The big test – the NCLEX
I did it. It was tough, it was crazy, and getting there felt a little like being in prison…seriously. But I did it. I was photographed, had both my palmar veins scanned (I guess a fingerprint isn’t unique enough anymore!), and I left everything in a small, very hard to open locker. All you get is your ID and your locker key. I had my veins scanned again, and my ID checked and triple checked (it felt like when the people at bars/restuarants look at my ID and don’t actually believe that I am 24, because I look like I’m 17, and look even younger in my picture!). And when it finally came time to start, I was escorted in… said my final prayers and got started.
I kept telling myself that it would be over after 75 questions. I am still not sure that this was a good idea. It did help me take my time – because I knew it wouldn’t take 6 hours to get there. But at the same time, I got to about question 60 and realized that the test doesn’t always stop at 75. It was then that I realized the questions were particularly difficult, and very random. I started panicking, thinking I’d spent almost 2 hours just barely making it to that magic number… and I braced myself. I knew that if the questions kept on and went to 76, I was going to have to take a break to keep from hyperventilating. There I was question 73…74…75….
And then blue. I think that was the biggest relief of all, just knowing that I didn’t have to stay there any longer. I was done. I was free.
Free, at least, until my brain caught up with me and I over-analyzed everything. Within 30 minutes of finishing the NCLEX I went into depression and convinced myself that I’d failed miserably and that I was royally a nursing school failure.
I’ve recovered a bit now, but still bummin’ about it. It was tough. I keep trying to persevere and think positive, but I am trying to be realistic too. I just keep checking that BRN site…waiting and waiting…
I'm a brand new, full-fledged, fresh-out-of-school RN! And better yet, I landed the job of my dreams working with children. I love what I do, and while everyday on the job is a new (and sometimes scary) experience, I'm taking it all in - absorbing everything I can about this amazing profession we all fell in love with.
By Ani Burr, RN