I really didn’t want to go to Children’s Medical Center on Thursday morning to volunteer. I have a concepts test coming up on Tuesday, and I’ve barely studied for it – not to mention the fact that Thursdays are my only weekday “off” from school but I usually spend the morning at the hospital.
My usual shift is 4 hrs on Thursday mornings, and I was frustrated because I thought that I could really use that time to study for my test and get some assignments done. But I really didn’t want to call in since I’d done so two weeks prior due to a nasty head cold that I didn’t want to “share,” so I reluctantly got ready and arrived on time for my shift.
I’m really thankful I went. For four hours my mind wasn’t on school, it wasn’t on tests, it wasn’t on assignments. For four hours, my mind got a break from all of that and I was able to focus instead on playing with kids and holding babies. And not only that, but I was able to watch the nurses interact with their patients and was reminded again of why I want to be in this profession. Being there for my shift not only took my mind off of school and gave me a much needed break, but also realigned my attitude about school and life in general. I finished my shift much happier, much calmer, and much more focused on my goal for the next two years.
Basically, this is an important reminder that in nursing school, you need time away from the books and the stress to focus on something else – whether it be volunteering or a favorite hobby. You’ll only end up burning out if you do nothing but school all the time!