Any success stories of overcoming mental and physical health problems to become a Nurse?

  1. Hi everyone.

    Here is my story, and I would really love stories of success and encouragement to give me hope that someday I can become a nurse.

    Ever since I graduated from high school in 2010 I wanted to become a nurse. I was only 17, insecure and I wasn't much of a student in school. After really looking into it, I couldn't fathem completing the schooling successfully and actually having some one else's life in my hands (if I could even completing the schooling). I didn't think I had the discipline or the intellect to make it through school and become a nurse, so I tucked my dream away and began working in retail. After working in retail for a couple years,I started community college, and began taking my core classes (basic math courses,english, psych) and some other random classes like business,nutrition, sociology, accounting, and logic so that maybe I could find another career that I felt I could be successful in.

    A year and a half through I still felt like I had no idea what career I wanted. Nothing seemed to suit me. Into my fourth semester I discovered I was pregnant and I could no longer concentrate on school. I withdrew from my accounting, pre algebra, criminology, and business management classes and continued to work as a merchandise coordinator at Ulta beauty. I thought maybe I could work my way up to store manager and that could be my career. After thinking about it for a while, I didn't feel satisfied having such a shallow job for the rest of my life, I wanted more.

    After I had my son, I had complications from my Crohn's disease and quit my job. My Crohn's disease is slowly going back into remission, and as I'm raising my son I constantly think about becoming a nurse. I want a career that I will love and that will make me proud of myself. Although my son is the light of my life, being a stay at home mom for the rest of my life/ homemaker isn't going to cut it for me.

    My mental health and physical health has held my back so much of my life from achieving my dreams and I don't know how to overcome it. I know my story is probably all over the place, but I'll end it with a question that sums up the purpose of this story. How do I overcome a life time of low self esteem, depression and anxiety to become a nurse? I feel I don't have the smarts or will power to become a nurse now, but I want to find a way to achieve it someday. I know I have a long way to go in terms of education, and self help both physically and mentally. I want to become a nurse so bad and get out of my comfort zone, but my mind, and sometimes my Crohn's hold me back. Again, please share similar experiences and how you have overcome them. I could really use the advice and encouragement. Thank you.
    Last edit by Theloving100 on Aug 22, '15
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    Joined: Aug '15; Posts: 16; Likes: 12


  3. by   stacylethani
    Hi Theloving100,

    I'm in my junior year of nursing school for my BSN and I have Crohn's disease as well!
    Before I applied to nursing school, I always worried that I wouldn't be able to go into nursing because of my crohns. I even asked my GI whether or not it would be a good idea and she said go for it.
    There's no reason to let your crohns hold you back, especially from your dreams.
    I say that despite all the health issues, go for it. Otherwise you'll regret letting your crohns rule your life again.
    The mental health issues are just something you slowly have to work through, but a good majority of my friends in nursing school have anxiety and some have depression. It is possible, it just takes some work.
    Good luck and remember that your illness does not define you!
  4. by   applesxoranges
    Well, one nurse I worked with doesn't have a complete arm.
  5. by   CelticGoddess
    I failed out of nursing school when I was 19. I blame being immature and being stupid! (We won't discuss how long ago that is). I went back to school later (after having children). It worked for me as I was able to work out some issues I had (immaturity, depression). I got my ADN, my BSN and am happy in my work. I have chronic conditions (Diabetes, Asthma, and chronic kidney stones) as well has a history of MI. My youngest is autistic. It's been long road, but, I was able to achieve it. I am not letting anything hold me back anymore. I was able to get to that point through time, therapy and a very strong desire to succeed.

    I want to add that my high school guidance counselor told my mother that I would never amount to anything and I should try to find a blue collar job. I have my BSN and am working towards my Masters.

    Right now, you might not be able to do it, but in a couple of years, it might work. If this is something you really want, keep working at it. Best of luck to you
  6. by   annietart
    Yup, I've struggled with recurrent severe major depression and an eating disorder all thru out nursing school. It's chronic so I'm dealing with it still, but I've been a nurse for 2.5 years now. So worth it.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  7. by   sunmaidliz
    I had a brain tumor and radiation when I was 23. I started nursing school 4 years later and had a HELLUVA time managing my fatigue and anxiety, which would trigger and agitated depression. I had to stop the program to do an outpatient Cognitive Behavioral Therapy program for 6 weeks and even then I struggled. And let me tell you, nurses don't have sympathy for nurses they view as weak or incompetent.

    I graduated and had a lot of missteps and terminations of employment. I was depressed, fatigued and anxious. I contemplated if I should just quit and apply for disability. I started therapy again and switched antidepressants.

    Then I found my niche. I'm a case manager for developmentally disabled adults living in group homes. I work a lot from home with the aid of my phone and fax machine and go to the facilities when there are things that cannot be accomplished in my pjs in my living room. I sleep in to 10am nearly every day and if I'm feeling ton fatigued, I shuffle around my personal schedule so I can rest.

    I've learned that when you have a chronic illness, you need to manage your health first. You CAN be a nurse. You can even be a bedside nurse... But you might not want to after you realize how physically and emotionally draining and taxing it is. You can't be good at your job, you can't be HAPPY at your job unless you can take care of yourself first.

    Just never give up. If there is a will, there's a way. And find a good therapist. Worked wonders for me.