Random thoughts today. Just musings really.
So I'm heading into a 3-day stretch of shifts at work. This wouldn't normally be too odd except that after the first night, I'm going to be on my own for the first time. For the last 2.5 months, I've been on orientation which means I've had a nurse by my side, teaching me, helping me along, showing me the ropes... the time for that is swiftly coming to a close... and now it's time to fly.
I know I might be making a big deal about this. I'm sure thousands of nurses all over would tell me that I'm gonna be fine, not to worry, everyone goes through this, no one ever feels ready... and I'm sure in a month or maybe in a year, I'll look back at this time in my life and think "why did I ever think this was a big deal?" but today... this morning... it's a big deal to me. I feel like one of those baby birds that needs to get pushed off the cliff so that I would be forced to spread my wings and fly... or the alternative would be to fall tragically to my death... paralyzed by fear, unwilling to do what I've been trained to do... immobilized by the desire to want to stay where it's safe and not move forward.
I've been a student for the greater part of my life... I'm getting my second bachelor's degree this coming Sunday... after having gotten a masters already. I haven't been "on my own" hardly at all... my entire life. This is definitely a scary time. It's a time full of unknowns. It's a time of changes. I just lost my train of thought.
I really didn't want my orientation to end. In fact... I realized today that I spent the past few days or maybe the past week trying to avoid it. I've watched more TV this past week than I have in a long time. I watched the entire second season of Chuck. I thought it was just something I could to do... a mindless activity... to just let my brain rest and veg... but it was more than that. It was me... retreating. Escaping. So I've thoroughly vegged and now I probably should be getting to sleep soon because all it did was eat away time.
It sort of encouraged me though. Chuck... is a good show. I like it. It's about a guy... who in the world's eyes is probably a loser/failure... but his circumstances worked out in such a way that he ended up living a pretty remarkable life.
And I've been thinking lately about what makes a life remarkable. A remarkable life is special because it has endured hardships and has been refined, strengthened, and purified by it as opposed to being destroyed. It's not remarkable to be destroyed by hardships... that's pretty much what's supposed to happen... it's expected. When things blow up, you expect ugliness, chaos, disorder... you don't expect things to come out even more beautiful, more orderly, more put-together AFTER something crazy or horrific happens. The more I listen to stories about believers and how God found them and has been working in their lives... I see that that is precisely what happens when God enters into someone's life. Their life becomes remarkable. There is hope. There is healing. There is meaning. And none of that comes without some sort of pain and suffering.
Pain and suffering = sadness. Horrible hurt = baggage that someone carries the rest of their life. Lost my train of thought again. ARGH. Maybe what I was trying to say... that to overcome these things are like tests... tests that show whether or not we're what's expected... or if we're something more... something remarkable... more specifically... living proof that the all-powerful God can do a miracle within us... that all He's said is true... that He delivers on His promises... and that we can trust that what's been done since the beginning of time is still at work because He is the same yesterday, today, and forever.
I don't really know what's going to happen. I hope I won't fail at being a nurse. I hope I won't make fatal mistakes that will end up hurting other people. It's possible. It could happen. Telling me that it won't happen is just... encouraging me with a false sense of security. No one knows what's going to happen in the future... only God does.
I'm not sure how this ties in but I just wanted to share a memory with you guys. I'm not sure why I thought of it today, but I did. It's about Anderson. I might have shared it before but I'll just share it again. He'd probably hate that I was blogging these things. Anyway. So I was lounging on the couch talking to him. He was about 15 feet away at his desk... facing me, talking to me. Maybe listening as I told him whatever weird stuff I used to talk about in college... probably about boys or something. Then in mid conversation, he got up, ran towards me, grabbed something on the couch next to me and then walked out of the room. I thought this was strange behavior. When he got back, I asked him what was up with that. He said he saw a spider. And instead of telling me, which he knew would freak me out, probably cause me to jump up and scream... and then give the spider time to escape... he didn't tell me, he pounced on it, and caught it with his bare hands. He told me he just didn't want to lose the spider, but I'll just think about it as one of the sweetest things someone's ever done for me. To use his bare hands to kill a spider that might have creepy-crawled on oblivious, self-absorbed me. If I hadn't been so self-absorbed, maybe I should have just stopped right there and asked him to marry me. I don't think we were dating yet at that point. Just thinking about that time... thinking about how he used to protect me... even from a spider at the very beginning... to protecting me as his girlfriend, fiancee and later on, his wife... I dunno. Does all protection come to an end sometime? No more school to protect me from the real world? No more preceptor to protect me at work? No more husband to protect me... at all? Eventually, no more parents either.
Is it the loss of certain protections... or is it moving one step closer to revealing who I really am... who I'm meant to be... just part of the journey? Can I be who I'm meant to be underneath the protective shelters that have been keeping me safe my whole life? I don't know. All I know is that right now... I have no idea what I'm doing... but I'm about to be pushed out of yet another protective shelter. It's scary. I don't know if I'm going to fail or succeed. But I know that it's going to be OK because God says so. Can't grow if you don't move forward into the scariness of the unknown. Pray for me though. I'm about to become a real nurse.
Time to fly. Night. :) I'll let you know how it goes... in about 3 days.