I know how you feel. Years ago, my dad had to have an angioplasty (I think. Anyway, he had a clogged artery and they needed to basically drill through the plauqe) He went to Standford to get this done, which I thought was one of the best hospitals around. We were sitting with him after his procedure and they bring his meal in. Included was a huge peice of CAKE. For a heart patient! I was really upset. I know people should have common sense but sadly a lot of people don't know any better. My dad knows better, but he was tempted and ate the damn thing! Hospitals, just like schools should have healthful meals. Neither seem to understand the connection between food and health. I have never once been asked by a doctor what my diet was like. Most don't believe it has any effect on your health or skin. But I guess most would go out of business if people started taking care of themselves =/ My mom is a nurse. I always tell her I could never be a nurse because there are so many people that just refuse to take care of themselves. I could not deal with it. She says there are some patients that want to learn but a lot of them just refruse to change what they eat or stop smoking and drinking.
Just an idea... Are there any "alternative" medical facilities nearby? You would probably need to go back to school, but I would think that a facility specializing in macrobiotics, chinese medicine, or ayurvedic healing would love to have someone on staff who was also a professional RN.
Julia - I just read anarticle in Real Simple magazine and it reminded me of your post. It's about the increase in the practice of integrative medicine. There are two sites listed. imconsortium.com has state directories of integrative health centers. nccam.nih.gov is the National Center for Complimentary and Alternative Medicine site. Maybe these could help guide you to an environment where you could still use your skills as a nurse as well as be appreciated for your support of a healthy lifestyle.
i work as a medical assistant in pediatrics, and i do share some of your frustration. luckily i work with two amazing doctors and an amazing staff. maybe its the hospital setting that is especially frutrating? could you get a job at a doctor's office that had a specialty in something that really hit home for you? or with a doctor who is serious about integrative medicine?
on a side note, i had a friend with a long cardiac history, and she's also diabetic. she's vegetarian. i'll never forget when she told me that she was hospitalized for a heart procedure and she had asked for the vegetarian menu. she said they had no idea what to do with her, and essentially gave her bagels with cream cheese, lots of white pasta, and potatoes. i remember her rolling her eyes and saying to me "hello! im diabetic too! these poeople have no idea how to feed a diabetic vegetarian!!!!" funny, but sad too. she brings a lot of her own food now if she is having a procedure.
Krysten - our dietary department in the hospital is the same! I overheard a dietician the other day coming out of a patient room. She said "Boy, I'll be glad when this crazy is out of here. This vegan crap is giving me a headache!" I think my face turned 5 shades of red!! The level of ignorance is astonishing. Needless to say, this wonderful patient and I bonded over many lovely lunches during her stay ;)
And Hazel (and everyone else!) - thanks for the tips! I recently dropped down to just PRN status (as needed) while I decide what I want to do in my career. I was terrified at first but now I'm pretty darn excited to start a new chapter!
Boy do I understand your feelings. I've been a RN for 24years and I also loathe it. I've also been trying to figure a way out, but options are limited and in my case I work at a place that has me by the finacial short hairs and I'm getting old! If you're stuck where you are try to find things outside of work that you love and bring you peace. I try to remind myself that nursing, for me is just a job but my "work" includes other things that bring passion....for me it's crafts: quilting, running a small canine bakery from the house and trying new things that make you feel good. I'm getting ready to start chicken keeping and I'm so excited about that, that the horrors of "job" aren't so bad. If you're younger than me (I'm 52) definetely consider some holistic/alternative options..that's what I would do if I wasn't near the end of the road in nursing. And don't forget to give yourself some of the kindness and caring you give to others. Hang in there!
PS Arbor day is 4/30. If you can, plant a tree...it'll make you feel great!
I was just reading another thread and posted my story about leaving a very stressful corporate job after 10+ years to follow my passion of helping America get healthy. I became a Certified Health Coach and I'm absolutely loving making a difference in people's lives. It's a career you can do anywhere, as the majority of America needs us! Best of luck to you!
I'm reading this post over a year after you posted it. I'm wondering where you went from here? Your post really hit home with me as I am a paramedic currently and was considering nursing but your feelings toward the profession are mine exactly but I have just been trying to overcome them. I thought I was a bad person for not having sympathy for all, even if it's the result of ignorance or unwillingness of people to help themselves. But I suspect my feelings are similar to many others and reading your post solidified why I won't continue into nursing. I've always thought I wanted to make a living helping people but now I'm thinking I'd rather help in a more pro active way, not in a picking up the prices after you've already destroyed your health way. I'm only 26 and am going to change careers, but into what??? Who knows. I thought about opening a vegan cafe/ bakery or something, or some other way to promote a lifestyle that is great for you, the environment and the animals. Anybody else have ideas??