It is finally over. I have taken my last exam and my first semester in nursing school is now history. Friendships were made, tears were shed, but most importantly, lessons were learned. I can’t even begin to describe how much I have learned in these four short months. It seems like yesterday that I felt fear of not knowing what to expect when I started nursing school. Though the time flew by, it was filled with so many events. Clinical seems like it happened in the far past and Health Assessment is now a forced memory. Even though the physical experiences have left my mind to some extent, the knowledge that I gained from those experiences are still fresh. They are being applied more and more each day. Slowly but surely I feel myself becoming a nurse and I am very excited. I pictured what this day, the last day I would have to be at school for the year 2012, would be like for about 4 weeks. I thought I’d run as fast as I could to the parking lot and jump into bed when I got home for some much needed and well-earned sleep. However I found quite the opposite. The LRC is fairly populated with students going over the exam in their heads to see what they missed, ensuring they’d never make that mistake again. “It’s Winter Break!” I want to tell them. But I can’t because I find myself doing the same thing. What nursing school has taught us all is that the grade or GPA that we held in such high esteem as applicants trying to get into nursing school is now not all that important. We are all going to be nurses and the important thing is the understanding. If that understanding comes after the test, it is still a victory because it’s at that point that we become a better nurse; one who knows more things, as opposed to someone content with her lack of knowledge and potential for error.
I can breathe easier for a few weeks but I still have to get into the mindset of doing it all over again in January. This time I’ll be prepared though. I’ll know what to expect for the most part and it won’t take long for me to get into the swing of things. There are three more semesters to go before I start my career as an RN. The thought is both nerve-racking and inspiring.