Over the past few weeks I have made some big changes. I recently finished my third year of nursing school and accepted that I am completely burnt out.
For the past five years, I have spent my summers working as many hours as possible to save up money to pay for school. I started each school year exhausted because summertime was always just an opportunity to pour my all into work instead of study and barely give myself a chance to even breathe.
This year I decided not to return to the pool; a job I have been doing for the past four years. As much as I loved the job and the people I worked with, I was ready for a change. I thought I would try out something more nursing related and work as a PSW in home care.
As much as the job was valuable nursing experience, the more I did it, the more I felt unmotivated. During the week I was giving so much of myself to my patients as a nursing student and on the weekends to my clients as a PSW. By then, there was hardly enough energy left for myself or for people I love.
I found myself complaining about the work I was doing and not able to enjoy the experience I was getting. I missed the family of coworkers I had at the pool, and felt lonely as I traveled around Ottawa visiting clients. I missed having people to support me at work and realized I thrive in a team environment. I decided this was not how I wanted to spend my summer, good money or not. So I quit.
At first I felt like I had given up. I had this opportunity and I was just going to throw it away for a break? Then I started to realize the detriment the work was having towards my future. This is my last summer before I embark on an amazing career as a nurse, and the last thing I want is to resent the work do, before I even begin.
To be honest, I love being a nurse. Meeting people. Supporting people. Making sure that my patients receive the best care I can give. Although I feel this way, I realize the importance of self care in this profession, something I definitely need to work on.
Although this summer is not panning out the way I had planned, I think it is happening the way it was supposed to. I need to give myself a break before I finish my last year of this intense, but rewarding program.
So, for the next few months, you will find me working the occasional day with the kiddos at the daycare, but mostly taking opportunities to explore my beautiful city, spend time with my favourite people, and discover how to take care of myself. Stay tuned, for some Ottawa adventures ahead!