Hi! I’m finally back with an update! Seems like I can never catch a grip on life LOL. It is always one thing after another and I am always busy… Well, I finally have some spare time to sit down and tell you guys what I’ve been doing this summer. Let’s get started with passing the NCLEX and applying for jobs…
Passing the NCLEX and Applying for Jobs
I wasn’t like most students in my class when scheduling to take the NCLEX. I scheduled my NCLEX date about 1 month and a half after my graduation date, while others took the closest date they could get. I am too worrisome to even think about taking such an important licensure exam that close to my graduation. I took the safe way out and took the NCLEX on July 2nd, and I found out I passed on July 3rd at 11:50pm. I was so relieved… I felt like another piece of my umbilical cord got snipped from being connected to my nursing program (this is a running joke between my friends and I). If you are interested in how I studied for the NCLEX, please visit my Instagram @nicolethenursern and watch the first IGTV video I posted.
Applying for jobs was a little difficult at first, and I wanted to make sure I did everything perfectly. I am fortunate to have such an amazing friend to help me with making my resume absolutely perfect. She helped me make it centered, changed some words here and there, and also wrote a letter of recommendation for me to use with my personal portfolio. She is so sweet!
With the help of my awesome resume, my cover letters/letters of intent, and certifications, I was able to land some interviews. I had a phone interview for a new grad program at a hospital by my college, and was set up with an interview for a cardiac new grad program at another hospital.
For the first hospital, I was able to get through the phone interview that led me to a panel interview with 5 staff members. Unfortunately, for whatever reason, I did not get through this interview to meet with the CNO/ACNO of the hospital. It could’ve easily been my nerves, or I just didn’t “jive” with any of the staff members. IT WAS MY FIRST INTERVIEW! Of course I’m going to be nervous!!! I found myself stuttering a lot and stumbling over my words because of how nervous I was. Thankfully, I had another interview set up with a different hospital.
I walked into this interview with the utmost confidence. I felt prepared, I felt ready, and I felt like I was going to conquer this interview. Something about the atmosphere just felt right with the staff, the facility… I don’t know… it just felt “right”. I walked into that interview with God leading me, I had just prayed my heart out right before I was called in. I was offered the job on the spot!!! I even heard myself mutter “Oh my God” right after I was offered the position. I was so happy, so ecstatic that I couldn’t WAIT to call my fiancé and my mother. I called so many people. I couldn’t believe that I had graduated my nursing program, passed my NCLEX, and got a job offer in less than 3 months! I am very blessed. Someone is definitely watching over me!
So now, I am preparing for this job. My orientation starts next week and I already ordered my Figs scrubs that I couldn’t wait to buy! (They actually just shipped today, WOO!). I will keep you guys updated in the future blogs… now lets talk about other stuff.
I dove straight into wedding planning after my graduation, as if my wedding was happening the week after my graduation HA! I had been wanting to plan my wedding for the longest time, but had to put planning to the side for school. Luckily, I have gotten a lot done throughout the 3 years of being engaged. My vendors are all reserved, there is a vision for everything, I’m working on the escort blocks (we are using Jenga pieces to escort our guests to their tables), I’m working on the chalkboards, finalizing everything with the vendors, and really just getting all the little stuff done. Yes… I am VERY early with everything. I did this on purpose so I wouldn’t have to stress about the planning when it got closer to the wedding date (10/13/2018), only 62 more days, but who’s counting!
In addition to wedding planning, I have also been preparing myself for the wedding, in which I am working with a personal trainer/friend to help me get to where I want to be for my (new) wedding dress, and she is FREAKING AMAZING!!!
Yes… I bought a new wedding dress because my first one wouldn’t fit over my butt when I was done with my nursing program. TRUST ME, this new dress is AMAZING, and a lot more flattering!
Along with fitness, I have been eating a lot cleaner. Veggies, chicken, and protein drinks galore! WOO! HAHA! My motivation just comes a lot easier now that I am working with a trainer, and she totally helps me find that motivation as well. Without her, I’d be at the gym doing nonsense exercises that aren’t benefiting me at all. She helped me realize what I WAS doing in the gym, on my own, was not benefiting me and she shows me in every session we have what I should be doing to get the results I want. She is just so amazing!
I am not sure if I have mentioned it before, but I have been trying to do more calligraphy lately. Calligraphy is my therapy, my “me time”. It is so relaxing and it keeps me focused, all while being creative. I have a massive collection of brush pens, regular pens, markers… you name it. It is disgusting how much I have, but it makes me happy and that is what matters right? If you would like to see my work, you can visit my calligraphy Instagram @TheCreativeNurse.
My Fiancé’s Mother
I had gotten her ready for her niece’s wedding (a week after her injury). She doesn’t have the sling anymore, and her incision site is completely healed.
So on June 4th, my future mother-in-law got into a terrible wave runner accident and ended up fracturing her C2 and shattering her left humerus/shoulder. She was flown to a nearby trauma hospital and taken care of there for about 3 days. She is LUCKILY not a quadriplegic, or dead… she is a very lucky woman. She is currently doing physical therapy for her left arm (which required surgery for plates and screws to be inserted to reconstruct her humerus back together), and she is wearing a hard collar to keep her neck immobile while it heals.
I have been driving her to all her physical therapy appointments and doctor appointments since she is unable to turn her neck and I am not currently working at the moment. Doing this has kept me busy throughout the weeks and it makes me feel good that I can be there for her so she doesn’t have to take Uber’s to all her appointments. Hopefully her collar SHOULD BE coming off in about 2 weeks, we are all crossing our fingers!
My grandmother has been slowly losing her short-term memory over the past couple years… she will ask the same thing 5 times in the matter of 20 minutes, doesn’t know what year it is (thinks it is 2013), forgets about doing laundry, burns food, forgets taking her pills, etc. She also has a history of controlled a.fib, heart failure (50% EF from this hospital visit, so not TERRIBLE), rheumatoid arthritis, neuropathy, hypercholesterolemia, and hypertension. She has also had many TIA’s, but never a full blown stroke.
About 2 weeks ago (same day I got my job offer) I ended up having to call 911 for her. I heard her in her bathroom yelling “HELP! HELP!”… I flew to her room and asked her what was wrong…she didn’t know, but then started vomiting, having diarrhea, sweating, became pale, short of breath. I grabbed my blood pressure cuff, stethoscope, and oximeter. Blood pressure was 130/70, pulse was in the low hundreds, and O2 sat was in the low 90’s. I ended up calling my mom because my grandmother refused to go to the hospital with the ambulance when I told her I was going to initially call an ambulance (she knows how expensive they are). I ended up calling 911 because it was getting ridiculous, and I needed to act fast. No signs of a stroke though.
Once she got to the hospital, they ran all the labs, EKG, and ran troponins. Turns out she had a slightly elevated Troponin of 0.2, which technically isn’t considered a full blown MI, but the doctor wanted to keep her over night so they could draw serial troponins to rule out a MI.
Turns out it wasn’t a MI because the Troponins started to go back down, not up. They wanted to rule out a PE, but they ended up not going forward with the test because it would be “very hard on her kidneys” and her kidney’s weren’t in pristine condition, nor were they in amazing shape… I wasn’t there in the room to speak with the doctor, otherwise I would be able to give more precise words, but my mother doesn’t know what creatinine and BUN are HAHA! SO, I’m guessing they wanted to do a pulmonary angiogram, which means using contrast, which is hard on the kidneys to flush out. ANYWAYS… no diagnosis was confirmed and she was released the next day.
My mother and I decided that I would take over my grandmother’s medications and set them up in her bathroom that would help her take the pills in a manner that she wouldn’t forget… My grandmother WAS taking Coumadin but would never go to the Coumadin clinic to have her INR levels drawn to have the doses increased or decreased, and she didn’t want to go because the doctor would get mad at her for not coming in regularly… so luckily, this cardiologist during this recent hospital visit prescribed Eliquis. If you know anything about Eliquis, there is no antidote… so it is a very “touchy” drug to be taking, and there is a chance that she could hemorrhage if she falls or seriously cuts herself on accident. However, Coumadin can be reversed with Vitamin K.
Long story short, we are starting to slowly take over her responsibilities. She hates it. She is a very independent Italian woman, and has always been that way, and doesn’t want to feel like a burden or an “invalid” as she says.
It gets exhausting though… it is like having the same patient every day, and playing a broken record… but I love her to death and I really do care about her health. She unfortunately takes my education as a reprimand, which can be very hard when you are trying to help your grandmother understand the importance of taking medications to prevent her from ending up in the hospital again.
Anyways… lets end this blog on a happy note.
Netflix and Hulu Shows I’ve Been Watching
Netflix: The Office (for like the 5th time)… what’s new… HAHA!
Hulu: The Handmaid’s Tale (I haven’t watched it in a couple days because the episodes in the second season were making me so mad… not because it is a bad show, but because the storyline makes you FURIOUS). Otherwise, it is an amazing show!
If you got to this point in my blog, I would like to thank you for reading the whole thing. I had a lot to say, but now you know why I have been so MIA lately! I hope you are enjoying your summer and being your best self you can be!
Have an awesome day, and stay cool in this hot weather! 🙂