Looking Back: A Nursing Student’s Year in Review

By Nursing Student and ThriveAP Contributor Ashley Prince

It’s time to wrap up the holiday season with one of my favorites- New Year’s! Time for endless “Best/Worst of 2015” slideshows, Facebook Year In Reviews, voluntarily staying up obscenely late, and making goals that will hopefully last through Valentine’s Day. I realized a while ago that I love New Year’s because I love new beginnings, chances to start over and to become more of myself (whoever that ends up being).

It’s been one hell of a year though- I got braces again at 22, graduated from Ohio State, moved back home, traveled to some new cities, and got myself into this awesome, insane ABSN nursing program. So this New Year’s Eve I’ve decided instead to focus not so much on where I want to go, but how far I’ve come.

If someone had told me I would be calling a thirty minute drive at 5:30 in the morning “not bad at all because I get to avoid rush hour”, I’d probably ask them what drugs they were taking. In undergrad, if I got less than seven hours of sleep I felt like a zombie. Now five will work and a few cups of coffee will pick up the slack. I never thought that I would move back into my parents’ house, and I couldn’t have predicted which friendships I would lose after graduation, or the close, different brand of friendship that nursing students seem to have.

Until I started my program, I got mad if my lunch break wasn’t long enough to watch Game of Thrones; now I’ve experienced 12 hour shifts with 5 minute lunches. Last year I wouldn’t have let TGIT go to the DVR, or passed up social invitations to go out because “these drugs aren’t going to memorize themselves” (actual statement used by me a few too many times during pharmacology). A year ago I hadn’t changed WoundVACs, pulled NG tubes, pushed IV meds, or gone eight hours without peeing. But, a year ago I wasn’t on my way to becoming a nurse.

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I’ve got a long way to go before I graduate, and still longer before I’m the nurse I want to be. But I’ve definitely come a long way from the sleeping in, ew-I’m-not-measuring-pee bum I started out as, and I’m proud of everything I’ve done this year. I can’t wait to see what happens next!

What have you done this year that you’re proud of? Let me know in the comments!


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