I'm in need of some advice. So, here goes. (I'll try to keep this short!) Hopefully I've posted this in the correct forum.
I'm about to start a post-baccalaureate nursing program in January, after first coming up with this idea 6 years ago. At the time, I was a new college graduate, with an ever-so-useful B.A. in Women's Studies, and I was beginning to realize that I hated sitting at a desk for 40 hours a week and that I was already bored to tears with my chosen career in arts administration. (I used to be an actress/singer.) My mom happened to be going through some heavy medical issues at the time (two kidney transplants, and a bi-lateral hip replacement), and I became fascinated with nursing and with hospitals. I had the idea to go back to school to become a nurse, but money and time and my own insecurities and a bad relationship made me stop and start on this idea. I came close to applying to programs several times, and then talked myself out of it several times. At one point about a year ago, I swore off the career change, and told myself that the office world wasn't so bad.. And then I found out that I finally got into a program. I decided to go for it.
So, I'm on the cusp of what I thought I've wanted for the last 6 years--I'm about to start a program, and I even left my stinky corporate gig and found a job as a resident aide at an assisted-living facility. The job itself is fine and I've been learning a lot. I've been there 5 weeks now, and I'm actually amazed at how quickly I've picked things up.
What I'm really struggling with is the lifestyle change--I used to work the usual 8-5/M-F, and I had lots of time to see my husband, since he also works in an office. In my non-working time in my former life, I used to train for and run marathons. Now, my schedule is all over the map, working days, evenings and weekends, and I'm usually so tired I don't feel like running. (I know it may seem silly to some, but running used to be super important to me, and I hope it still is. I had a lot invested in my identity as "Lola, the crazy runner.")
I knew that evenings and weekends and overnight shifts were part and parcel of the nursing working world (not to mention holidays), but I guess I always thought it would be worth it. Worth it to be doing something that you actually enjoyed, rather than watching the clock on your grey cubicle wall every day. Now I don't know. Am I really not sure, or am I just having a hard time to the change?
It sounds terrible, but almost every day, I think about returning to the office world and schedule, and chucking nursing school and a nursing career AGAIN. (And maybe teaching yoga part-time.) But I know that deep down, I would be immensely disappointed in myself to not see this through. (Plus, what would I say to all of my friends and family? "Oh, yeah, I decided not to do that, so that I could run." That just sounds stupid.) And so, I beat myself up about my struggling with all of this. I think my poor husband is tired of me crying myself to sleep.
So, here's my plea--any advice for how to deal with the erratic schedule and exhaustion? I especially appreciate advice from any second-career nurses out there, who maybe went from the office world to the nursing world. How did you deal with the transition? Do you ever wish you hadn't made the move? Has anyone gone back?
Thanks for reading.