Thursday marked the end of an era… that of paid employment! It hasn’t completely sunk in yet. I know logically that next week my life as a student will start, but it still feels like a regular old weekend at the moment. I was telling my mom today that we have Monday off and I realized that I was still thinking that I was working, forgetting that for this semester I have EVERY Monday off.
Obviously I’m thrilled to finally be pursuing something I’ve been working towards for so long, but it also means that I have to say goodbye to a portion of my life and accept that my experience there did not turn out how I might have hoped or expected when I started. I knew very soon after I started with the company that it wasn’t really what I saw myself doing for a lifetime, yet part of me did hope that I could find a niche there for myself. Somehow leaving for this reason seems like admitting failure. Which isn’t to say that I’m spending all my time beating myself up for being a corporate flunkie. Rationally I know that I’m doing what’s best for me and that no matter what job I might have found there I would have always had that nagging voice in the back of my head saying that I should pursue my dream of getting into healthcare.
I hate admitting that I’d probably feel differently if I were leaving the mutual fund world to go to medical school. There was a bedpan reference in someone’s note in my going-away card. Knowing the person who wrote it, I know he thought he was funny and he has a rather bad sense of humor anyway (any of my former co-workers reading this know exactly who I’m speaking of here). But it still bugs me to know that I’m leaving a white collar job to go to something that’s traditionally been pink-collar. As I’ve said before, I’m not one to jump on the advocacy bandwagon yelling and screaming about how nursing is so much more than bedpans, that we’re not mindlessly following doctors around and doing whatever they say, that I actually have intentions of going on to complete my doctorate in nursing. But I hate the idea that others might think that I’m leaving to go do something “easier”. That I couldn’t hack it. Kinda makes me wistful that I didn’t apply to Yale’s nursing program. Of course it’s stupid to worry about idiotic ideas other people might hold towards my chosen profession and in a few months I probably won’t care. It’s just my own insecurities getting to me.
The hardest part, though, is saying goodbye to the people. While my jobs might not have been my life’s dream, I met some really great people while I was there and I will miss them. They were there for me when I needed them personally and professionally. They were there to shoot the shit and make the day go by more easily. They saw me through some major changes in my life. I will forever be grateful for that.