I've been out of town for the last week-plus. I spent 5 days in Washington DC, then came home for 12 hours and left for Seattle for 4 more days. The trips were great, but I am glad to be home. DC was our Mid Year Assembly for the national organization for nurse anesthetists. There were a couple days of conferences, mainly prep for going to Capitol Hill. Then there were a couple of days of each state's delegation going to visit its legislators and discuss various issues with them. It's about visibility for our profession, especially in light of health care reform that is happening as we speak. It was very enlightening to see how Congress actually works, and see that senators and representitives are actual people and there is no need to fear contacting them and telling them how you, their constituent, feels about issues. They actually do listen. In between all of that, we met lots of CRNAs and student nurse anesthetists, went to lots of fabulous dinners, and saw the sights in DC. It's a lovely city, and I hope to return someday and see more of it.
The Seattle trip was for our state organization. They had their spring conference this past weekend. I wouldn't have gone, except that I am the student representitive from my program for this year, which meant I needed to go to their board meeting. It's an honorary thing; no vote, and no responsibilities, just mentoring really. The conference itself was interesting, lots of good speakers and topics. I also saw some friends in town, which was great.
Now I am back into stress-mode for school. I feel like I've fallen behind in my studies; I've been away for over a week, and we have an exam tomorrow in OB. We are going to 2:1 supervision next week and becoming "seniors" which is a big deal and marks the final 12 month sprint to graduation. For our first year in the OR, we are supervised on a 1:1 basis, meaning that there is a CRNA in the room with us at all times. When we go to 2:1, we are supervised by the docs, and one doc watches a student nurse anesthetist in 2 different OR rooms. It's great experience because we get to develop our skills and our style of delivering an anesthetic, make more decisions ourselves, but the MD is present for induction and emergence, and if we have questions or problems at any point during the case. But it's a big shift, and it's a bit scary.
On my run tonight, I realized just how much negative self-talk I still have. I was telling myself how much work I have to do, how much studying, how I'm not ready for Bloomsday, how I'm not doing well enough in my recovery, I still haven't lost the 10 pounds I want to lose...and then I finally stopped and realized what I was doing. Learning to be kinder to myself doesn't come easily. I've got a lot going on, and I'm keeping my head above water. I'm very tired, and stressed, but really I'm doing okay. I've got to learn that a bit better.
I gained a few pounds while gone. But between all the restaurant eating, and no running all that time, I think I got off easy. Here's hoping it comes off without too much struggle.