Monday, January 21, 2013

Nerves Getting the Best of Me

Nervous for what you may ask?  Nervous for tomorrow being my first day back to school for my final semester of school.  
Nervous because why?  Let me list a few for you: 1) because I’m scared of being overwhelmed with mountains of homework like last semester where I had a hard time keeping things organized.  2) because I’m worried about the (two) 10-12 hour clinical days per week, consisting of up to four patients at a time (yikes). 3) worried that I won’t be able to absorb my time with friends and the small moments of nursing school and that before I know it, I’ll be done.  4) most importantly worried I won’t pass the NCLEX at the end.

I’ve been reading blogs of friends who have graduated and passed the boards, and I’ve even see upper classmen live to tell about how their strategies worked for them or not.  I’ve listened and stored lots of advice in my brain.  And I’m not saying I’m better or unique, but I just think I’m going to have a harder time passing the darn thing than most other people. 

I can almost guarantee I’ll take longer than the minimal 75 questions to pass the NCLEX, and if the screen does shut off after 75 questions it won’t be because I passed.  I mean at least that’s how I feel deep down inside.  I almost hate to admit that because I don’t know what the Lord has in store for me.  Maybe I’ll pass just fine because that’s the picture he painted for my future instead of my insecure one, and if so then AMEN!  But what if I’m humbled and I don’t pass the first time, what if I don’t pass the second time.  I’m not prepared for that! 

I don’t think I could broadcast my exam date even on my blog because I’d be so embarrassed if I didn’t pass the first time around.  But I guess if I do announce a date for when I’m taking the NCLEX, and I don’t write a follow-up within a week after taking it, then you’ll know it didn’t go well.  UGH!!!  Why is this so hard to even want to deal with it?  It’s just another exam, testing me on content and application; I’ve been doing this for 4 semesters so far, so I should have nothing to worry about, right?  Right!

Then why am I so nervous?

Friday, January 18, 2013

Unpretentious Birth

Nothing pleases me more while working on the birthing center, than when the call light goes off for one of the rooms with a laboring mom ready to push.  I get all excited and giddy, and pick up the pace to grab a sterile cart that I’ve already prepared for this moment.  Usually the nurse I’m following grabs the baby scale and together we enter the room. 

The look in the mother’s eyes is not of shock or that we’ve intruded, despite the fact that sometimes her bottom is exposed.  Instead her look is of desperation to get the baby out and end the exhaustion that labor is putting her through. 

The mother we took care of that day already had given birth once before, that took over two hours of actual pushing, and she was afraid this labor would be the same.  The nurse reassured her by saying that every pregnancy was different and we would know more after she started pushing.

Sometimes I am caught off guard by the sounds laboring moms can make, or how they talk to their spouses because of frustration.  This mom didn’t say much and every time she felt the pain increase from another contraction, she would cover her mouth as if to control herself to stay quiet.  She also purchased a birthing gown prior to coming to the hospital, and the nurse did her best to push it out of the way so it wouldn’t get soiled.  However, she was quite modest and kept pushing her gown down to cover her vagina, so her hubby and her mother wouldn’t see her exposed. 

The actual pushing of active labor only lasted about half an hour, especially after we talked her into dropping her knees down allowing for a wider opening.  Also, we put the head of the bed down straightening out the vaginal canal.  I was thrilled to take over the “counting to 10” for my nurse while she caught up on some charting during a few of the earlier pushes.  This made me feel like I was the nurse coaching the mom through the labor process, if only for a few pushes.

Moments later, the baby was on the warmer getting cleaned up and healthy apgar scores were being tallied.  Mom was saying over and over how beautiful the baby looked, dad was a blubbering mess (which I LOVE to see), and grandma was hugging and kissing her daughter for doing such a good job.  To be honest, even my eyes were a bit misty.

This never gets old to me; I love to watch the miracle of birth happen over and over!  I am so very blessed and happy with my decision to work here.  Now if only I could get a job as a nurse on this unit, I’d be all set!  Oh and also, between me and the nurse, together we were able to keep mom’s gown from getting too dirty.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

New Year = New Word = Flexible

I know the second weekend in January is already upon me, but I’ve been inspired to write a New Year posting similar to this one one.

Carrie from Chasing Big Dreams wrote about a word(s) that summed up her 2012, along with a few new words to charge forward with into 2013, rather than New Year Resolutions.

Since I've never heard of this concept before, I was not able to sum up my 2012 into one word.  However, looking forward to the possibilities of my future this year, I think I have found a word that will fit nicely.

Flexible defined by as: Capable of bending easily without breaking.  Able to be easily modified to respond to altered circumstances or conditions.

Here are a few of the areas that will pull and twist me, hopefully without breaking me:

~Finishing my last semester of nursing school

~Being supportive of my husband’s new job responsibilities that will take him on business trips more often leaving us without him

~Cleaning and purging my home in the attempt to get it ready to sell

~Keeping said home clean during “showings” from the Realtor (with two messy teenagers)

~Selling our house and possibly living in an apartment if only temporarily

~Studying for the NCLEX (state boards) AND passing them

~Searching, interviewing, and accepting a nursing job

~Saying goodbye to my family members and friends

~Moving to Texas

~Finding a home

~Adjusting to the positive and negatives of moving

~Learning the southern lifestyle

~Starting out as a fresh baby nurse

I think that’s about it.  I would love to put my new word to the test, and see if in January 2014, I was able to be flexible.  Here's to the new year!

Friday, January 4, 2013

Last Winter Break Before Graduation

This is my last winter break from school before I graduate in May with my BSN, and in a previous post I mentioned a few things I wanted to do with my family.  Here's what I've been up to:

Sledding with the kids

Reading more of the Bible

Making Gingerbread/Graham Cracker houses

Watching the snow fall, then melt, then fall, etc.

Enjoying my favorite cookie (peanut buttered Ritz crackers dunked in milk chocolate Almond Bark)

Working out more at the gym

Enjoying my Christmas lights (since this picture has been taken, the tree has come down)

Ultimately I couldn't have asked for a more productive winter break.  I start school in a few short weeks and until then, I am picking up more hours at work.  I hope you all had wonderful Christmas and New Year celebrations.

PS I couldn't forget the dreaded studying for NCLEX that I'll be doing as well.

Thursday, January 3, 2013


It’s amazing to be called an ambassador as a Christian in 2 Corinthians 5: 11-21.  Many times I have spoken to others, of my zest and zeal for Christ without realizing there could be questions that I may not have the answers to.  That just because my emotions are electrifying would not be enough to carry me through a conversation without knowledge and truth from the Word to back up what I’m saying.

I find this a sore spot in my job as an ambassador for nursing too.  I may have the best intention to help heal others through serviceable hands, a willing heart, and empathy, but without knowledge I won’t get very far.  I’d be pretty useless.  If people rely on me for correct answers, then I better know what I’m talking about otherwise they won’t trust me and trust is very hard to work on earning back.

I had a conversation with my mother the other day regarding the way a medication worked (statins) and I was corrected by my mother (she is the patient taking this medication).  That was a humbling experience and even though she did not know the conversation had that kind of effect on me, I felt knocked off my block of understanding and knowledge.  I felt shaken on my foundational skills as a soon-to-be graduate nurse.  It was not the fact that I did not know the action of the medication, it was that I thought I did.  I could have led my mother in the wrong direction and if she did not know any better she could have believed my misguidance.
If this mishap could easily have been done regarding medication and someone's life in my hands and losing their trust as their nurse, then how much more damaging would it be to lead them astray in their spiritual life?  

I would never intentionally tell something to someone incorrectly, but because of my ignorance I’m motivated to learn more conscientiously.