Of course, most of what’s kept me out of the blog-zone for so long is college. It has a way of doing that. In the face of a coming test, priorities shift; you find yourself up at all hours of the night, you end up reciting reams of information to disinterested people, and you wake up realizing that you were dreaming about what will happen if you forget it all on the day of the test, check-off, clinical, whatever. There is a lingering fear, especially on finals week, that if you hold your head in any position but erect, the information so laboriously acquired will run out of your ears, like sand or something.
However, I’m through, and I made it. The week after finals, I always have the sensations I experienced after my first roller-coaster ride—thankfullness (to be alive), excitement (that I accomplished something new) and anticipation (to go all over again).
Here’s what I did this recently-finished semester:
I survived (and passed) three nursing check-offs. (A check-off is sort of like a driving test—you exhibit your skill in front of an expert, after which you are qualified to perform the said skill in the hospital setting. ) I am qualified to perform tracheostomy care, insert IV’s and hang the fluids, and install a foley catheter.
I made it through a semester of clinicals, where I worked from 7:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at a hospital every Wednesday, along with a group of fellow-students and an instructor. I definitely will not miss waking up at 5:00 a.m. in the morning to be at my post by 6:30! But I had a wonderful instructor, Krista, and a fantastic bunch of fellow-students, who were always willing to offer advice, help or critisizms when needed.
I survived and passed many health-assessment check-offs. I can now do a head-to-toe examination, including auscultating lung, heart and bowel sounds, testing cranial nerves, and testing reflexes (love that reflex hammer!).
I struggled through round after round of pharmacology (the study of drugs). We had five tests and a final—for each test, we had to know about sixty different types of drugs. And I do mean know them; trade names, generic names, how they work, what they do, what side effects they have, what the antidote is, who should it not be given to, how and where it’s administered, etc. And the final was comprehensive! But at least I now know, among other things, the antidote for morphine overdose, how a beta-blocker works, and the differences between the classes of diuretics.
I waded through a course on nutrition (nursing-flavored). Not only did this help reacquaint me with my old biochemistry friends carbs, lipids, and proteins, but I also learned about nutrition throughout the life-cycle and through a variety of illnesses.
I won’t even mention all the lectures I sat through, some fascinating, some infuriatingly boring. Oh well. They’re over.
Wheww! I’m exhausted thinking about it all! Anyway, I hope I have slightly excused my absence from MN2B. I hope to be posting again shortly, this time with OBX pictures!