Dear Nurse Beth,
I work on a busy cardiac telemetry floor at a large hospital. I love my job most days despite how hectic and stressful it sometimes gets. The only problem is that the hospital is 75 miles from where I live. When I took the job the plan was that me and my family would move. Things have changed and we are not moving. Recently I have been offered a full time position in home healthcare that is closer to home and will pay more money. For several reasons I have decided that the job will be better for me and my family. In addition to being able to be home more and better money, I think that a small company has better room for advancement.
I gave my manager my notice of resignation today. She told me that she was disappointed that she spent the resources to train me (understandable). She also said that it is a waste of my talent to go into home healthcare. I don't believe her, but should I? It is making me second guess myself.
I don't have a clear idea of how my future will look as a nurse and in what area I would like to advance. I have been doing home healthcare prn so I know that it definitely requires critical thinking and assessment skills. The only thing that I can think of that is missing is watching and learning from others.
I guess what I am asking for is some words of wisdom. Thank you.
Dear Second Guessing,
Your manager may believe that acute care is more challenging than home health, and while many may share that belief, it is only an opinion. I'm sure many home health nurses would have a different point of view, and there are definitely opportunities for advancement.
Remember your manager is speaking out of her own disappointment and not necessarily what's best for you and your family.
Choosing home health at an early juncture in your career is choosing a narrow specialty. There's nothing wrong with specializing but know that the longer you stay, the harder it is to go back later. Within 2 years or so, you may not be seen as eligible for acute care.
This is really a question of values, and as with every decision, there are gains and losses. Only you can decide what's important and best for you and your family. You can never do wrong when you do the right thing for your family.
Author, "Your Last Nursing Class: How to Land Your First Nursing Job"...and your next!