I loved ER/Trauma nursing so much I honestly couldn't believe they paid me to do it. Started in healthcare in the late 1970's. Taught CPR and First Aid, orderly, EMT, EMT-I, LPN, RN, CEN, BS, Trauma Nurse Specialist, lots of certifications, Certificates of appreciation from State of NM, American Red Cross, Presidents Volunteer Action Award. If I didn't have it, it hadn't been invented, YET!
Always expected to work till the day I died. As I went to punch out, they'd have my coffin waiting at the time clock.
Back pain. What nurse Doesn't have it? But in 2009 I could no longer stand erect. Doctor after doctor. I respect the docs who admitted "I don't know." Most had really dumb answers. No income and my insurance fighting me till I had to live and seek help paying with credit cards. My Army combat medic daughter carrying me to appointments. A year to the day, an answer "Polymyositis." Worst of all, never to return to work.
The point (finally)! 6 years out of work, I can care for myself (barely) with Humira and Methotrexate injections. BUT WHAT AM I? I'm still struggling to define my identity. I can barely lift 30 pounds now. Too many side effects and weakness to work or volunteer. So much experience and knowledge, but can't use it. Nursing school didn't prepare me for the day I became disabled. My license is inactive, I guess I'll always be "A Nurse" but it's wrong to add "registered" without painfully adding "former."