Wednesday, September 29, 2010

RN School Blues

Being an LPN currently, or almost if you read my previous post, I am, of course, in RN school now!

It's way harder, way more complex, and if I hear anyone say an LPN and an RN are practically the same thing I'm punching them square in the mouth. When I first thought about nursing as a field I wanted to get into, like many people, I only saw what nurses did. You can't possibly see how someone thinks. And that makes all the difference between an RN and an LPN.

They've thrown a few more electrolytes into the mix. Last year, I only worried about sodium and potassium. In addition to them, now I gotta worry about magnesium, calcium, and phosphorus.

I took a test on ARDS and acute MIs the other night and felt fairly ill after taking it. I believe I passed it, but, wow... it was hard! My teacher last year for the most difficult section was a guy who was absolutely great; he had a good ole boy demeanor and had a way of explaining difficult concepts in a way anyone could understand. He never gave anyone a hard time about not knowing something and he was just great.

This year, I have a PhD educated supernurse. She won't dumb anything down. It's like a totally different program. It's like if she says tetany, and for some reason you don't know what it is, don't expect to ask or may get told you are a "nimrod".

Upon talking to some classmates directly progressing from the LPN to the RN program we mostly all agreed that during our break things just didn't feel right. You get set in a routine and when you get an unexpected three week break, you almost don't know what to do with all your free time! But once we were all back in the program, it's like things felt normal again. I compared this to my cousin when he was little. We used to joke he couldn't go to sleep without getting his ass beat by his father at least once. This is kinda like that I guess! :)

Graduation, which is in a mere nine months, seems to be looming on the horizon. I don't know what the hell I will do after I'm out of nursing school; I'll feel like I've been freed from a cage I've been stuck in for like two years!

It's Official...

It is official. The Pearson Vue trick was correct. I did, in fact, pass my boards to become a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN)! Talk about a relief after two days of torture; I don't know how people waited months for their results back in the "golden years"!

It currently shows that my licensure is pending on my state board. However, I received an urgent call from the Complaints & Investigations department.

Turns out my background check turned up a non-disclosed crime I committed back in 2002! The lady was very rude, like I was trying to hide something from her! In fact, this is what happened:

I was pulled over one late December evening for a burnt out taillight and the officer noticed I had a six-pack of beer in the back seat. Incredibly, I was only 20 years old, sober as a fox, and on my way home to get some sleep. However, I was still arrested for underage possession of alcohol.

The cherry on this little sundae is that I turned 21 not even four weeks afterwards! By the time I went to court, I was already 21. The judge, I guess too busy cutting deals with real bad guys, said he'd stick it on an inactive docket and that it would be exponged within a year. He even made the comment that the charge was a waste of the court's time.

However, eight years later it still causes me issues. It's the only real trouble I've ever been in, and now I have to hunt down the paperwork for this case (in a courthouse in a different state from which I reside) so that I can then write a 'Letter of Explanation' to the Board.

First few days as a nurse and I'm already dealing with the bureaucratic bullshit. I just I hope I can get it resolved in a decent amount of time; my Board likes the take their sweet ass time with licensing.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

I've taken the NCLEX-PN!


I took the NCLEX-PN examination at a Pearson Vue testing center yesterday. Let me guide you through that experience.

First of all, if you think you've had test anxiety before, you are totally wrong. This is like panic-level anxiety when you realize you are about to take this thing.

First, I show up about 15 minutes early. I wait for some old guy to come to the desk. When he does, I have to provide my identification and my ATT (authorization-to-test) form. My fingers were then scanned. I then had to place my palm on some sort of reader.

I eventually get to the test station, do the tutorial, and begin.

Nothing... I repeat nothing, can prepare you for this test. The topics are varied, the answers all look great. My test shut off fairly quickly after like 85 questions.

I'm legally bound to not say what was on my test, so I'm going to honor that, but I will say that a complete knowledge of the nursing process is completely necessary.

I'm sure I failed it. Sure. Until I learned about a trick...

Affectionately coined the "PVT Trick", allnurses.com has probably well over a thousand people that this trick has worked for.

I got the good "pop-up". Hopefully the results will coincide with me getting the message all the people who have passed got. I was very skeptical, however, nearly everyone who failed the test (God bless them) were able to pay for a new test... I was not.

So the waiting has been unbearable. I feel like I failed it. I've wanted to pretty much vomit all day yesterday and for the first half of today! I won't actually believe totally I passed it until I see it... It's been excruciating!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Sorry for my absence!!

Sorry for my absence...

It's been a long and trying summer for me. Between having health issues with my mother, marital problems with my wife, and a recent auto accident on my plate, it slipped through unnoticed that my Google account that this blog that was under it was cancelled!

Well, it's back up anyhow and you can expect some more posts! That's good news... now back to that whole nursing thing!

I passed psychiatric nursing fairly easily. I did really well on all the tests and projects, however, I bombed my final exam because I was doped up on Vicodin ES after having a tooth extracted. Psychiatric nursing was a breeze... and that was my last class before becoming an LPN.

That's right! I'm no longer a nursing student... I'm a student nurse!