Sunday, May 18, 2008

About Me or How I Ended Up in Nursing School

Not so long ago, I was perched on a bench in a lab surrounded by a shelf of jars containing live locusts. I hate locusts. In fact, I’m not a fan of bugs in general. But there I was, suspended between paralyzing inaction and an overwhelming desire to stuff my lab coat in the fume hood before walking out and never looking back. I have zero confrontational skills so while I muttered a string of profanities, I walked over to the locust jars, closed my eyes, grabbed an unlucky bug, pinned him onto a plate and then cut out its gut. Not a high point in my life. Just then, my supervisor came in to encourage my work by telling me that I should consider applying for a master’s degree in biology with a focus on insect physiology. That was it. I decided that there has to be more to life than torturing insects (which I despised – the torture and the insect part) and politely told my supervisor that I will not be returning in the summer due to personal reasons (such as disgust and apathy towards my work).

That felt great. For about 10 minutes. And then I panicked. “What the hell will I do now?” I wondered (aloud on a subway). “I can’t spend the rest of my life as a poorly paid lab rat... I like pretty things too much. And a Master’s in biology? I’d rather give up cake”(again, muttered out loud in a subway). While I was contemplating the direction of my life and enjoying the increasing amount of empty seats near me, I saw some people get in the subway wearing scrubs. This story would be tied up in a neat little package if I said that that was the moment I decided to enrol in nursing school. But that wasn’t the case. I was lulled into a deep sleep by my food coma (a non-medical term coined by my friend, referring to a sleepy feeling after eating a heavy meal).

Over the next few months, I started to panic about what I would do with a crummy ol’ BSc in biology and started to consider my options. Luckily, I was also volunteering on a medical-surgical floor in a hospital and for some strange reason, I thought, ‘Hell, I could be a nurse. I like blood and guts, I like people, lots of folk in my family are in health care, I’ve always wanted to be in health care, and going to work in pyjamas is just the icing on the cake… umm… cake)’.

Shortly after hanging up a $30,000 piece of paper (my degree) on the wall, I got a letter saying that I had been accepted into nursing school. Awesome! I prepared for my new career by renting out the first 6 seasons of ER (fine, George Clooney was the real reason… gimme a break) and started becoming a much bigger nuisance to the nurses on the unit in which I was volunteering.

Suffice it to say that nursing school was nothing like I imagined it. I thought we would start learning gruesome and bloody stuff right away. Alas, that was not the case. We theorized and conceptualized (until our eyes bled) before we were allowed to touch patients. During the course of the nursing program, I was placed in units such as maternal/child care, long term care, neurosurgery (not nearly as impressive as it sounds), paediatrics, mental health and the community. And now, it’s finally (FINALLY) time to do the consolidation (an intense period of in-hospital or community training before graduation).

Since the consolidation period is probably the most exciting time of nursing school, I figured this is the ideal time to start a blog featuring heart-warming, gut-wrenching and sometimes just plain old twisted anecdotes. I’ve also been told that I have a keen sense of twisted anger when I’m sleep deprived and that it should be shared with others. So for my adoring public (consisting of about 3 people), here it is; Maha’s blog! Enjoy!


Jessica said...

Ricing brilliant!

Glee said...

YaY!! Finally! Now, post another one!;P

Keith Fraley said...

My name is Keith and I work with Jacksonville University. I am interested in e-mailing you information awarding you as a Top 20 Blog for Nurses. I could not find a email address so I decided to send you a comment.

Please contact me at Once you contact me I will send you the information and the code for the award badge for your blog.

Have a nice day,