Wednesday, July 27, 2005

One of my beautiful flowers

It's raining, it's pouring...

The Diva is looking for a new bank. My current bank has lost its mind. I was recently charged over $160 in overdraft charges. I can not understand how this is possible. They let me make a withdrawal with my ATM card when there was no money available. How can that be? I checked my account over the internet before I went to the bank. Of course this was allowed as a convenience to me. How is it convenient to pay over $160 in overdraft fees. I am a full-time student. That means I am broke! Um...that is not going to work for me, but I can't seem to find a decent bank that will meet my needs.

I am feeling a little anxiety. I don't know what to pack for my trip. I want to pack everything, but I can only take two bags. The digital camera is broken. (It's a good thing I deleted those embarrassing pics!) I have to get pictures developed. My kids are beginning to get a little emotional about the whole idea. As the time approaches, I feel like backing out. I can't do that. I stand to lose too much. The financial aid office is not giving me credit for my student loans, so the bills are starting to come. That makes me nervous because I really don't want to leave the states without that being under control. (Sigh)

I have got to get out of this funk. This is an exciting adventure for me, right? I am getting to learn about international health promotion. I am getting to perfect my Spanglish into comprehensible Spanish, right? I am going to meet some really awesome people...this is my last year of nursing school and then the real world of nursing. It all seems do overwhelming. I have so much to learn still. I hope this is normal.

Okay, time to give myself a pep talk and work on my positive inner dialogue:

You are going to be an awesome nurse, Diva. Your family is counting on you. You are the hope for your family. How about your fiance? And your children? Your nieces and nephews? Your younger siblings? Your parents? They all look up to you. You are accomplishing things that they have only dreamed. If you are successful, they will see that they too can achieve great things if they are determined. If you give up now, you will show everyone that they were right about you. You can do it! I know you can. Just get up, take a shower, get dressed and do what you need to do. You have good potential. Find a way to make this work.

But, I'm tired...

Stop whining! We are all tired. You aren't exempt from hard work. It gives you character. Come on now, I am not going to let you sabotage yourself. Do you really want to be up all night packing? You have over a twelve hour flight. Do you actually think that you will be able to sleep on the plane?

No, but I need help.

Help with what? You have scoured the internet for packing lists. You know what you need to bring. You have gathered all sorts of advice. What more do you need? Here's what you need to do. Drink a cup of warm tea. Take a short nap and revisit the whole packing thing.

But I don't have time for napping. This is it. I have no more time for BS. I have to get serious.

What are you going to do?

I am going to take a shower, get dressed and go to the bank and talk to them about my account. If I am not satisfied, I'm going to close my account. Then I am going to find a new bank that will better suit my needs.

Good! Then what?

I am going to take my film to the drugstore for the one hour photo processing. I will go and fill out all of my last minute paperwork. I am going to come home and get serious about my packing. I will finish early so that I can go say goodbye to my family, then me and my fiance are going to hang out for the rest of the evening. I am a phenomenal woman!

That's the Diva I know and love!

Okay, I'm all better now...

-Diva

Monday, July 25, 2005

What a surprise!

Today, my mother-in-law to be called me over to see her before I leave because she is proud of me, and she wanted to give me a gift for sticking it out in nursing school. When someone calls you on the phone and says something like, "I am so proud of you for going back to school." I never realized that my decision to return to school touched so many people in a positive way. I have inspired people, and gave hope to people, just by deciding to go back to school at my age. That was something that I never expected. And everytime I think about it, I am amazed. In the beginning, I had a lot of skeptics say to me, "How are you going to do that?" "You're just a single mom, it isn't fair to your family." "How will you make it without working?" Somehow, I found a way to get through most of the hard times. Believe me, there were many.

Like the time my family could no longer help me and I had to find a way to finish out the semester with no daycare. Or when I had to fight about a reasonable schedule for getting my hours completed. I must say though, throughout my experience I never turned in an assignment late. When I started reading nursing blogs, I noticed that most of them talked about this wonderful, glowing nursing school experience and how great they were doing. That is not very honest. I am not afraid to say it out loud. Nursing school is TOUGH! Not everyone has the Florence Nightingale experience. I have failed a test before. At least once a semester I threaten to quit. It is hard work, but it is a labor of love. It is my passion. I can't imagine doing any other type of work. I have a lot of good support.

I know I complain about school most of the time. They aren't so bad...I guess. (Let me not get too carried away.) To be completely honest, I have learned a lot. I talk about some of my highly critical clinical instructors, but along the way I have had some pretty awesome ones too. My OB clinical instructor was very kind, and encouraging. My med-surg instructor wrote the most objective review I have ever had written by an employer/faculty. It was so precise, it didn't say that I was perfect, but it didn't make me feel like I should reconsider my career choice either. It was so honest, I was thinking about attaching it to my resume...Seriously! My acute care/critical care clinical advisor was very clear about things that I need to focus on in becoming a better nurse. I could probably call on these people anytime for help.

I want to say this to all and anyone who is reading this blog that what I write is from my perspective as a nursing student. Sometimes I am happy, and sometimes I am really pissed off. If you are seriously considering nursing as a profession, GO FOR IT! Try it out. I am glad I did. You will find out that you will touch the lives of others in really good ways, without even knowing it.

-DiVa

BTW, I have made no progress with my packing. I will be leaving in a few days for study abroad. I can't believe that time is going so quickly!

Saturday, July 23, 2005

Since I am beginning to get some comments...

I have created an email address especially for this blog, (it's in the profile). Feel free to send me an email, if you want. School starts for me early, so I may be a while getting back but I will respond. Promise.



-Diva

Thursday, July 21, 2005

In a week I will be in a foreign country

I can't believe how quickly the time has passed. I am feeling a plethora of emotions about my trip. Yesterday, I had a meeting with the administration of my school. They gave me the same talk that my mother gave me and my brother in the car before we went into a store. I felt like such a liability. "Don't make a fool of yourself." "Don't act like a tourist." "You are representing our fine institution, so don't make us look bad." "If you go there and misbehave, they may never accept an exchange student from our fine institution again." Some of the things that we talked about were good, and for the first time ever I feel like they prepared me well for an experience. But at the same time, a lot of what they said was common sense and I was mildly insulted, but hey I guess I can't say I didn't know any better.

I am a grown-up, I guess talking to them about my feelings as a non-traditional student during the course of my schooling gave them the impression that I have a negative attitude, incredibly low self-esteem and that I have a critical eye for everything. This is my huge opportunity to show them that they got me all wrong. I am a perfectionist when it comes to my work. The people at my school can be very rude. I was not prepared for being talked to like an idiot, or being treated like a moron when I ask a question in class. But I think all of that will make me a better nurse in the long run. I feel like I can handle anything after living through that experience.

I won't be alone. Another person is traveling with me. I don't know her very well, and I am not sure how things will pan out with us working together. I found out that we will be working on totally different projects. I also found out that there are not many people there who speak English. ¡Gracias Dios para las clases de español! ¿Qué yo harí­a sin mis clases? Everything we are scheduled to do is in Spanish. Even the syllabus and lecture is in Spanish. I am thinking about extending my trip so that I can explore the continent. I am not thrilled about the idea of exploring this foreign country alone, but if I develop a relationship with the person I am supposed to be traveling with I may consider it.

Well, I guess I should get back to packing and preparing. I will post again before I leave, once I get there and whenever I get lonely. I am taking my digital camera, so you can expect a few pics too!

-Diva