When they say, you can’t… Remember you can

When they say, you can’t… Remember you can

Whether you’ve just applied to your dream program, are in the middle of finals, or just finished the most tiring semester you’ve had yet, you might still be questioning your ability to make it in nursing. We’ve all done it; we wondered if we have what it takes or whether we’ll be able to support ourselves financially through school. Some have families and kids to take care of, while others lack confidence and let that imposter syndrome creep in. Nursing school involves hours upon hours of schoolwork every week, long clinical hours, and high-stakes exams like HESI and ATI. We wonder if we’ll have the time to do it all and still pass. This made it more difficult when you add it to having a job. I can’t tell you how many times our faculty have lectured us on why we may want to reconsider working while in nursing school (if only it were that easy). If any of this applies to you, chances are you need a little motivation and inspiration to keep on pushing through. And since it is the season of giving, I’m here to share some.

The summer before my first semester of clinicals, I found out I was pregnant with my second baby. I was ecstatic! We were happy to be adding another member to our little family and timed it just right so that our kids would be close enough in age. I shared my excitement with everyone I encountered. But guess what I was met with?

Questions like:
“Are you sure you can do this?”
“Nursing school is tough. Are you sure this is the right time to have a baby?”
“Are you planning on taking a semester off? You might want to consider it.”
“It’s going to be tough to get through nursing school with a newborn.”

I heard it from my family, my peers, and even my professors! For a moment, I started to question my decisions. I mean, we look to our nursing faculty for advice all the time, so hearing from them that this was a bad decision had me second-guessing. Am I going to be able to do this? Then during one of my clinicals I was working with an RN who was also a mom that had been pregnant during nursing school. I’m thankful for her because all she did was shower me with motivation. After our conversation, I tried to shift my mindset. I told myself that if I wanted it badly enough, I’d make it happen.

So what did I do? I had my baby the first week of my second-semester clinicals. Took one week off. Then I went right back at it. It took some major prioritization skills, but I finished that semester with top marks and a healthy baby and family. Cause here’s the thing, Nursing school is hard, but self-doubt is what makes it even more difficult. Once people place those seeds of doubt, you have to stop watering them. No matter what you have going on in your personal life, you need to remember that you got into your program for a reason. You have all the qualifications. You are intelligent. You can become a Registered Nurse, and you will. Why did you get into nursing school? Because you wanted it. Why did you pass up that night out with your friends? Because you prioritized your desire to become a nurse over the distractions. Look at the whole picture and try to remember that every decision you made up until this point was made with one goal in mind… becoming a nurse. Don’t stop now.

What makes passing even more gratifying? When you prove all those nay-sayers wrong. So get to it and remember that when they say you can’t, you remember you can.


Written by: Mary Vadenais

Instagram: @marybvadenais

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