BSN

Specializes in CVOR/General/Transplant Surgery, and cat herding. Has 30 years experience. 268 Posts

Theresa, all the best with life and future endeavors.  Like SmilingBluEyes, my target date for retirement (praying) is 4-5 years which will put me at almost 35 years as a bedside RN.  While I am blessed to be healthy, there is just no way my mental and spiritual health will allow me to keep working in this profession to full retirement age.  May we all find peace in our lives

njmonsterboi80, BSN

Specializes in Psychiatry. Has 16 years experience. 44 Posts

Therese, 

It sounds like you've been unhappy with work for some time and you've been really proactive in regard to making changes and searching out a situation to get out of the endless nightmare you've been living.  I lived through the worst in NYC at an acute care hospital as well and was so appreciative for all of the travel nurses that came and put themselves at risk to help during the initial crisis here.  One thing I've learned about myself and see in others is that during periods of extreme stress, our longstanding maladaptive behaviors start to emerge.  

Of course your decision to leave nursing isn't written in stone, but I'd hate for all your hard work and experience to cease being able to benefit the patients you obviously hold dear. 

Have you considered speaking to a therapist to get you through some of these difficult decisions?  

Edited by njmonsterboi80

PMFB-RN, BSN, RN

Specializes in burn ICU, SICU, ER, Traum Rapid Response. Has 16 years experience. 5,320 Posts

On 11/29/2021 at 9:00 AM, Therese Pingatore said:
No Jeep, No Love: I'm Out Of Here!

So, I own a Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT. It is my toy. It is fun to drive and super-fast. It has all the bells and whistles and is black on black with carbon fiber trim. I bought it used, on impulse when looking for a second vehicle to continue my travel nurse career. Before I test-drove it, I did not know such a vehicle existed.

I drove it exactly 104 miles and had catastrophic engine failure. At that time, I was pursuing my nurse practitioner degree and was informed by the medical director of the facility I was working at that he did not like me. I replaced the engine in my jeep and determined that that facility was not where I needed to be. I packed up my life in my jeep, found a travel contract and continued my journey.

Then the pandemic began. No one in healthcare knew what this new virus was but there was a tremendous amount of speculation by the media experts and the political parties. I was on a contract at a cath lab in South Dakota and was on call for Stemi for the weekend for the first time at that facility. I was called out at 0050 and had 30 minutes to get to the hospital and get the patient on the table. The nice officer asked me if I knew why he stopped me and I responded with, “because I let you”. He started to laugh, and I showed him my beeper and badge, explained why I was doing 55 in a 25, and he was kind enough to let me continue on my way. The patient had a good outcome and was discharged several days later.

Then the rules started coming out about appropriate PPE and the media decided that the virus came from China and was transmitted from bats. Government-appointed healthcare officials determined that healthcare staff was to wear surgical masks at all times, with N-95 masks and visors, plus gowns, gloves, and shoe covers when doing procedures or entering a patient’s room suspected of Covid-19.

Then the hours and staffing changed for the cath lab because it was determined that only emergency procedures were to take place because so many people were contracting the Covid virus. The contract ended and I packed up my Jeep and headed home to wait and see what was going to take place next.

New York City made the news for being overwhelmed with Covid patients and the lockdown truly began across many states. The lockdown affected every business in many ways. I waited for as long as I could before obtaining my next contract, packing my Jeep, and heading 1500 miles South. I chose to not work Covid contracts as there were still too many unknowns about the virus. The media was declaring that the virus was manmade in Wuhan, China and released into the general population on purpose.

Then there was the development of the PCR test for Covid-19. Now all patients were screened through the emergency rooms before permitting entrance into the hospital and family members’ visitation was limited. There was and continues to be a severe shortage of nurses and the government is funding and deploying nurses to where the shortages are critical. Masks were now required for the general populace when in public with restricted hours in bars and restaurants and essential shopping limited. Schools were closed, elective procedures curtailed, and “non-essential” businesses shuttered. People were becoming afraid as exemplified by the lady who snatched the loaf of bread from my hands while in the check-out line in the grocery store. I won’t even talk about the toilet paper shortage.

Next came the hints that the development of a vaccine was on the horizon. The media was continuing the fearmongering and hate-promoting while the political parties used the pandemic as a football to sway their constituency to one party or the other. I had arrived at my contract facility in record time because of my speedy SRT to recover open hearts as the restrictions for “elective” procedures were being lifted. These patients were much higher acuity as they had developed complications due to their surgeries having been postponed because of the restrictions imposed by the government secondary to the pandemic.

Fast forward a year while continuing to work with restrictions now being handed down related to mandates regarding the vaccine and encouragement for continued social distancing and masking while out in public. As a working nurse, I wear my mask for 12 to 14 hours a day, wash my hands continuously, wear appropriate PPE when caring for Covid patients and disinfect surfaces. I care for my Covid patients (vaccinated or not) as I would for any patient in my care with expertise, kindness, compassion, and empathy.

As I am finding less joy in driving the Jeep and have been offered a substantial amount of money for it, I think I will sell it as I leave the nursing profession. The divisions, animosity, anger, and hate that have been promoted in my “profession” have exhausted my emotional, mental, and physical resources. I’m finished hurrying from assignment to assignment and patient to patient. 

I was lucky enough to have you as a mentor while a new nurse in Marshfield.  You're an amazing nurse and person and our profession will be worse off without you.

    Thank you for all you've done and all you taught me.