Friday, January 25, 2013

thoughts on a friday night.

Oh my goodness, I have so much to blog about! I still need to do my monthly year in review posts, talk about my third semester of nursing school, and share pictures and stories of my Christmas break trip to China and Hong Kong (I know!). Well I'll start with baby steps and just ramble about what I've been thinking about tonight.

01. Today marked the end of the second week of my final semester of nursing school, only 14 more weeks to go. Wow, that's scary and exciting to type out! I feel like I just started college yesterday and now I'm almost done. I want to soak up every moment of this semester. Let the soaking begin!

02. I just found out this week that I'll officially be at the VA hospital in the Emergency Room for my FINAL nursing school clinical ever! I am so so excited. Our last clinical placement is way different from our past experiences because now we've been assigned a preceptor (a designated nurse) and we work their schedule. I met my preceptor today, she looks tough but fun and actually graduated from TWU a few years ago. The VA holds a lot of memories for me, during my clinicals there last semester, I had my first patient die right in front of me there, I put my first IV in all alone there, and it was at the VA when I had my first experience of being in the room with a patient when they were just diagnosed with cancer. The VA is a crazy place but the nurses are great teachers, veterans are the best patients, and I kind of secretly love old people so this should be a awesome experience. Maybe I'll become an IV pro after this experience?

03. Today I went back to daily mass for the first time this semester. Did you know that I went to 7am daily mass everyday of Lent last year? Oh daily mass, how I've missed you so! I went to a church near the medical center and it was a pretty neat experience seeing so many patients, wearing masks of course, in attendance. I love that we specifically prayed for the cancer patients at my hospital as well.

04. I signed up to be the peer tutor for the pediatrics class this semester and I'm totally excited about. I took this class last semester so now I'll tutor the class behind me of nursing students once a week. I really love pediatrics (specifically babies and angsty teenagers) but I'm not sure if pediatric nursing is my calling. My first tutoring session is this upcoming Tuesday, let the big bucks start rolling in (kidding)!

05. The roommate/best friend and I had an adventurous week and went out to eat three times! WAY more than we have done before but I've been enjoying the tasty restaurant leftovers this week. On Wednesday we went to the movies, something we never do, and saw Les Miserables! I loved it, I loved it, I loved it. Have you seen it? I'm ready to see it again already!

06. Tonight I'm trying out a new face wash called PanOxyl found out my local and friendly Walgreens. It comes highly recommended from a nurse at work so I'm counting on it to work wonders of my face. I'll keep y'all updated!

07. This summer I had a student nursing externship at a cancer hospital here in Houston and I have luckily been able to keep working at that hospital during the school year. I absolutely love it there. When I worked last weekend, one of my patients asked me what the hardest part of my job was. And after thinking about it, I realized that my favorite part of my job is actually the same as the hardest part. You see every once and a while, we get patients sent over from the ICU that have run out of insurance money, it turns out when you have cancer, it's pretty easy to run out of money. These patients stay on our floor until they're well enough to go home or until cancer takes their life. Sadly, they don't usually get to go home. But you see these patients usually stay on our floor for at least six months, sometimes even a year. And in this time the nurses get to really know these patients, I mean you spend every shift with them for months. You learn about their families and their life before cancer. You look through old photo albums with them and decorate their rooms for every holiday. You think of special things to do with them to try to brighten up their day, like wheeling their bed outside to enjoy some sunshine or letting their wife wheel them off the floor for a secret one hour coffee date downstairs. You learn to understand what they need even when they can't talk anymore. You call the doctor and persuade them into letting the patient's dog come visit because you don't know if they'll ever see it again. This patient was the patient I had every shift I worked since the end of August and he died this morning. It was an honor to get to work with him this year. He taught me so much about listening, and love,  and suffering. He taught me that just being in the room is enough. He taught me that there is always time for hand holding and a little bit of tv watching. Working with him was the hardest part of my job but it was my favorite too. I think there are some patients we'll never forget and he was definitely one of mine.

4 friskies:

Anonymous said...


Natasha said...

You, my dear, are going to be an excellent nurse. It makes me so happy to see such passion for your calling. Get it, girl!

Anonymous said...

This is beautiful. I'm praying for you, you will do great things with great love. Also, I can't wait to see the China pictures.

Caitlin said...

If it's what you want, I really hope you get to keep working there after graduation! It's so wonderful to have a job you love and it's so obvious that you love it there!