Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Great Expectations


Last week saw the start of my final semester as a second-year student nurse, and I can’t help but feel that by comparison this year has gone much quicker than my first. Perhaps it’s because the learning curve was so staggeringly steep during those initial twelve months; every lecture, every placement, every shift, all felt like unexplored and uncertain territory. Fortunately, by the time second year rolled around a feeling of familiarity had begun to set in, and both my confidence and comfort levels benefited as a result.


Very early on into my second year (in fact I think it was the first day!) I realised that whilst some things would follow much the same pattern as the previous year, the expectations now placed upon us were vastly different. Academically things had obviously stepped up a gear (or five), and the story was much the same out in practice. I remember there being an almost protective quality that came with being a first year, a kind of get-out-of-jail card if you will; on the occasion that somebody mistook you for a more-advanced student or even qualified nurse, it was common to hear someone say ‘she’s only a first-year’ by way of an excuse. That all changed the day I transitioned from a first-year to a second-year student nurse however. Gone was the proverbial cotton wool that had somewhat protected me whilst in the infancy of my education, and in its place was an almost tangible weight of expectation from those all around me; these days you’re far more likely to hear ‘let the student do that - she’s a second year, she can handle it’, and I’m pleased and proud to say that for the most part, I can.


So now that I find myself coming towards the end of my second year, my thoughts naturally turn to third year and the even greater expectations that will fall upon me during the final stretch of my nursing education. I envisage it to be equally terrifying and demanding, requiring yet another step up academically, as well as the infamous management placement to conquer, and the small matter of a dissertation to write. The story doesn’t end there though, because once I’ve (hopefully) completed third year and graduated, the really hard stuff starts. I imagine the transition from student to qualified nurse to be the most the difficult, whilst also being the most anticipated and worthwhile. I know that there are worrying and tough times ahead, but I also know that I will do whatever it takes to succeed; after all I didn’t come into this profession to be an adequate nurse, I came into it to be the best nurse that I can be, and ultimately, I expect nothing less from myself.


  1. Good luck with your training, here's a link for some down- time reading you might like http://www.amazon.co.uk/An-Angels-Alternative-ebook/dp/B00B3GVKAY/ref=pd_rhf_gw_p_t_1_2A23

  2. Second year is a definitely a step up. It's a challenge but I'm enjoying it. Know what you mean about bot being protected by the fact you're a first year anymore, but I've found that getting out of my comfort zone has been a better learning experience.

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