Last week was a week where Americans took a moment to come together with friends and loved ones to give thanks. While friends, family, and health are at the top of my list, I have been reflecting on what it means to be a nurse and how thankful I am that I chose this most noble profession as my career. The following are just a few reasons why I am thankful to be a nurse.
While many college graduates are greeted with mounting debt and a highly competitive job market upon graduation, graduate nurses have multiple job opportunities waiting for them. I had my first job long before graduation. As the need for nurses continues, there will be no shortage of jobs anytime soon.
Nurses have choices. We can work days, nights, evenings. We can work per diem, part time, full time, or contractual. Working as a travel nurse and per diem nurse the past many years has allowed me the freedom and flexibility to travel and spend most of my holidays at home with my family.
Our patients teach us about love, loss, the human condition. I am thankful for my patients and all they and their families have taught me through the years. They have made me the nurse I am today and a better person for that matter.
I am equally thankful for each and every coworker I have had the privilege to work with through my travels. I have made friends from one side of the country to the other, as well as on the other side of the Atlantic. Working side by side in the thick of the job, it is easy to understand the bonds that quickly form.
The nursing profession is perfect for the individual that feels a strong urge to travel. It can take you to all points on the globe if you let it. I never imagined when I started my career that I would one day be living and working in Europe. What started as a thirteen-week contract in San Francisco has since taken me to some of the farthest points north in Europe.
Working as a nurse has changed my life. It has made me a stronger, more confidant person. It gave me opportunities I might not have experienced had I chosen another career. It has taken me across the country and abroad and enriched me.
Above all, nursing gives more than it takes. There is no doubt that it can be challenging at times, but it is a rewarding profession. I feel such pride still after 13 years when I tell someone that I am a nurse. There is just something to be said for helping those in need. I hope all my nurse and medical friends back home had a very Happy and safe Thanksgiving!! How are you thankful to be a nurse???
Lori is a travel nurse that has made her way to Sweden. She is also a Yoga Alliance Certified Yoga Teacher. Follow her adventures working and traveling through Europe in her blog, Neonurse, or on Instagram.