Hi everyone! Happy Monday and to my fellow nurses, happy nurses week!
Today, in honor of the fact that it’s nurses week, I wanted to do a little post on why I became a nurse!
So for a little background, I always wanted to do something medical. In high school, I was 100% sure I wanted to be a physical therapist. I quit basketball (after 14 years of that…) and took an internship with a PT to start my gazillion required hours for school. Then they told me I would have to go through cadaver dissection (tmi?) for the doctoral portion and I was like #ByeFelicia.
I thought about everything from physical therapy to medical school. I knew I wanted to be in the medical field, and just like anyone else, I wanted to help people.
In June 2010 I went on a medical mission trip to Haiti with a local church staffed with nurses.
In Haiti, I saw a nurse save a dying baby’s life because of her skills and expertise and compassion. I witnessed how quickly and instinctively, with confidence she acted in the care of that baby. She was smart, intelligent, and lifesaving.
I saw nurses working tirelessly, from 7 am to dark, seeing hundreds of patients from the little babes to adults. They were hardworking.
I was placed in the triage tent. I took vitals and listened to their hearts and lungs. I remember thinking how unqualified I felt to be sitting there.
I believe it was the impression from these nurses and the qualities they possessed that caused the first push for me to go into nursing. I went to Liberty University in 2011 pursuing a pre-professional science degree, with the thought of being an occupational therapist, a physical therapist, or going to medical school, once again. I was one of three students in a pre-requisite course that was NOT in nursing school. I kept thinking, what am I missing out on?
My trip to Haiti still resonated with me as I went through my third year of school not knowing what I wanted to do. My last few months of my fall semester, junior year, I started praying hard, and during this time, I eventually felt a strong pull to go after nursing.
One of the things I loved (and love) most about nursing is how hands on it is. We need doctors, NPs, PAs. But the job descriptions are different. I loved that in nursing, you had to know the information and you had to act on it. You are at the bedside seeing changes and making changes.
I love that nursing is something I can use outside of my job. Need a nurse at camp? Got it. Need a nurse at special needs respite nights? Got it. My job is where I work, how I get paid, where I complain about wanting to have the day be finally over (like any other job). But I use and treasure these skills everywhere.
I also love how versatile nursing is. I wanted to be able to take my skill set from the bedside to another country again, if I was so called. I love that nursing is something I can take into the mission field. And throughout my three years, I’ve learned that nursing is my mission field.
And with all of that said, I’ve defintely had my days, where I’m literally fed up and losing my mind in this career. A lot of them. I’ve questioned it even. Part of this results from issues in healthcare and the fact that it’s just HARD work. Part of it is finding your niche. Part of it is being around so much illness and stress. A lot of it is putting judgement and anger and emotions behind yourself and viewing the patient with a blank slate. As a human, I don’t care how selfless you are, this takes action and it takes work.
I think my job is a calling, but no matter how much I’ve complained, I also know it’s given back to me personally, both in my character and in my walk with Jesus.
Nursing has taught me how to love people even when it’s hard.
This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. John 15:12
Nursing has taught me how to be disciplined and persevere.
Nursing has taught me to be strong.
She is clothed with strength and dignity…Psalm 31:25
Nursing has taught (is teaching*) me to be soft, kind, and gentle, and patient, when your with someone at their most vulnerable.
I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love. Ephesians 4:1-2
Nursing has taught me to put others before myself.
Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. Romans 12:10
Nursing was the culmination of my interests in medicine, my desire to serve people, and my call to serve the Lord.
And ya know, the comfy uniform doesn’t hurt either 😉
Happy nurses week! Thanks for all that you do.
Amanda, RN, BSN, PCCN (in the future: CCRN, DNP 😉)
Some nursing humor…..