I started the year looking forward to the career opportunities ahead, anticipating more school, and feeling quite confident overall that I was headed in the right direction. I am ending the year on the flip side: burnt out and wondering every day if I (we) made the right decisions.
I’ve spent most of my life looking ahead to the Next Big ______. Not content to rest on my laurels (or for that matter, to rest at all), I graduated with my Master’s in 2012 and immediately asked “What’s next”. I told myself this time it was for S, but we all know that this move benefited me just as much as it did him (if not more so). We left stable jobs and a city we loved to put 3,000 miles between us and our family, forcing S to wait a year to establish residency in a new state before we could afford for him to start PA school prereqs. I dove headfirst into a program that I am busting my a$$ to succeed in, and still wondering every day if it’s putting me in a professional place I actually want to be. S and I are like two ships in the night between our work and school schedules.
Rather than hitting the pause button and taking time to enjoy life-as-it-was, I forged ahead and pushed us headlong into life-as-I-thought-it-should-be. And I’ve never felt more lost. Irony of ironies.
Nonetheless, I did set a few goals for myself this year. Let’s take a look at how they fared in the midst of my self-induced guilt-o-rama…
- Walk the walk. Ha. We won’t go there. Anyway, The Holistic Nurse (and every other blog series) are on hiatus. Self-care has been supplanted by survival…for now.
- Get certified. I did complete the Med-Surg review course at work but when I found out the cost of taking the test (Hint: $$$$) my eyes bugged out a little bit. Instead I’m going to sit for the oncology certification course in the Fall of 2014, after I’ve completed my oncology NP classes. I figure they’ll prepare me just as well for the exam and I’m paying for them anyway. Any certification counts toward a bonus at work…this one will just take a little longer. I’m hoping to take those earnings and treat S and I to a much needed vacation.
- Get credentialed in chemo administration. Done. Did the class, got signed off at our cancer center. Dread giving chemo. I’m just full of irony today.
- Pursue clinical ladder. Also done. I’m a “Clinical Nurse III” as of August (and a charge nurse and a preceptor). The whole experience was quite eye-opening. But at least my paycheck thanks me. And maybe, just maybe, I’ll have it in me to go for Clinical Nurse IV. Maybe.
In other news, I’ve decided not to make a “New Year’s Resolution” post for 2014. For one thing, I’ve neglected this blog far too often and I don’t want to make content-related promises I’m not sure I can keep. For another, I’m hoping that by not concentrating on the future, I can better grab hold of (and appreciate) the present. Even if the present is going to be tough.
Thanks for sticking with me through a tough year. May 2014 be full of moments to celebrate!