Yesterday morning I met a classmate of mine at a surgery center where she works. She had graciously arranged for me to follow a CRNA around so I could get a feel for the position.
CRNA (Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist) is an advanced practice nursing position that functions essentially as an anesthesiologist administering drugs for surgical procedures--whether conscious or unconscious sedation.
The position is attractive to me because it is both well respected and well paid. If I were to secure a position as a CRNA it would allow my wife to severely cut her hours, if not quit altogether. I'd be able to work days as well, as the salary would be enough that I wouldn't need the night shift differential.
It's not an easy road though, 2 years of nursing school, then 2 years of work experience in a critical care setting. Then 2 years of CRNA school. I am fortunate as there are two CRNA programs here in the metroplex, Texas Wesleyan University and Texas Christian University both have programs. This is unusual as there are entire states without CRNA programs.
The CRNA I followed yesterday, Jessica, was wonderful and answered my many questions, as well as pointing me to good places to do my own research about the profession.
I left excited about the possibility of working in a position with high demand, good pay, and decent hours.
But then I felt a big let down because I was excited before I started chiropractic school also, having been told almost that exact formula as benefits of being a chiropractor--high demand--not, good pay--NOT, decent hours--NOT!! I mentioned this fear to my wife, and she said that this time we have plenty of time to make a good decision, unlike chiropractic school where I was admitted within 3 weeks of the first time of hearing of the program and was attending classes 45 days later.
If all goes smoothly I would be graduating from CRNA school in 6 years, a month before my 40th birthday. That's a very disheartening thought. If I hadn't messed around with thoughts of medical school and then going to chiropractic school and had instead immediately started nursing school after I graduated with my first bachelor's I would have graduated from CRNA school this past May...
2 weeks ago