Today marks my first day off in, you guessed it, 13 days. We had a little trip home to Arizona which inadvertently overlapped with the first day of school. The day after we got back (on the first day of class - that'll teach me not to double check a school start date before booking tickets) I started 2 days of clinical orientation, then 4 straight days of work to make up for the hours lost while we were in Arizona - and for which I have no PTO since I just started the job - then 3 days of class/clinicals, then more work until my first day off in 2 weeks. Which has been spent in blissful inactivity.
This semester should be much more manageable than the last, thankfully. Only 1 class instead of 2, and I started a new job in a student nurse program at a nearby hospital. I'm working in the surgical-trauma ICU which has already provided excellent hands-on experience and learning opportunities. The nurse to patient ratio is always 1:2 or 1:1, and I basically follow one nurse and do whatever he/she needs me to do. As I progress through school, I will be more or less given the less intense patient to care of almost independently while the nurse oversees me and double checks my assessments. While this work is much more challenging mentally, it is less physically demanding than my old job which had me hopping to take care of up to 11 patients on any given night, so I've been less tired. And I'll be able to pull 2 twelve-hour shifts instead of having to work multiple days of doubling up on class & clinicals, so things should be a lot less intense this semester.
Which will hopefully allow me to achieve my goal of posting at least once a week on either Sunday or Monday, which will be my 2 days off. I'm wanting to be a lot more consistent and this semester, I shouldn't have too many reasons not to be.