Monday, September 21, 2009

Undergraduates may think that the day they graduate or the day they pass the board exam will be the happiest day of their teenage life. Some students can't wait to graduate from reviewing and doing mountains of paper works. I was not one of them, yet I felt like I took for granted those days when, no matter how toxic the requirements were, all I should worry about were finishing them and what to eat at lunch the next day.

Now that I know better, I urge them to think otherwise.

Graduation is just a formal ceremony where you can see your professors, deans and high ranking officers of your school wearing poofy dresses and oddly shaped hats. There is nothing special about it especially if you still have to take and pass the board exam before you can do anything with your diploma.

Passing the board exam is another thing, though. You know that you have surpassed the one thing that you needed to in order to start your life, and it's very fulfilling to see your name listed together with the thousands who passed when so many more have failed to do so. The euphoria may last up to months, if you're lucky. Other passers, like myself, weren't so fortunate.

Because what comes next after passing the board exam and having your oath taking in front of the legendary BON? Parents, families and relatives, that's what.

Being a practicing registered nurse (with salary) is not as simple as the graduate -> pass board exam -> have job -> have money -> be a productive member of the family/society chart that parents seem to have etched on their brains, especially parents from non-nursing/medical background. But reality is more complicated than that especially nowadays that clinical jobs are more elusive than ever.

And even if you have a willing backer ready to, well, back you up, you still need numerous papers which include a PRC license and certificates which takes forever to be released by your school and the PRC itself.

So what do you do while waiting for those requirements and/or job opportunities? First, if you really need the money you'll apply in a call center, make your family really happy but put your 4-year education background to waste, at least for the time being. If money is not a necessity, you bum around in your house, surf the net, be a house maid and look for Red Cross and IVT trainings. Oh, and yes, have your parent constantly nag and tell you how you're wasting time and space doing nothing.

Wow, thanks a lot. Fresh grads like us are already in an emotional turmoil of "WTH do I do now?". Add to that the sudden transition from a comfortable routine time table to an onslaught of free time you don't know what to do with. All our lives, everything followed a certain schedule where days were filled with subjects after subjects and we learned to live life in that manner. Lunch breaks were spent eating with a group of familiar people you share food, jokes, problems and laughs with everyday. Where are they now? Even if you remain good friends with all of your college classmates everyone's scattered into different directions now.

And it's not like we want to stay stagnant and be a certified bum forever. I, for one, is jealous of my batchmates who now have a paying job in the palm of their hands. I feel like everybody's moving forward leaving me all alone in the depressing state of unemployment. Still, I resist to succumb to the monetary lures of call center careers. Health care (and writing) is my passion and my background and I want to make use of the 4 years I spent studying NCM to use.

So what now? Now, I will further express myself in cyberspace because it's one of the things I know I do well and enjoy at the same time. I'm not planning to stay like this for the rest of my life but give me time.

As for tomorrow, I'm going to finally claim my PRC license. *enter big grin here*


manik_reigun said...

"But reality is more complicated than that especially nowadays that clinical jobs are more elusive than ever."< sad but true.tsk.

napagdaan ko rin yan. at sht, grabe hirap ng pinagtiisan ko nun. (im not trying to send tons of nega vibes here)im just giving you guys na diskartehan ng malupit, at makakaleveup din kayo.

and as for your license, congrats!

Clarrise said...

I know what you mean. Actually it's nice to know that what we are going through is a norm nowadays here in our country and even abroad. There is comfort in numbers. Haha.

Thanks for the comment! :)

Mina said...

I'd love to go back to school though...after years of working, you'll gonna miss school all the more :) But congrats, PRC is one good thing newly grads should be proud about:)

Clarrise said...

I know I miss school already. Being a student was so much simpler. I can't believe I took it for granted. :(

kha said...

congratz for your license. buti k pa. d p q nakakapag board worst I am so prexurd!.. Never got the chance to enroll in a review center, d p nmn maganda ung foundation q s NCM. at lalong I need to work while waiting for the Nov 09 exam sched.. And my mom always and keep on reminding me I have to pass.take one! kprexurd tlga..

Clarrise said...

Feeling pressured is normal. Every one who passed the boards felt it as well. :) Goodluck to your career and future endeavors!

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Anonymous said...

Wow thats exactly how I feel. I just finished nursing school and I feel like while I was in school my life was planned-this class...this test...this study group...this cupcake which probably has 1000 calories,,, and now I am like roaming around my living room in a mooo mooo and a ripped white t-shirt (my favorite one to study in) wondering why I am depressed and have sooo much anxiety! Because now I need to discipline my own time....and balance all the sh*t that went to the wayside during nursing hell i.e. laundry, grocery shopping, family time, cleaning, and taking off the extra 20lbs that has taken up residence on my ass.

Clarriscent said...


Wow, well said. I especially like the 'taking off the extra 20 lbs that has taken up residence on my ass' part. I suffer the same fate. 2 years off graduation. Damnit.

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