• I Wasn't Strong Like This When I Started Out

  • True Stories of Becoming a Nurse
  • By: Lee Gutkind
  • Narrated by: Tavia Gilbert
  • Length: 8 hrs and 36 mins
  • 4.4 out of 5 stars (695 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

I Wasn't Strong Like This When I Started Out, a collection of true narratives, reflects the dynamism and diversity of nurses who provide the first vital line of patient care. Here, nurses remember their first "sticks", first births, and first deaths and reflect on what gets them though long, demanding shifts and keeps them in the profession.

The stories reveal many voices from nurses at different stages of their careers: One nurse-in-training longs to be trusted with more "important" procedures while another questions her ability to care for nursing home residents. An efficient young emergency room nurse finds his life and career irrevocably changed by a car accident. A nurse practitioner wonders whether she has violated professional boundaries in her care for a homeless man with AIDS. And a home-care case manager is the sole attendee at a funeral for one of her patients.

What connects these stories is the passion and strength of the writers who struggle against burnout and bureaucracy to serve their patients with skill, empathy, and strength.

©2013 Creative Nonfiction Foundation (P)2015 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"Beautifully written stories." (Booklist)

"Tavia Gilbert’s narration of these essays written by nurses is beautiful and profound....  Gilbert translates all the emotions, including fear, gallows humor, gratitude, and empathy." (AudioFile)

What listeners say about I Wasn't Strong Like This When I Started Out

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A nurse must read!

Great narrator, this keeps all books flowing. Good experiences, very true to the profession. from my 27 year experience. Gotta Love it😘😷

24 people found this helpful

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Kept my interest

I do not work in the medical field, yet hold those that do in the highest regard. This book kept my interest. It was fascinating to hear so many nursing perspectives - from a mercy ship to pediatrics.

21 people found this helpful

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Disappointing

All the different seemed to have a negative outlook or outcome disappointed with. This book

10 people found this helpful

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Great short stories about nursing

Loved it! Great short stories from a nurse's perspective! Very ingesting to see it from the other side.

8 people found this helpful

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amazing!

I'm just ahvac tech, who's life has been touched by a nurse of and on in my life God bless you all.

7 people found this helpful

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Was not able to read it

Any additional comments?

Started great and I think I will be great listen but I would never know. This was little too much for me, I too faint hearted for this. Some of the stories are little hard to bear.

6 people found this helpful

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Exceptional compilation of nurses' stories!

I have been an RN and an NP for ten years collectively, and every one of these nurses' stories resonated with me! This compilation has inspired me during a time in my career when I'm at a loss as to what to do next. Thank you so much for sharing!!

4 people found this helpful

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Review of I wasn't strong like this when I fist started

As a nurse for more than 34 yrs, I totally related to this book!
I enjoyed every minute! The stories were real & engaging

3 people found this helpful

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  • Al
  • 04-13-18

RNs will enjoy this book

I could relate to this book as could most nurses because of the honest and insightful way it was written. Anyone who is considering going into the nursing profession may want to read this book. It is well written.
I am a retired RN and I can relate to many of these experiences.

2 people found this helpful

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Book about emotional perspective

Any additional comments?

This book is about the emotional struggles of nurses; if that's your thing, you will enjoy this. I, however, did not. It is still a good book, however, and I think this would be an important book for anyone who is a nurse, or has a nurse in their family.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-19-17

Loved it

I really enjoyed this book. It was heartbreaking, funny and inspiring all at once. It's made me think more seriously about pursuing a career in nursing!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Laani Wright
  • 08-04-21

Loved it

This was a great collection of nursing stories and I would recommend it to nursing students to gain further insight into the industry.

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  • Cill
  • 08-14-20

beautifully written, great narrator

i would buy this audiobook again. it was perfect. great collection of nursing stories. 5 star

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  • Anonymous User
  • 03-06-19

beautiful

as a new RN I heavily enjoyed this read with a bit of everything you can't go wrong with this read

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