Posted on May 6, 2011
Guest Blogger – New Nurse, In the Hood
This Nurses Week, we’ve asked our favorite Nurse Bloggers to contribute posts explaining why they became a nurse and their feelings on being a nurse. Today’s guest blogger is New Nurse, In the Hood, an ER Nurse working in the Inner City and blogs about her experience. Thanks, “New Nurse”!
Well, when I was asked to do this guest post I was naturally very flattered and excited, but as I got to thinking about it throughout the week I realized that it was going to be much more of a challenge than I initially thought. As easy as it is for me to write about ridiculous complaints in triage or the crazy things people do under the influence of drugs and alcohol, it is much harder for me to articulate my real feelings about becoming a nurse.
I think it’s partially because my entire nursing career up to this point has pretty much been one giant gut decision. And I wouldn’t have it any other way. Ever since I was very young I’ve felt a duty to take care of and protect others, something that I really did not know how to go about doing. I had a void to fill that left me confused and frustrated, one that at times led me to making some questionable decisions. I dabbled in tons of interests until I settled on art, but it was obvious by my first semester of college that this wasn’t how I wanted to spend the rest of my life. I remember calling my mom the day I realized this completely in a panic. We talked about a few options and she mentioned nursing, and something told me to “just go do it”. So I did. I went through 4 years of hellacious school on what was basically a hunch, and it was the first time in my life I didn’t feel a little bit lost. It was incredibly difficult but very natural at the same time.
My decision to go into ER nursing was very much the same. I’d had literally 6 hours of ER experience in my entire nursing school career, but I just knew it was where I belonged. My internship here was no doubt the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. Besides having to learn to be an ER nurse as a new graduate with absolutely no work experience, I had a young eating preceptor from hell and most of my patient encounters brought to mind an episode of Cops rather than an episode of E.R. The self doubt and frustration was enough to make me cry on a near daily basis. And it was worth every second.
Becoming a nurse has granted me a serenity that I can’t adequately describe. All I can really say is that my sense of duty, the void that weighed me down so deeply through my adolescence is noticeably absent. Just the day to day things- teaching something new to my patients, making them laugh even though they’re hurting, watching the worry leave someone’s face as I explain something they fear brings me such great joy. My journey to get where I am today seems an arbitrary and random one. But now that I’m here I have no doubt that I was just following the path that was set before me. And not a day passes that I’m not thankful to be here.