Wednesday, May 13, 2015

On the shoulders of giants, we can do great things

It is only fitting that I start my next journey during Nurses Week. That on Florence Nightingale's birthday I was in class discussing using research and data to transform nursing practice. That this week that honors and celebrates the amazing work all nurses do, I was stepping out of my comfort zone, going from 'expert' back to a novice of sorts. While many were graduating programs and starting their journey as new clinicians or administrators or educators, I am purchasing books and software and attending immersion week.

Since making the decision to begin this journey I have come up with every reason why I should not pursue this path. I have rationalized every excuse. I have compared this experience with past ones; unfavorably of course. I have almost talked myself out of it...twice. Something I have wanted to do for years, I have almost quite before I have started. Because it will be hard? Because I will be busy (I'm already busy and used to piling on the work!) What is different this time? Is it fear of failure?

In my mind I know how I want to leave my mark on nursing - some of it I am already doing. Some is yet to come; that is part of the journey. This is the next step. I need more tools to accomplish my goals.

As I entered the classroom meeting my classmates for the next 18 months, I realized they were all questioning themselves also. They were also doubting their abilities and wondering "What am I doing here?" But as these past few days have unfolded, we have found out that we bring a variety of skills and experiences with us. We have amazing visions for nursing and what we believe advanced practice nurses can do to improve care for our patients and impact an ailing health care system that is still in need of repair to provide the necessary care for all.

It will be hard. At times we will be tired and frustrated. We will be inspired. We will change practice and do great things. And in December of 2016 we will be Doctors of Nursing Practice.

“How very little can be done under the spirit of fear.” ~Florence Nightingale


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