The University of Texas at Arlington College of Nursing
In partial fulfillment of the requirements of
N 3645 Transition to Professional Nursing Part A
Jeanean Boyd, Ph. D., MSN, RN
January 29, 2012
My Decision To Become A Nurse
I have been a nurse for over twenty years, first as a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) then as an Associate Degree Nurse (ADN). In this paper I will discuss why I became a nurse, what the essence of nursing means to me, my beliefs, my values and finally my future goals as a Registered Nurse (RN) with a Bachelors of Nursing Degree (BSN).
Even though, I went into nursing looking for a quick career, I did develop a nursing philosophy. It is a philosophy of caring, and one that I am proud to say I still embrace today. “The profession’s values give direction and meaning to its members, guide nursing behaviors, are instrumental in clinical decision making, and influence how nurses think about themselves” (Killeen, 2007, p. 58). Choice of Nursing
My Grandmother was an LVN and the Director of Nursing of a local nursing home, my mother is a Respiratory Therapist. I have been raised around the nursing profession most of my life. When I was younger, I spent a great deal of time with my Grandmother at the nursing home. You could pretty much say that I grew up there. I always enjoyed spending time, talking, playing games, and making crafts with the residents that lived there. My mother was employed by the local hospital and from time to time I would go to visit her at work.
Being exposed to hospitals and nursing homes was not the driving reason I chose nursing. After I graduated high school at seventeen years of age, I knew I did not want to spend years in college. I wanted a career that you could make a decent wage, had longevity as well as opportunities for growth and advancement. The LVN program was one year, and didn’t require any prerequisites before you could enroll. Looking back now, this was the best decision of my life.
Essence of Nursing
Some nursing philosophers such as Florence Nightingale focus on health of the patients as related to their surroundings (Black, 2011). Virginia Henderson’s philosophy describes the “nurse’s role as that of a substitute for the patient, a helper to the patient, or a partner with the patient” (Black, 2011, p. 332). Jean Watson wrote, “nursing is based on human values and interest in the welfare of others…(Black, 2011, p. 334). All of these philosophies have one thing in common, caring for the welfare of the patient. You cannot devote your life to taking care of patients, nursing them back to health, whether by cleaning up and sanitizing their surroundings, or becoming an extension of themselves to better assist them when they cannot., and lack compassion and care for them.
The essence of nursing is and always will be changing as new laws and health care reform are passed. However, no matter what comes into play, whether it is hospitals making drastic changes because of health care reform or new disease processes being discovered. One thing will always remain prevalent in nursing and that is nurses caring for the welfare of their patients.
Beliefs and Values
I believe all patients should be treated with dignity and respect no matter what the circumstances of their illness may be. There are times patients can be rude and snap at you. We as nurses have to remember this is probably not the normal response we would get from this patient in a different setting. They are frightened and anxious about their hospitalization and may feel they have lost control over their situation. It is our duty as a nurse to help them regain as much control of their situation as possible and to lesson or alleviate their anxiety. This can be achieved by including the patient, whenever possible, in decision making for their care, educating them about their disease process,...