Wednesday, November 30, 2011


I had my graduation ceremony and received my Practical Nursing diploma last week. I am glad to be done my schooling and appreciated having my parents at my graduation. They got me roses, gave me a pearl ring from the Philippines, wrote out a special card,and took the family out for dinner. This is my second post secondary graduation, and it wasn't as special as the first one, but it still is a nice feeling. I will write my exam in January and once I get the results I will be an official nurse in search of a nursing job!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

A Heart Grown Cold

When I was younger and hearing Old Testament Bible stories, I wondered how in the span or a generation (or less) God's people could turn away and pursue other gods. The cyclical nature of their relationship with God baffled me. Why didn't they learn from their history that to turn away from God meant disaster, while following him brought blessing? Again and again they were unfaithful, but when they cried out to God for deliverance he rescued them.

I don't find their disobedience so hard to understand any more. That's because I go through periods when my heart is far from God and I am merely going through the motions of a Christian life. I have been going through such a period for some time now. I wouldn't define it as a dark night of the soul, though I have experienced that before. I would call it a time of spiritual barrenness and lassitude. My prayers are few and are either crisis prayers or monologues to God about what is wrong between me and him and how I don't believe it can change. I may occasionally pray for others, but my prayers lack conviction.

I want to have some epiphany, some shining moment that will turn things around and change the course of my life. I know that the times I have felt closest to God have been times when I am ill and need to rely on him. But I don't want to be ill.

In church I sing the repetitive choruses, but I don't feel anything, no spark of connection, no sense of awe. The Bible fails to excite me or motivate me. I am numb to its transforming power. I feel no thirst or hunger, only an emptiness.

So now I understand how God's people could hear of God's mighty acts of deliverance or witness it themselves and still turn away. I know what it is to have a heart grown cold, hard as a stone. What I don't understand is how God could continue to show himself faithful to such a faithless people. Was the cost of redemption worth the lacklustre results?

I have been told that Christ would have gone to the cross even if it could only save one person, even if it could only restore me, and me alone, to God. But now I wonder if he is as frustrated as I am at this cycle of futility. What will it take to turn my hardened heart into a heart of flesh and to breathe new life into these dry bones? Maybe just a willingness to cry out to him for deliverance... a desperation for him. A simple remedy, so why is it so difficult?

Friday, September 30, 2011

Life These Days

Since last post, I have had another birthday, begun a job search, and started working in the health-care field. Right now my job is part-time in home care, but probably I will eventually build up more clients. I work evenings and weekends and also some mornings, with every other weekend off. I also have a second job I haven't started yet, also in home care.

I won't be a RPN until sometime in the New Year, after I pass my College of Nurses of Ontario exam. I am glad to have a job in the meantime, although I am also glad that this is a temporary stage on the way to becoming a full-fledged nurse.

I need to find a good work/life balance. I am trying to take a walk every day. I haven't started studying for my exam in January yet, but once in a while I try a question in my Practice Manual and I always get them right! I am not sure when I will start studying... I have been advised to start sooner rather than later.

I am still getting used to my job, but I enjoy my clients and it is great to help them in their homes and make a difference in their lives.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

My Final Week!

Today I started my final week of Pregrad. Tomorrow I have my Evaluation and on Wednesday I will have my last day. I have one assignment left and three hours at school on Friday and then I will be officially done my time training as a Practical Nurse. I will graduate in October and I have elected to take my final College of Nurses exam in January rather than in September, meaning I won't be able to work as a Practical Nurse immediately.

Before I plunge into my job search I am taking a couple of weeks of vacation. I have been in school since January 2010 so some time off without thinking about school will be great. I just have to find enough enjoyable vacation-like things to do, so I am not wasting my leisure time.

I am feeling better about nursing as a career and I am glad that there are many options in this field of work. I am still not sure what area interests me the most; I do appreciate long term care and working with the elderly. Although I am finishing my studies at Mohawk, I have so much left to learn as I begin my nursing career. I am excited I made it this far.

A random picture from my sister's birthday earlier this summer. Summer has flown by!

My nephew, niece and newest nephew looking adorable.

Friday, July 29, 2011

A Solitary Weekend

I have the weekend off from my nursing endeavours and I have the house to myself. I may have a couple of people over at some point, but three of my family members have gone to visit my new nephew, Ethan David who was born a week ago, and the other family member is off to Montreal for a fun-filled weekend.

I actually had a very good day today and am satisfied with a job well done. Next week I have the evening shift, so I am looking forward to being able to sleep past 5:15 am. I almost overslept a couple of times this past week, as my alarm didn't wake me because the radio was softer than the noise of the fan I had on full blast. Thankfully I got to work on time, because I woke up half an hour later by myself on Monday morning, and was woken up by my Dad Thursday morning. He was surprised that the first word out of my mouth was a swear word. Oops!

I picked up some movies from the library, but, according to my discerning sister, none of them are any good. Thankfully I never let the lameness of a romantic comedy detract from my enjoyment of it. Other than that I will do some lounging around the pool, sipping cool drinks, and reading one of The Number One Ladies' Detective Agency books, and will also complete necessary tasks like laundry, ironing, and watering the garden plants.

It should be a decent weekend, although I'd rather be in Saskatchewan, meeting my newest adorable nephew.

Monday, July 18, 2011

A Life Fulfilled

I am a person who likes routines, even if life becomes slightly monotonous and stale. I mean, I don't go out seeking excitement on a Friday night. I like predictability and stability. But sometimes I wonder... what is my life all about?

I have been told that I tend to be overly focused on myself and if I would look outwards and love the people around me, I would be much happier and more fulfilled. Navel gazing isn't particularly beneficial, especially if accompanied by self-flagulation.

I guess I'd like to be more focused on others, and in the profession I have chosen there is a lot of potential to develop in that direction. To be an effective nurse, you must be focused on the patient and put your own concerns aside.

Sadly, selfishness comes much more naturally to me than selflessness. I am reminded of Jesus' words that Eugene Peterson paraphrases so starkly, "If you don't go all the way with me, through thick and thin, you don't deserve me. If your first concern is to look after yourself, you'll never find yourself. But if you forget about yourself and look to me, you'll find both yourself and me." These words hold a promise that if I lose my life in following Christ and serving others, I will find it. That will be a life fulfilled, and a life filled with love, no matter how routine it may appear. Somehow I don't think a sold-out life could be monotonous.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

A New Challenge

This past week I wrote my last test at Mohawk College. Now I will start my eight-week pregrad experience. I will be working in long term care with the elderly and I need to clock 300 hours. All my shifts are either days or evenings and are eight hours long.

I am quite apprehensive about this new challenge. Yesterday I bought some new scrubs and new shoes. I wish that confidence was on sale! I guess I'll just have to gain some confidence through getting more experience as a nurse.

Saturday, May 07, 2011

Another Summer in School

After two weeks off, I am getting ready to head back to school for my final semester of Practical Nursing. Last week I found out my good friend and study buddy would not be around for this summer after all, but would be taking her final semester in the fall. I will definitely miss her, and contemplated working this summer instead of taking school, but decided finding a summer job on such short notice might be a bit tough.
Spending another summer in school means that I have been in school since January 2010without any fourth month break to rejuvenate me or summer job to restore my bank account. I will be busy until August 19 with semester and pregrad experience, and then I will have my exam in September. I think the toughest part will be when my sister, nephew, and niece come to visit for a couple of weeks and I have to be studying full-time when I'd rather be spending more time with them. At the same time I am really looking forward to them coming. We have a family wedding and a camping trip coming up.
On the plus side, I like school, even if I find the clinical experience stressful. Also I will get done that much sooner and enter the workforce as a Practical Nurse sooner. I even have been given an unexpected bursery so I will be less in debt. I won't be earning money or enjoying much vacation time this summer, but finishing the program will be a great accomplishment I can celebrate at the end of August.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

On Death and Life

On this, the day before we celebrate Jesus' resurrection, after having commemorated his death on a hill outside Jerusalem two thousand years ago, I am thinking about death and about life. As a Christian, part of me is supposed to have died along with Jesus and another part is supposed to have been raised to life. While there is a deadness, a barrenness, a dryness inside of me, my old sinful nature seems very much alive and while evidence of Jesus' resurrection life, the new self, seems reluctant to emerge from where it is cocooned.

I desire a new life, a vitality, a spiritual rebirth, but I am afraid. I fear both the death and the life that is required. Sometimes I think about Jesus' words. There are some comforting ones like "Come to me all who are weary and heavy-laden" and "No one can snatch them (believers) out of my Father's hand." There are words of hope and grace. But then there are the demanding ones like "Be perfect as your Heavenly Father is perfect" or "If any one would come after me, he must deny himself take up his cross and follow me." I ponder the fate of the ten foolish virgins or the servant who hid his talent, or I remember Christ's words that not every one who says to him "Lord, Lord" will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of his Father in heaven. Jesus had harsh words for the hypocrites and for those who thought they had no need of grace. When I think of Jesus' more difficult words and the cost of discipleship, I second-guess the boundaries of his grace and I ponder the prospect of Christ as judge. Does he really accept me?

This weekend, I prayed that Jesus who suffered on the cross to pay the debt of my sin, would change and renew me and transform me. I prayed that it wouldn't depend on me, but on him. I felt a sense of peace and confidence that he who began a good work in me, would bring it to completion. The parts of me that must die, will die, the dry bones will be brought to life, and the new self will come forth, as Christ burst forth from the grave.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

The End is Near

Only five months remain of my program and so far I am surviving. As usual I am concerned (actually worried is more accurate) how my clinical placement will go. And not looking forward to two group projects coming up. This part of the semester will be more of a challenge due to a greater volume of work and a tiredness that seems to be creeping over me. There is so much I don't know yet and it can be overwhelming. We are learning a new way of documentation by computer at the hospital.

I finished a clinical rotation that was challenging in other ways. Psychiatric facilities aren't my favourite places to be and it is sad to see how sick some of the patients are.

In view of how little I have been blogging lately, I wonder if the end is near also for this blog? Can new life be breathed into it, or should it go the way of all the earth?

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


Today I finally got around to filling in my wall calendar for this semester. And it is *only* January 26th. I have two group projects and numerous assignments due in the coming weeks. I have never been this disorganized and it is starting to stress me out. On Monday I have three tests. I am not sure how I will make it through to the end of February let alone the end of April. Somehow my motivation is lacking. And the class work is the easy part for me... clinical is much more demanding and challenging. Let's hope I can pull up my socks!