They say if you can make it in New York you can make it anywhere. Well. I’m here to tell you: if you can survive accelerated nursing school, you can do anything. Only 12 months to go until I sit for the licensing exams. For now I”m taking coursework and will begin clinicals in March.
It seems like many of the student midwife and midwifery blogs online are from midwives who were already nurses prior to their career, or who went into the dual-entry programs that bundle the second degree nursing and midwifery in the same training (or, of course, are Professional Midwives not associated with nursing programs at all!). For many circumstantial reasons, I’m attending an accelerated nursing program now, will become an RN, and then will go back to become a Nurse Midwife later.
At first I viewed the requirement to go through nursing school as a major drag; a means to an end. I want to be a midwife, not a nurse, and I dreaded this year. Even though I always knew how important nurses are in general, I realize now that nursing is such a strong foundation for midwifery care. Nurses are trained to care for the whole patient, not simply the disease. We’re learning about how to communicate, assess, interpret, comfort, advocate, and keep clients well across all stages of development in addition to studying disease processes and emergency procedures. It feels like a sixth sense I’m developing; I’m starting to look at people and see things about them that tell me about their overall wellness. AMAZING! A month into the program, and I’m so excited about cultivating my clinical skills right here, right now.
And I’m exhausted. I wake up, I drink coffee, I go to class or study, I go to bed. My whole entire life, every second of it, it drenched in becoming a nurse. It’s tough not having time for much else. Sometimes it feels like an enormous sacrifice of my family time, friend time, personal time, sleep, emotional and physical wellness. The expectations of our program sometimes border on absurdity. You want us to do WHAT by next week?
It’s really intense. I totally love it. Working this hard, this fast, with this much sleep deprivation and this much joy has given me even more confidence that I can take the challenges of becoming and being a midwife.