Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Group Work

This past Monday I had a group presentation, and this presentation marked the end of a long run. Since January I have spent a significant part of each week with this group. Together we experienced our pediatric rotation, psyche rotation, medical-surgical rotation, and obstetrics. We have had a patient die, watched new patients be born, spoken with poor souls who are truly crazy, watched children recover, cleaned up a lot of poop, started IV's on each other, given each others shots, taught each other, learned from each other, and grown as future nurses together.

Next week I will start boot camp. I will be placed on 6 North at Vanderbilt Medical Center. This is a neuro unit - so there will be patients who have had CVA's (strokes), seizures, head trauma, etc. I'm looking forward to the whole experience and am getting excited about starting year 2. Boot camp will provide me with a new group of partners. There will be six of us this time; 4 of us worked together in the fall semester, so there is some familiarity there.

Yesterday concluded all of my classes. I still have some tests to take and 4 weeks of clinical to experience, but for the most part - year 1 is almost complete. It's amazing how fast this year has gone, it's amazing how much has happened, it's amazing how much I've learned. But the journey is only half way over and really just beginning.

Knight in Shining Armor or Desperado

So Monday I went to school and stepped into the student lounge to put my lunch in the refrigerator. I realize as I walk in that there is a commotion going on. Check you mailbox a friends says to me. So I walk over to the mailboxes and find the letter that has been placed in every nursing students mailbox - this is more than 300 people. It read as follows:

"My name is Tray and I need your help with something. I met a really awesome girl at a swing dance which was held at Otter Creek church in Brentwood on June 16. I've been hoping to run into her again but she hasn't been dancing there since. Unfortunately I didn't get her name or contact infor. I know I know . . . the dance ends at 11 and at 10:30 I was like "I should get her contact info". . . and she had left a little bit prior to that. While we were dancing she told me a lot about herself. . . except her name. She is a 2nd year Nurse Practitioner student. She works part time at Vanderbilt medcial center. She also lives in an apartment off campus with several roommates. I realize at this point I am describing about half of the nursing students. She is blond, about 23/24, nice eyes, works out, nice skin . . . nice everything. If you're the one I'm looking for, send me a message. It would be great to talk to you again. If you think you know her . . . help me out!!"

So the guy brought these letters in some time last week. Funny thing is he hadn't known there were mailboxes, so he left and had copies made. Some individuals saw them and alerted security and then another individual went behind him and pulled most of the letters out of everyone's mailboxes (I keep some papers in my mailbox and so she missed the letter). Also, the 2nd year students aren't even on campus any more and are pretty much done from what we understand - so "the girl" isn't even on campus. The girl he described truly is half of the 300 people in the program.

So some people found the whole thing to be incredbily sweet and endearing. Other people found the whole thing to be creepy and stalker like - maybe she didn't give you her name for a reason. So everyone went and checked out his myspace page (which I have still yet to do) and made further observations.

The whole thing has been kind of funny.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Summer School and Boot Camp

Tomorrow starts our 7th week of summer school. We finished clinicals one week ago and so we are completely in the class room for the next three weeks. Since we aren't in clinicals right now, we are focusing on Community Health and learning about the various roles a nurse plays within the community. We are also going to do a disaster training seminar, which I'm really excited about, because at the end of the seminar we will be certified with the American Red Cross. So if a disaster strikes, we will be able to help (not that we can go with school and all).

At the end of nine weeks, we get two days off and then starts the infamous Boot Camp. Boot Camp will last for three weeks. During boot camp we are expected to act in the role of a nurse. We will have multiple patients and perform in the clinical setting as any nurse would. By this time we are supposed to be nearly completely almost trained - we'll see how it goes. I'm excited for boot camp and nervous too. As with anything though, you really aren't proficient at something until you do it all the time. I look forward to that in the next few weeks.

Then when boot camp is over - I cross the bridge!


There are consequences to every action. People often tend to think of consequences as something negative, but there are positive consequences too. Consequences are just the result of a decision we make or an action we commit. We can't always see the consequences that occur because of a choice we make and we don't always understand or even know how they impact other peoples lives. Consequences can often be life altering. We are often found to be victims of consequence and change. But those are the circumstances that make up life.

The past 18 months have produced a significant amount of changes in my life. I suppose I have fallen victim to consequence and circumstance. Ironically, the majority of the changes I have encountered which have so dramatically altered my life, were generated by those that surround me and not be me at all. It's amazing how other people can so significantly affect us.

Life altering events cause us to question - this is only natural. We question what the real meaning of life is. What's the purpose of it all? What is God's plan for me? Does God have a plan for me? Am I doing what I'm supposed to be doing? Am I being who I am supposed to be?

In the past 18 months I have gained and I have lost. I have been blessed and I have grieved. I have felt full and I have felt significant lonliness. I feel I have found my purpose and yet I feel more lost than I ever have before.

It's funny to every think that one is in control of their own life.

This past weekend I traveled to Birmingham and watched one of my greatest friends get married. She was absolutely beautiful and I am so happy for her. She will stay in Birmingham and I will dearly miss her.

A couple of weeks ago I recieved a beautiful gift and I look forward to the joy she will bring.
A few weeks ago my little friend Haydn had her preschool graduation (she's still in preschool though).
A few weeks ago my twin moved to another state and took a part of me with her.

A month ago I learned of a friend's struggle that has left me confused and grieved.

Seven months ago I observed a most beautiful event. It is amazing to watch him grow.
Seven and a half months ago I participated in a close friends wedding. It was a true dream. She moved to Ohio and I dearly miss her. Eleven months ago I quit my job and started on a two year journey.

A year ago I recieved my second little friend and she has brought a smile to my heart.
15 months ago I learned I had been accepted to school and was excited and scared.

18 months ago I was on top of the world.
And there has been so much more. There is still so much more to come.