December 6, 2007

I feel like I've been in nursing school forever, and it's only been 16 weeks

The thing about these 8 week classes is that they are very intense and half the time, there is no break between classes, so it feels like you're rolling from one semester to another non-stop.  While we were waiting for our practical yesterday, I realized that it's only been one semester.  One!   Last week, a classmate and I spoke to the next two cohorts coming in and it felt like we were seasoned vets counseling recruits, and we're only two courses ahead of them.


Three glorious weeks off is coming up.  I'm drinking a bottle of champagne on the 11th and plan to wake up sometime on the 13th.

So the practical:  I passed.  I ran through an assessment at 90 mph because I was afraid that if I stopped I'd forget everything, but caught everything I needed to.  Of course, I was subject to teasing...I do get a bit of that, actually.  My classmates are convinced that because I do well on tests that I'm some type of nursing student genius and everything must come easy to me.  They don't realize how much I have to put into the skills portion--when I go in saying that I'm nervous or worried, I'm not saying it to make them feel better or to try to be emphatic.  I truly am terrifed and worried!

Anything involving filling out a Scantron sheet:  no problem. 

Put me in front of a human:  watch me swallow my own tongue and forget how to use basic equipment.  

I had been rehearsing my physical assessment for five days because when we went into the simulation lab the week prior, I stood there in front of the (normal) mannequin and froze.  I went in knowing I had to do a head-to-toe assessment and I could not even speak, could not think of what to do first.  I just stood there and stared at it.  That worried me--what if I do that in hospital?  That's not going to go over very well with my clinical instructors, now is it?   


So anyhow, we lost another student--but this time for a good reason.  This one realized that nursing wasn't for her, that it was making her miserable.  So she decided to get out.  Good for her for realizing that--that's better than wasting two years' of time, money and stress to do something just to make her family happy.   From what I heard, no one failed the practical which is also good.  Several students did poorly on the last test though, so there's pressure on them for the final.  There's only three tests in this class leaving one with no wiggle room.