Have you ever thought about becoming a nurse? Growing up, becoming a nurse had never crossed my mind. I didn’t grow up around anyone who worked in the nursing field nor was I used to being in and out of hospitals; whether it be for me or because of family. Although I wasn’t around many nurses or had much experience, I knew at one time or another I would be a huge part in changing the lives of others. Even though I haven’t always wanted to be a nurse, helping others has definitely been a huge priority in my life. It never occurred to me that being a nurse would give me the opportunity to help others until the end of my sophomore year in high school. That is when I decided a career in nursing would be perfect for me. Throughout my first two years of high school, I took class after class about where I was going to attend college and what my major would be. In the beginning I thought my decision was made and I knew exactly what my plan was going to be. I was going to be a Cosmetologist.
From the time I was little I was always playing with hair and I just knew that was what I would do as a career one day. However, it seemed that God had a different plan for me. At my high school students were given the choice to take 2 electives. Whether it was choir, art, parenting, band, or a foreign language the decision was ultimately up to the student. My sophomore year I decided to take the parenting class as one of my electives. This class was the type that students assumed would be an easy grade and would not be a top priority. Little did I know this course would be the one to finalize my decision about life after high school and have a massive impact on my life. Throughout the class I watched many videos and had to complete projects on what it is like to be pregnant and all the things that come with having a child. I will never forget the final project that was assigned to the class. Each student in the class was assigned a computerized baby to care for over the course of a weekend. We had to watch this baby and care for it as if it were our very own.
There were a variety of keys that came with the baby and each one had a reason as to why the baby might be crying. So, as the “parent” of this baby, when he or she started to cry we had to determine whether it was hungry, needed a diaper change, burped etcetera. This was an extremely difficult weekend for me, but even after all of the crying and staying up all night, I enjoyed the project. In addition to caring for the computerized baby, we had to wear a pregnant belly suit for a day. This belly suit was designed to help students experience the feeling of a full term pregnancy. While wearing this suit I experienced a few things that an actual pregnant woman would feel. There was a 30 pound weight gain, fetal movements, shortness of breath, bladder pressure and frequency of urination. Even though I only had to wear the belly suit for a day, I felt that it was a very good experience and I was able to get an understanding of what it is like to be pregnant. Both of these projects taught me a lot about caring for an infant and the importance of good parenting skills.
I was also intrigued by the medical aspects of labor and delivery and I began to think of the possibility of becoming a nurse. Throughout the many weeks of this class I had numerous talks with my friends and family and by the end of the course I knew my career path had changed. I wanted to be a nurse. During my remaining time in high school I began to focus more on classes that would be an asset to furthering my education in the healthcare field. My guidance counselor also worked closely with me to explore all my options in the nursing field. After much thought, I made my final decision to become a labor and delivery nurse. At the end of my senior year I started my prerequisite classes at Butler Tech to prepare for the LPN program that I would ultimately begin in January 2011. LPN school was extremely intense from the very beginning and at times I was ready to give up. Although it was very difficult, I learned that through hard work, diligence and sometimes tears, I can accomplish more than I ever thought possible of myself.
Even though becoming an LPN was just a stepping stone to achieving my ultimate goal, I knew it was what I needed to do. I have enjoyed working as an LPN and I will continue to use my skills and knowledge to work towards becoming a labor and delivery nurse one day. Overall, there have been many events in my life that are very special to me and will forever be a part of who I am today. I believe making the choice to take part in a parenting class back in high school is one of the major events in my life and is the reason I am where I am today. Looking back, I realized how important this class really was to me and the significance it had on my life. Taking this class was a main factor of why I became a nurse and I may not be where I am today if I had not taken part in it. I am very grateful I took the class, and I will never forget the impact it had on my life.