any rags to riches stories - page 6

I'm looking for inspiration. Currently a cna in an impoverished neighborhood waiting to take my nclex. My only dream is to move me and my children out. I was wondering if anyone had a pretty hard... Read More

  1. by   Nurse2B2016
    Quote from lauriepat
    I love this thread. The old dean at my nursing school said that nursing takes care of nurses, too.
    I grew up, poor.
    It hurts me to say that because i love my parents so so much.
    Sharing a room with my brother until i was 15, my mom who supported us fought breast cancer when i was 13. I struggled through high school.
    I didn't make big plans to go away to college or a university..a lot of people gave me crap about it.
    My senior year of high school i jumped into nursing school through a vocational program that continued on to the community college in my town. A year after i graduated high school i graduated with my lpn.
    That year was so hard. To put it into terms,
    it was a role struggle.
    i was 18. While all of my friends were out partying and drinking i was trying to go to nursing school.
    Nurses aren't supposed to drink and drive, do stupid things 18 year olds do, right?
    Major role conflict/struggle. But i got through it.

    As broke as my family was, financial aid and my mom supported me. Gas, uniforms..etc
    But two years later i am about to graduate with my rn (next may!!!!!!), i make 40 grand a year at the age of 21, and i have a brand new car.
    While most of the kids i graduated hs with are pregnant, still partying or working retail jobs. Or moved back home with mommy and daddy because they flunked out of their big university.

    Kudos to me, kudos to community college.
    If i can get through nursing school, anyone can.
    Wow!!!! Thanks for sharing. You've just motivated and encouraged me!
  2. by   Marsha238612
    all smiles here!! I now know that there's another side to nursing, a brighter one. And all these wonderful stories really lift my spirits. Hopefully I can soon write my own ( I'll be stating nursing school this January, that is, if I get accepted).

    Thank you all for sharing these stories and inspiring us nurses-to-be!!!!

    Sent from my iPhone using
  3. by   Heather2014
    Quote from oldlvn
    I kinda think I have one. I'm not special. I didn't do ANYTHING the way your supposed to. I was young when I had my first son. I married and had 2 more kids. I've been taking one class at a time forever. I kid that I'm on the 25yr plan to a degree. I am now an LVN...I have a ONE yr certificate after almost 20 yrs of going to school off and on. We were poor. I mean...we BARELY made it. There was no savings. It was literally trying to buy groceries with whatever we had left after rent and utilities. We ...a family of 5 never made more than 25,000 a yr..not ONCE.
    Now I'm an LVN...thanks to pell grants and a grant from another local program that helped us pay for childcare that year. The YMCA was kind enough to give my kids a partial scholarship for care and I actually worked there every weekend to get an additional discount for being an employee....
    the yr I was in school we made only $17,000. Nine of that went to housing costs.
    My parents bought groceries, paid for my kids school supplies, bought them shoes and coats...without all that help I would not be an LVN today.
    I just did our taxes.
    I had a hard time finding a job out of school. I took a temporary home health rehab position that paid VERY well...then nothing til Nov of last yr. Even so...I worked less than 3 total months and still made $15,000. With my husbands income...well...lets just say our income has more than doubled since last year.

    But here's what it's REALLY about. It's about that when I needed help almost 20 yrs ago and went to my county healthcare system...they were there for me. They provided a surgery I needed at no cost to me. They gave me vaccines. They cared for my son and I when we were sick. I didn't have a job. I was poor as dirt with no job. It was just me and him against the world and what they did for me...I never forgot it.
    I now work for my county. I work in a community clinic just a few short miles from the county clinic I used to visit as a patient.
    I am giving back. Sure I get paid to be there.... but what I represent just by standing there and saying "hello, I'm so glad to see you.."
    I give hope.
    I was once a patient and now I'm a nurse. I love what I do and where I work. I love that I can be an example for what can happen if you want it and work for it.
    Yes...I earn a decent living. Yes...I love what I do....but the real lesson is that what I give back is way more important than what I earn.
    WOW...tears streaming down my face...
  4. by   meeks123
    I'm kinda rags to riches if you count what my life could've been if I had not come to the U.S., I was born in South America where there is no way I would've been making good money even with a good degree (I also recall from my childhood that school was much difficult and harder over there, when I came here, after learning the Language, school did not seem that difficult, and I loved how LOTS of children would get a pat on the back, over there you study like crazy and only the top three got an award, I loved that it was based on GPA here and I often got honor rolls, lol).

    I came to the U.S. at 12 and took the safe path, meaning I lived at home the whole time. Started working at 18 making 9 bucks an hour, quit working for a year because I got lazy, was forced to work again after getting yelled at by my dad over and over to get a job. At 20 I began working for a good company with just a high school diploma making 14 an hour, a year later got promoted to 19 an hour. After feeling slightly depressed that my cousins where going to college and knowing that my job pays for schooling (except for the Nursing classes!!!). I began taking the generals getting scared that I would fail from being off from High School for a couple of years. Slowly and surely, I worked full time and went to school, eventually made it into the Nursing program, paid with my own money and worked part time and now I can say I'm a nurse.

    It feels good to be a nurse and I am lucky I came to the U.S., my life would've been very different had I stayed in South America. I would've have a tan and possibly lots of kids by now, maybe a happy life, but I wouldn't have been as financially stable.

    p.s. Every time I think about it, I think oh my gosh, the U.S. is so awesome, people can literally still make a living with just working at McDonalds. I remember back in those days in my little third world country, people would have to safe their money for a long time to buy a new pair of shoes, or clothes. Those things were expensive... and that's why people would have to take their shoes to "el zapatero" the shoe repair person, or patch up their clothes. Wow, third world countries are something.
    Last edit by meeks123 on Nov 9, '13 : Reason: adding more
  5. by   MindySue
    I love that this is a site that has some positive things regarding the profession. I am considering nursing as a career and up until now I have read nothing but bad reviews everywhere from current nurses. I believe I would be humbled and appreciate to make anything over 30K but Ill still shoot higher. I'm not afraid of hard work, I am more afraid of politics in Nursing from what I have heard so far but oh well. This section is just what I have been needing! Thanks
  6. by   iPink
    I have a riches to rags to riches story, well kinda... Graduated from college several years ago and landed a great job that I loved. Saved money and got myself my first apartment and treated myself to a lovely Hawaiian vacation. Fast forward a few years later and my company is hit during the recession and I am let go along with several other employees. Jobless with what's left in my savings I head back to school for nursing. During the journey, I ended up on food stamps and in credit card debt because I used it to pay for gas to drive to clinicals. All the while hoping and praying it wouldn't break down during the commute. I was grateful for the times we had to wear our uniforms because I didn't have much clothes to wear that fit due to weight gain. It somewhat reminded me of the movie "The Pursuit of Happyness," in that no one knew the struggles I was going through but I was determined to make it. I remember arguing with the lady at the County office who told me my food stamps have been cut off despite unemployment benefits running completely dry, and telling her that's ok I'm about to become a nurse and will never be on food stamps again!

    Fast forward, I am a working nurse. Paid off my credit card bills which now have a zero balance, checked my credit score and its amazingly in "Excellent" condition, built up my savings account, and currently house hunting for my first home. During the "rags" period of my life, it made me finically conscious and resourceful. But I don't miss that part of my life and I continue to believe the best is yet to come.

    Sent via iPink RN's iPhone using
  7. by   PediatricRNTX
    Nice story. I don't really have one...

    A fellow nursing student once told me (at the beginning of nursing school) " I should do well in this program because I don't have baggage like you"

    Baggage=my three year old

    I ended up graduating with honors, and invited in the nursing honor AND "my baggage" !!
  8. by   kiszi
    I left home right after high school and proceeded to screw things up for myself and my future any which way I could. I was waiting tables to make ends meet, but partied a lot of that money away leaving me with bill collectors calling and my landlord threatening to evict. By the grace of God I met a wonderful man whose support enabled me to pull myself together and take control of my life. We've now been married 10 years and have two beautiful children. I went to nursing school for LPN four years after graduating high school, then finally became an RN several years later just three months before the birth of my second child. We followed our dream of relocating to the South just last year and life is still a work in progress, but the future is bright.
  9. by   feliciageorge4510
    This has inspired me I only make 1500 a month and I live in new york city with a four year old and a baby on the way my husband lost his job and we are struggling but I want to go back to school to become a RN and every time I'm ready to sign up I get scared but I know this is what God keep telling me to do his redirecting me back to school and to fulfill my dream of becoming a RN
  10. by   kiszi
    Quote from feliciageorge4510
    This has inspired me I only make 1500 a month and I live in new york city with a four year old and a baby on the way my husband lost his job and we are struggling but I want to go back to school to become a RN and every time I'm ready to sign up I get scared but I know this is what God keep telling me to do his redirecting me back to school and to fulfill my dream of becoming a RN
    Do it! Apply for federal financial aid-you might be surprised what you can get (I was) ! You don't even have to be enrolled in college yet, just make sure you put down the schools you are looking at so they can send them your info. Even if you just tell yourself "I'm only going to take a class or two to start" it will get the ball rolling and you will find a way to make it work. Don't wait!
  11. by   lpn2B2016
    I am keeping this thread with me when I enter the LPN program June 2015...I am going to have each and everyone of your testimonies handy when I start. This has given me so much hope and motivation until I can burst! Encouragement and Empowering each other is what it is about! I LOVE IT! ... Shift+R improves the quality of this image. Shift+A improves the quality of all images on this page.
  12. by   lpn2B2016
    Quote from feliciageorge4510
    This has inspired me I only make 1500 a month and I live in new york city with a four year old and a baby on the way my husband lost his job and we are struggling but I want to go back to school to become a RN and every time I'm ready to sign up I get scared but I know this is what God keep telling me to do his redirecting me back to school and to fulfill my dream of becoming a RN
    You can do it! I have 2 kids and am in a city and state with NO family. My mother passed away the first time I was in the program....BUT GOD!! Second chance and I am in it to win it!
  13. by   Colby21
    Lots of people tell me i'm a "survivor," but I just think I'm hard headed and refuse to give up like my awesome mama.

    My mom is 100% Italian, and she met my dad, an immigrant from Puerto Rico. This is important because my moms old fashion family was totally against this, as I'm sure you all know how those old schoolers are. Well, my mom ended up not having me, but also my sister (2 yr difference) with my dad. Because of this, my mom's family wanted nothing to do with her nor us.

    My dad was an alcoholic, (still is) and used to abuse my mother. He'd go straight from work to the bars every night and come home late. He would yell, and they would fight a lot. They fought so much growing up, it was ridiculous to see. But the abuse got to a point where my mom had to leave. With no family to support us, we packed as much as would could fit in her beat down car, and lived out of it, and a hotel for 2 years while my mom finished nursing school and passed boards. This was for about 2 years.

    My mom was a single mother to us two kids throughout our whole lives. After she got her first nursing job, we moved into an apartment, and then bought a starter house, and then into a bigger house. I ended up excelling in sports and academics and earned a full tuition paid scholarship to a D1 school. I recently graduated Magna Cum Laude with my BSN and will be taking boards this week.

    I owe a lot of my dedication, inspiration and determination to my mother, who absolutely refused to quit in the face of adversity. And in Youngstown Ohio, I should not be where I am. Statistically, I never should have graduated high school. However, my mother instilled great values within me, and truly introduced me to my passion of caring for others within the nursing field. I still have very big plans for my future, and owe it all to my ma. She not only made me want to be a great professional, but also the great father that I've never had.

    I think the thing that helped me the best was like others have said, I didn't know the odds were against me. I thought how I was raised was how every other kids was raised as well. However, this led to a lot of social isolation and bullying from my peers, which is a whole other story in itself and further, a source for my motivation and drive. But I learned early on, from my mother, that it doesn't matter if you're the most gorgeous person in school, the smartest in the class, or strongest in the gym, because you have the ability to OUTWORK everyone.

    I truly am humbled and blessed to be in the position I am, and that's why i encourage and speak to as many young people as possible. Their minds are so malleable and they're so fixated on TV and the media. I would love to be a motivational speaker someday.

    well, anyway, that's my story/rant. I hope it touches anyone going through any hard times.

    Remember: Only those who are willing to risk going to far, can possibly find out, how far one can go.