A Nurse’ Story: The Downs

I was a unit secretary for many years and admired the nurses for both their medical knowledge but also their ability to help others. That and a divorce prompted me to go to Nursing School. I graduated with ADN in 1998 and have had varied experiences. I have worked in med surg, Telemety units, GI lab, Nursing Home ADON and currently back in Med Surg. I have only been back to med surg for 6 months and have bid off the floor to go to Case Management next week.

I have had it with patients, families, lazy coworkers, ancillary staff, management and MD’s. I am so tired of being the one who has to answer to every question of the above, low pay, and long hours. At my hospital, the RNs all work 12 hour shifts, Oops I mean 14 hour shifts. Ever sit down at a computer 12 and a half hours after your shift began and try to remember every thing you did for that patient. Ever work a shift when there was no time for a bathroom break. I think most of you know what I mean. I hope to find some happiness in Case Management, but am not really expecting it.

The bureaucracy in this cash driven system is blind to the needs of the patient or the staff caring for them. If I do not find any fulfillment in this job, my plan is to go back to agency nursing, Work 2-3 days for the best money available, and use the rest of the time recovering from the most thankless job I have ever had. Would like to go back to school and change my career entirely, but am in my mid 40’s and have 1 son in college and one to go in 2 years. Maybe when I am 50, they say you’re never to old to get and education. I had an MD tell me not to go into nursing some 10 years ago. If only I had listened to someone who knew…