I graduated in 2006, from a prestigious school in the Philippines. I was a humdrum student then, not very booksmart but I made grades good enough not to get kicked out of my college. I passed college and proceeded to taking the NLE. I was lucky to pass that exam as I remember it was pretty difficult for my brain but voila! Luck.
Most Filipinos are well aware of the 2006 board exam leakage, so if you took the exam during that year, you have three options,
Just trust your original exam and hope that employers both in the P.I and abroad will not take notice of
Take a quarter of the exam where there was a leakage on
Take the whole exam again.
My friends decided to take the whole exam again and dragged me into it. I was working full time as a nurse then so I did not have the time to study my bum off . I prayed to God that if I don't pass this time, that means I'm not meant to do this thing. LO and behold! I passed again! I was like okay I'm meant to do this.
Two years later, as I was going back to the nurse's station, I passed the staircase and I had that thought of just running away from the hospital. I realized, I did not want to do this anymore. I was always tired and going to work started to feel like it was a chore that I did not want to do. I was reviewing for IELTS then for plans of going to the UK for a greener pasture. I got the NURSE burn out. The next week, I applied for another job. I decided to try to become a Flight Attendant.
My older sister was a F.A. already so I was interested. By another whip of luck I got accepted , It was a tumultuous journey, I was not in great shape, my hair was blonde when my natural hair color was dark brown (I had to get it colored the day before the open day) I was fairly short compared to many but out of 14,000 aspirants only 15 was accepted for that day, I was one of them. My life decided to go to a different path and then again, I thought, I was meant to do this! screw being a nurse. In less than a month, I flew out of the country to venture on my new found path. I am now a flight attendant, I will love this job and this is what I was meant to do. or so I thought..(again)
So there I was travelling the whole world for free, visiting places I never thought existed and see. I was having breakfast in London, lunch in Milan, dinner in Berlin. (This was a line from my previous airline to pull in some new applicants which was true just not on the same day.) In my days off, I would party like there's not tomorrow, live like nothing's gonna stop me. I get to experience how to live like a princess in some points, I did extreme sports, traveled to great destinations using my 90% off tickets, shopped like crazy, spent on shoes purses, jewelry etc and I did not save anything thinking I'm gonna be like this forever, I was selfish and I just thought about myself. I'm meant to do this, this is my destiny. Then a crazy thing happened. I got pregnant.
In the country I was residing in, it was great deal if you're not married and you've got a bun in the oven. Rumors were if they found out you were pregnant and unmarried, you will be sent to jail, will have 100 whiplashes on your back, keep you in until you give birth and put your child up for adoption. Imagine the stress of keeping my baby in secret as I needed a month to fix all my stuff for resignation. I was showing when I left. I wasn't aware that I was pregnant until almost two months (what a nurse), I had my tight uniform adjusted twice to hide my belly. I made it back home to my lovely Philippines safely.
So me and then BF decided to go back to the country as his work was still there, we made all the necessary paperwork and we forgot one thing. We still weren't married and we are not allowed to be staying in one house as the country law states. We needed to get married, I did not want to ever get married though. The thought of it gives me chills through my spine. But things change and Love does really make you do crazy things. We got married in the US as my husband (now) is an American. Plan was to get married, send paperwork to the Muslim country, go back there when were approved and my career would be a question mark. That never happened. My husband also tried to get work here in the US and by some weird luck again he got one and he got it fast. After making the necessary adjustment, we decided to live here and I felt like I needed to be a housewife.
For two years again, I was the dainty housewife, learning my way from zero. I don't know how to do anything. Laundry, Ironing, cooking, taking care of the newborn, being a wife, its all new to me, everyday I feel like my head is going to explode because I have no idea of what I'm doing. I'm so clueless that there was a time burned the upholstery of our couch because I used an iron to dry the wet stuff on it. My self esteem was at it's lowest, I was losing my baby weight slower than usual ( even though I was breastfeeding), I feel ugly most of the time, I felt worthless. I felt like I wasn't doing anything with my life. I was never inside the house this much. When I was asked what do I do for a living I would always say, I'm a bum, I don't do anything. But one thing that I keep on forgetting is that being a mother is a task and a blessing. There are no day offs. Its a continuous process and seeing your baby smile and laugh and be the best he can be is comforting. More than any job can offer. I can't even believe I'm saying this because well, I never thought it would happen to me.
Even though I've already settled in being a housewife, I never lost that itch or drive to be something else. I wanted to become a 2.0 version of me all the time. I wanted to become a better me, a better mother , a better wife and a better person for everybody else, I want to help and touch lives again. As I was thinking these thoughts, what better way to upgrade myself other than being a nurse? After all I'm still a nurse at heart, its just I've become rusty and clouded. I feel its still there.
I decided to take the NCLEX. I studied for almost a year, on and off, studying, juggling my way between taking care of my child and being a wife. And also losing weight. It wasn't easy. One of the most stressful events in my life. NCLEX was a toughie, I had to learn and relearn all my principles and rationales, I had no nursing experience for 5 years prior to this. my head was blank. and I was questioning myself am I really meant to do this again or am I just pushing it. Starting from step 1 all over again, I inched my way back to the world of Nursing, my first love. I had sleepless nights, weeks. I had to study at night when everybody was sleeping and all the chores were done. There were times I just couldn't do it, since things just kept on happening. I had to wait for my paperwork from the P.I to be sent here which took months and then one day I applied for my ATT, got approved in less than a week, I had to take my NCLEX in less than two months. I was armed with nothing but a Saunders and Mnemonics book.I prayed again to God, If this was meant to be, I will be able to pass.
I took the online Kaplan Course for the last month before NCLEX. IT wasn't cheap but it was definitely worth it. It was a big help. Most of the Qbank questions are NCLEX like compared to the other review materials I found. Everyday I was answering more than a 100 questions, I'm a fast test taker and I finished the Qbank a week before my exams. And I was like what am I supposed to do now. Nothing but pray and hope that things will turn out like how destiny planned it to be.
The day of the exam, I got there early and settled in early. I was ready but not ready. I was ready because I'm tired of reviewing and I just wanted to get it done and over with. I wasn't ready to fail though. Took the exam with whatever brainpower I've got and found myself crying in the middle of the exam. I have no idea what these questions are about. I'm doing horrible. 75 questions rolled in. and the screen didn't turn blue. I turned off the number counter and just endured the hard questions like I'm Thor. I lost track of the numbers and then it just shut off. I feel like it was a 100 since I checked it at 80 something. I took off with a heavy heart. ready to tell the world. I failed myself.
Almost a day had passed and I did not want to do the PVT trick. I felt like it was just going to increase my anxiety at that point, I'd rather see the real results from the quick results than rely on something that's just a trick. That I night I dreamt of opening my quick results on Pearson Vue. when I clicked submit, the site says "worried" not pass or fail. My brain works in funny ways to mock me. Here comes Saturday the day of doom. I sat in my front of my computer, took a deep breath and whispered a silent prayer. I prayed to every single religious entity I can think of. Jesus, Buddha, Allah, the Gods of India. My husband was holding my hand as if were waiting to become Powerball winners, we clicked submit together. I was covering my eyes then. Then I fell to the ground. PASS.
I thanked everybody who prayed and encouraged me that day. MY husband, my almost two year old son, though he just wasn't the best study person to be with( he wants to play all the time) Kaplan, Saunders. It was again a stroke of LUCK for me. This vocation is still in my veins, runs in my blood. Im still a nurse! But this was just the beginning, as I haven't practiced for my than 4 years, I needed to take a foreign refresher course for six weeks in order to obtain my US RN license but all is well and done. I'm going to embark on my sort of new journey with high hopes and tons of Luck as usual.
Thanks for reading my uber long story, hope this will bring good vibes.