Should I walk away from nursing or keep trying?

  1. I'll try to keep this short but I need to know if there is hope at salvaging the career choice I made for myself. A little background: I am 24 years old. I graduated with my BSN nearly 2 years ago. I went to college straight out of high school with only 1 months worth of employment as a cashier at Dollar General. I quit in order to give my full attention to nursing school. I knew it wasn't going to be easy, I heard that all the time. Unfortunately for me, I didn't have any nurses in my family except my Nana. I went into nursing blind and hopeful that taking care of people was my calling.
    Fast forward 2 years later and I'm questioning myself. I worked on a med surg/telemetry floor for 6 months. I absolutely hated it. So I moved and accepted a new job in a NICU that allowed me to live with my boyfriend while he finished school. I was ecstatic! Babies were why I initially went into nursing. The 1st few months were awesome. I looked forward to going to work everyday and I loved my preceptor. Then the reality set in. I was much happier at my new job compared to my old but I still felt hesitant. The anxiety of making a mistake, a code, or just dealing with a stressed out family affected me so much. I took work home with me. I resented being at work instead of spending christmas day with my family. Everything started to point out how I was not cut out for this.
    Now, we've moved again and I'm trying to find a job in a clinic setting. I accepted a position in the NICU at the big downtown hospital when we first moved here but ultimately walked away after a week and a half due to several factors. I decided I really wanted to work in a clinic and didn't want to waste their time training me for 13 weeks just to eventually leave. Well, Its been almost 3 months and I've applied to several places, had 3 interviews and no job offers. I'm starting to lose hope. I DO NOT want to work in another hospital (highly doubt I would get hired at the only hospital system here after quitting so soon anyway) but I'm beginning to feel like I may not have a choice. My boyfriend makes ok money but we are sharing a house with his older brother and his girlfriend for the time being. I don't want to live here forever and I don't want to sit around feeling like a bum. Should I go out and get a non nursing job just for the time being or keep trying for the job I want? I know I probably shouldn't have walked away from the job I had but you know, hindsight is always 20/20.
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    About RNjusttryingtofindherway

    Joined: Jul '18; Posts: 3; Likes: 2
    from AL , US

    8 Comments

  3. by   Sour Lemon
    Maybe a PRN position would be a good fit for you. You'd have more control over your schedule and less obligation, but a foot in the door and some money coming in.
    It sounds like you're still learning what being an adult is all about. Very few people skip around the halls with a song in their heart while they're out earning a living. If it were that great, they wouldn't pay us to keep showing up.
  4. by   Lemon Bars
    I think you may be giving up on hospital work a bit too soon. Lots of families have to celebrate Christmas a few days early or late (police, firefighters, soldiers, pilots, flight attendants, retail workers, etc.) I think celebrating holidays a bit late or early is a small price to pay for a good-paying job that you enjoy. Perhaps you would feel less stressed if you worked in a Pediatric department instead of the NICU. Pediatrics is full of babies, but they are not usually critically ill as in NICU. You could work back up to NICU when you gain more experience and confidence. You are a bit short on experience for a clinic nurse job, especially if there is triage or case management involved. I think you should go back to the hospital for a couple of years, perhaps in Pediatrics or Labor & Delivery. With a bit more experience, you will have more confidence and you will be in a better position to change jobs if that's what you want to do. There is also school nursing and public health nursing if you really want holidays off (possibly a good choice if you plan to have kids soon). Just my thoughts. Good luck with your choice.
  5. by   RNjusttryingtofindherway
    I was just thinking this today. I should go back and gain more experience which could equal more confidence. That's what I am seriously lacking right now, especially after being rejected. Thank you for your advice.
  6. by   LC25
    If you're able to get back in the hospital I would go for it. Get your experience and with that will come confidence. Then you can try for a clinic job if you still feel like that's what you want to do. As far as the hours and missing holidays, I've had jobs RN jobs that are 9-5 M-F, and more traditional nursing hours (3 12's or 4 10's). They both have their pros and cons, it's a personal preference and what works best for you. Don't give up just yet and good luck!
  7. by   Neats
    It sounds like you really have not found your niche yet. I would speak to the hospital recruiter and really let her know your experiences and that you would like to shadow a few nurses in different departments. Have them help you. Another possibility is going to a smaller critical access hospital. Here you have to be knowledgeable with many specialties. You may end up finding what you want to do from this.
  8. by   adzukibeans
    Like the last poster mentioned, you should see if you can shadow different departments in the hospital. I worked in three (very) different nursing specialties before finding my niche- and I am a new nurse as well! Do not give up hope!
  9. by   Meg11M21
    There are many options in nursing! If the hospital setting isn't for you.. no problem. There is home care, long term care.

    In home care with your NICU experience, You could go into new mothers homes, and assist with their babies tube feeds, and dressing changes after heart surgeries. Make up your own schedule that works for you.

    Don't give up on nursing. You've explored one aspect. Find what's right for you, and hey, you could always start out per diem... work your way up to FT if its something you like.
  10. by   RNjusttryingtofindherway
    Thank you to everyone who left feedback. I accepted a job offer at a clinic today! Things are looking up!

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