May I have a moment to whine?

  1. I don't post often, but I just need to get this all out. I'm into my 5th week of school since taking a 15 year break. At 33, I'm starting to wonder where all my brain cells went. I'm working on my pre-req's....psych, bio and eng and last week we had our first test in psych. I studied my butt off. I didn't get my gade back yet, but I know it's a C or low B. I completely froze up like a deer in headlights. Everything I "knew" got all jumbled up inside my head. Amazingly, it un-jumbled as soon as I walked out the classroom door :angryfire and thats how I know already how poorly I did. I'm starting to wonder now if I'm really cut out for this. I know it's only one grade, but I only have 6 classes to take before I apply for my clinicals and my GPA needs to be at least a 3.8 to even get considered (highly competitive program).

    And then there's the kids, all 6 of them. I've been snowed in with them since Tuesday and my classes have been cancelled as well. I stupidly thought I could take these days to really get some schoolwork done. Alas, that is not going to happen. I am interrupted every 5 minutes at least. When they are not bugging me I have to hear them yelling and fighting, stomping around the house or the phone ringing. My husband is supportive but he works until late and by the time he gets home and I get everyone fed I'm so exhausted. I've threatened to move on campus, that's how bad it's getting.

    Ok, I could write a whole book on this so I'll just quit now. Thanks for letting me vent.
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  2. 10 Comments

  3. by   sddlnscp
    I'm sorry. Life can be such a struggle at times. Just don't give up. There are going to be times that you feel you just can't do it any more and then times you feel on top of the world. Usually, many many students give up in their first semester. Don't do that - it is normal and the feeling will pass. Sure, it will come back again, but it will also go away again. It is hard and overwhelming, but just keep in your mind that it is also very worth it. You can do this. I too have test anxiety and I don't really know what to tell you for sure, but here is one thing I do that helps: On multiple choice questions, read the question and then think about the stem of the question, figure out what they are truly asking. Then, instead of reading a, b, c, d, start with d and read the choices backwards. It makes you slow down and think about it a little harder. I dont' know if it will help you or not, but it does work for me. Another thing: actually picture yourself succeeding before you take the test. Sit down, close your eyes, take a few cleansing breaths and picture yourself knowing the answers. You know the information is in your brain, you just have to work at getting it from there to the pencil.

    Best of luck, I hope things smooth out for you and I hope that you continue.
  4. by   juicy_jade
    Does your school offer test taking tip seminars? Possibly check into that.

    As far as the kids, I have developed the ability to tune mine out. Sometimes, I set up a "quiet hour" where the kids have to have a quiet activity and I turn the ringers off of the phones.

    I also get up an hour earlier now to study before everyone else gets up.

    Good luck.
  5. by   GeneralJinjur
    I have felt the same way. Most of my studying is done during naptime when the big kids are at school or after 11PM. This is my fourth semester and I'm learning that I will have several really bad weeks when I'm convinced I can't get my assignments done and I definitely can't do this for another second. Now that I've gotten used to it, I don't pay as much attention to the panic. Many of my papers are pronounced done because I have 90 seconds left to save and post them online. I don't like doing my schoolwork that way, but it's good enough and I get to move on to the next one. Don't really know if this is at all helpful, but you're definitely not alone. I had the same disappearing brain syndrome at all my A&P II lab practicals. It was so depressing to remember all the answers after I'd left the room.
  6. by   *Blessed2BaNRS*
    Mrs Mom,
    I know just how you feel, and I haven't been snowed in (not a chance down here in Texas!!!) I am a mother of 4 whose husband has also returned back to school. Which means: I have the kids in the evening while he is gone!! I do have 3 online classes which helps tremendously, so I do have time to myself while they are at school. When they are home, I do like Juicy said, I tune them out. I have to or else I get nothing done. I don't know the ages of your kids, but mine are between 7 and 13, so they can "do their own thing" for awhile. They know that they can't be constantly running in and out bothering me (even though it really doesn't stop them!!) and that I will be on my computer, but we try to make it up to them on the weekends, and usually on Friday nights we will have a movie night. So they aren't totally neglected, and they know that ultimately it will get better!

    Don't think the negative thoughts just yet! The first test always comes back with a lower grade than an A+ for me, just because I am unfamiliar with how the instructor tests and not sure what to expect. But trust me, it does get better! I am several years older than you, and never did well in HS, because I was to into the party scene, and it has now come back to haunt me, but I have been able to keep A's & B's (which I never did in HS) and have just finished all my pre reqs and applied to the ADN program. I will find out in April whether I make it in or not. So...just take a deep breathe, know that you are not alone and remember that it will be over before you know it!!
  7. by   smk1
    Well I know where the brain cells went, your 6 kids took them! Lol. You may need to get some test taking and study tips. Good luck, it usually it gets better.
  8. by   AmyL
    Try to remember (or at least convince yourself) that the first test in any class will be the hardest. You're new to it, you're getting used to your professor, etc.

    I'm not a mom, so I'm not going to push a lot of advice out there on this topic. With younger kids, I've usually found that getting them involved helps to calm them down more than letting them do their own thing while you try to study. I have friends that use the kiddie carpool in the morning/afternoon to their advantage - they get the kids to call out key words, read sentences from the class notes, etc.

    Don't give up until you feel, absolutely, that letting this go is the right thing to do for you and your family.
  9. by   NurseJeanB
    Hang in there. I too went back after many years off and I am a mom too. I only have one so I am in awe because I know how hard it can be with just one. I have a supportive husband as well who works 14 hour days, and I work full time. Going back is a bear. I took night classes for many years and when it came to really difficult classes that were important as a prerequisite I made sure I took it all by itself so that I could devote my best effort to getting an A. It has taken awhile but I am finally down to my last prerequisite (Physiology). The teacher is okay but this is her first time teaching it. She usually teaches Anatomy. We just had our first test and many people were disappointed with their grade. I think the first test is hard because you are still trying to establish what the tests are like and what you should focus on. I am in my late 30's wondering if I should be pursuing this now, but it is my dream and I have worked really hard to get to this point. So hang in there. Try to see if you can get a study group together. That is one of the things that helped a lot with Anatomy.
  10. by   shoegalRN
    I would like to offer some words of advice. I am a 32 yr old nursing student who worked in the corporate world for almost 14 years before I decided to take the plunge and go back to school fulltime. I am also a single mother of a very active 10 yr old son who demands alot of my attention. I did manage to complete my AS going to school at night while working 40 hours a week. I have ALWAYS had test anxiety, it was even so bad that I had to go seek professional help. I would study for hours on end, can recite the information back to you, then get to the test and just blank out. I would also second guess myself and go back and change answers and I would change them from the right answer to the wrong answer. What has help me get over my test anxiety is to get plenty of rest the night before the test. I also listen to relaxtion CDs that my therapist gave me. Do a little bit of "brushing over your notes" about 3 hours before the test. Do not sit around other students who are also "brushing up" on their notes 30 minutes or so before the test because it will cause you to question your studying and second guess yourself. Then finally, I'll go in a very private area and PRAY! I'll ask the Lord to please help me relax and take me to a very comfortable and relaxing place and not to read too much into the questions and to select the most logical right answer for the question. I would also ask the Lord to put my mind at ease and to let me have a clear understanding of the material. This has worked for me so far. I had my first test in nursing school (Patho) and I ended up with an 83 which is a B-. It can only get better from there.

    I would also recommend you take small breaks when studying. I used to pull all-nighters and then have to get up in the morning for work, work all day, and then go to school and take the test and then I would forget just about everything I studied. So, remember to study for 30-45 minutes at a time, take a 20 minute break, and then do it again. This will help to retain the information.

    Last but not least, I would recommend learning some test taking skills. You will definately need this for nursing school because I can tell you from the way the questions are worded, if you simply don't know, you can do the process of elimination. This only works if you know something about the other answers that may or may not go with what the question is asking.

    Good luck to you! You can do it!
  11. by   nservice
    As for studying tips. I agree to break your study time up in increments. I did well studying in public places. Coffee house, Deli, etc. I can't study with too much quiet and I can't study in a group. During nursing school my best friend was my "study buddy". We would study our material separately and then get together to review. It's funny how many differences there were in our notes. The next day we would quiz each other on our notes. The goal was to try and think of questions that would trip the other one up. I never did the all nighter, cramming thing. In fact, I never even studied the night before the test. I watched TV or read a book. The morning of the test, I would go eat breakfast somewhere and just review my notes while I ate. This system worked well for me.

    As for how to study with 6 kids in the house...God I think I'd shoot myself.
    Seriously though. maybe you could let them help you study. Tell them you need an hour to review a section and then they can test you. Make a copy of your notes and let them make up the test while you're studying. If you get a question wrong, you have to do 10 sit-ups. They might be quiet for an hour if they get to make you do sit-ups. This way, you'll get to study and have a flat tummy!
  12. by   PaulaWVNCC
    Hi there. I feel for you. I have had my kids home all day everyday for about two wks with this weather. I had no time to myself really...let alone when I start school this fall. I have two kids...which is a lot less than you. But I figure there are a couple older than mine. Mine are just turned 5 and one that is 8. I know this is not where you are at, but I told mine that I will be going to school this fall and that they have to learn to work out their own problems. My 5 yo bothered me every 5 min when I told her to let me read what I was reading...and this wasn't even for school. I have a huge test coming up in a few wks for the NLN preadmit test. I just beg for a moment alone just to catch my breath. One recommendation is to take Bvitamins. I started taking them a few wks ago. Since then, I signed up for school and for financial aid. I got admitted to the school (no guess there, since I graduated from there over ten yrs ago) and I got the pell grant...now heading for a scholarship to help cover expenses above the school...like, who will watch my kids so I can go to school and to study. My kids know it is for two yrs. There is enough time to make up for everything. I am a single parent. As for tests , I agree with the other posters on this is the first test with the new instructor and 15 yrs is a long time to be out of school. Think about how you would feel if you quit school now. You had a dream or a calling or a desire to be a nurse. Don't give up on that cause some test took you for a ride. You can overcome this. Before this is over, you will be giving people advise on what to do. Just knowing you have a problem is half the battle. If you didn't care about your tests I would be worried...LOL. Hang in there!! You'll get it. I am 39 and will be 40 heading back to school. And like the other poster said, have your kids that can help, help with housework and with helping you study...chances are, a couple of them will be fascinated with what you are learning and be encouraged themselves to continue their education. I hope this helps..and I hope I haven't said anything offensive. I just want you not to give up on yourself..You can get this!!!

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