As a little girl, growing up I didn’t really know, what I wanted to become, all the girls and boys around me had their plans. Princesses, policeman, firemen, later turned into doctors, lawyers, garbage men, stripers, pimps (ok so the last 3 wasn’t on the list). Enter high school, still didn’t really have an idea, but I knew I loved sport; but I was no Caster Semenya or Wade van Niekerk, and decided I’ll go into sports management instead.
Sports management was out of reach due to finances, so my mom convinced me to apply to study teaching as you get paid while you study and the world would always need teachers. I must say I didn’t despise the option of becoming a teacher, I did love kids and was a Sunday school teacher, later becoming the head of our local Sunday school teachers at church. Then reality hit. The expectations vs reality had me shook and needless to say, I quit teaching.
Sounds easy right, wrong, being a child of parents that did not believe in waiting, I couldn’t take a mid-gap year. Nope, that was unheard of back then in the Northern areas of Port Elizabeth where I am from. I had to go and find a job and make some money. Getting a job wasn’t hard for me, being such a smooth talker and all. Fast forward 2 years and countless jobs later I found myself working in a battery factory, were gossip is like the 6-2 shift always coming up. I knew this is not the life I wanted for myself.
Low and behold good old mom to the rescue, she again convinced me to apply to study, this time to become a nurse. The same stability as a teacher, also getting paid to study. So I applied. My mom, being a praying woman, prayed me into the nursing college after only applying once, which was unheard of in that day and age. Man, did I not know what I was getting myself into.
I was never ready, but nursing, unlike teaching, made me feel again, I actually loved this. Even after my first-day setting foot in a hospital and having to find out the patient I was about to bed bath has passed away. I was so naive I actually tried to wake her before taking her to the mortuary, because guys, I really thought she was still alive I mean I could see her breathing even after the doctor pronounced her dead, I calmly explained to her that, look lady if you don’t wake up now you are really going to die in that cold fridge. Needless to say, she never woke up.
Yes, I wanted to quit nursing a few times, I mean who loves test and practical exams, give me an open wound to suture or a baby to deliver any day. I loved nursing this is what I was meant to do. Changing bedpans and bad smells couldn’t keep me away. So after my years of studying, I became a professional nurse MAMA I MADE IT!!!! Fast forward a few years to after the birth of our beautiful baby girl. Going back to work was difficult I just did not want to be away from her for so long, working weekends. When I got home after my 12-hour shift she would be sleeping, waking up to go to work in the mornings she would be sleeping, I use to hate it and to top it all off I was working in a kids ward which made it even more difficult.
I eventually made the decision to look for a new job, and at first, it was still in nursing. I figured that perhaps if at the local clinic it would be fewer hours, weekends and public holidays off, but that didn’t pan out, so I totally left nursing and settled for an office job. A lot of people did not understand, many still don’t even know. No, I’m not ashamed of my new job; but it’s complicated and according to my Facebook info I’m still employed at my previous employer. Some of my family members do not get it. A lot of people felt I was born to be a nurse, so how could I betray my patients and my pledge just for my daughter, but how could I not though.
I would love to always be there for my patients, I love each one of them, lost a few and still, I mourn for them, but who will mother my child if not me. I went into nursing for the money and rewards way back then and now I left if for less money and less financial reward. but I do not regret for one second leaving it. I always said I’m not going to die as a nurse working in a hospital. I may still die as a nurse though. Will I go back to nursing as a profession; perhaps on my own terms yes, maybe. The lesson I’ve learned from quitting nursing is that going against what is expected from you is not easy, but staying somewhere and not feeling it and being unhappy is far more painful. You decide what is best for you and your family no one else can or should.
As always these are my Naked Bullets. If you have any, shoot right ahead in the comments section below. Would love to hear from you.
Bang Bang Naked Bullets OUT.