Waiting for today...: Not Long After

Thursday, January 23

Not Long After

con't from: And So It Begins

“You’re a sprinter and you need to learn to be a long distance runner.”  In other words, my professor was trying to impart to me the need to pace myself.  This was very characteristic of the majority of my time in nursing school.  I would often start strong and then at some point along the way, I would lose steam.  Oh how I wished that was my only problem.  Before my last year of nursing school, depression would almost derail my career again.
This Could Be It.  This could be the end of my nursing career at (... University). I left… I just got my stuff and left. We took a break at around 11:00 and I “broke”. I don’t plan on going back either. My practicum was crap… incomplete, massively incomplete! We had to present them, informally, but still. What was there for me to present? Everyone else got their binders back. They were all at least ½ inch thick. Mine, a manila folder with two articles, my draft, resubmitted draft and a sub par write up of whatever, was handed off to (the Dean)…                   
I couldn't believe it. Immediately my stomach tied a knot. As she leafed through it and while others presented their projects my chest tightened. I felt sick. All I could think of is heading for the door as soon as we took our break. What was I to do? It would have come to be my turn, I would have presented the project and they would drill me with all sorts of questions that I could only answer ‘I don’t know’ to. The pressure would have been enough to throw a clot. All the while I waited, I thought of what could possibly become of my life... -- Wednesday December 7th, 2005 11:18pm
The final grade that I received in the Nursing Management and Leadership class was gracious but not enough to pass the class.  That somehow wasn't  enough to get booted from the nursing program.   I was given yet another chance.  Some of the minorities in the program had an inside joke that it was because there was a quota to fill.  Either way, I was grateful I had another opportunity to get closer to my dream of being a college graduate.
I don’t recall why the Dean granted me the option to retake the course the following fall semester.  But, one of my peers shared sensible pause for concern: taking a break from college is usually a nail in the academic coffin.  Many people don’t return and for many reasons.   Although, I found myself on the same side of conversations with people in the past, I had to elevate my needs above the  expectations of others.  I was mentally and emotionally drained and I needed a break.   Besides, I was too close to officially graduating to not follow through in the fall.  I only had one class to complete!  I had no excuse not to finish and finish strong.  

I soared and shined in my final semester of nursing school and finally stood eligible to receive my baccalaureate in the science of nursing.  Since I walked in May, all I had to do was pack up and make my way to the place that would become my new home.  I decided to leave some nasty habits behind.  I even promised myself that as soon as I settled in, I would seek therapy.  However, with the move, the reality of nursing and the lack of social support I would do more than crack under the pressure.  I would almost shatter.

next in series: A Challenging Transition, Part I