Well, here I am in my second semester of nursing school. It's a 3 year program for accepted transfer students with prerequisites completed. I am taking Med/Surg 1 (Acute Health) this semester. My first semester (Fundamentals) flew by. I did well in lecture by my grades and in clinical based on my evaluation from my clinical instructor, but deep down I don't feel I did as well as I wanted to. My simulation lab was probably the most dreadful. I was always so shy and timid and never wanted to participate. We were recorded during the simulation, and it was played back for us to review and reflect on the performance. In clinical, I was soft-spoken and afraid to interact with my patients. I always felt extremely awkward and with every motion I was trying to do things perfect but looking an absolute mess. My CI assured me I was doing well and to just relax as it was Fundamentals. As I stated, here I am enrolled in Med/Surg 1 and suffering in silence in a way. My anxiety is starting to go through the roof and I am dreading each school day. I don't feel confident in things I am doing, or the content I am learning. It's like I am so stressed with school and the anxiety I am dealing with makes it so hard for me to focus and concentrate on anything else. It's just like a constant brain fog and almost depressed state that I am so desperately wanting to get out of. (Personal experiences have also contributed to this but NS has made it more difficult). Sometimes it takes me so long to do an assignment because I just can't focus. Then I realize how much time I've wasted and how little time I have for other assignments. The amount of work including 10 papers, care plans
, concept maps, presentations, and a hell of a lot more that is required this semester is daunting knowing how poor my time-management skills are. I enjoy helping and taking care of others, but the way I feel is making me second guess my career path. I would love to be a great nurse one day and I feel I worked so hard and waited so long to get here. Then again, I feel like my shyness, anxiety, and poor skills is going to ruin this opportunity I have. Critical thinking is such an important factor in nursing and sometimes I cant even do that. All of these feelings are making me less motivated and feeling like giving up NS. Is this the wrong field for me?
I also have added pressure as I feel people are really counting on me in my family. I am the first one in my immediate family to be on the path to obtain a degree. I don't want to let anyone down. Then there is my partner. He is the most supportive person in my life I could have ever asked for. He helps me with purchasing school supplies, and he even pays some of my bills so I can work minimal hours to focus on school. At times, he leaves himself with absolutely nothing just to make sure I am taken care of. We talked about me changing my career path and he says I need to do what is best for me. He said I will be a quitter though and I am making excuses like I usually do. He is putting his career goals on hold while I go to school to help me, so when I graduate our roles can switch.
I know nursing isnt for everyone, but I wish I could make it work for me. I have my interest in wound-care or perioperative nursing. I don't see myself as a typical floor nurse, and prefer working in something more of a specialized, specific field. I can't make it there if I do not make it through nursing school. I feel so lost at this point. I see everyone else in my class extremely confident in patient interaction and content. Then, I ask myself if nursing is truly where I want to be? Can I get over the fears I am having and my personal conflicts within myself?
The only other career that I have an interest in is pathology assisting which was my 1st career choice. It's unrealistic for me at this point being that a BS is required for application, GRE exam is required, and there are only about 10 schools in the country offering this program. I am unable to get up and move halfway across the country at this point in my life. Might I add employment opportunities may be limited.
On a better note, I found out my school offers personal/mental health counseling that addresses stress, anxiety, problem-solving skills, career advancement, etc. I scheduled an appointment for next week. Ugh. I'm just mentally exhausted. Any advice/direction is appreciated. 😓😥😢