A World of Opportunities
Today is the beginning of the rest of my life! I know that sounds very corny, but I’ll explain why. As I left the hospital I worked for over 9 years; I experienced something of an identity crisis. When you are a nurse, your job defines you. You are not just a nurse for 12 hours, or for 3 days a week. You are a nurse 7 days a week 24 hours a day.
To work in a hospital unit for that many years, you invariably build a strong bond with your co-workers. You spend good times as well as bad times with them. Nursing is a group effort, teamwork where you share your deepest fears, your frustrations, and your pains.
In places like intensive care units, bad times come a lot more often than good times. Compassion fatigue is real and an ever-present situation that is affecting health care providers. The long 12 plus hour shifts, the continuous stress, the multiple grieving as well as the overwhelming needs of patients and families take a toll on nurses.
It takes some people very little to realize that it’s time to leave their jobs, even if they choose to remain employed and be in denial about how bad the situation is.
Others are completely oblivious that the time has come to get out.Big changes are difficult for me, and I might stick around a bad situation for the simple fact that it is familiar and safe.
Although leaving my position of bedside nurse was very difficult, it was like shedding old skin. One of the great things about switching jobs is the chance you get to try out something new and meet new people. A world of opportunities has opened up for me since deciding to take up a full-time teaching position, and I’m willing to embrace it.
“Opportunities are like sunrises. If you wait too long, you miss them.” ~William Arthur Ward