lonely bringing happiness

The Loneliest Days Brought Me The Happiest Of Times

Just a happy go lucky girl, trying to make the best out of life.

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Throughout our life, we tend to paint a mental picture of how we believe our life is going to turn out. Whether it be similar to a scene in a movie we saw or something we just created ourselves. No matter how this image came to be, we try so hard for it to become our reality and when it does not, we are crushed.

A lot of people have the idea that college is all fun and games. You are finally on your own and away from your parents who were the only people who could actually tell you no. The world is your oyster now.

You begin to make all these expectations not only for yourself but the people around you also. In the movies, they make it seem like making new friends and meeting new people is the easiest thing in the world.

For me, making friends in high school was a piece of cake. My high school friends were and still are my best friends. Coming to college though, I didn't think twice about how difficult it might be for me to make new friends. I never thought for a second that college could possibly become one of the loneliest times of my life.

The transition of going into college was a very difficult task for me. I was at the school of my dreams with a great group of friends who were going to the same college as I was, what could possibly bring me down?

It wasn't until after sorority rush week was over when I began to second guess everything I had ever thought about college. I didn't end up joining a sorority which was one of the many images I had painted for myself when thinking about college. Seeing all your friends have the time of their lives while you sit alone in your dorm room really hit me hard.

One of the most challenging things I've had to do was change the way I viewed myself and my life from here on out. I had to tell myself that making friends was going to be a little more difficult since being in a sorority was out of the picture. The expectations I held for myself in college had to be altered a bit. Once I accepted this fact, my life started to change for the better.

Here I am, sophomore year, still at the school of my dreams, making it all worth my while. I stopped feeling sorry for myself and decided to be happy again. This year, I realized that I am not that girl with a best friend or a set group of friends, no, I am that girl who has a bunch of really great friends and just goes with the flow.

I would not change anything in my life right now. All the hardships I had to go through brought me to where I am now and made me the person I am today. Just a happy go lucky girl who is trying to live her life to the fullest.

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So, You Want To Be A Nurse?

You're going to find that nursing isn't really about the medicine or the assessments. Being a nurse is so much more than anything that you can learn in school. Textbooks can't teach you compassion and no amount of lecture time will teach you what it truly means to be a nurse.

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To the college freshman who just decided on nursing,

I know why you want to be a nurse.

Nurses are important. Nursing seems fun and exciting, and you don't think you'll ever be bored. The media glorifies navy blue scrubs and stethoscopes draped around your neck, and you can't go anywhere without hearing about the guaranteed job placement. You passed AP biology and can name every single bone in the human body. Blood, urine, feces, salvia -- you can handle all of it with a straight face. So, you think that's what being a nurse is all about, right? Wrong.

You can search but you won't find the true meaning of becoming a nurse until you are in the depths of nursing school and the only thing getting you through is knowing that in a few months, you'll be able to sign the letters "BSN" after your name...

You can know every nursing intervention, but you won't find the true meaning of nursing until you sit beside an elderly patient and know that nothing in this world can save her, and all there's left for you to do is hold her hand and keep her comfortable until she dies.

You'll hear that one of our biggest jobs is being an advocate for our patients, but you won't understand until one day, in the middle of your routine physical assessment, you find the hidden, multi-colored bruises on the 3-year-old that won't even look you in the eyes. Your heart will drop to your feet and you'll swear that you will not sleep until you know that he is safe.

You'll learn that we love people when they're vulnerable, but you won't learn that until you have to give a bed bath to the middle-aged man who just had a stroke and can't bathe himself. You'll try to hide how awkward you feel because you're young enough to be his child, but as you try to make him feel as comfortable as possible, you'll learn more about dignity at that moment than some people learn in an entire lifetime.

Every class will teach you about empathy, but you won't truly feel empathy until you have to care for your first prisoner in the hospital. The guards surrounding his room will scare the life out of you, and you'll spend your day knowing that he could've raped, murdered, or hurt people. But, you'll walk into that room, put your fears aside, and remind yourself that he is a human being still, and it's your job to care, regardless of what he did.

Each nurse you meet will beam with pride when they tell you that we've won "Most Trusted Profession" for seventeen years in a row, but you won't feel that trustworthy. In fact, you're going to feel like you know nothing sometimes. But when you have to hold the sobbing, single mother who just received a positive breast cancer diagnosis, you'll feel it. Amid her sobs of wondering what she will do with her kids and how she's ever going to pay for treatment, she will look at you like you have all of the answers that she needs, and you'll learn why we've won that award so many times.

You'll read on Facebook about the nurses who forget to eat and pee during their 12-hour shifts and swear that you won't forget about those things. But one day you'll leave the hospital after an entire shift of trying to get your dying patient to eat anything and you'll realize that you haven't had food since 6:30 A.M. and you, too, will be one of those nurses who put everything else above themselves.

Too often we think of nursing as the medicine and the procedures and the IV pumps. We think of the shots and the bedpans and the baths. We think all the lab values and the blood levels that we have to memorize. We think it's all about the organs and the diseases. We think of the hospitals and the weekends and the holidays that we have to miss.

But, you're going to find that nursing isn't really about the medicine or the assessments. Being a nurse is so much more than anything that you can learn in school. Textbooks can't teach you compassion, and no amount of lecture time will teach you what it truly means to be a nurse.

So, you think you want to be a nurse?

Go for it. Study. Cry. Learn everything. Stay up late. Miss out on things. Give it absolutely everything that you have.

Because I promise you that the decision to dedicate your life to saving others is worth every sleepless night, failed test, or bad day that you're going to encounter during these next four years. Just keep holding on.

Sincerely,

The nursing student with just one year left.

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Transitioning Into The 'Real World'

The ability to believe in yourself can change your life

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It is that time of year that everyone in school may be struggling or trying to pull through the last couple of weeks and finals coming up. Since I am experiencing a time in my life of transitioning to "real life" from the four year college life, it is important to value and believe in yourself especially outside of school. I have come to a realization this semester that it is so important to believe in yourself and take care of yourself in your personal life because you will feel happier and less stressed out.

I have called the University of Arizona my home four years ago and now I am going to leave it soon. People in this society think it is easy to transition from college to the real world but unfortunately, it is not. The University of Arizona was so meaningful to me these past four years. It has made me grow, boost my self-confidence, develop critical thinking skills, and meet so many friends that I am sad to leave. At the end of college, I will have thoughts about what I would want and wish for in my future?

Why is it so difficult to leave this type of life I made myself? I have been a part of so many clubs and communities on campus that changed my life completely and I would not be the same without them. In the moment of transitioning to the real world, I want to wish all my friends that are staying at the University of Arizona the best. My life is going to change but I will still stay in contact with my friends while I am transitioning to the 'real world' and my incoming future job. As a graduating senior, some people say to me aren't you so happy to leave college? The answer is yes and no. Why would I be happy to leave a community that made me grow so much? It is challenging to leave college because the last four years I developed a new life for myself and now I am in the process of applying to jobs to start my career.

One of the best pieces of advice I have received this year from my mentors and friends is "you have to wait patiently, you have so much to offer to this world." The piece of advice was very meaningful to me because it is challenging to be in the unknown. Next year my life will not be on a college campus. I will have a different daily routine every day and I will be going to work. It is very important for me to invest in all my friendships I have made at the University of Arizona these last two weeks of April before I wake up on May 9th and put my cap and gown on to celebrate all the achievements I did the past four years. I have accepted that I have a lot left to learn and I must look forward to it because it will only help me in the end while transitioning to the 'real world.'

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