To My High School Self

To My High School Self, There Are Some Things You Should Know Before You Grow Up

College isn't always what it seems, girl.

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If a miracle occurs and you can read this before you go to college, please do, and if not, this is the perfect excuse to let some thoughts out. High school may seem bland, boring, and lonely, but you'll miss it sometimes. Yes, college can be great, and you meet some awesome people, but it is harder than anything I have ever done. That doesn't mean to not attend college but to be aware of what you are getting yourself into.

Science courses are challenging and at times, even with hard work, it seems like you still aren't working that hard. This may seem bad, but it builds toughness and character, if only I could control it better. But don't worry, everyone has demons and struggles; some are better at hiding it than others. Take science APs — yes, it will be a pain, but it'll help you out so much during college and you won't be wondering why you never did.

Be proud of yourself for dreaming bigger than the Sunshine State for there are great things here. You are so close to NYC (even though I never go) and live in a state where the weather is always changing. I have seen snow for the first time, and let me tell you, while getting your feet wet with snow isn't good, it is so beautiful and fun to walk on. I have even gotten into my first snowball fight, although I think I lost.

Most of my classes are great and interesting, but there are a few that are unfair. Luckily you will meet someone amazing that will be really helpful (more on that later). Oh, and remember how you wish you had a larger Jewish community? Well, look no more. Here at Stony, there is an amazing Jewish community with some of the best people you will ever meet and people I hope to never lose touch with because they are so special. Without these people, I don't know how I would survive college.

Many of these people have become friends and mentors which is amazing when you have a class with them. No matter what, stop chasing and flirting with guys that are long distance and aren't interested in you. I'm not going to reveal any details, but you will meet a man that is special. While he is not perfect, he is an incredible man and even with all the stress still finds time to help me out and make me feel like a queen. We have our ups and downs but we complete each other so well.

One last thing: don't forget to read your books because you won't have time in college. I love you. Remember that you are amazing, beautiful, smart, and please keep on being you. Try to like veggies and working out.

Good luck.

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To The Nursing Major During The Hardest Week Of The Year

I know that no grade can possibly prove what kind of nurse you will be. I know that no assignment will showcase your compassion. I know that no amount of bad days will ever take away the empathy inside of you that makes you an exceptional nurse.

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To the Nursing Major During Finals Week,

I know you're tired, I know you're stressed, and I know you feel like you can't go on. I know that no part of this seems fair, and I know you are by far the biggest critic of yourself. I know that you've thought about giving up. I know that you feel alone. I know that you wonder why in the world you chose one of the hardest college majors, especially on the days it leaves you feeling empty and broken.

But, I also know that you love nursing school. I know your eyes light up when you're with patients, and I know your heart races when you think of graduation. I know that you love the people that you're in school with, like truly, we're-all-in-this-together, family type of love. I know that you look at the older nurses with admiration, just hoping and praying that you will remain that calm and composed one day. I know that every time someone asks what your college major is that you beam with pride as you tell them it's nursing, and I know that your heart skips a beat knowing that you are making a difference.

I know that no grade can possibly prove what kind of nurse you will be. I know that no assignment will showcase your compassion. I know that a failed class doesn't mean you aren't meant to do this. I know that a 'C' on a test that you studied so. dang. hard. for does not mean that you are not intelligent. I know that no amount of bad days will ever take away the empathy inside of you that makes you an exceptional nurse.

I know that nursing school isn't fair. I know you wish it was easier. I know that some days you can't remember why it's worth it. I know you want to go out and have fun. I know that staying up until 1:00 A.M. doing paperwork, only to have to be up and at clinicals before the sun rises is not fair. I know that studying this much only to be failing the class is hard. I know you wish your friends and family understood. I know that this is difficult.

Nursing school isn't glamorous, with the white lab coat and stethoscope. Nursing school is crying, randomly and a lot. Nursing school is exhaustion. Nursing school is drinking so much coffee that you lose track. Nursing school is being so stressed that you can't eat. Nursing school is four cumulative finals jam-packed into one week that is enough to make you go insane.

But, nursing school is worth it. I know that when these assignments are turned in and finals are over, that you will find the motivation to keep going. I know that one good day of making a difference in a patient's life is worth a hundred bad days of nursing school.

Keep hanging in there, nursing majors. It'll all be worth it— this I know, for sure.

So, if you have a nursing major in your life, hug them and tell them that you're proud of them. Nursing school is tough, nursing school is scary, and nursing school is overwhelming; but a simple 'thank-you' from someone we love is all we need to keep going.

Sincerely,

A third-year nursing student who knows

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To The High School Graduating Seniors

I know you're ready, but be ready.

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Seniors,

I am not going to say anything about senioritis because I was ready to get out of there and I'm sure you are too; however, in your last months living at home you should take advantage of the luxuries you will not have in a college dorm. The part of college seen in movies is great, the rest of it is incredibly inconvenient. It is better to come to terms with this While you still have plenty of time to prepare and enjoy yourself.

Perhaps one of the most annoying examples is the shower. Enjoy your hot, barefoot showers now because soon enough you will have no water pressure and a drain clogged with other people's hair. Enjoy touching your feet to the floor in the shower and the bathroom because though it seems weird, it's a small thing taken away from you in college when you have to wear shoes everywhere.

Enjoy your last summer with your friends. After this summer, any free time you take is a sacrifice. For example, if you want to go home for the summer after your freshman year and be with your friends, you have to sacrifice an internship. If you sacrifice an internship, you risk falling behind on your resume, and so on. I'm not saying you can't do that, but it is not an easy choice anymore.

Get organized. If you're like me you probably got good grades in high school by relying on your own mind. You think I can remember what I have to do for tomorrow. In college, it is much more difficult to live by memory. There are classes that only meet once or twice a week and meeting and appointments in between that are impossible to mentally keep straight. If you do not yet have an organizational system that works for you, get one.

I do not mean to sound pessimistic about school. College is great and you will meet a lot of people and make a lot of memories that will stick with you for most of your life. I'm just saying be ready.

-A freshman drowning in work

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