J2 so far

This semester is already flying by. I feel like I am always saying that but literally when you are this busy time really does fly by!

Between class, hospital orientation, skills days, and simulations for both of my clinical courses I feel like the last few weeks have been a whirlwind. I calculated that between school and work I’ve been spending just over 50 hours a week at each place. That doesn’t include the time I’ve spent studying and working on assignments outside of class/clinical hours. No wonder I’ve been exhausted!

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The best thing about J2 so far is how much more laid back it is than J1. For our skills day, we were told to review our skills guide, we watched a demo from our teachers then we were expected to immediately check off. Whereas J1 was multiple practice days/labs and our instructors were so rigid when it came to performing the skills in front of them (which I understand why—most people have zero medical knowledge at this point). For our Women’s Health skills day we had a breastfeeding lecture, IV starts, IV spike/push, foley review, newborn and postpartum care, and labor support skill where we learned different ways to support a laboring mom. For our Adult Health skills day we had tracheostomy suctioning/care, NGT insertion, ostomy care, CVAD dressing change, and IV push/IV pump.

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Practicing IV starts. (Note: This isn’t a real arm.)

We had a simulation day in Adult Health where we were in charge of care of a patient with CHF exacerbation. We all had different roles (primary nurse, med nurse, documentation, etc) and we basically walked into the room and jumped into caring for our patient. We have our simulation for Women’s Health later this semester.

I also had my first women’s clinical day and it was so much fun! We only have them every other week because they are 12 hour clinicals. On my first day I was in L&D and I saw a vaginal birth, a c-section, and spent time in the women’s ED. Even though L&D is not a field I’ve ever considered before watching life come into this world is amazing!! It definitely opened my eyes into a different niche in the nursing world. I can’t wait for my next clinical day!

We had our first test of the semester in Adult Health this week. It was over ABG’s, electrolyte/fluid imbalances, EKG interpretation, CHF, CAD, HTN, PVD, Asthma, PN, COPD, and TB… so you know not much to study at all. 😉 I went into the test wishing I had of studied more. I feel like this course is really going to be one that is “self-taught”. I ended up squeaking by with an A on the exam but I am definitely going to spend more time preparing for the next test. We have our first clinical this week in the hospital so I am hoping that is more fun than the class itself.

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No way I’d make it through without these crazies!!

xoxo,

D


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Summer Update!

Well summer came and went and I’m already into my second week of my J2 semester. How is that even possible?

The first part of the summer was hectic as I bounced around between my 3 jobs. I started working as a PCA and well… it was interesting. I am much more comfortable interacting with patients, ambulating and assisting them with ADL’s but I’d be lying if I said it didn’t make me question why I was in nursing school. But then, there would be patients or patient’s family members that touched my heart and I would realize “this is why.”

Finally, at the end of July, I got a break. Some of our favorite Texas friends got married and we had so much fun at their wedding. We visited Pagosa Springs, Colorado with K’s family. Colorado in the summer is so amazing! It was our first trip to Pagosa and it was such a cute mountain town. We did a lot of fly fishing and spent time w/ K’s family and his extended family.

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Wedding Fun!
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Tubing the river with the family
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Parelli Ranch BBQ!
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Horseback ride through the San Juan National Forest

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Catching trout!

We came home from that trip for two weeks then flew to North Carolina and spent a week in Nags Head with my family and some of our friends. The Outer Banks is my favorite place in the world and it was such a relaxing week spending time with my favorite people in my favorite place and I left with my heart so full! We came back to Texas for a few days and one of my best friends flew into town. We had the best time showing her around town and literally eating our way through Texas! The day after she left was the first day of school. So the last month of summer was insanely busy but with all good things!

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Seriously, how adorable are these two little men?

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Cheers!

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Eating our way through Texas! May have visited Steel City Pops more than once!

Now, it is back to reality. The first couple of weeks of the semester are always hectic and I’ve still been juggling work between it all. This semester we have 3 online classes (Aging Family, Nursing Experience with Groups, Intro to Research) and 2 clinical courses (Adult Health I (Med Surg) and Women’s Health). More coming soon! 🙂

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Leaving you with a picture of this nugget because he’s just the cutest!

xoxo

D