When I first heard that we had six weeks off for Winter Break I couldn’t believe it. I went from being busy all the time and always having something I could be working on to the sudden shock of free time with no responsibilities. I always like to stay busy and after two weeks at home in Boston, I came back down to Baltimore to make the most of my remaining free time. While I was home I spent time with my parents, dogs and two sisters and even found time to head up to Maine and go skiing with my boyfriend at Sunday River. While I was at home I used the opportunity to shadow a Nurse Practitioner who works in the Center for Perioperative Evaluation at Brigham and Women’s Faulkner, the hospital that my mom works at. It was interesting to gain insight into yet another field of nursing. The FNP that I shadowed was in charge of clearing people who had upcoming surgeries. She performed a physical and asked many questions in order to discern whether or not their were physically fit to endure surgery. It was a great way to witness another career opportunity I might want to explore some day. While catching up with my high school friends was a lot of fun (we went to see Alesso perform at a club called Royale in Boston), I decided to head back down to DC for NYE.
The next day it was back to business. After weeks of filling out applications and jumping through the seemingly endless hoops to acquire my CNA license, I finally secured an interview at Mercy Hospital here in Baltimore. I was interested in gaining clinical experience in pediatric nursing, something I haven’t yet encountered, so I applied for a Nursing Support Tech position in their NICU/ pediatric unit. Luckily, the next week of waiting to hear back was supplemented by the emotionally and intellectually intense HIV course I had signed up for, purely due to interest. Unfortunately the graduate level course I took from the SON won’t fulfill any mandatory elective requirements for my graduate degree. Therefore I took it purely for my own educational benefit. It was a grueling five days of straight class from 8-5 but in the end I feel like I received a plethora of information that I will be able to use in my future practice. The HIV class also inspired me by opening my eyes to the reality of evidence based treatments for controlling the viral load of HIV and gave the frightening disease a more manageable quality.
When I finally heard back from Mercy I was ecstatic. I will finally start getting paid for doing something I am truly passionate about! I know that being an NST will require me to work 12 hour shifts which will mean less free time (especially on weekends), but for right now it doesn’t bother me. Next semester we will have less physical class time at the SON because of the absence of labs. I figure that I can study more during the week and therefore dedicate my remaining free time on the weekends to fun stuff…. like the upcoming Ravens Patriots playoff game this weekend… GO PATS!!!