Tuesday, August 23, 2011

First day...mixed thoughts

So today was my first day of my second semester in nursing school...and as alluded to in the title, I've got some major mixed thoughts on it.

The morning started at 8:30 with Mental Health class, taught by one of our TNI clinical instructors from last year, who is also the same instructor that several of us had for Pharm a year ago.  She's a very kind person, very approachable, someone who wants us to do well and is willing to offer help and suggestions as needed.  I can't remember if I've said it here or on Twitter or on Facebook...but I think the classroom portion of Mental Health will be pretty interesting, with the clinicals being...interesting but also potentially scary/sad/eye-opening.  We will spend some time in the local childrens' psychiatric hospital, as well as the psych floor of THE hospital and out at some community sites.  We'll get those assignments on Thursday.  And it was stressed to us that what happens in psych clinical cannot leave the confines of our classroom when we meet for post-clinical conference.  So yes...I still remember my HIPAA obligations.

Our instructor also told us her very personal reason for being interested in mental health topics...and while I wish I could pass along her moving story, for the sake of her privacy, I just don't feel right doing so.  But I will say I was surprised to hear her story, having had no idea of this part of her life even though she's been a fairly consistent figure in my nursing school life for the past year.  God bless this woman...and now I have an even greater appreciation and respect for her and what she's doing.

We also had a medical dosage calculation quiz after going over the syllabus and course stuff.  Just checked and my grade isn't up on Blackboard yet, but I feel pretty confident about it.  It's pass/fail, so as long as I got a 75% or better, I don't care too much about the actual "grade" on it.  Well, I do...but I've learned to let go of some of that Type A tendency.  I give my best, my all, but I'm not going to worry about getting that 100% as much as I used to...as I learned last semester that nursing school is a whole different ball game on that front.


Next up was Adult Health AKA Med-Surg.  I mentioned in my last entry that we have a new instructor for this course.  I'm still debating on how to go about this portion of this entry...getting my point and thoughts across without also getting myself into a big mess o' trouble if this little bloggity-blog were to be discovered by the powers that be at my school.  So I'll opt for the professional route...and say that the jury is still out on my final opinion of the new instructor.  She is...different...than the previous instructor and from what we were expecting to walk into.  Having been a teacher in my past life, I'm hoping she's just employing a few teacher tricks that help her to establish her role early on and then will...settle...a few weeks in.  We shall see.  All I know is I will be working my butt off for this class.  For one thing, Med-Surg is a backbone for the rest of my nursing courses and subsequent career, so what I learn this semester has a huge impact on the rest of my whole nursing gig.  Another thing, is it's an 8 credit hour class...and 8 credits of A will be a huge boost to the GPA, plus it will look good if I can swing an A in such a hardcore class.

We had another medical dosage calculation quiz in this class...I walked out of that one shaking my head and hoping that I had done OK on it.  A couple questions really threw me because they were either really involved with conversions, or had conversions that I was hazy on, or were things we just hadn't yet covered.  But, I ended up with a 15/16, with the one I missed being a really stupid mistake on my part (such and such L of IV meds was to be given over 24 hours, calculate the flow rate in mL/hr...and instead of using the 24 in the equation, I had a 4.  ?!?!  See, stupid mistake.  BLARG.)  But I passed.  Even though the Maths is so not my thing.

Up tomorrow and next week are massive clinical/skills review days for Adult Health...we get to demonstrate to our instructor all the things we've learned (and haven't learned) last semester so she can see where she needs to start (and what to fix).  Yay, sounds like fun.  :-/

So...mixed thoughts/feelings on semester 2.  I'm hoping it's just the 'trauma' of the combination of impending stress, the new instructor, the new courses, not knowing what to expect, etc. and that in a few weeks once things are more familiar, I'll be just stressed and busy, not feeling so discombobulated.

So...to end on a positive note -- Happy First Day to those who are starting or heading back to classes this week!  And for those who still have a few more days/weeks of summer vacay left...enjoy it while you have it!

Later(s) gators,

1 comment:

  1. Well at least you survived the first day back! Good for you for taking those quizzes and I'm sure you rocked that first calc. dosage one too.
    You're an amazing student and I pray, pray, pray that my semester goes better for me than last semester.

    I just got my first email today about the big 7 credit class and what to expect on the first day. Yikes! I think I'll brush up on dosage calc. too along with my head-to-toe assessment.