Any RNs/LPNs/CNAs on here?

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by skirbo, Feb 11, 2009.

  1. skirbo

    skirbo Songster

    Jul 18, 2008
    Walton County, NW FL
    I'm really thinking hard about what I need to do job wise, praying a lot. And while I'm praying I thought about going to nursing school. It's not something I'd ever really considered, but right now I really like the idea of helping people.

    So I'm thinking and talking and researching (and praying, did I mention the praying?) and a friend of mine mentions that she heard one of the nursing homes in a close by city is doing free CNA training, at night for five weeks starting next week. So I'm going to call tomorrow and find out more, see if it's too late to get in.

    So then I'm looking at the college website for where I'm going to take the law enforcement basic aptitude test tomorrow. And the college has an information session for it's fall 09 2 year RN program next Tuesday night. Application deadline is April 1st. I'd already be working as a CNA by then if I liked the program and should know if I wanted to continue in the field. There is also a much cheaper LPN program not five minutes from here, though I'm not sure when it would start, I'll have to call.

    I'm almost forty. Is it too late to totally switch career fields? Paralegal to Correctional Officer isn't that big a leap I don't think, but nursing is. And that's committing to a few years of school, too.

    Thoughts? Experiences to share about any of these careers or programs?


  2. Mourningdove

    Mourningdove Songster

    Dec 17, 2008
    Cleveland, Tn.
    I am a retired CNA worker, when I say retired I mean hubby told me he didn't want me working so I have quit. My 1st job at 17 was at a
    nursing home and by the time I was 25 and still working at a nursing
    home the state I lived in began making schooling and licience mandatory as a nursing assistant. If you like helping people and not afraid of hard work with low pay I say go for it! 1 thing is certain for everyday we draw another breath older there will always be a dire need of skilled nursing care! Good Luck!
  3. I was a CNA for 10+ish years. LOVED the work I did...I became a stay at home mom when our youngest daughter was born...(she's 7 now)... I would love love love to go back to work as a CNA, but right now I am needed around here more...I also did private in home care. I really enjoyed that too. Some of the nursing homes I worked in were NOT the best...But I was there because I loved what I did. The residents needed me and I enjoyed being there. The pay wasn't the greatest, but then again every penny helps. I have thought many many times about going back to school for LPn or even RN, but right now the waiting lists are sooooo long (around here) that I keep putting it off. Maybe some day I'll go back.
  4. lizardz

    lizardz Songster

    Jul 18, 2007
    Grass Valley, CA
    My recommendation would be go for the RN. My hubby's a RN and makes GREAT money (of course, that's in California; don't know what wages are where you live). If you become a CNA or LPN you are very limited in what you can do, and, from what I understand, the work is hard and the pay low. An RN has so many choices in what they can do and where they can go (even travelling RNs), that it is, IMO, well worth the extra time and money. My husband was almost 40 when he got his two-year RN. Then a few years later he went back and got his BSN, and then his MSN. Currently, in the Sacramento area, a new RN graduate can pretty easily make $60K/yr. Do the CNA while you're working toward your RN degree. Good luck with whatever decision you make.

  5. chrisf

    chrisf Songster

    Dec 27, 2007
    I'm in school for my RN, my third career move, I go at night, it is hard but it can be done, by the way, I've got 10 years on you. It's never too late............
  6. Beekissed

    Beekissed Free Ranging

    I'm an LPN~16 years. I love helping people also, but the opportunities to do that in the nursing profession are becoming slim to none. I wouldn't advise anyone to go into nursing that doesn't want a high-stress, low paying job. Some RN positions in bigger cities will pay well. LPN jobs are low paying across the board, so go for the RN if you are wanting earning potential.

    Most of your stress from a typical facility nursing job will come from your co-workers and your supervisors. Also the whole idea of being a nurturing, helpful and caring nurse will fade away as you find yourself hurrying from one patient to another poking meds in their mouths and spending the rest of the time doing repetitive paperwork that the insurances demand.

    If you can manage to obtain a hospice position, it is the closest I've come to finding a spot for someone who truly wants to have the time to help people.

    Don't get me wrong, good nurses are needed. And I stress the word "good"! We also find ourselves being able to help others in little ways in our hurried days, while coping with lazy co-workers and brainless upper management. But a larger part of nursing is having big responsibility and little control...sort of like cops and air traffic controllers~big burn out rate after a few years.

    I've worked oncology, extended care, vent units, subacute wings, home health, pediatrics, geriatrics, occupational, urgent care and hospice. I've even worked with the Red Cross a couple of years.

    I would say that the experience of nursing as a profession was generally the same in all these areas, with a few variations. You will find some nurses who work for 25 years and tell you they loved every minute of it. Some will hate it from the start. Some will become disillusioned with the quality of co-workers and the health care system as a whole(me) after some time in nursing. Some will be in it for the prestige and money, some because they had to choose a job with some sort of security. Some will stay in the same position/facility all their careers and some will taste all aspects of the nursing scope. In the end, each person has a totally different perspective on their nursing experience.

    I wouldn't worry about changing careers in mid-life, older students make good students. I would worry more about being able to cope with the stress of the nursing profession at any given stage in your life. Will nursing suit your life?

    A friend of mine, who cannot handle much stress, went to school for her RN. We all wondered how she would even make it through school! She did. Now she is too stressed to work the floor, found she had to start out on evening or night shift instead of days~like she had pictured in her mind, that she couldn't handle the high stress~ but more glamorous~ ICU, PICU, ER units like she had dreamed. We all tried to tell her that it wasn't like she saw on TV and, just because you have a soft heart and a caring nature, nursing might not be the outlet for that. Now she is ashamed and frustrated about doing all that schooling, spending the money for the classes, and now not being confident or tough enough to work the floor.

    Think long and hard before entering nursing and explore your motives and personality. It might even help to volunteer in a nursing home and get a little closer look into the life.

    CNAs are the backbone of any facility and get to spend more time with the patients. They still do not get to spend as much time as they like, they are horribly overworked and even more horribly underpaid. They get little respect from the nurses and upper management and get the blame for a lot of neglect that happens to patients, especially in long term care. CNAs are the true heros of the medical profession, IMO, and a good CNA is a pearl of rare price!
  7. jnjross

    jnjross Songster

    Apr 3, 2008
    edwards, ms
    i too am thinking about go to school, i finished the first half then quit , i'm going to the school tomarrow to see if i can return, and the program changed since i was there they dropped 4 classes from the program and i only lack 2 under the new one [​IMG]

  8. mom'sfolly

    mom'sfolly Crowing

    Feb 15, 2007
    Austin area, Texas
    At forty, you probably have about 25 more years of work until retirement. Seems to me that is a long time. A career switch at forty is less than halfway into your working career, if you went to college first. If its what you want to do, go for it.
  9. ksacres

    ksacres At Your Service

    Nov 16, 2007
    San Antonio TX
    CNA= hard physical (and if you are in a nursing home-emotional) labor and low pay. Most (nursing homes) are so understaffed that you don't spend any time "helping" people, you are rushed from one dirty bed/butt to another.

  10. Rufflemyfeathers

    Rufflemyfeathers Songster

    Nov 20, 2008
    Astatula Florida
    I too use to be a CNA and it is a good field to be in but I would be an RN instead..the CNA's do too hard of work for what they get paid.. I loved taking care of people and there will always and I mean always a call for nurses and CNA's. My husband told me I don't have to work anymore but I do take care of the books at home for his trucking business..and I take care of the chickens and do the gardening .. I love my life now and I am still taking care of something..I just love my chickens and husband.

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