Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Making the switch

I'm sure my story isn't the only story like it but I had quite the road to becoming a nurse.  When I went to college, actually even before I went to college, I was going to be a pediatrician.  I was going to be Dr. Jessica "Whatever My Last Name Would Be".  There was no doubt in my mind.  That's what I was going to do.  Then I got to USF, had the time of my life, maybe focused on my social life a little more than my education, and found myself a junior (almost senior) with no graduation date in sight.  I had changed my career path from Medicine to something unknown because I was no good at Organic Chemistry.  Yep.  Organic Chemistry was my Achilles heel.  I dropped that class in the first week and my med school dream disappeared and left me wondering what I was going to do with my life.  After changing my major 3 times in a semester, I decided I'd go with nursing.  My mom thought I was a crazy person because I couldn't stand blood, needles, people throwing up, all the things that go with being a nurse.  At the time, USF was only accepting once a year so my awesome advisor, and I use the word awesome loosely, told me to take some time off while I wait for my acceptance.  Not the best advice a girl with almost 120 credits wanted to hear.  Once again, I gave up my dream of being in the medical field.

Until one night, at 4am.  I had that light bulb moment that I wanted to be a nurse.  That nursing was where I was called to be.  So I researched nursing programs at other universities and community colleges.  I had a few community colleges I liked so I applied.  About a week later, I got an acceptance letter from Hillsborough Community College.  In the letter, I had a 4 day deadline to accept my seat before they pass it on to the next person.  I had 4 short days to turn my life completely upside down.  After talking with my mom, I made her send in my acceptance because it was too stressful for me.  By accepting that seat, I was finally going to be doing what I was meant to do.  But it also meant leaving everything I knew.  My school, my friends, my Chi Omega sisters, my job, and everything that I loved.  Oh and all of this would be happening in 2 months.  Too much for my poor little heart to handle.  But I put on my Big Girl Panties and walked through the door to my future.  Yeah it was hard saying goodbye to everything I knew, everyone I loved but I knew it was the only way I could be truly happy.  I moved back in with my parents and started my journey to become a nurse.

Not only did I have the time of my life, I also met the most amazing people.  If I never went to nursing school, I would not have met one of my very best friends.  Granted, at first, I was hoping he would be interested in me but I quickly learned that would never happen. Instead I gained a best friend.
I also started working at New York & Company where I met 2 of my favorite people.  At that point, the Bandits were created (more on that another day).

I met the Hubs and we all know how that story goes.
It also prepared me for my grown up life and everything that has happened since 2003.  I never regret my changing schools.  I wish some things played out differently but all in all, I love my life thanks to my decision to go to nursing school.  And I eventually went back to USF and finally graduated with my Bachelors of Science in Nursing.
7 years later, I feel like I'm a seasoned nurse.  I feel like I'm one of the nurses I used to work with in nursing school clinicals who seemed to have it all figured out.  I'm still learning and growing every day as a nurse but that's the beauty of this profession.  Every day there's something new to bring to your craft.

From my first day.......
To the most rewarding work I do now......
My life has been forever changed by those 4 days I had to decide whether to accept my seat or not.  I've never looked back since.....



  1. thanks for sharing. I had a bumpy road to find nursing school as well. Now to only be finished school...

  2. Great story. I love that you love your job so much and I'm quite jealous!

  3. I've been desperately trying to decide on a career path myself. I was psychology then med school, then pre-pharmacy, then I considered radiography. I have about 140-150 credits and just an AA. I've been in pharmacy for almost 12 years and everyone keeps telling me to go for nursing. You are one of the few nurses that I know that actually seems to like it though. I don't think it's for me. I am glad you found your place. :) I hope to find a job eventually that makes me happy.