Tuesday, July 3, 2012

There is No Work


Why don’t I get a different job?

Simple answer:  I am trying to.

Nursing is not my first or even second career attempt.  I attended college right after high school, just like most other people my age, and took out hefty loans to cover the costs of earning what was, in hindsight, a worthless degree.  We were told that we would make the amount of the loan in a first year salary.  That didn’t happen.  The jobs were low-paying, hard to acquire, and even more difficult to hold onto.

I went underwater at age 18 and have not come up since then.  I am buried in student loandebt.  Several years of forbearances exponentially multiplied the debt.  At the current pace of repayment, assuming that I don’t lose this job, I will finish paying the loans when I am 67.  Social Security will be out of money before then, so I guess I have to work until I mercifully drop dead.  Some people purchase a house.  I purchased pieces of paper for my rented walls.

I live in a metropolitan area where nurses are among the highest paid in the country.  The rent is higher than most other places.  I tried living in a cheaper area.  Yes, rent was less, but so was the salary.  Much less.  My student loans payments do not decrease based on where in the country I live.  Only the rent and the salary decrease.  Everything else costs relatively the same.  So I my residence stays put.

There is no nursing shortage.  People need to stop saying that.  Nursing schools no longer teach students how to be a nurse.  It’s a liability thing.  Harm a patient and there could be a massive lawsuit.  Your employer is supposed to train you.  Because there is no nursing shortage, few hospitals and nursing homes are willing to hire a new graduate and then waste another nurse to teach the new nurse how to do the job.  Once trained, the new and now experienced nurse will jump ship to a higher paying job, so the hospital avoids this altogether by seeking experienced nurses only.  Budget cutbacks in these institutions means fewer nursing jobs- just dump the ever-increasing workload on fewer nurses.

I have applications on file at every hospital in my geographical area and renew them on the designated schedule.  I have literally applied at every healthcare facility in the area.  There are no openings.

What about another career?  As I mentioned above, I have tried a few others without success.  I am loath to return to school and increase my student loan debt and still be unable to find work in the new field.  In my neighborhood are all kinds of well-educated individuals who used to have cushy jobs are now hopelessly out of work, competing with the local teenagers for the jobs at Burger King.  Most people I know live with relatives or have a bunch of roommates.

So that is why I am still at this horrible job that upsets me so.

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