I am really in need for some advice!
First, a little about me. I just graduated in May with Magna Cum Laude honors from a great nursing school in Ohio. I am a non-traditional student with a husband and two small children (aged 2 and 6). I worked my tail off in school because honestly, I could not afford to NOT succeed. My family is poor and actually as of now (due to crazy preceptor hours and my husband having to cut back on hours at work) we lost our apartment and we are currently living with my in-laws.
Also, I should mention that I absolutely love psych nursing! I have ever since I started nursing school, it is something I know I am meant to do. There happens to be a brand new psych hospital opening up in my area and I went, interviewed for a position there and got the job (no other hospital around is willing to hire someone right out of school into a specialty) but it was obviously based on my passing the NLCEX.
I studied my tail off for the NCLEX. I did almost 3000 questions between Kaplan and other resources. I mainly used Kaplan because again, I don't have money and our school paid for it. I did EVERY SINGLE Qbank question and all 7 question trainers. My scores ranged from the mid 50's to the low 60's. I reviewed EVERY SINGLE QUESTION and the rationales every time I took the tests although I admit, I did not have time to review the content areas that I was weakest on in depth because of my children and my husbands work schedule.
On the day of the test, I woke up at 5am (exam was not until 8 but you have to get there half an hour early and it took a while to get there). My husband had to drive me because we only have one car. I had a five hour energy drink (which I now know was a mistake lol) and I was SOO extremely scared and nervous that I thought I might throw up. It just so happened that three of my classmates were taking the exam at the exact time and place as me so that added to the pressure (we all know how competitive nursing students can be). Then I get to the exam and I have mostly the dreaded select all that apply questions. Once I passed the 75 question mark and the computer kept going, I think I just let the nerves get to me and felt defeated (I ended up getting all 265 questions). Got home, did the Pearson Vue trick, and cried for the next week.
I really don't wanna sound like a sob story because I know that every person who doesn't pass the first time feels awful. Honestly, I cannot afford to not pass the NLCEX this time. My family is struggling.....I don't have the money to pay to take it again if I fail this time around (it would literally mean taking food out of my children's mouths). Any advice and help would be greatly appreciated. At first, I thought that maybe it was mostly because my nerves got to me but thinking back now, there was a lot of content that I just didn't know. So do I study content? Do I keep practicing questions? I obviously cannot prepare for this test like I did other tests in school so I don't know how to start studying the content if that is what I need to do.
I feel so lost. I lost my dream job....my family is still struggling after so many years of hard work......I just don't know what to do. I am trying to pick myself back up after this and it is hard....finding the confidence to try again. I am sure a whole lot of factors went into not passing it the first time.....but I don't know how to sort it all out.
Again....any help/advice would be GREATLY appreciated!!