It’s hard to believe that this time 2 years ago, some of the most important people in my life today, hadn’t even entered my life yet. When I started Nursing School, I had anticipated (hoped!) to make a lot of good friends, but I didn’t realize just how crucial they would be to my success in school, and my joy. I’m absolutely blessed to be a part of a class that is incredibly tight knit and supportive. I know my classmates are the best, because they have the hearts of future nurses – compassionate, kind, and intelligent. I’m just lucky that I get to know these people.
1 – They get it. Nursing School (and Nursing as a profession) is demanding, difficult, exhausting, and often grueling. Lucky for me, I’ve had 9 other people that understand exactly what I’m going through., because they’re going through it with me. Whether it’s the demand of balancing a full class schedule with work, feeling like a failure when you see an exam grade, or feeling like you may vomit the first day of clinical, they understand it. They’re always there to rant with you, cry with you, and support you. And the first people you want to send a picture of your new stethoscope to.
2 – They’re helpful. I’ll never forget my first day of clinical. I truly thought to myself, “I’m not cut out to be a nurse.” My first patient was bed-ridden, nonverbal, and in contact precautions. While I had envisioned a day of head to toe assessments over coffee and conversations about grandchildren (in a perfect world, right?), my reality was far from my expectation. And I had no idea how to interact with a patient in this condition. Thankfully, a classmate came to my rescue and led the way. Another time at clinical, I experienced my first “Code Brown”, thankfully, I had a group of friends bearing supplies that were great sports about helping. If not for my classmates, I likely would have failed my first clinical experience. I was a fish out of water. Also, classmates make the best study buddies and will usually share their lunch. Thanks for the help, guys.
3 – They make you laugh. When the going gets rough, the tough get silly. I remember being so upset and anxious, and belting Nicki Minaj over lunch instead of studying. (They don’t call me Cassie Minaj for nothin’.) There was another time when we were in a short car heist, (Don’t worry, Mom, we were wearing seatbelts!), and the time I pranked a teacher, and the many Granny Rhoda stories, and the time Greg finally got facebook, and the time David accidentally proposed to Sydney, and the time Jess defined the word “naked”, and hearing over and over about Deonna’s terrible driving, and the list goes on and on and on. . . In short, when I could have cried because I was stressed, I had tears from laughing too hard instead.
4 – They share your goals. We all started the program two years ago with one goal in mind: RN. The fact that we all share this goal and mindset allows us to push each other and support one another. When anyone is having a rough time, they are quickly reminded that they aren’t allowed to give up. Time and time again, we are reminded why we started this journey, and encouraged to finish it together. When a group shares one goal and pushes toward it together, the results are amazing. I anticipate my class will be no exception.
5 – They become your own personal team of nurses. “Don’t worry, it’s probably just heartburn, no way it’s a PE.” In nursing school, you learn about a million different things that can go wrong in the human body. And then you convince yourself time and time again, that you have any combination of those ailments. There’s a good chance my class may be the absolute worse for that. Thankfully, we constantly remind each other that our list of absent symptoms is way longer than the list of present symptoms. And if you’re not feeling well, who better than to take care of you? Or put you in quarantine because you have strep throat and we have clinical that week? Seriously though, nursing friends are awesome because they can often tell you’re feeling bad before you’ve even recognized it yourself. Love those assessment skills.
I’m so thankful for the incredible group of nurses I’ve had the pleasure of spending the past two years with. Now that these people are in my life, I can’t imagine life without them. I hope your group of classmates is just as wonderful and loving and hilarious as mine is. Every nursing student deserves to have the love and support that I’ve received from my nursing friends.
“A friend loveth at all times…” Proverbs 17:17
What makes your nursing friends awesome? Are you blessed to be surrounded by classmates that build you up?