So, you think you want to be a nurse? Well...that’s awesome! Being a nurse is extremely rewarding. Plus, there are so many aspects of nursing that you can go into! The possibilities are endless!
We understand that this is a very exciting time for you, but we also know you will experience a lot of anxiety. Our first bit of advice for you on this journey is: Relax! We are here for you, and want to help you navigate through all of the ups and downs you will encounter. Our goal is to let you know what to expect every step of the way, so that you can be well prepared and be a superstar!
But before we get ahead of ourselves, let’s make sure that you have thought carefully about this career decision. Nursing school is a major commitment, so you need to be certain that this is what you want to do. Take a look at the following facts about nursing that we have experienced first-hand:
1. Nursing School represents a huge time commitment. If you are planning on working full-time during school (or even part-time), think again. Also, if you have young children, you will need to have someone (spouse, parent, a really good friend, etc.) that can help you with child care.
2. You will have to deal with other people’s bodily fluids (feces, urine, blood, saliva, vomit, you name it).
3. Although patients and family members will often thank you for your care, you will also be yelled at or spoken to harshly. Anxiety and pain can cause people to lash out.
4. You will have to become comfortable with inserting needles into adults or children. This becomes easier, if not second nature, with practice.
5. Doctors are not always nice. They sometimes take their frustrations out on the nurse.
6.You will be on your feet a lot!*
7. Most nurse jobs are fast paced.
8. You will most likely at some point have a patient who will code (heartbeat or breathing stops), depending on what type of nursing you go into. You may even witness a death.
*(Note: There are physical demands of this profession that require long periods of time in which you are standing and walking. You will need to talk with a nursing school advisor if you have concerns about any physical limitations or health conditions you may have.)
OK! If you think you can handle all of the above, then take a look at just a sampling of all the super cool stuff about being a nurse:
1. You actually help people feel better, live longer, and live better.
2. Nursing is the most trusted profession.
3. Most nurse jobs are 12-hour shifts. Full-time is considered 36 hours, which means you get four days off each week!
4. If you don’t like the type of nursing you are doing, you can do something different. I tried pediatric nursing for six months and decided it was not for me. So, after six months, I simply switched back to adult med-surg.
5. Scrubs are so comfortable; you feel like you are wearing pajamas. And, you don’t have to decide what you are going to wear!
6. You get to see a lot of really cool things!
7. Nursing is a team effort. You will get to collaborate with doctors, pharmacists, lab techs, radiology techs, and many other amazing professionals.
And there is so much more, I could go on and on. Needless to say (or should I say "needles" to say), I am very proud and thankful that I chose nursing as my career!
Now it’s time to get down to business. Take a look at our ADN vs. BSN (insert link) blog and another helpful discussion on how to get into nursing school (insert link). Yes, you can do it! We will cover prerequisites, entrance exams, and the application process. And, once you become a student, and then a nurse, you can come here for support. We want to encourage you, every step of the way. It will be awesome!