I’m sure you all will be shocked to learn this, but I survived my summer class and so did all of my patients (to my knowledge). And now, for the first time since January – or last August, really – I’m taking a break. I’ve had some school breaks since last August, yes, but every one of them involved studying and/or panicking about something school related, so they don’t count because the stress level was still high. And also you wouldn’t feel as sorry for me if I said this is my first break since May, which is technically true but still involved lots of prep work for the intense summer class. And really, we all know that the point of most of my blog posts is to elicit sympathy from my readers. (Ha! Like I still have any of those…)
My last day of clinical was on a Wednesday, and we worked at the hospital for half a day and then went out for margaritas to reflect on what we learned this semester. On the first day we met our clinical instructor, she told us about herself and happened to include the fact that she likes to do “fairy readings.” Personally, I didn’t know what a fairy reading was, but I was pretty sure I wanted one. Fast forward to the last day when we were all gathered around our lunch table and not at all tipsy. The instructor was wearing her fairy hat – it helps her communicate with the fairies, duh – and pulled out a stack of cards much like Tarot cards except they don’t ever predict death or dismemberment.
As the instructor worked her way around the table, I listened as my classmates were told to follow their instincts, to trust in themselves and that they were living good lives and could expect to live happily ever after. So imagine my surprise when the fairies just told me to get some exercise.
Were it an actual conversation with the fairies, I imagine it going something like this:
FAIRIES: Have confidence, young nurse! You will do great things! And you, sir, are a good person! You, my dear, need to trust your instincts! And you, sweetheart … um … how do we put this delicately? We didn’t want to be the ones to tell you this, but you’re getting a little chubby.
ME: Fuck you, fairies, I’m finishing this plate of enchiladas, AND this margarita non-alcoholic beverage.
To be fair, they may have a point. This whole nursing school thing, with the studying and the stress and the fact that peanut butter M&Ms are a really tasty studying snack, has caused a bit of expansion in my waistline. Let’s use the term “womanly curves” so I can feel a little more sexy and a little less squishy.
I was sort of pissed at the fairies all afternoon, and apparently my bitching wasn’t entirely in my head because my instructor eventually asked me if I wanted another reading. Of course I did. This time, the fairies told me to take a vacation. Give myself a break. Etc. I think they mostly wanted me to stop saying “Fuck the fairies!” in the middle of downtown Manitou Springs.
A couple of my classmates are avid Facebookers and posted pictures of our very sober afternoon playing Skee-Ball and Dance Dance Revolution at Manitou’s outdoor-ish arcade, including one photo in which I look a good five months pregnant. Now, I was packed with some tasty enchiladas at the time, but I’d think that would only equate to looking maybe three and a half months along.
And so this break, which lasts three and a half more weeks, has so far involved me taking the fairies’ advice and relaxing. (You thought I was going to say exercising, right? You don’t know me at all.) But I have been thinking very hard about taking the plastic wrap off the Jillian Michaels DVDs I bought several months ago. I even made the claim that I would start the 30-Day Shred yesterday and then somehow that didn’t happen because I was too busy practicing my relaxation skills by napping half the day. I did, however, play “Nickelodeon Dance” on the Kinect with Kaylee last night, which is practically the same as letting Jillian Michaels show me how out of shape I am. That Dora the Explorer can be a real slave driver. Plus I kind of hurt my arm doing the Cabbage Patch and don’t think I should be starting an intense exercise program right now. I should ease into this, right?
At the very least, I should wait until I recover from the crick in my neck caused by all the napping.