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As my fourth, and final, semester of nursing school gets started I am feeling a bit… overwhelmed.

Overwhelmed… with the amount of homework I have. Ten weeks of class, three tests, one final. Several paper/projects. Online tests every week. Three full days of NCLEX (nursing board exam) testing prep. Eight clinical days. And THEN preceptorship begins… 144 hours in the hospital one on one with an RN.

Overwhelmed… that my formal school training is coming to an end and I’ll be able to sit for boards and receive those sweet letters after my name… RN

Overwhelmed… with the desire to finish strong. I am on track to graduate with our honor society – there are only 11 of us – and that is something that is important to me. There is still the fear of not passing something this semester, but what I really want is to finish with honors. Prideful? Maybe. But I’ve waited a long time to do this!!

Overwhelmed… at the sheer amount of knowledge I have gained and am expected to know from here on out.

Overwhelmed… with the reality that I will be caring for real people, not “Manikin” people in the lab. Overwhelmed with the knowledge that I will be present when people come into this world… and leave it.

Overwhelmed… at the thought of having to say goodbye to some really sweet people. A lot of my classmates are here for college, their families living in other places in Texas. I have surely enjoyed being “Mom” to some of them – they have made this experience enjoyable. They have also made the loneliness of the Bearkat being away at school a little easier – being with them is a lot like being with her. I do love their hugs, lending them pencils, giving them ibuprofen, and sharing my snacks with them.

Overwhelmed… at the way the Lord has surprised me with great study partners and a super sweet “nursing school chum.” We study together. We laugh together. We have cried together. She gives my girls her hand-me-down workout clothes. And I have sent pretty dresses over for her girls. We have eaten breakfast, lunch, dinner, and countless bags of Boom-Chicka-Pop popcorn together. This gal is a post for another day, though.

This experience has been overwhelming from the very beginning until the very end. But I am absolutely loving it all. There are only 101 days left until our pinning ceremony!


it’s almost time…


Screenshot 2016-01-27 15.21.08

I really don’t have the words. I haven’t really had words for the last 18 months. I should probably start a series of posts about my experiences in nursing school. It has been one of the most challenging things I have ever set out to do. Today I will just put that picture up there and try to let it sink in. Tomorrow I will try to put into words all that I am feeling about it!

on the 1st day…



No poetry today.  Just angels singing that it’s the LAST DAY BEFORE THE CHRISTMAS BREAK.

This momma is MORE THAN READY.

And so is that cute little elf above.

Today she took her teachers (and a few others who are close to her heart) insulated tumblers full of goodies (magnets, clips, Target gift card, candy, chapstick).  She looked like Santa with her little drawstring bag on her back, jammed full of goodies.

Her class is also doing “elf bags” today.  Each child brings a little something to give to all the others.  This is what she brought.  (We “borrowed” the idea from a friend. She LOVED the idea.)

photo 1

{Below is a close up of the card.}

photo 2



I saw this posted this morning on Facebook and it really made me laugh.

You see, I use autocorrect a lot.  A LOT.

I am a medical transcriptionist and I type a great deal of words every day.  Autocorrect is my best friend.

Instead of typing this:

There is no headache, dizziness, CP, SOB, or abdominal pain.

I simply type this:


Or maybe I’m just lazy and it is nice to type in these:

bc, info, def, rad, ow, pad, rue

Instead of:

because, information, definitely, radiculopathy, overweight, periphery arterial disease, right upper extremity

See how that works?  Autocorrect saves me time and key strokes, but it also saves me some embarrassment.

It helps me spell these words:

it’s not, is not, and does not

Instead of:

it snot, i snot, or doe snot

Because it would be terribly embarrassing to have a doctor see those words on his transcription the next time he looks in his patient’s chart.

There is a flip side to all of this convenience, though, and I have to be diligent when using my computer for non-work-related typing.

If I am writing a letter, to say, Ed or Amy, they might get a letter addressed to Erectile Dysfunction or Amitriptyline.  Or if your name is Rex and I don’t catch it, your letter would be addressed to:

RECTAL EXAM:  Shows a 30 cc symmetric prostate that is bilobed with
normal rectal tone. Stool is guaiac negative.  No hemorrhoids are present.

Oh, dear, that would be unfortunate.

But perhaps the worst is if one of the kids is typing a letter to my dad.

Instead of reading like this:

Dear Pap-Pap,

Yo! What’s up? Um, not much here. I just wanted to tell you that I think you are rad.


Your Granddaughter

PS: Thanks for taking me shopping at Rue 21!!

He would get this:

Dear PAP smear-PAP smear,

Year-old! What’s up? Urine microalbumin, not much here. I just wanted to tell you that I think you are radiculopathy.


Your Granddaughter.

Prostate screening: Thanks for taking me shopping at Right upper extremity 21!

So you see, autocorrect… you absolutely are my best friend… and yet my worst enema enemy.


When I think about things that bring me joy… besides the obvious things like my family and sleep … there are really three things that stand out.  Reading, writing, and scrapbooking.

My pictures are in quite a state right now.  I’m so thankful for iPhoto and that everything since I went digital is organized by date and in one place.  I haven’t had my hands in a scrapbook in years and it makes me a little sad.  The fellowship of scrap retreats and the feeling of accomplishment with a completed album are things I really miss.  Life is speeding by and I just don’t have the time for it any more.

Recently I have taken up reading again.  My nook wish list was getting rather long and I just made a decision to pick up book after book.  It’s the end of February and I’ve read MUCH more than I did last year.  It really is relaxing.  It’s great for my kids to see me reading.  And with the hustle and bustle of life, it’s nice to be still.  And quiet.

Then there is writing.  I really enjoy writing.  My life, though very busy, is rather boring, so it’s slim-pickings when it comes to material to write about.  Writing is fulfilling.  I love it when I get feedback on something I’ve written, when someone agrees with me, or has a suggestion on a problem I might have.  Going back and reading what I’ve written in years past is interesting, too.  There are things mentioned… feelings felt… memories shared… many of them forgotten in the busyness of life.  I don’t want to forget.  Perhaps that is why the scrapbooks are important to me, too.

This morning, I stumbled on this.

I think I’m going to give it a shot.  Writing every day.  Something.  It doesn’t have to be much.  They will even have prompts for those days I think I have nothing to say.  Anyone else want to join me?

>run for compassion 2010




Thanks to some gentle “prodding” from a friend, our family signed up to run and walk the Run for Compassion 2010 fun run.  Summer and I signed up for the 5K walk and I signed Hubby up for the 10K run.  He was hesitant about running it as he had not been training and hadn’t run that far in a long, long, long time.  If ever.  He was a good sport and gave it a shot. 

Summer and I got to visit with Liz and Sarah on our leisurely 5K walk through the neighborhood.  Summer was actually quite entertaining.  She walked almost the first mile backwards.  She finished that mile skipping.  By mile two, we all decided we needed a drink from the water stop and were greeted by some really cute helpers who were about 4 years old.  Needless to way, we ALL got water. 

I kept thinking about my sweet Hubby… wondering where he was and how he was faring in the run.  It was somewhere after the 2 mile mark that we started getting passed by the 10K runners.  Then along came John… but no Hubby.  It was here that I started thinking maybe he’d finished after the first 5K. 

As the girls and I came to the finish line, I started scanning the crowd.  No Hubby.  John decided to head back up the course and take a look.  And a few minutes later, here they came… running!  They crossed the finish line and Hubby was done. D.O.N.E.

His knee hurt.  Bad.  So we headed back to the house and John iced and bandaged him up.  What a brother. It took two days before the poor guy could walk right again.  I felt horrible for “making” him do the run. 

But you know what?  He’s ready to train and do it right.  I think I’ll still walk, though.