Currently working at Blossom Hill in Westlake, Isabel Gomes, LPN, is in her last semester of the LPN-RN Program at Lorain County Community College. While the path to her goal was not direct, her determination is seeing her through.
My nursing journey did not go as I planned. I have always wanted to be a nurse, but just took a few detours along the way. During my nursing program I worked as a dental assistant. While I was never a nurse’s aide or a medical assistant, I did learn about patient care during my dental assistant years. I was a single mother of three young kids when I decided to pursue nursing. I took one prerequisite course at a time and slowly advanced. When I was accepted in the RN program at Lorain County Community College, I felt as though I had finally accomplished something.
Nursing school is not easy no matter how intelligent you think you are, because nursing school is just different. We are graded at a higher level and we have multiple things going on at once. We were told if something life changing was going to happen, it would happen in nursing school, and for me they were right. I had personal issues arise in my last year of school and I failed out. This was my first real failure in life, at least that is how it felt at the time. I remember how embarrassed I felt, so I secluded myself from everyone who was in the program with me. My future would have been different if it had not been for my clinical instructor Aileen Maslinski, who at the time ran the LPN program, saying to me, “Stop crying and go transfer to the LPN program”. At first, I was taken aback, but she was right. I knew I was going to make a great nurse because this is my calling. I did great in clinical and lab; the problem was that I did not test well. Nursing exams are not like typical tests, “Which is the most correct answer?” It is hard to get used to those types of questions. I did complete the LPN program and did well. When I graduated, I passed the NCLEX without an issue.
Currently I work at Blossom Hill, which is a home that cares for adults with disabilities. I am blessed to be there and to have the opportunity to care for some of the most amazing people I have ever met. After all my experiences, I did have the urge to finish what I started with the RN program. Therefore, after one year of working as an LPN, I decided to go back for my RN. I enrolled in the LPN-RN access program at Lorain County Community College. I am in my last semester and I am doing well. I am using my LPN experiences to get through this program.
I have learned so much about myself through this nursing experience. I no longer hold the shame of failure because I realize everyone has his or her own path. I am confident in myself as a nurse because I am a great nurse. I truly love to help people and be there for them if their loved ones cannot. I want my fellow nursing students or people who are considering nursing school to know this... Yes, it is difficult, and you may cry and struggle at times, but if you are made to do this, do not let anything stop you, even yourself. Being a nurse is worth it.