Nursing is a noble profession and I love being a nurse. But I've been a nurse for many years. I won't tell you how long because it will give my age away. But let's just say it's been several presidents ago since I graduated from nursing school.
Because I've been a nurse, so long I only have to spend a very short amount of time with another nurse to figure out how long she's been practicing.
When I come home from work and I'm covered in blood, the only thing that annoys me is that I have to wash my scrubs and clean my shoes. It doesn't even cross my mind that I look like someone from a scene in Friday the 13th.
I have NO filter anymore. I talk about the most disgusting things and I truly don't even realize that the subject is gross and nauseating to others. I seriously need to be told to be quiet, which happens a lot when my daughters are around. 'Mom, please stop!...really?" I do better eating with other nurses where it is completely cool to discuss the vile smell of C-diff, poop and vomit.
Speaking of no filter, If you ask me about a medical problem, be prepared for what may come out of my mouth. If you ask me whether you should go to the emergency room for a problem. Um, well, if you're asking if you should go, then you probably don't need to go. Most people know if something is a true emergency and I don't have time for hypodilaudism or hypochondriacs.
I rarely cry anymore. When I first became a nurse, I cried all the time. I felt so bad for all my patients and I took all my work home. I would worry on the way home about what I could have done differently. Not anymore. It's not that I don't care about my patients. But once you've seen as much as I have not much surprises you anymore and you pretty much know what the outcome of each situation is going to be before it even transpires.
Are you guilty of checking out people veins in the grocery store isle? Geeze, do you even realize how abnormal that is? Haha, no worries you're in good company because I do that too!
I know that may sound so very harsh to some of you. But I really love being a nurse and I am very good at what I do. I've just realized that nursing is my work and I need time to unwind from it and escape into the world of friends and family. Even if it's with a Foley bag full of wine and some specimen Jello shots.
It's a shame that so many new nurses have to go through such worry and stress about work before they become one of the "seasoned ones." But I guess we all have to go through that period in our life to become more experienced and more likely to allow things to roll off.
While nursing may be your calling in life and you may love what you do, always remember to take time for yourself. Enjoy life. Life is not all nursing. If you learn to relax and take things in stride, not only will you be a better person, you'll be a better nurse.