Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Epilogue...

My signature now reads: Kayla Stutler, RN

I do a tiny happy dance in my head every single time. Nursing school started in 2012. Roxas was 5 months old and I had no idea what my life was about to turn into. Fast forward to that crazy final day in 2014. I now had an AAS in Nursing but the book wasn't done being written. There was still one more thing. The NCLEX. I couldn't really be done until then. I couldn't write RN after my name, yet. Three years of hard work, nervous breakdowns, and many hours of family time sacrificed. It all came down to one test.

The day before I treated myself like a pretty pretty princess. I stuffed my face with ridiculously priced food from my favorite celebrity chef's restaurants. I went on a mini shopping spree and indulged in room service for the first time ever. I was on top of the world the night before. My confidence was through the roof. Then I took the test.

That test is designed by terrible people who want you to feel miserable about everything. No, really. The test gets harder and harder the more questions you get right...except you never think you are answering the questions right anyways and become completely convinced you have just failed miserably. I totally get why they don't allow roof access in Vegas. My computer shut off at 75 questions, the minimum amount of questions you can possibly pass with. Then, because remember these people are cruel, they have you answer a little exit survey. I probably said I was Mexican or African American. I was in such a state of shock I wouldn't have known my own name. I walked out of there feeling absolutely positively sure I failed. I went to the aquarium at Mandalay Bay to soothe my nerves and then grabbed a super yummy burger at yet another one of Gordon Ramsay's restaurants. Then I couldn't come up with anything else I wanted to do, because drinking copious amounts of beer was off the list, and I went home.

The next morning I woke up to a text from my boss of all people..."Is this Kayla Stutler RN??? Congratulations!!!" Of course I immediately logged onto the state nursing board and saw I had an RN license. Turns out they don't give out licenses to people who fail. There was a lot of crying. Then there was a lot of texting and general social media posting.

So I am officially done. All done. Absolutely nothing left to do but work. I now feel like the book of my nursing education journey can finally come to a close with this last piece, the epilogue. Until I start my BSN...dun dun duuuuuuun.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Here We Go Again!

I am so excited to say we are now a family of 5!
No, our TV isn't broken. Yes, we know what causes it. Yes, it was extremely planned.

We are so excited to be expanding the family again. This picture is the exact way I feel. This baby has been prayed for, and seeing the second line on that test was an answer to my many prayers. It has been a rough road getting here and I could not be more thankful. The heartbreak and disappointment month after month after month had done things to my heart and my faith. I felt like less of a woman because my body had rebelled against me, putting up a fight to allow my family to expand again. The endless tests, the handfuls of supplements, the temperature taking, all of it was enough to drive me mad. I went through a time when I got mad at God, and acted like a little spoiled child admittedly. I couldn't understand why and I still don't but I finally came back around like a little kid after a tantrum. I prayed every single day for this little baby and the afternoon after my pinning ceremony they were answered. I could not possibly be happier.

This pregnancy is already standing out as extremely different, and somewhat difficult, compared to Roxas and Lucy. The first huge difference is we will not be finding out the gender! I never thought I would be able to handle the anticipation of not finding out. I am pleasantly surprised to find I am enjoying it. Since we already have all of the stuff for either boy or girl I feel like we are already prepared pretty well and I'm not too flustered about it. I like the idea of getting that huge surprise of the doctor announcing "It's a..." in that moment. We won't be sharing our name choices either so you will all be surprised like we will be!

The other difference that is proving extremely hard for me to handle is the sickness. I had to go and brag to the doc about how "I barely get sick with my pregnancies. I feel fantastic, totally normal!" I am paying dearly for those words. For the past two weeks I've been the sickest I've ever been and it doesn't look like it will be letting up. I have been surviving on whatever I can convince my stomach to hold on to which isn't much. I tried every trick in the book from accupressure bands to gingerale (which I hate) with no relief. I finally caved to my family requests that I call the doc. The nurse told me I needed to go to the ER and be checked out. So after work, yup I am just that stubborn, I headed downstairs and got checked into the ER. The doctor agreed that I needed some help. I was very dehydrated and the big concern was the baby having enough fluid around it. They gave me two liters of fluid and some anti-nausea medicine. They also performed my first ultrasound. The tech wasn't one of the helpful ones and barely showed me anything, and she didn't print a picture either, so I was kind of bummed. I did get to see the little blob with a flickering heart for a few seconds though. Everything looked fine with baby. They did find several ovarian cysts which didn't surprise me much.Those cysts are my nemesis, the cause of all my heartache and frustration. It's a genetic curse that I truly hope I do not pass on.

After all that fluid I was feeling a bit better. Not back to 100% but I'm at least not as bad. I listened to the doctor and took off of work the next day to try to rest and push as much fluid as I can. Of course it would be the day that it snows for the first time in nearly 30 years and I didn't get to go out and play in the snow as much as I wish I could have. Instead I stayed tucked away inside with my blanket, a cup of 7-up and a bowl of plain rice.

Even though I'm feeling like death, I am still so excited to be able to experience pregnancy again, and most likely for the last time. Even with life as crazy as it is with the two kids and my new career and all that, I am trying hard to savor whatever I can and enjoy this time.

This new year is going to bring so much change to our lives and I can't wait. I will be taking my NCLEX exam this month and then I will begin my career as a real Registered Nurse. I can't believe it's so close. For years I had dreamed of this day and it seemed so far away. 

I am also kind of terrified. There are moments when the kids are trying to kill each other and I have just had it where I wonder what on Earth I just got myself into. I wonder if I can survive. I wonder if we will be able to do it. I just keep reminding myself it's all going to be fine and things will work out one way or another. It's an insane ride and I just have to hold on tight.