When I first became a nurse 40 years ago, there weren't many options for women. You either became a teacher or a nurse, so I chose nursing! I started my career as a medical surgical nurse, but have been working as an oncology nurse for 33 years. Initially, I worked in an outpatient area within the hospital caring for cancer patients, but now I work for a group of oncologists in private practice. Providing care for cancer patients can be a hard job at times, and people always ask me, "How can you work in oncology, isn't it depressing?" It isn't depressing for me. You do lose patients, but you have to remember that along the way, YOU made a difference in their lives. The patients that do beat cancer come back and see us for routine visits and are always so grateful for all that we did for them when they were struggling and going through a tough time. You have to have a sense of humor to be successful in this specialty and it helps to get to know your patients outside of their disease. They are people with hopes and dreams just like you, and it helps to connect with them about their everyday interests while they are in your care.