I got kind of tired of the usual stock answers. Yes, we all wanted to help mankind. Yes, we are all "people persons". Yes, we all wanted to make a difference.
But what was the impulse? It had to be something. C'mon, spill it and feel free to add to this. Here is a collection of thoughts by my co-workers, somewhat tongue-in-cheek, but not entirely without a few grains of truth.
"I wanted to be an LPN because a really nice one took care of me when I was in the hospital at age 7. My parents wanted me to go to college. I compromised on a three year school for my RN"
"I thought it would be fun to give shots; I was thinking revenge"
"The opportunity to see blood...and guts"
"I really wanted to be a paramedic, actually; I was obsessed by that show Emergency! in the 70's"
"Capes and nursing caps, baby"
"I wanted to be a pediatric nurse until I realized I really didn't like kids all that much"
"I liked the science of nursing first"
"Because we were programmed to aspire to wifedom and motherhood as career goals and there were limited interim choices for women: teacher, secretary, nun.....nurse"
" I read a book called Candy Stripers about 30 times when I was in 2nd grade. Seemed like a good idea at the time"
"I WAS a Candy Striper. I spent one entire summer working 9-12 AM in the hospital coffee shop making toast and pouring coffee. The closest I got to any patients was being promoted to flower delivery and filling water pitchers for one week. Pinafores with gathered skirts was not a good look on me. A white uniform seemed like a huge improvement"
"I think it was just always assumed that I would be a nurse because my mother is"
"I was a hair dresser for 20 odd years. Then became an LPN. Then an RN. It was kind of a long convoluted path. I'm still on my feet all the time, but the money is better"