Friday, March 14, 2014

A little word vomit for you.

So I'm just going to start typing and hope I word vomit all over the place for your entertainment. I feel like I haven't posted in a long time and even Vince mentioned how long it's been when he went to check my blog last night. If your husband is telling you your posts are few and far between, you know you need to write. But alas, I do not know what to write about.

I guess I can start with the biggest part of my life: the nursing program! I feel like I'm jinxing myself by saying this, but it seems to be way easier than everyone told me it would be. I expected to be doing homework every night and to never have time to hang out with Vince, but that hasn't been the case! I know it's only my first semester and I've heard the second is the hardest by far, but still. I expected tears by now and I've hardly even been stressed.

Last semester was a very pivotal turning point in The Mind of Steffani in the sense that I totally chilled out. My microbiology lecture was kicking my ass hardcore in the beginning and I for sure thought I was going to end up with the C in the class and would not be able to get into the nursing program. After stressing about it for a few weeks and talking with my teacher who recommended I 'chill the hell out' and that passing is passing, I stopped caring! Well, I stopped caring in the sense that I didn't need to get a perfect grade and that as long as I passed, I wouldn't care.

After not doing as well as I wanted on my first two test (well, I got a low B and a mid B which isn't bad at all, but I considered it to be at the time) and talking to my teacher (see above paragraph) I re-evaluated what I was doing. What was I doing that was helping, and what was I doing that wasn't? I noticed that I would take a lot of notes throughout lecture, almost everything he said, and that I wasn't actually listening. So I stopped taking notes! The first half of the semester I took about 5-10 pages (front and back) of notes and the second half I took NONE. Not a single note. I had a friend who sat behind me in class who actually asked me if everything was ok because I was just sitting there! I also noticed that doing physical activities like riding my bike and working out helped me relax, so I did more of that.

Going into the third test I was like, WHAT WAS I THINKING OH MY GOD I'M GOING TO FAIL AND HAVE TO TELL EVERYONE THAT MY ACCEPTANCE TO THE NURSING PROGRAM WAS RESCINDED ALL BECAUSE I WANTED TO RIDE MY BIKE. But guess what? I got a fucking A that I previously thought was unattainable. (I can't stress how hard this class was. On our first test we had like five As out of almost 200 students, and that was with him giving us 6 or 8 extra points.)

After that third test I continued not taking notes, took my final, and ended up getting a 98% in the class. Yes, that is almost equal to 100%. In microbiology class, which is known as the 'make it or break it' class for all medical/science majors. Needless to say, I was pretty stoked.

So bringing that knowledge of 'chill the hell out' into the nursing program has been beneficial to me. I feel like I absorb so much more information when I'm relaxed and just sitting there listing to what the teacher is actually saying. Going into my first big test for the program I was somewhat nervous, but at the same time I had this calmness about me knowing that I didn't need an A. An A would be fantastic and that is ideally what I wanted, but if I didn't end up with one (which is so much harder to do in the nursing program because 93+ is an A, instead of 90+) it wouldn't be the end of the world.

As luck would have it (or reading 18 chapters and doing hundreds of NCLEX review question would have it) all of these little changes have been beneficial as I was one of very few who got an A on the first test! And no only that, but I feel confident in what I've been learning, as if I actually understand everything. (i.e., I'm not BSing myself into an A) Needless to say, I was excited, and really think that without my realization last semester, I wouldn't have gotten such a good grade.

I guess I wrote this post to tell everyone to chill out. Go take your dog on a walk. Climb a mountain. Read a John Grisham novel. Watch an entire season on Netflix in one day. Just chill out and don't feel guilty for not spending every waking moment studying! And lastly, even if you don't get an A, grades aren't everything. I know I won't get an A on every exam I have. I do not think people who have good grades are always smarter than someone who fails. Some people are better at taking tests, some people just don't want to apply themselves to a test but know all the information, and sometimes tests are just hard no matter how much you studied. In ten years I can promise that the A I got on my test will mean nothing to me, but the hours I'm able to spend outside camping and going on trips with my husband will mean a lot more.

So there you have it. Word vomit that was somewhat purposeful. A little. Now I'm off to study. ;)


  1. Yay! A post from you!
    So happy to hear the nursing program is going well! And all I can say is better you than me! HAHAHA.
    Keep on keepin' on!

  2. I'm so glad that you've found an approach that works for you. Something you might consider doing in addition: Spend about 15-20 minutes after each class writing down the most important stuff that you remember from the lecture. It's likely to make the things you learned stick even better, and the notes might be helpful to review for exams later, when you might have forgotten some of it.

    1. Merry, I think that is a GREAT idea!