A nurse in the making

hoover vacuumIn August, I was sucked up by a vacuum. Not like a quantum vacuum in space … more like a giant Hoover.

I remember sitting in my living room minding my own business when all of the sudden I found myself in an enormous pile of crap (minus the fecal matter). It was more like a neighborhood leveled by a tornado. I was surrounded by a plethora of unfamiliar faces, an abundance of information, bandages, textbooks, needles, syringes, flying papers, catheters, dressings, notebooks, and naked plastic dummies.

Between nursing homes and uncomfortable checkoff experiences, my first semester in nursing school was filled with interesting adventures.

The semester was off to a great start with Be Ready Camp …

be ready campSixth graders from across Alabama met at the Space and Rocket Center on Sept. 18 to demonstrate their knowledge of emergency preparedness. My Health Promotion class was lucky enough to play victims at Be Ready Camp and have it count towards our grade! Unfortunately, I did not wear all the blood and gore that some of my fellow classmates did, but I did test out my acting skills. I discovered that I am an excellent screamer! Perhaps, I should consider this for one of my next movies!

Tears were shed!

nursing schoolEveryone cries once in nursing school … I just happened to be the first! This is quite embarrassing when you are 10 years older than most of the students in your class, but I can laugh about it now. I learned a valuable lesson from this experience … never recap your needles after giving an injection!

Cleaning privates is my specialty …

I will admit that most of my anxiety this semester was centered around bathing naked old ladies. I spent weeks worrying about the day that I would actually have to peel the clothes off a 90-year-lady (or man) and clean everything she has to offer. The day finally arrived, and I am now happy to say that I did it with confidence!

I can put a catheter in any ole’ dummy …

plastic dummyPutting an indwelling catheter in a plastic penis ranks high among my most uncomfortable moments this semester. To avoid all the messy details, I will provide you with the highlights of this moment: three pairs of ripped gloves, a huge betadine mess, and a shortage of time. Somehow I passed! I wish I had pictures of the disaster I created!

Was it everything I expected?

nursing school funI am not sure what I expected as I sat in my office 1.5 years ago filling out an application for school on company time. Honestly, I was not expecting much. My immediate concerns were to cast off my evil journalism job and to move forward into some new role (almost anything would do at that moment in time … drug dealer, prostitute). Whether it was the fumes from burnt popcorn or the numerous meetings that went nowhere, I decided to return to Huntsville to start my adventures in a new career!

The vacuum has spit me out momentarily and is allowing me to catch my breath …

It is scheduled to begin cleaning again on Jan. 11. It is time to enjoy the lazy life for the next month!

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4 Responses to A nurse in the making

  1. Ang Henson says:

    I cannot wait to see you! It BLOWS that you live (not even) 10 minutes from me, and I haven’t seen you in FO’eva!

  2. jmo says:

    Congrats on making it through this semester. I know you worked hard!

  3. Karen says:

    First, congrats on getting into nursing school! I have a site for nursing students and a facebook page and I like to spread the word about nursing school projects that are out of the classroon/hospital setting. Can you let me know more about your Health Promotions Class and how helping with the 6th graders was part of your grade? It sounds like it was a great experience.
    P.S. Great pictures : )

    • My health promotions class was awesome in that I think 50% of our grade came from projects and participation in events to help spread the word that preventive healthcare is far more important than waiting until illness occurs and using maintenance healthcare. I am actually extremely interested in this particular branch of healthcare but most medical insurance plans do not cover anything until sickness happens.

      The Be Ready Camp was 10-15% of our grade (maybe more … 1.5 years ago since I took this class). It was an exercise for 6th graders to help them prepare for community disasters and how they might respond. It was interesting the kind of things they were learning. I know that I would not know how to identify a person in shock at 12 years old. Or, much less, trying to bandage up a person who is losing a lot of blood quickly. As nursing students, we were the actors since we knew how these injuries might affect a person and how they might act in such a situation. The event was put on by First Responders in our area and local medical & safety departments.

      I added a link to your site in my “Interesting sites” on the right sidebar. Even though people do not comment on my posts as much as I would like, I can track the traffic to my site. I get over 100 visitors per day, so maybe some of them are nursing students :) Good luck spreading the word!

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