Thursday, January 24, 2008

Like Quicksand, It's the Small Things that Bring Us Down

I quit the nursing program. Yes, you read this right. I've been having nervous breakdowns, feeling overwhelmed, feeling like I wasn't being a good mother, not keeping up the house, not keeping up on the reading for school. All these little things that add up, like taking care of vehicles, shopping for food, paying bills, keeping things running around here. I could not do it.

All is not lost. I still have Florence Nightingale ambitions. I'm going to reapply for the traditional program that starts in the fall, taking 2 1/2 to 3 years which would have taken 16 months if I would have stayed in the accelerated program. The thing is, I had to decide which program to apply for earlier last year before I knew the kids' dad was moving to California. I knew we were getting divorced at that time, but I figured he'd be around to help with the kids. It was too much, and it felt crazy for me to feel like I was hanging by a thread myself and then think I was going to go out and take care of sick people.

I could only have done it if I would have neglected my kids for the next year and that is an insane trade-off.

I realized that having people step up to help me out by watching my kids for me was fantastic and it helped enormously, but it's not the same as having other people around that are are actually invested in their well-being. I felt like everything was a transaction, and it was taking too much of me away from the kids just when their dad left, so...

Woohoo! Free time! I am purging my feelings of guilt and failure for quitting (we'll just call it "putting it off") and I'm going to clean and organize. I could try to learn my mandolin again. I can be a person. I can keep up on what my kids are supposed to be doing for school. I need something else to to do, though, I should volunteer for something. One of the things I'll look into is hospice care. I'm intrigued by the idea of being a death doula. Like the experience of birth, I feel like there are some experiences of dying and death that should be reclaimed from the medical industry. That's something I'd like to explore. Yes, indeed, I willl stay busy. But Nurse Ratched will be back!


Daye said...

oh hunny--I understand. YAY for free time!!

Warren said...

Congratulations on your impending sanity! And free time ain't so bad, either.

Laura Jacquez said...

Yay free time! Let our luncheons commence!

the injector said...

Your decision sounds more than reasonable and very honorable!
a toast to your less-stressed next few months.