Week 1 Down the Hatch

Holy syllabi!

This week was a not-so-gentle introduction to the life of a full-time nursing student.  Gone are the days of one course and 4-hour clinical shifts at nursing homes.  Welcome to reality!

Classes will be Monday-Wednesday this semester.  I’m jazzed about all of them, albeit intimidated by the enormous reading and writing load that they collectively represent.  Because this is a second-degree program, they emphasize critical thinking and writing skills from the get-go.  Apparently our life experiences that have led us here justify throwing us in headfirst.  But it’s all good.  Davidson didn’t exactly have a light workload (understatement of the millennium), so as I soon as I complete the mental transition to full-time studenthood I think I’ll be fine.

However, clinicals are another story.  I do a good job of keeping the terror off my face, but this is a whole new level of challenges that is going to kick my ass and take my name.  Repeatedly.  Starting next Thursday.

We met briefly with our psych clinical instructor this morning. Funny story, actually.  Our Mental Health prof told us we were supposed to meet in the third floor lobby at the hospital in a very specific location.  So we all show up at the right place (which looked more like a pseudo-lobby and was nowhere near the actual psych unit) and proceed to twiddle our thumbs.  Five minutes after we’re supposed to start, no sign of our instructor and we start to wonder if we’re in the right location.  We conclude that we are and she must be running late.  10, then 15 minutes pass before we exchange cell phone numbers and split up to start looking for any other 3rd floor lobbies.  Nada.  Then one of my classmates gets a phone call from the instructor.  She’s on the third floor lobby of the freaking nursing school!!!  Apparently some lines got crossed.  So needless to say, by the time she got to where we were, it had already been a long morning.  Good news is, she was really nice and really supportive and encouraging about the fact that she was setting us all up to succeed, rather than feel like idiots.  And since our clinical is in a major medical center, we’ll be able to rotate through a number of different psych settings in our 6 weeks: adult, child/adolescent, and chemical dependence.  We’re all psyched (pardon the pun) about that opportunity.

So there you have it.  We have hit the ground running.  Now if you’ll excuse me, I have a paper to write…

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