Reasons For Hope

Since we need a little optimism I was doing some thinking and thought of a few things that I should to keep in mind to be hopeful and excited for the future.

#1: I am probably going to graduate from NP school in May

Back when I met Hubbin I was working in research but research doesn’t make very much money. My original plan in college was a career in research which would require me to get a PhD and move on from there — only after working in a lab for a few years, while I liked it, and still miss it sometimes I decided the PhD business wasn’t for me. I couldn’t pick a concentration and didn’t want the rest of my life to be defined by grant writing. I made the decision to go back to school but wasn’t sure for what. Medical school, which is probably what I would have done if I had some better advising in high school and college, was kind of out of the question because of my GPA from college. I never really wanted to be a nurse, but was interested in being an NP or PA to be sort of a mini doctor. So the breakdown went as follows: PA program for 2 years and done but I couldn’t work during it and would need to take out loans for school. OR NP school. To do NP school though, first you need to go to nursing school and a bachelors in nursing is required for entrance. So I needed to do nursing school, get a BSN, then go to the masters program, which would take a lot longer but I would be able to work the whole time.

Since Hubbin and I were engaged and getting ready to start out lives together, I made the decision to go the nursing route, mainly for financial reasons. We didn’t want to take on huge debt for school at the same time we were trying to buy a house and everything. Which sucks. Because I’ve been working full time and going to school part to full time since 2005 (really, with the prerequisites for nursing school – Nursing school actually started in January about 6 months after we got married)

So just think: The ENTIRE time we’ve been together I’ve been working and going to school full time. How nice is it going to be when I will just have 1 job! We both talk about how the best part of being on vacation together is getting to finally spend time together. The thing to be excited about is that the more time I spend with Hubbin the happier I am and the more I love him. It might just feel like vacation all the time once I’m out of school!

#2: I’m going to graduate loan free

Which I consider to be a HUGE accomplishment in and of itself

I have completely busted my butt and dealt with a lot of comments from Hubbin but this is totally going to pay off. I don’t mean it like that per say I mean we both agreed it was the route to go, but it is hard for Hubbin to 100% avoid reminding me that he pays ALL the bills. He pays EVERYTHING, my pay check goes towards fun activities, vacations, dates, and a weekly allowance for both of us. Otherwise I squirrel it away in my savings so I can write a check for a few thousand dollars each and every semester.

Between my tuition benefit from working full time, and choosing to go the cheapest route possible for nursing school (community college) I was able to finish nursing school by paying cash. While I was doing that I took a slight pay cut moving from research to being a nursing aide. But I thought the experience would be important to job hunting (and it was, because I was offered my nursing job in my same department about 5 months before I graduated). THEN I started my job as a nurse and got about a — $13,000 a year raise by moving from an aid to a RN. I enrolled in a BSN-MSN program the soonest start date after I graduated and paid about $15,000 in tuition to get my BSN. So we never felt that raise. The month after I finished the BSN I started the nurse practitioner program and I’m just ending and my bill is $33,000, so the entire time I’ve been working as a nurse we’ve still only been getting the same income as from when I was an aide really…. When I start working as an NP I’ll get an approximate $20 – $30,000 a year raise from my salary now… SO if you add that on to the raise I got when I was a nurse that we’ve never really felt the benefit from me finishing nursing school in the first place. So:

#3: It’s going to feel I’m getting a roughly $50,000 a year raise when I get a new job. (Holy shit!)

And

(Which I am both excited and nervous about): One of my coworkers in the ER who is a PA now is encouraging me to apply to jobs over Christmas break because the ER company is hiring lots of PAs & NPs right now. EEK! So:

#4: There is the potential to have a job lined up for me before I even graduate.

My friend who graduated last year said no one was too interested in talking to her in interviews until she had passed her boards, but my friend who is encouraging me to apply says they hired her before she passed her boards. My original plan was to leisurely take boards maybe around August after I graduated since I have this awesome weekend only gig at work now which I’ll be sad to leave. BUT this is causing me to need to seriously reevaluate this and really just the thought of taking boards makes me a little nauseated, I’m not going to lie. The plus side is if I can get a job lined up to start in August then I might be able to quit my current job in July and Hubbin and I could take a nice long vacation or just enjoy a long time together (since he’s a teacher).

and PS:

I believe we are a ‘go’ this month for the first unmedicated IUI. I called the clinic to let them know we were planning on doing it. The only issue would be if it needs to be a weekend. The clinic is open but my mandatory 12 hour shifts would prevent me from going in at all. So. Cross your fingers for a nice Sunday- Thursday positive OPK.

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Merry Christmas!

Well Christmas will be over by the time I hit post here (two minutes left). We had dinner at our house and it was all delicious. I suppose I cooked, but I outsourced all possible aspects of the meal so ended up just orchestrating the grilling and heating. As is typical, I was a nervous wreck for the 1hour preceeding dinner (see previous entry) about all food reaching the appropriate temperature at the appropriate time.

For Christmas my study room was repainted and somewhat refurnished, it looks beautiful… I almost -almost- want to study 😉 I’ll post some pictures soon 🙂

The best present I got for Hubbin was a romantic weekend for two. I booked a night for us in a hotel in mid-January in a fancy hotel room, with a gift certificate for the restaurant where we had our first date/where he proposed and also a gift certificate for Victoria Secret so he could do a little shopping beforehand. We’ve been having a lot of “problems” lately (probably much of the reason for my previous post) so I think we both really need a special weekend together.

and PS,

I finished posting our Christmas photo shoot with the Princess 🙂 Click on the flickr photos at the side of the page to view with narrative

Lust

I have a desk that I study at. It’s adequate, I guess. I want a new desk. I want one of those pretty desks that people save at flea markets and repaint like you see in Country Living. The only desk I’ve found that satisfies all of my perfect-desk-requirements is this desk. I love this desk. I am sitting here looking for a desk on craigslist and secretly pineing away for this beautiful Potterybarn desk. In white please. And look! My desk is on sale. $667! They’re practically shoving them out the door at you! A whole $52 off. Can’t be beat. And here above it is listed, you can buy just the desktop, the plank of wood you stretch across the filing cabinets, for only $169.

Essentially what I had hoped to pay for my entire new desk. *sigh*

Ooooo, my very own?

I don’t precisely recall the date I decided it might be a good idea to marry my husband… not at all. However I think we’ve turned out to be a very good match. One reason for this is we both have a deep love for high-tech-electronics. Mine has been engrained in me from a very young age a la father.

I know it’s cliche but I’ve married my father.

My nursing school orientation is at the beginning of November but in anticipation I was checking out my community college’s website to see what nights a week I *might* have class and by george they have posted the class schedules for the spring. I was telling my cute-husband about this over dinner last night, and over looking all other possible implications he queries if I will need access to a computer for this class as it is web-enhanced. Indeed I shall.

We have a computer, a super-computer really. My husband is so adorably-geeky that he builds his own computers to the latest specifications for games/graphics and whatnot. Last year when I cornered the title of “Best Fiance EVER” for buying him an XBOX 360 I also unwittingly blocked him from making his yearly computer updates. The games/graphics on the XBOX were so much better he was unable to justify spending money to upgrade the computer. Since then he has been searching for excuses to build us a new computer. (“I could make it work like a tivo” was the best one I’ve heard.) Even offering to build my father a new computer just so he could get the need to build one out of his system.

He works on our computer nightly to prepare for work the next day and it’s not often available. Worst case scenario I was thinking I would print the pages I needed while I was at work, but as previously stated I love computers/electronics too so it’s hard for me to produce arguments against what would ultimately end with me having my own computer…..

Patience is not easy for me…

I had finally finished applying to nursing school at the community college July 5th. I made my cute-husband hand deliver the application to the nursing office (he does have summers off afterall). They were accepting applications July 1-Sept 1. So I had been able to push it all out of my mind and forget about it for a while. (I only occassionally checked the student website to see if my new test scores were listed, or if they had posted something to my school email before mailing a letter to my house)… waiting waiting waiting. Finally the 2nd week in September I received this little postcard that says “Your application has been received and forwarded to the reviewing committee. You will be notified of their decision sometime after Sept 30” sometime after Sept 30th Oh well that’s a relief… thanks for narrowing that down bitches.

So now all I can assume is that I’ll find out sometime before classes start in January, but definately not before October. This wouldn’t annoy me so much if I haven’t been in the “applying”/ “taking prerequisites” stage so long. People assume the program started in August and are asking me how it’s going all the time. “How’s nursing school going?” “hard to say, I haven’t even been accepted yet”…. “You’re going to nursing school right?” “well I certainly hope so”…

No I am not in a place

So I moved out of my parents house and into our house at the end of last September. My parents have been complaining (probably about 5 times over the past two months) that they’re getting phone calls from College for me encouraging me to donate money. Fortunately my parents are thoughtful enough to NOT give College my cellphone number (as we do not have a new home phone number). I happened to be at my parents house this weekend when they called and my Dad handed the phone to me.

A girl got on the phone with a quaint southern drawl which I’ve noticed I am no longer accustomed to hearing. She asked me if I am “in a place to donate money to College right now, even just $50”. I replied that no I was not. She asked if it would be alright to contact me again next year. I replied “no, I’ll take care of that when I’m able to”… and we ended the call.

What I really wanted to say:

No I am NOT in a position to donate money right now. Wasn’t my $150,000 of tuition enough? It has come to my attention since I graduated that had I gone to an inexpensive state school I would likely have graduated with a much higher GPA, people would have heard of my school, and I wouldn’t have to explain why I went to this little school no one’s heard of everytime someone asks me where I went to college. I would no longer get blank stares and have to answer the question “Why would you want to go to school in Tennessee?”

Perhaps more important though, I’m now applying to nursing school. Why? Because my degree in biology which I was under the impression was a solid major to have and I incidentally worked extremely hard for isn’t evening earning me enough money right now to attend College for a year. It turns out if I had skipped college altogether and gone to nursing school (a two year program) straight out of highschool paying 1/10th the amount of tuition I would currently be making twice as much money as I am right now. So no, I am not in a good place right now, but thank you for asking.