I recently quit a terrible job without a back up plan. It wasn’t the kind of job I could hang on to until something else came up. I’ve been off for a week and it is glorious. There is nothing better than spending time with my husband and child. But I am the breadwinner so I must go back. And to be honest, looking for a job terrifies me. In 13 years I’ve never been able to find something that fits. I’ve found a couple of decent facilities, but I grow so weary of the emotional burned of nursing. I’m tired of being afraid of letting my daughter be near water (because of the 2 year old that drowned), or my heart be in my chest when any kid is playing in a driveway (because of the mother who accidentally killed her baby because she didn’t see her when she was backing up). When I was pregnant I would cry because what if I got cancer a month after the baby was born? Or threw a clot 3 days after she was born? What if my husband has a heart attack?...he was complaining of epigastric pain earlier today, and that 47 year old died the same way.
See what I mean? My mind does this at least 3-4 days a week. It isn’t just when I have to much time to think, it is just there in the background always now. I can’t watch any TV with sad storylines...I just feel them like they are real. And I’ve seen a lot of real pain....like most nurses. It is better when I am off work for a while, because death isn’t in my face as much when I’m off. Again the reason so much anxiety about having to go back to work.
I am not very religious. I admire those with religion because the religion seems to give them a reason for the senselessness of tragic deaths (the father of 3 that got hit because someone missed a stop sign, the 3 kids and 1 grandparent that died due to a reckless driver...so many more). But I don’t see god in these things. I see a society that is moving to fast to be careful, that is polluting itself to death for profit of a few. No reasonable actions, no community, no way to slow down because bills have to be paid. And really after 13 years in the field, I don’t see the good in what we do. Mostly because we are rushed, so we rush the patients and their families, we all try to give quality, but often the system prevents us from doing so and then we get blamed because no one wants to admit the system is terrible and broken. I wish I had taken a different path, because there is no balance in this career, I’ve been looking for it for 13 years. Even in less emergent care there is still so much pain to see. The 80 year old using her gas stove to keep warm in her home while her son is out trying to pick up some work. She is not safe at home alone but she never worked so she doesn’t get SSI benefits. Her husband never had steady work. The 13 year old at home with cancer, she had been in remission for 4 years but it is back. The family is out of money so they are doing some fund raising. The couple that have kids but no one wants to take care of them, but the kids are discouraging their parents from selling the house to move into assisted living.
I can say that nursing has brought me such prospective on how good my life has been, and that I appreciate. But my nursing experience has also had this dark cloud effect on how I experience my life now seeing all that I have. I just frequently feel anxious and afraid of losing everything. I wish there was something else I could do to support my family.