The Midwest (Week 11)

Happy Nurse’s Week! My sister sent me this cup as a gift to celebrate. It’s a time in which we honor Florence Nightingale (The lady with the lamp) and commemorate her birthday. She was a legend in her own lifetime and one of the most famous women in British history. She became a nurse despite the disapproval of her family (there was a time that nursing was viewed as a lower class job and her family wanted her to pursue a “more appropriate” upper class role). Her work in the Crimea set the standards for modern nursing. For the rest of her life, she continued to campaign for improved sanitary conditions in both military and civilian hospitals. She truly embodied the art of nursing. We as a profession can sometimes get lost in the science, but must never forget the art.

The effort continues toward preparing for the next assignment. I have purchased airline tickets, secured a rental car, and found a condo for housing. Can I just say that all three of these tasks were incredibly taxing and physically draining? I am exhausted after it, but relieved to have a few more tasks completed. It will all be worth it!

Obtaining a nursing license from another state is rarely an easy feat. I am currently licensed in multiple states to practice nursing. Most of these licenses were obtained while I was working a telephonic triage role, but they have come in handy for traveling. Each state has a different set of requirements to become licensed by endorsement (and they all have different processing times). Some of the requirements take an immense amount of effort (one of the states that I applied for in the past wanted a copy of my birth certificate and marriage license along with the other requirements such as fingerprinting, transcripts, license verification, etc. I could not locate my marriage license and had to request a new one before I could move forward). The fingerprinting records are not shared state to state, which means I have been fingerprinted for every license. I have spent the past week notarizing documents, getting another set of fingerprints, obtaining money orders (some states are still snail mail), requesting license verification, and completing background checks for this new assignment which will be in a state that I have not been licensed in. It will all be worth it!

In the meantime, I am closing out this assignment. I have low-key anxiety sitting here on the weekends, thinking about all of the things that need to be done in 16 days, and knowing that if I were home, I could be actively preparing. I have two weeks left with these people/patients that I have formed bonds with. This is always the hardest part! Discussions have begun about the absence of Wookie. It’s as if the staff, residents, and families have begun the grief process for our departure. I feel as if we are doing the same.

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