In my very first post I mentioned how I knew finding my career would be a “journey” and before picking nursing I had to “come to terms” with some things within me. I’d like to expand a bit on those subjects. I knew finding a career would be a journey for me because unlike most people in the world, I had (and still have) the luxury of freedom. Let me explain. Most of the people I talked to, when I asked them the question, “why did you choose your career,” they answered with the following:
- “I knew I wanted to be married and have children by X age and this career would allow me to work and then quit when those two occasions arose.” – This mainly came from my fellow elementary education classmates in college.
- “I just always knew this is what I should do.” – This wasn’t a popular answer but I heard it a few times.
- “I want to make X amount of money and this is the best way to do it.” – This mainly came from men (actually, this always came from men).
- “I needed to get out of a bad marriage/living with my folks/supporting children as a single mother…” – This came from girlfriends who felt nursing (and other careers) was the easiest/quickest way to gain an independent lifestyle.
I, on the other hand, fall under none of these categories. I care little about money or children or weddings, I’m not pressed to find a quick solution due to “hard times” in my life, and I wasn’t lucky enough to have the perfect career fall into my lap. But I do know what I want out of my career. I need something that challenges me, that is interesting and flexible but most importantly (and sometimes the hardest to find): I need something I am interested in but ALSO good at. I couldn’t settle for one or the other because if I did, I would either feel bored or unaccomplished, which were two things I could never be happy with. I feel at times that not having a real “kick in the ass motivator” to find a career (such as the desire for kids or getting out of a bad marriage, etc.) made it harder for me to find something that fit.
Coming to terms with nursing as a career was another hard obstacle for me. For whatever reason, nursing school scares the crap out of me. It’s not that I think I can’t succeed; I know I can. To quote a nursing friend of mine, “Lots of people less capable than you make it through.” It’s more the fear of what I might have to sacrifice in the interim. Will my love life with The Boy suffer? How many friends will I lose contact with? Will my already high stress level shoot through the roof to the point where I can’t function as a normal human being? In short, fear held me back for a long time.
Thank goodness I decided to shadow and speak to nurses before letting my fear get a hold of me. I realized I had been basing my fear off my own security, yes, but also off the insecurities of all my worn-out, scared and exhausted friends already in nursing school. NOT a good idea! So, in my following posts, I’m going to share some of my volunteer experiences and the steps I went through that has lead to where I am now: about to start nursing school!