Friday, June 30, 2006

My parents and roommates are the greatest. Today I came home from work to a kitchen table full of goodies to congratulate me on passing my NCLEX from my mom and dad and Phyllis. And the day I actually took my test, I came home to find a surprise from Megan on my desk. I feel loved. :)

I think by the end of this weekend I will feel very, very tired. I worked today, and I will be working the next 2 days as well. I do enjoy only having to work 3 days a week, but it's usually nicer when they're spread out a wee bit. Oh well. I will survive. And get weekend shift differential. I guess life isn't all that bad.

Have I mentioned yet how much I am loving my job? It seriously doesn't feel like going to work. Yeah, it gets a little stressful from time to time, but I love everything that I do. Even the gross stuff. Not that I love the grossness itself, but I love the feeling I get knowing that I am helping people get better. And I know that at some point in time, I will be the one creating grossness that other people will have to deal with because I can't, and I hope that they will feel the same way toward me.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Good news: I found out today that I can now officially call myself a nurse. That's right, I passed the NCLEX!! Hoorah! I can now adequately appreciate the fact that I only had 75 questions on my test. *** :) :) :)*** Done and done.

Failure to Launch came out on DVD today. You better believe a copy of it now resides among our hundreds (literally) of alphabetized cinematic masterpieces. I have to say, this movie has become a recent favorite of mine. Probably partially because the roommates and I laughed like idiots through the whole showing at the theater, and partially because it is chock full of fabulous one-liners such as, "What size of a group are we talking about? Is it a small group? Like, a basketball team? Or is it a big group? Like...the Chinese?" Oh man. You don't run across quality like that every day.

You know what I love? I love the fact that people have the ability, based solely on the distinctive yellowish staining of my teeth, to determine that I spent my formative years in West Texas. It's quite a self-esteem booster, really. There's really little that compares with a compliment like, "My, you have an incredibly strong, although slightly discolored, mouth full of teeth!" High praise, I tell you. High praise...

Monday, June 26, 2006

Today was a day of many wonderous events. Events wonderous enough, in fact, to merit a list detailing the extent of their wonderousness.

  • This morning, Megan and I voluntarily roused ourselves from restful slumber at the ungodly hour of 5:30 so we could go work out before I had to be at work at 7. With much determination we took on the menacing stationary bicycles and Stairmasters. I am happy to report that we emerged successful, with only the slightest hint of soreness, and in plenty of time for me to shower and arrive to work on time.
  • Upon my timely arrival to work, I was beckoned by the small, mouse-like voice of the night charge nurse. She showered me with apologies as she informed me that the pediatric floor was devoid of patients this day, and thus my services would not be required. She had not called earlier to alert me to this fact because she did not have a phone number at which to reach me. I gladly supplied the desired number for use on future such occasions, and returned home to my bed and an additional 5 hours of sleep.
  • I am happy to report that we can now boast the proper functioning of all utility services at our house. The air conditioner repair man arrived at approximately 1:30pm. Shortly after his arrival, men came to install air vents in our attic, follwed a few minutes later by someone from the gas company to turn on our gas service. In a matter of hours we went from living in a hot, muggy, poorly-ventilated house with no hot water to a refreshingly cool, energy-efficient home with the luxury of a hot shower at any given moment.
  • I bought new shoes today for the first time in about 2 years. Let me restate that. I bought new athletic shoes for the first time in about 2 years. I decided that between being on my feet 36 hours a week at work and the challenge I have given myself to start walking/working out on a regular basis, I needed some shoes that actually benefit my feet in some way. And so, with the help of my shoe-savvy roommate Phyllis, I picked out some functional yet fashionable athletic style shoes. I must say, I am a bit proud of myself. This is the first time I actually considered the needs of my feet when purchasing shoes instead of basing my entire decision on visual appeal. Ah, personal growth.

I am certain I am leaving out other highlights of the day, but this is all that comes to mind at present. I have yet to find out whether or not I passed my NCLEX, which is slightly upsetting. I'm hoping I will know something tomorrow. I'll be sure to keep you well informed, faithful reader. I know you hate suspense.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Back to Abilene. Back to a house with no air conditioning. Sad day.

Friday, June 23, 2006

I am in search of a hobby. Yesterday, upon completion of my test, I realized that I now have nothing in particular to occupy my free time. This is new for me. For most of my life I have always had something I should be doing, be it homework, studying, writing papers, etc. Even when I wasn't doing such things, the knowledge that they were there to be done was always hanging over my head. But now, the space above my head is suddenly free of obligation. Of course I must go to work 3 days a week, but as of right now, that is something I look forward to. So the question is, what will I do with the other 4 days? Suggestions are welcome.

Here's an interesting little tidbit: as of tomorrow, I will be living across the alley from my little brother, and next door to my cousin. (I have a theory that my family is actually trying to monopolize the entire neighborhood, but we must start slow to reduce suspicion.) I am excited about this arrangement. I am a fan of both my brother and my cousin, so it should be good times. Too bad Bryan and Amber moved to Arlington, or we could be one step closer to familial domination of Abilene.

I am excited to see Bryan and Amber's new place. I hear it's very nice. And, being as I'm in Arlington currently, my desire will hopefully be fulfilled later this afternoon.

Jackson is leaving for Puppy Boot Camp today. This means that upon my return to Abilene tomorrow, our house will be dog-free for 2 weeks. He should return to us an obedient, well-trained canine. And, given the incredible speed at which he seems to be growing, at least twice his current size. Fabulous.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Judgment day has arrived. The NCLEX is behind me, and the future of my professional career is floating around somewhere in the void of cyberspace. I'm a little freaked. My test cut off after question #75; the minimum number of questions possible for the test. This is either a really good thing, or a really bad thing. I either proved myself competent or completely hopeless in just 75 questions. Let's hope it's the former.

At least I have spunky brown shoes.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

This afternoon, Phyllis, Julie, and I watched Raising Helen, a movie that highlights just a few of the challenges that come with parenthood. Then, I spent the evening reading about the birth process as part of my studies for my rapidly-approaching NCLEX. The combination of these events has made me seriously question any desire I have ever had to reproduce.

I take the NCLEX in approximately 33 hours. Basically, my career as a nurse depends upon my passing this test. Stress, anyone? I felt pretty confident until about 2 days ago. Now I suddenly feel as if I know nothing about nursing. I'm sure I'm just psyching myself out. At least that's what I keep telling myself...

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Hooray for being back online! Our internet connection decided to quit working about a week ago. Sad day. But now I am back. I know you missed me.

I'm finally starting to feel like maybe I'll be a nurse soon. I started orientation with my preceptor on Monday. She's awesome. She's been a pediatric nurse for like 29 years, and I think she might know everything. All the nurses I've worked with on the floor so far are great too. And funny. And since there's not much I enjoy more than laughing out loud, it works out rather nicely. I still haven't quite grasped the fact that this is my actual job. I still feel a bit like I'm in clinicals or something. But I think the more comfortable I get with my environment and the more confident I become in my skills as a nurse, the more I will start to feel at home. I claimed a locker yesterday, so I guess that's a step. The first day I went in the charge nurse told me to just find an empty locker to put my stuff in, so that's what I've been doing. But yesterday I put my name on it. I feel like being allowed to put my name on a locker is like some kind of sign that I'm "in." So that's exciting. Or maybe I'm just weird.

Today, as Megan and I were enjoying one of our in-car sing-a-longs, we marveled at the fact that either one of us had ever found anyone willing to date us. I think we came to the conclusion that everyone is secretly weird. We're just not so afraid of parading our weirdness to the world. It really does make life much more entertaining. Besides, what fun is it to make friends with people when you're pretending to be normal, only to have them find out later that you're weird and then wonder why they befriended you? I think it saves much time and energy to just be real from the beginning...

In all seriousness though, I've been thinking a lot lately about the importance of "being real." This is actually fairly new territory for me. I know I've said this before, but I believe it enough that I'm going to say it again: I am happier and feel like I have more friends now that I'm not so afraid of what people will think of me than I was before, when I was always trying to be what I thought everyone wanted me to be. Interesting...

Another subject that's been the topic of much thought and conversation lately is the difficulty of letting go and letting God control my life. Megan and I had a good conversation about this last night. Currently, we are in situations that seem to be very opposite, but in reality are very similar. We are both in situations in which there is something we want very much to turn out a certain way, yet we have no power over whether they will or not. We are both realizing the incredible power emotions have over us, while realizing that it is unhealthy to always let emotions dictate actions. As much as I hate to admit it, I want to be in control of every aspect of my life. I want things to go the way I want them to go, when I want them to. But the fact of the matter is, I have no control of 99% of the things that I stress out about. It is all but killing me right now to not know what my life will be like 1 or 2 or 10 years from now. But I know that God has a plan, and He is in control. All I have to do is keep my eyes on Him, and He will lead me where He wants me to go.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Well, another one of my friends joined the ranks of the married people today. I should be getting to used to this by now. I guess I've just reached that time in life when getting married is what all the cool people do. I've always been a couple steps behind the "cool people." I think I'm ok with that...

I do enjoy weddings though. I like it when everyone is happy and pretty, and the punch is usually pretty good too. Today's punch was especially nice. And pink.

My song got stolen. Again. I have this unwritten list of songs I think I might like to have in my own wedding someday. (The day I catch up with the cool people.) One of those songs is "Wrapped Up In You" by Garth Brooks. The first time it was stolen with permission by Sarah and TJ. Today it was stolen without permission. Oh well. I have heard threats of another one of my songs being stolen for a wedding later this summer. Efforts are being made to foil these attempts. I hope they are successful...