Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Fear in Uncertainty

Below is a letter I wrote to a friend who is also taking her prereqs to start her BSN program and I felt it was perfect to share as it explains exactly how I am feeling right now.

"I started taking A&P I at the community college on Sundays. I am doing surprisingly well and I am actually enjoying this memorization style of studying but it definitely is different. I think the whole "at a loss" feeling comes from many angles but for me its the thought of an entirely different career. I too have worked since I was 14 and I have had so many different jobs its crazy but yet I always find myself in the same type of role. If I go through with this wholeheartedly and leap in . . .. I will end up in a new place that will provide many different opportunities but it will be completely new. I can't just fall back to "what I know how to do well."

I am currently working part time because this job market is horrendous. I had 3 part time jobs in January just to pay bills and live a certain lifestyle ---- of which I have no idea what that is. lol. When I talk to people who are in marketing and do enjoy their office life . . . I feel at an even bigger loss and disadvantage because they just don't get that although I am good at what I do, I don't feel like I fit in.

A couple of things I have learned about myself is . . . I AM A HANDS ON person. I never thought I was but I very much enjoy DOING more than conceptualizing. I ENJOY WORKING WITH PEOPLE . . .less in a sales manner and more in a I WANT TO HELP YOU BE BETTER manner. AND I am smart. The last one was hard to understand . . .. EVEN AT 29. I always put myself in the "I am hardworking" category and never gave myself the credit that I am smart person. Could you imagine? It feels good and I feel confident going through class with this new found wisdom about myself.

I told my friend the other day that I would like to have a mentor. Someone who is in the Health Science field who did something completely different once. Someone who would understand the fear, excitement, and complete loss of jumping into a different career. I am still looking for that person. I can't wait to find him/her. I know I'm not the first person to do this. Just googling online I found many RN's who are also MBAs. But sometimes I feel like the perpetual student and wonder if I will ever find true happiness in a career. Will I EVER love my job? Will I EVER find a career path that would lead me to the things I want in life vs. dead ends.

Those are my thoughts.

However, I am SOOOOO PROUD of you and LOOK UP TO YOU TOO. You just jumped right in and didn't hesitate. That takes guts missy. I just couldn't do it. I had to feel it out. I feel like I've had too many missteps in life by JUMPING IN. Needless to say, I AM SCARED!

I'm definitely taking it slow. Hoping to save up some money for living expenses as I finish my pre requisites. I would hate to put all the expenses of this apartment solely on the man. If all goes well, I hope to enroll in an Accelerated BSN program in 2013."

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Exams and more

So I am back to taking exams. I did so well on my last lab test and I am kicking my butt trying to study as hard as I can for my lecture exam but I must say, this isn't easy at 29.

I am tired and working two part-time jobs and attending school isn't easy when you are no longer a kid. In undergrad, I was able to hold down multiple jobs and take 18 credits but now my body shuts down at 11pm.

I literally can't function. I've begun drinking coffee again and I hate it but I have no choice. This school thing is EXHAUSTING.

BE FOREWARNED . . . this is a rough road ahead

Sunday, January 22, 2012

First class today

Today, I walked into my first class of what could potentially be the rest of my life . . . Anatomy and Physiology I (Lecture and Lab). About five hours of class in a day to allow myself to go to school without disrupting my work life.

I was thankful when I saw 39 other people in the class with me on a Sunday at noon. That was a huge relief. At one point last night, I had this dream that I would be the only one there. The professor was awesome. She started us off with the very simple lesson of "what is an atom?" That immediately refreshed my memory and helped me tap into some knowledge sitting in the back of my brain collecting dust. It looks like everyone else in the class is going into some type of health profession. The age range was broad as well and not everyone is a matriculated student.

I certainly didn't feel awkward. I will say, that my studying for the ACE Personal Training Certification helped me a lot because I at least have a broad understanding about everything the professor will cover over the semester. Now, I just have to get into specifics which will be the hard part.

I decided to take one class this semester to ease myself into school again and I am so happy I did. Science doesn't come naturally to me. I love to learn about the human body and the systems but my brain shuts off at times when things get really complicated. Taking one class will allow me to focus on the topic and avoid feeling overwhelmed. Of course, I'm also working three jobs so this won't be an easy task but not taking Chemistry this semester along with A&P I, is helpful. I'll be taking 6 exams in the lab portion of the class and 6 exams in the lecture so I am sure I'll have a lot to write about as I go through it all.

Regardless of all the unknowns, learning a new topic is exciting and I'm going to continue taking baby steps. It's the best I can do.

For those considering joining me in this journey, a nursing friend of mine mentioned a forum website I should check out. Nursing World. Check it out for more information on the nursing field.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Self-Doubt creeping in

Yesterday, on a long car ride, I felt an increasing sense of doubt. What if I won't do well? What if this isn't the career for me? What if I fail after spending so much time and money in another degree?

I kept thinking about this reoccurring dream that I constantly have. The dream is about me being in school. I have had this dream several times, usually in times of stress. I am in school and I have a full class load. Sometimes I am in high school and sometimes I am in college. Regardless of that fact, I attend all of my classes except one. I constantly forget that I have this ONE class to take on this one day at a specific time. I see it on my class list, and its in my calendar but I never attend the class. Every week, I prepare to take the class but I NEVER walk in or I just forget. Throughout the dream, I continue trying to find a way to get myself to class but it never works out. EVER! It's a really stressful dream because I think about the money I am spending for credits, my GPA being affected, and my personal perception of myself but I do nothing about it.

I know I am many steps away from starting the Accelerated BSN program and I know that I have told myself to take it "step by step." First, Anatomy and Physiology, then Chemistry and so on BUT it just seems so overwhelming and taxing. Considering that my work and financial situation is so unbalanced, I feel the sense of hurry to get it all done and get myself in a better place. Wish it was that easy.

Thanks for reading.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

I registered!

I just registered for Anatomy and Physiology I at my local community college. I'll be taking the course on a Sunday! Crazy I know but the best time in the case that I find a full-time job soon.

Next year, I will be in a lecture followed by a lab from 12pm to 5pm every Sunday.

Wish me luck.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Is this really for me?

Early this summer, I had a conversation with a doctor friend and fellow Zumba instructor on a long car ride to another friend's home. I told her how I had been thinking about looking at nursing programs. She excitedly said I should definitely do it. I listened but then put it in my back pocket.

The thoughts that ran through my head were:

  • Are you kidding? You already have two degrees.
  • Do you have any idea what this will cost you?
  • You haven't studied any science since High School?
  • You can't just jump up and decide you want to change careers. The world doesn't work that way.
  • You are crazy.
I thought about it but always came to the same conclusion. I was insane. Until another friend of mine who is also in marketing and also in fitness and is unemployed confided in me that he had been thinking of nursing. I ran through all my thoughts with him and he confirmed that I was crazy. Not because I was thinking it but because I just stored it away and gave up on the thought so quickly WITHOUT doing any research.

So, I began researching. I began learning about the various programs and I organized a spreadsheet. Here is the list that I put together of things that were important to me:
  1. Location - I didn't want to go to a school that was too difficult to commute to as I realized the Accelerated Programs were eight hours a day and then you need time to study. Being far from home would extend my time away by at least an hour, perhaps two, and I wouldn't have any time for anything else. 
  2. Length of time - In my book, more time is more money and I can't afford being in school for too long.
  3. Cost per credit or Cost of program - something I never considered in undergrad or even grad school but a definitely consideration now. 
  4. Pre-requisites: The way I see it, the more pre-requisites that the school requested of me that I already didn't have, the more money I would have to spend.
Doing the research and making myself fill out my spreadsheet helped me start learning about programs, the school offering it, and the type of students. Most students who go for the Accelerated BSN program are professionals in career transition just like me

Anyway, I decided to take a step-by-step approach. I'm signing up for one or two courses in the spring semester at a local community college. If I enjoy the coursework, and want to continue, then I will. If not, then I won't. My goal is to pay for all my pre-requisites on my own without student loans so this might be a long process but I am excited about it.

See ya later! 

Monday, November 14, 2011

First post - why a blog?

I have been toying with the idea of starting this blog for a couple of months now. I have a Masters in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing. During this economy, I've found myself struggling to find work. I once had an awesome job but due to changes in leadership, I lost it. This occurred four months after obtaining my MBA and right in the middle of this crazy recession. I, like many of my MBA classmates, thought I was marketable enough to find another job. So after complete desperation and blowing right through my savings, I took a job without doing much research. It was for a start-up firm. It was a marketing position, it was social media, and finally, it was a job. How could I really complain. Like really???  So what I was making $20K less than in my last position and so what I had to fight for health insurance, a job is a job is a job, right? I should be thankful.

Well yes UNTIL . . .

Like many other start-ups in both good and bad times, the one I was working for, began losing revenue and looking for ways to cut bulk. I eventually became the ONLY employee at this company and now I am a part-time employee - making peanuts.

Prior to ALL of this happening, I found a deep desire to learn more about health and fitness. I have a family that's pretty sick and I became interested in learning more about healthcare and healthy living. I became a personal trainer and a group fitness instructor. Working part-time in this field has peeked my curiosity in the medical field. I work with people who have injuries, illnesses, and need care. They ask me about this stuff BUT I am not qualified! I have many friends that are doctors and nurses and I see how much they love their jobs and realized that I too can be a nurse. That I like to care for others and that medicine, health and wellness is something I want to learn more about.

After DEEP thought and even a DEEPER look at the cost of going back to school, I realized I wanted to give a shot. I have some pre-requisites I need to take and then the nursing school application process. I did some research on various forums and found no information on the REALITY of switching careers. I figured, I can provide my experience and my advice to others who are looking.

From today until the day I graduate with my Accelerated Bachelor's Degree in Nursing, I will attempt to blog about my experiences to help others going through or considering the same transition.

That's all for now!

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