As Angie Kyler’s two children reached adulthood and her family’s needs began to evolve, she embraced the change and excitedly looked forward to a new stage. This shift in her family dynamic evoked a shift in focus toward her career and her own personal growth. She also yearned to see new places and enjoy new experiences with her spouse.
An ICU nurse, Angie was curious about the world of travel nursing. She connected with RNnetwork and discovered her career could be the catalyst to write the next chapter in her life story.
“I didn’t realize I had as much in me as I have until I started traveling. And I didn’t realize how much of myself I was giving to others,” said Angie. “I have always been there for my family, but I knew they had reached a stage where they could do it on their own. I needed to find my own focal point. Travel nursing has helped me find myself.”
1. New surroundings, new experiences
Angie was drawn to travel nursing as a way to have fun with her career and vacation at the same time. She dreamed of visiting new and different locations.
“All you have to do is get out a map of the United States. You can literally close your eyes, point and say, ‘I want to go there,’ and your recruiter could make it happen,” said Angie.
A Midwest native, Angie chose Florida as the destination for her first travel assignments. Working closely with her recruiter, Shalena Taylor, Angie communicated her housing needs and desired parameters – a home within walking distance to the beach, fishing and nightlife, and able to accommodate the special needs of her husband.
RNnetwork housing specialists found the Kylers a home one block off the beach: “so, I work three days a week and the other four, we play!”
2. A deeper sense of purpose, personal fulfillment
For Angie, one of the most professionally rewarding aspects of travel nursing is her connection with patients. While facilities and operations may differ location to location, the constant is always the patient.
“Sometimes, a manager will give me my assignment and tell me this patient is a VIP. But for me, every patient is a VIP,” said Angie. “I am not going to change how I treat a patient based on their profession or status. I want to care for everyone as though they were my family. A patient is a patient.”
In a recent assignment in the neurology unit, Angie cared for a patient who underwent a procedure that left her sensitive to light and sound during recovery. Angie spent time at the patient’s bedside, speaking softly and learning about her patient’s life. Angie also shared about her own life, including her desire to help her husband find a fishing partner and spot.
A month later, the hospital received a card and a purple angel pendant for Angie. The letter mentioned Angie specifically, thanking her for the care she administered and expressing hope that her husband found a fishing partner.
“My managers were overwhelmed that a traveler received this gift and expression of thanks from a patient,” said Angie. “That was really significant.”
3. Freedom to adapt to life stages and events
For individuals considering the field of travel nursing, Angie recommends planning around the needs of your current stage of life.
For Angie, this meant planning for a stage when her children were out of school and settled. And even in her present stage, she works with her recruiter as family needs arise.
When her daughter was expecting a baby, Angie sought an assignment closer to home. Shalena helped secure Angie a position in her daughter’s hometown, where she was able to be nearby and help when the baby was born. Once her daughter and baby were settled, Angie went back to another travel assignment in Florida.
For individuals in stages of greater flexibility, Angie wholeheartedly recommends the travel nursing lifestyle.
“If someone is single, perhaps just finishing school, I recommend getting your two years’ experience and then jumping in,” said Angie. “It would be an awesome time to go. Enjoy it! What is there to lose? You might as well go for it!”
For more information about travel nursing, or to speak with a recruiter, visit RNnetwork.