Monday, July 29, 2013

Where does the time go?

Wow! Some days it feels like I've been a nurse forever and other days I feel like it was just yesterday that I started! It has been nine months exactly since I started working as a RN. It's everything I hoped it would be and more. I learn something new each and every day. On my drive home from work I feel like my head might explode with all of the information that I am continually trying to process and store in my long term memory..and then there's also the things I try to forget!

I wish I could share all of the experiences I've had so far, the good, the bad, the ugly, the horrifying, the enlightening, the blessings, the tears, the laughter...there's so much I've seen already and I'm just getting started. There's many great things about being a nurse but I'll just share a few of them! Although not necessarily in the order of most important to least important...just simply listed as they come to my never ending mind and thought process!

One of the greatest things about nursing is the fact that I'm not alone! :D This is one of the single most greatest aspects of the health care field and something I am so appreciative of with the people I work with. There's nights where I get bombarded and feel pretty certain I've just been set up to fail. The greatest thing is, I just take a deep breath, assess the situation, come up with a plan of action, and ask for help! I don't think there's ever been a time where I felt I was drowning and didn't have a lifeline right there for me to grab a hold of. Everyone is willing to drop what they're doing to come and assist you at the blink of an eye. If I could give one piece of advice to a new nurse (or any nurse really) is that it's never a sign of failure to ask for help! If you need help, ask for it. There's absolutely no shame in saying, "hey, I'm overwhelmed and could really use a hand!" That's why it's called collaborative care." I love how Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines collaborate, "to work jointly with others or together especially in an intellectual endeavor".  Utilize every resource to the best of your ability and never be embarrassed when you need help. There comes a time when everyone needs assistance and we all need to be willing to lend a hand whenever we can!

The second greatest thing is the impact we nurses are able to make on our patients. Some of our patients we're with for all three days, others we see for a mere hour or so...either way each encounter is an opportunity to make an impact in that persons life. But in reality its the patients that make the impact on us. We learn from our experiences how to relate to our patients. Our patients teach us. They tell us everything that we need to know...the only thing we need to do is listen. They tell us if they're feeling worse, they tell us if something just, "isn't right", they tell us if they're in pain (some like to remind us more than others). They put their health in our hands and trust us to advocate for them. If they need something we're the ones that communicate their needs...we are their voice...when they're in a vulnerable situation and they have to trust in people they've never met before to help them get better...they trust us and they tell us what we need to know.

Another great thing is how our patients change us. I've met people who have every excuse in the world to give up and call it quits, and it's normally those people who show me that they have everything to be thankful for. They're still alive. They're still breathing. I have met some of the most selfless people and I'm so fortunate to say that I've cared for them and been changed because of them. I wish all of my patients that find joy in complaining about little things, for instance, on nights when there's a new admit at three in the morning and the roommate is complaining because they're never going to get to sleep with such noise going on. I wish those patients could meet the person that has cancer and their prognosis is bleak, yet, they can still find the joys in being able to be woken up in the middle of the night...because that means they're still alive. I wish everyone could meet the person who is so excited because they can finally wiggle their toes after weeks of not being able to feel anything. Each person changes us. Each experience gives me a new perspective on life. Every morning I walk out of work I take a deep breath and I give thanks to God that I had the chance to make a difference, and that I had the strength, health, and resources to make it through another night.

Alright, so let me wrap this up before it turns into the next best-selling novel ;) I think one of the most exciting things about being a nurse is learning how to stand up for yourself. Not every patient is a fairytale story. Some really like to put you through the ringer. Some like to test you and like to push you around. An important aspect of nursing is being able to tell your patients that you demand respect. As one of the nurses says when she is being cussed at, "I am not your 'F' word. I will not listen to you speak to me like that, and if this continues I will call security"! There's never an excuse to treat someone like they're dirt. I am typically timid and will put up with crap...but I've learned to stand my ground. It's funny because I was talking with one of the nurses at work and we were saying how we realized that we've taken our new found confidence into our personal lives as well. Meaning we're less likely now to put up with people's shenanigans. We're not the pushovers we used to be. We've learned that it's okay to set boundaries and to tell someone they're over stepping their grounds and they need to take a few steps back! 

There's never a dull moment in nursing. The things people do to themselves, the lessons we learn along the way. The continuing education...There's so much more, but that's all for now. I mean, honestly, where does the time go? So I will leave you with this little cartoon. I'd like to say it's an exaggeration, but uh, I'd be lying because I've had patients in frighteningly similar situations, but that's another story for another time!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Farewell Target!

You wouldn't believe how long I've waited to write this! My days at Target and in retail are over! I have been hired onto the General Medical Unit (GMU) at Presbyterian Hospital. Where 140,000 people apply each year and only 1,200-1,300 are hired annually! My last day at Target was 10/28/2012 and my first day at Presbyterian was 10/29/2012. However, before I move on to bigger and better things I would like to take a few paragraphs to reminisce on the things I won't miss, the things I will miss, and what I'm looking forward to! Sounds like fun, right?! Let's begin:

What I won't miss: 
  • People coming to me in the fitting room and asking, "did my (kid/spouse/sibling) go in there?" ...I always held back a sarcastic remark and bit my tongue so I wouldn't say something like 'I have 7 people back here, have no idea who you are, and have no idea who your kid is!' Instead of saying that I would simply say, "You know, I have no idea, you're more than welcome to go back and yell their name!" :D
  • Parents dropping popcorn on the floor, picking it up, going to put it in their mouth, then re-thinking that idea and giving it to their children instead. What's even better is when they leave the popcorn on the floor and roll their carts over it multiple times and then come to me and say, "oh, there's some popcorn crushed all over there!" 
  • The sound of people rustling through clothes/hangers on my freshly zoned rack. Don't they know how hard I worked to finger space all of those items? 
  • Finding half full or empty Starbucks/sodas hidden on shelves, under clothes, and left dumped on the floor. There are trashcans for that!
  • Phone calls on the holidays asking if we're open...the funny thing is that they have to listen to our greeting which tells them that we're open!
  • Guests coming up to the cash register saying, "Make sure those come up the right price...the sign says 5 for $20!!!" ...if they ever took math they'd know that the original price is $4 which means they will most definitely ring up 5 for 20...I simply tell the guest, "Oh trust me, they will ring up the correct price!" :D 
  • Holidays...'Nuff said!
  • People trying on 29 items and not getting a single item and not hanging up rude!
  • Individuals dropping items on the floor, looking at me, looking at the item, and proceeding to walk away from the item! Yeah, I saw that!
  • Tables that have folded items on better take a picture while you can because as soon as you turn your back the tables are a mess all over again!
  • Activewear - more specifically - zoning and putting those items active wear you have 5 pants that are almost exactly the same, but one has a thicker waist band and the stripe down the leg of the other pant is just a little thicker than the other one!
  • Managers...when you tell them something it goes in one ear and out the other...Managers motto is: Do as I say, not as I do!
  • Retail and the people who shop it!
  • The paychecks

Alright...onto a brighter note...Here's what I am looking forward to:
  • Being able to shop at Target!!! :D
What will I miss?
  • I will miss the friends that I've made along the way...let Target continue to motivate you to get a college education and get the heck out of retail!!! :D

Monday, October 1, 2012

Take a moment... I just thought I would share a little piece of my's a candid moment with Maggie! :) 

As most of you know I'm taking a math class right now so that I can go on for my BSN and first of all can I just say how crazy it is to go from taking classes that are specifically for your major and then going back to pre-req classes...but that's besides the point. 

This is a hybrid class so that means that you have to read your book, do the homework, and then come to class to 'fill in the blanks'. Well that's all fine and dandy if people would do the homework..however..people don't! 

There's a person in my class who has a particularly difficult time every class and today was no exception. While it was a hard subject if you had read the material prior to class it made way more sense while the instructor reviewed how to solve the problems. However, like we humans tend to do, this student still wasn't understanding how to solve the problem. They asked the instructor to explain why she was doing what she was doing and how she got to a certain step and the instructor answered with slight sarcasm...this then fed the students frustration so she wasn't even able to focus on the problem at hand and just became irate. So the instructor looks at me and says, "help her with that will you?"...and she went on to the next part of the lecture. 

So I'm sitting next to this student who is beyond help at this point as she is just completely frustrated with the problem, teacher, and situation. I tell her to take a deep breath, and to start from the beginning...well it just wasn't happening...she couldn't start over...she couldn't let go the fact that the teacher had completely dissed her...and she certainly couldn't see how it was possible to solve this type of question. She was beyond consolable and as tenderly and kindheartedly as I tried she didn't want to have anything to do with my help. I simply told her, "I'm sorry, I see you're frustrated and I hear that you don't understand how to solve this...when you're ready to start fresh, I will be here!" Well, she didn't speak to me the rest of could focus on the lecture.

What did I gain from this experience?

Sometimes we all just need to take a moment and put everything into perspective! I don't know if that student had prepared for class (she could have and just didn't understand the concept)...and I don't know if my instructor had a bad day or what (because she acted like it)...and I'm sure I could have worded things a little better (even though I thought I did a good job)...but come on people! We're all human! It's so easy to get caught up in a moment and think about ourselves...we're all guilty of it...but next time you find yourself in a crappy situation...take a second...take a breath...put things into perspective...and carry on (hopefully in a more compassionate manner)!!

So this, my dear friends, is the moral of my story: The next time you're in math class...sit by someone else! (hahaha just kidding) On a more serious note...when you find yourself (or a group of individuals) in a tight spot, remember that it's okay to take a moment!

Friday, September 21, 2012

I can add a couple letters to my name!

A near empty bank account and a couple of years worth of complete dedication all worth adding the two letters "RN" to my name! That's right..I'm a registered nurse. You can go to  and click on license verification and look me up. Unbelievable. I can hardly believe it. 

I was at a friends house holding her precious newborn when I got the picture message from my friend that had tested the same day with me. Her name was up...which could only mean one thing! I carefully pulled my phone out of my pocket being as quiet as I could be, I waited patiently for my phone to load the webpage. I then waited patiently again for it to reload after I entered my name (trying to keep in perspective how lucky I am that I only had to wait about 42 hours until my name was up on the board of nursing website while both of my grandmothers had to wait weeks to get something in the mail saying that they had passed). Then the page came up with my license number and I did the most amazing silent dance you've ever seen!! :) That's right...I've got moves you've never seen! 

It's so exciting hearing from all of my friends their success stories with the NCLEX! I would like to know the statistics of my graduating class and their passing the boards because we're some pretty amazing and smart (good looking and hilarious I might add) people. 

Now we're all saying prayers as we submit our resumes and hope to hear something soon from our prospective employers! So until such a time comes that's all folks! :D

Margaret Rosecrans, RN

Thursday, September 13, 2012

My Date with Destiny

A huge sigh of relief, a pat on the back, and a round of applause! My NCLEX is behind me!! I'm still waiting for official results, but according to the Pearson Vue Trick, which is pretty legit; I passed! I'll explain more about that shortly, but, let me give you a little detour through my NCLEX experience. 

August 29, 2012:

I received my Authorization To Test (ATT) which meant I could schedule my NCLEX. Initially, I took the soonest date open which was September 19, however, the next day my friend said she was able to register for the being the anxious person I am, I looked online and sure enough, they'd opened up a sooner date to test, so I took it!

I made a decision this day to tell only a select few that I would be taking my NCLEX. I didn't want people badgering me on test day with questions etc. as I knew that would only make me more nervous than I needed to be! That was the best decision for those of you who have the NCLEX ahead of you, that may be something you want to consider! But then agian, maybe it's not...who knows! :)

August 29-September 10 included non-stop studying and practice-test-taking! Thanks to Kaplan who I took a prep-course through. Every day I was doing at least 150 questions a day that were all application and analysis type questions (translation: they were the type of questions that are above the line of passing on the NCLEX)

Tuesday, September 11, 2012:

Well I believe it's needless to say, but just coming out of nursing school I'm about as broke as they come. So while some people are able to afford a massage, a dinner out with the family, anything relaxing and that requires using money, well, I couldn't afford that! So, I made my own relaxing day! First, I went on a morning walk with two of my best friends (who both took their NCLEX with me) and after our lovely walk we went to the building where we would be testing. This helped ease our anxiety and familiarized ourselves with the place we'd be taking our life-changing test! Then afterwards we went out for lunch, because there's some delicious melt in your mouth chocolate chip cookies from Paradise bakery (aka Panera Bread) when you're a little stressed out! Then I ran some errands and came home and cooked/baked the day away! Then my little brother and sister (who had no idea that I would be testing the next day) came over and enjoyed dinner with me and my mom. After dinner as my siblings played hockey downstairs making as much noise as possible...I went upstairs and started to wind-down for the evening and start my relaxing evening....I stepped into Spas by Maggie. There I did a hair wrap, face mask, I painted my toes and fingers, I got skin that was so soft thanks to Avon's skin-so-soft...I even shaved my legs...that's right! I was living on the edge. At least I knew that if I didn't make it through the next day, I at least looked (and felt) nice! 

Such a great evening! I took a melatonin and hit the hay..because I had a date with destiny the next day!

September 12, 2012: 

I woke up to the sound of my alarm and actually had a smile on my face! I knew that this morning meant all the waiting was over with. It was time to put my test-taking skills to the test...and my nursing judgement I suppose! :) So I started things off with a quick morning jog. I didn't have a lot of time but knew a couple of endorphins would do wonders for me! It was a beautiful overcast, fall(ish) morning...perfect for a run and the NCLEX!!

 Then it was to the shower, throw on some clothes, eat a breakfast for champions (Jimmy Dean d-lights of course), and I was out the door to meet up at my friends house! Me and my girls decided we needed to do something in the morning together to help the time pass until we had to go take our test, which wasn't until 1pm. So we got together and watched a movie, drank a lot of water, peed more than one normally would, danced like some crazy women, ate a hearty lunch, and then we were on our way!

I drove there with stereo playing my test-taking music to help me get "pumped up." I said one more prayer (actually I'm not sure I ever quit praying throughout the day) and I pulled into the parking lot of the Bank of Albuquerque building, where my testing would take place. Destiny was right in front of me! Destiny was right in the palm of my hands. This was finally happening. All my schooling, all those years, those long nights, those dreaded care plans, those tears, the sweat, it was all being put to the test. It was my day to prove I'm not going to be a killer nurse! 


 We went down to the basement, checked in with the friendly lady that had so kindly helped us out the day before when we had a little tour of the place! We read the instructions on correct and incorrect behavior and so on and so forth! I was fingerprinted...the palm of my hand was scanned my purse was thrown into a locker, and then I was taken to my own little cubical where I proceeded to take my test. Now the NCLEX is a hard test to describe. But it's a minimum competency exam and you have to get 60 questions above the line of passing. Questions that are considered above the line of passing are application and analysis type questions. The test starts you off at the line of passing and then depending on how you answer you get an easier or harder question ect. You can have anywhere from 75-265 questions. You're given 6 hours to take the exam. At 2 hours the test has a pop up that suggests you take a break and there's another pop up at 3.5 hours. Any break you take is on the clock, the exam doesn't pause! Once your 6 hours start, it doesn't stop or pause! I knew that if I got to two hours that I would take a break, and I would take one again at the 3.5 hours if it took me that long. With each question I took a deep deep breath and moved on. Forgetting whatever questions I had answered and focusing only at the one on hand. However, things were going smoothly (I was pretty sure I was doing well because all of the questions were application/analysis type the ones I had practiced with Kaplan). Yet, when I got to question 75 I told myself, "It's okay Maggie, you're going to get 76 questions and that will be okay. More questions just means you're still in the game so don't freak out" So I clicked next and the screen went blue and a few seconds after that it came up with a screen that said, "you have completed the NCLEX examination. Please proceed to take this short survey" That was it! I was done in an hour and forty minutes and in 75 questions. Every NCLEX-taking student's wildest dreams! I held up my hand, the proctor came in and escorted me out, I "palmed out" and I was good to go. 

My friend Candice had gone in a few minutes before me and I saw her go out shortly before I did. Larra went in after me so she was the only one left taking her test! I ran out to my car hoping that Candice hadn't left yet...and I found her in her car trying to do the Pearson vue trick. Essentially you try and register for the exam again and if it comes up with a pop-up then that means you passed but if it lets you put in your credit card information then that means you failed. So we were doing that and we both got the pop-up! It didn't let us put in our CC information!!! Then we started to call people and tell them we'd finished the exam and we tried the pearson trick and it didn't let us register! Then shortly after we had been out our friend Larra came out!!! We all got 75 questions and we all got the pop-up!! Shock, joy, tears, adrenalin, more shock, terror, excitement, it was all pulsing through our veins. We decided we need to go share some appetizers at Gardunos to let the whole situation settle in! 

While I don't have official results I'm hopeful that I passed my boards and will soon be a registered nurse. Now I just wait. I'm still contemplating if I want to pay the extra ten bucks to get the quick results. I almost don't want to because I think it's lame that they want to nickle and dime us...nursing school did that enough to us already! So I'm content with waiting...for now...


So that's it! I had my date with destiny and it was better than I thought it would be. It didn't make me bawl my eyes out and it didn't make me scream. I think I had reasonable expectations for the exam and now I will wait...and see how patient I really am! Congrats to me (pat on the back) and a huge congrats to my friends that took it with me...WOOT! and Congrats to all my other friends that already took their boards and passed and best of luck to those of you who will be taking yours here in the next few weeks! If you need something to pass the time...bake...and go on to pinterest! Those are great ways to spend time. I did more baking today...I think tomorrow a run is in order.... until official results are in TTFN...ta-ta-for-now!

Friday, August 10, 2012

I have brains in my head

I went through 16 months for an hour and a half long pinning ceremony?! That happened way too fast. I blinked and it's gone! Now it's time for me to move on and transition from student nurse to novice nurse. My studying is not yet done, however! I still have to study for the big test..the NCLEX. For those of you who may not know, the NCLEX, is the state board exam that every single nurse must take (ADN or BSN) to become a registered nurse (RN). I have a week off, to party; and then it's right back to the books...*sorry mom, I'm going to be 'reclaiming' the kitchen table again shortly*

The pinning ceremony was lovely. There's something very personal and exciting when you know almost every single person walking across the stage. It's exciting being able to cheer everyone on as they walked across the stage and got pinned as Graduate Nurses! There's something very satisfying looking at all your instructors from various levels and stages of your nursing school career and being able to look them in the eyes and say "I did it!" (When really on the inside you just want to say 'hahaha take that I did do you like me now?!'...or maybe I was the only one that wanted to do that?!)

We all go to take the Florence Nightingale Pledge which goes a little something like this:

"I solemnly pledge myself before God and in the presence of this assembly, to pass my life in purity and to practice my profession faithfully. I will abstain from whatever is deleterious and mischievous, and will not take or knowingly administer any harmful drug. I will do all in my power to maintain and elevate the standard of my profession, and will hold in confidence all personal matters committed to my keeping and all family affairs coming to my knowledge in the practice of my calling. With loyalty will I endeavor to aid the physician in his work, and devote myself to the welfare of those committed to my care." 

My favorite part of the pledge, personally, "I will abstain from whatever is deleterious and mischievous." I was, however, a little sad that it meant I had to say goodbye to my wild and crazy past (hahaha...because you all know how crazy I can get...Going out to the movies and going to dinner is about as crazy as I get). tips for you future nursing students: 

1 - Expect the unexpected...things are not going to happen the way you planned or how your instructor said things would go. You're going to have last minute changes, you're going to have to adapt, improvise, and overcome. It's not the end of the world! Take a deep breath, do NOT complain to your instructor, and go with the flow!
2 - Make time for yourself and your, there's not a lot of free time! Choose a day where you can forget about your upcoming exams, never ending list of required reading, and utter chaos that comes along with school. You'll feel better after spending some R&R with your family.
3 - Go for a's common knowledge that you gain your freshman 15 all over again while in nursing school, however, a walk a day can keep the pounds away! It's also a great time to allow your mind to wander, go blank, or do whatever it pleases as you walk through someone else's green pastures! Also, it's free therapy! I don't know a single person in nursing school that doesn't jump on the opportunity to get something for free!!! :)
4 - Try and get a job as a tech...yeah the pay may not be great, the work is dirty, but it gets you experience working with patients...and it can be an "in" for you when it comes time to find a job as an RN! 
5 - Heed your instructors advice...while some instructors do enjoy the site of weeping students, almost all of them want what's best for you. If they're telling you that you're not doing something right it's not because they're "nit-picking" it's because they're your instructor. They want to see you become the best that you can be and reach your full they realize their lives may be in your hands one day!! :)
6 - Never be above anyone else...we're all in this boat together. Some of us are a little more weird and awkward (and sweat a lot more than your average Joe). But we all have the same doubts, fears, and excitement running through our heads. The sooner we realize we're in this together the better we will be. Nursing isn't a's collaboration (That should sounds familiar)...the moment you think you're better than someone and don't have the time to show someone the ropes...that's when you become the nurse you never wanted to be. 
7 - My advice is never ending...but if I told you everything then you wouldn't learn it for yourself!! ;)

So I will finish this post of the way our Nursing Director did for us tonight at our pinning ceremony:

"You have brains in your head.
You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself in any direction you choose.
You're on your own.
And you know what you know.
and YOU are the one
who'll decide where to go..."
- Dr. Seuss

Thursday, August 9, 2012

I am a graduate nurse!

Nothing I say or do can prepare you or make you fully understand what it's like to go through nursing school. I can try and explain it until I'm black and blue in the face, but if you don't go through it for yourself then you'll never fully understand. But without adequate support system you're screwed! :) To put it bluntly! It was a rough 18 months. But somehow, by the grace of God, I have survived nursing school! HOWEVER, the end to my nursing school career was no without it's drama. We couldn't wrap up our final like any other normal person and then get our grades like a normal class would. No, please, allow me to share with you what my past 18 hours has been like! 

Well, I suppose I should start a little before I took the final. I was eating dinner with my mom and all day I had just a feeling of anxiety, nervousness, and fear of the unexpected. It wasn't really towards my final exam because that was going to happen whether I liked it or not, but I was more anxious about the fact that I'm about to be a real nurse, I'm about to take on the responsibility of someone's loved one. Their life is essentially in my hands (not completely but figuratively). And realizing that is terrifying. So, while I was eating with my mom, I experienced a terrible anxiety attack! For those of you who have never had one, count your blessings...I was wishing I had a benzodiazepine to take!!! It started with just an overwhelming since of anxiety out of nowhere...then numbness overtook my body...then my heart started pounding (even though my blood pressure was only 110/62 and my pulse was only 62)...then afterwards you just feel exhausted and can barely lift your arms up..and I just got waves and waves of this attack! So, that's how the night before my exam went. I calmed myself by watching NY Med (LOVE that show!)

So at approximately 0809 I pulled into the CNM parking lot to take my final, nursing school final! I got to the testing center where all of my fellow nursing school students were waiting in line to get checked into the testing center. My anxiety started to go down and I was feeling more "at home" and relaxed! So we all got checked into the testing center and then we had to wait for them to sit us down at then put our codes into Black Board (where we take our tests) so that we could take our exam. Eventually we're all put into our exams and

No joke! Every student was trying to get a hold of one of the test proctors to tell them about the computers freezing up on us, but all that they said was, "I'm sorry, there's nothing we can do." So in an hour and a half I had only completed 30 questions...and we had 2 hours and 30 minutes to complete 140 questions. Yeah right! So the proctors were able to get in contact with our instructor who gave us 2 extra hours to complete the exam. To make things even better there were multiple questions that had grammatical errors, incomplete questions, and none of the right answers. As if we didn't have enough anxiety already! So after about 2 hours and 40 questions the computer finally started to kick into gear and wasn't freezing up on me. It took me over 3 hours to complete that exam and when I pressed submit I just knew I failed it. I was just reading the questions, not really pondering it, and giving my answer and going on!

Normally after an exam we can see our grade right away, however, our grades didn't show up so we knew that meant it would be a while until we saw our final grade. Some of my friends were kicked out of the exam and had to complete the exam all over again! Most of us had an emotional breakdown. We expected to have a sense of completion and the sense that we were finally done...but none of us had that. It sucked. 

I went to lunch with some of my great friends to try and lighten the mood, but things just got worse there, our orders got messed up, some of us got over charged, and a place that normally has great food ended up having terrible food (although it could have just been that we had a bad day). So that just fed our bad moods. I decided to go to the mall and do some retail therapy, yet, even that wasn't doing the trick for me. So I went home and decided it would be a good idea...yeah...not! The watermelon was sliding all over the place and I threw a hissy-fit like a child and slammed the knife on our sink and put a little dent in the knife. My poor mom had to take the knife from my hand and say, "Maggie, just walk away!" Yes, real mature. I went up to my room, cried, and slept for several hours!!

That night around 10 or 11 pm we got an announcement from our instructor saying that the IT problems messed with her system so she was having to go through all of our exams one by one to evaluate them and she said she hoped to have grades posted by 8/9/2012 sometime in the afternoon. 

So this morning I got up at 5:45 and went swimming with one of my nursing school buddies, went and got breakfast, went to the mall (where retail therapy really did happen this time). I then went to lunch with some of my family, then I did it...I check my phone! Grades hadn't been officially posted but I had a total grade showing up, but the awful thing is that my total grade was 72% (which is technically failing). I knew that it couldn't be right because she was still working on our grades and nothing had been released but I let my nerves get the best of me and I started freaking out! I mean, who fails level 4?! That's just not heard of. So I was texting another friend and trying not to work myself into a frenzy so we decided to meet up! There we vented to one another and checked our phones waiting for our grades to be released! The grades were finally release after 1900. AND....I got a 92% on my final and a 90% overall in my class! I'm pretty sure I peed my pants and made the entire restaurant think there was a fire somewhere because I screamed and then cried!!! Every single emotion you can imagine was running through my body! I finally felt what I had hoped to feel yesterday...elation! 

So...this is it! I'm a graduate nurse. Tomorrow I get pinned (and we all get to have a good laugh when my instructor says my name....hahaha). I have to shave my legs so I can wear a dress!! (I know that may be TMI but I haven't had time to shave because I spend all my time studying). I'm also going to sleep!!! But the truth is, I'm never not going to be a student. Healthcare is an ever changing field and you never learn everything. I'm going to be learning something new every single day for the rest of my life, plus I'm already registered for my NCLEX prep course through Kaplan...and...I'm registered for a math class that I'm going to need to be able to go on for my BSN, so even the school part of it isn't done. But like I have said and will continue to say, "one day at a time." Trust me on that one...I'm a nurse!