"When you get those rare moments of clarity, those flashes when the universe makes sense, you try desperately to hold on to them. They are the life boats for the darker times, when the vastness of it all, the incomprehensible nature of life is completely illusive. So the question becomes, or should have been all a long... What would you do if you knew you only had one day, or one week, or one month to live. What life boat would you grab on to? What secret would you tell? What band would you see? What person would you declare your love to? What wish would you fulfill? What exotic locale would you fly to for coffee? What book would you write?"
Thursday, November 3, 2011
Changing the Future
First of all, for an idea of what I will be talking about, Read This Post to catch up on things. If you recall in June 2011, I was uber excited for being picked to go to this Nursing Honor Society Convention, in October. It felt so far away then, being June. But now its here- And I am here! In Texas. And OH MY God! What an amazing, and most of all-strange- experience it has been thus far.
I have met really important people and have had some great networking contacts. My ex-professor, and my travel partner on the trip and reason for being here in the first place, is somehow friends with every important person in this entire organization. I have lost count on how many CEO's, Deans of (good) schools, and Presidents I have met because of her. Not only met but they actually gave me business cards and if I apply to their school and email the deans directly, I will get in for my MSN or DNP or PhD.. Oh my god! This is absolutely insane. Absolutely. Goes to show how important it is to be overly polite, kind, interesting and interested....and how far it can get you. And to have a really strong hand shake, and to say the right things....yadayada.
But so far the conference has been listen to important people speak during the day and write down notes, learn really important stuff, and then by night- regroup and "drink socially and eloquently" with the people you listened to all day. So being that my professor is in the circle of important people, by night I have somehow found myself drinking wine (way too much wine-this is troublesome) with some very important people. Crazy!!
Also, I have met other nurse bloggers! Which is so cool. Apparantly nurse blogging is really picking up popularity among nurses in general but is also catching the attention of this organization. So I made extra sure to be wary of what they were saying on the nurse blogging frontier, to make sure I wasn't stepping in any muddy ground by having a blog about nursing. It seems to be the ongoing current question right now- is nurse blogging taboo, or is it the future? Should our workplaces know about our blogs, or is it OK to keep them private? Is it OK to tell them? What about our schools we graduated from? Can we openly talk about our schools of nursing? Where do you draw the line?
It was brought up in one of the workshops I attended that some schools of nursing (more advanced in the technology game) require their students to create a blog to document their journey through education, and nursing. How cool is that! I guess that's part of what my blog has been about the whole time anyway, but its cool that those students actually get to do it as an assignment...
But I think most important thing so far I'm taking away from this conference is...the rest of my future. If I tell my professor I'm interested in one particular thing, she says "Oh! I know the exact person you need to talk to!" However, as many of you know, I'm interested in a lot of things. I can see myself doing a lot of different career paths in nursing. So, I've met a career link in each one of the divisions I can envision myself in. So now I reallly have to choose soon, because I have so many opportunities. Opportunities are great, but how do I narrow down what I can see myself doing?? The problem is they are all so unique career lines that really don't intersect. My professor suggested I have a couple career paths and do something different after every couple years...but I think I want my career to make a direct line, one line. Start at the beinning somewhere, and move to the top. Learn about the entire career, the ins and outs and then by the time I'm at the top, I know what I'm talking about. But we'll see. On the plane ride home, I actually made a diagram to sort it all out- Because I am a visual learner. I need to see things mapped out. After I made this- my professor was able to help me draw lines on what nursing paths can definitely intersect and totally relate to each other. Hence, this lovely diagram of my entire future:
What we narrowed it all down to was that "Nursing Informatics" was the core of all things nursing for me. Informatics can leave me openings not only for a long education, but to possibly delve into NASA, the Air Force, Politics, Humanitarian efforts, Emergency medicine, Epidemiology and Disaster relief. What it all comes down to, is that technology fits everywhere. Can I say it enough times that technology is the future? Of everything?
"Nursing Informatics" and its a rapidly growing field. Its all about revolutionizing nursing through enhancing technology. And, I come from a family of technology and I consider myself to be pretty competent with technology, and I have a lot of strong ideas for technology and nursing in the future.
At the beginning of the conference, I didn't know what nursing informatics was. But I had(have) at least three solid nursing inventions.
By day 2, I discover this new field. It intrigued me, but it was so foreign and new to me that I really had to think it over and learn more about it before I went crazy over it.
By 5, after listening to multiple "technology in nursing" seminars, I was crazy about it. I kept itching in my seat- I wanna learn! I want to do this! I can do this! I want to get in this field now- this is where we're all going! Not just nursing, but the entire planet! This is the answer. I wanted it. I do want it.
Also, with one of the particular schools that want me, I can skip right over the MSN and go right for my PhD, which is, insane. I'm 23. Am I really ready to think about PhD? Granted, I signed my soul to a 2 year contract with my hospital now, so I can't officially start my PhD until I'm 25.....Ah. Could I actually be Dr. Somebody by the time I'm 30? Could I?
There's the age battle, right there. I can get my doctorate by 30. Why not? It'd be hard as hell, but I could eventually do it....but in addition to just the schoolwork, you are judged going in so early. You have the older doctorate students that look down on you because
1) you are so young
2) you dont have nearly as much "clinical expertise" and lifelong practice as they do
3) they fear you, for being so young and ambitious
4) you're just really, really young.
There were people I met at the conference that were in their 50s-60s that were still doctoral students, or even just thinking of getting their doctorate soon. And here I want it by 30? You can see where some discrepancies and arguments might arise...
Looking back to the diagram above, there are two strong sides of who I am. Its like two hemispheres of me. There is nursing me, who wants to (literally) change the world. But I only ever went into nursing because I didn't have the courage to be who I really wanted to be, an artist...The real me. But I like nursing. Its worthwhile, a lifetime career, and its productive. I can help other human beings. Thats why I stayed, and why I will always be in nursing. However, the second hemisphere of my brain is the artist, the drawer, the painter, the photographer, the writer, the mom-wannabe, the wife wannabe, the daughter/sister/friend.....How can I be everything? Is it so sad that I so badly desire to be immortal and live forever and take a normal lifetime span to try everything? I set my goals too high. I want to learn every language. I want to read every book. I want to travel to every country. I want to write at least eight novels. Like, strong, hardcore novels. But those novels have nothing to do with nursing. Can I really be a stand alone writer and a Nurse, too? Why not, I guess, right? We shall see...
There was something really intriguing, however, that I noticed at this convention that has to do with the question: Who do I be, mom/wife, or powerful nurse? Well, at this convention I came across multiple women in very-high up positions. Granted, 95% of the organization has got to be women. Most of the government is made of women. And some of the men in the audience? They were there for the sole purpose of supporting their wives. They came to this conference of nursing to congratulate their wives who are probably making way more than them and just got an award for saving a bajillion people in Africa, or something. But seriously how sweet is that? How awesome is that? How new millenium is that? Awesome!
This organization seems to be the one door to open that will open a thousand more doors, If I play my cards right. And by golly, I'm about to start learning how to play some cards! This organization not only can help me travel for fun and business, but for humanitarian/volunteer efforts. Like, safe children in Africa sorts of trips.
Summary of the entire blog post:
I really doubt my life will ever have a dull, boring moment. If it does get boring, time to start the next big thing I want to do!
Also, I am absolutely crazy.
~ A Writer in a Crazy Nurse's Body