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  1. Elliott, Brenda PhD, RN


Abstract: Background: Although being deployed gives military nurses opportunities for personal and professional growth, their psychological equilibrium is often strained more than they thought imaginable. Limited research has focused on how soldiers and families cope with the disappointment of the postdeployment phase, which can result from unrealistic expectations. Research questions: Military nurses were asked these questions about the postdeployment phase. 1. How do you describe your experience? 2. What's the meaning of the experience? 3. What strategies influenced your return to personal and professional roles? Method: The researcher conducted a qualitative study by interviewing 10 military nurses, then re-presented a narrative of what many nurses experience after returning home from deployment. Results: Seven themes emerged describing these nurses' experience and its meaning. Application to nursing practice: Several strategies were developed for future nurses to manage postdeployment periods. Conclusions: Conducting narrative inquiry contributes to the use of the qualitative method in nursing research. Healthcare professionals' increased knowledge and sensitivity can help them recognize the issues and challenges military nurses may face after returning home.