Quite a few times over the past two years my role as a mother has conflicted with my role as a student nurse. Usually one role has been sacrificed for the other and sometimes I have regretted my choices as I realise I made the wrong decision. I’m starting to get better at resolving my conflicts, or perhaps I’m just getting better at juggling my dual roles. Currently, I am in a quandary concerning a decision that affects my family and my nurse training.
I am currently choosing my electives. This means that I can ‘elect’ to spend 12 weeks on placements that are of particular interest to me. My electives start in September and I have chosen to divide my elective into three blocks of four weeks each. My little girl also starts school in September. Now here is where my dilemma’s start. My elective’s start the same day that my little girl starts school.
I’m hoping my first elective placement will let me work my first shift around her first day at school.
I’ve had one elective placement confirmed, but I’m struggling to decide where to spend the other 8 weeks. My partner and I will also have to juggle my shifts and his job around our daughter’s school hours.
I would miss putting my children to bed; I would miss my daughter as she develops and grows and discovers what life at primary school is like.
Emergency care is where I hope to work when I qualify, so 4 weeks in Accident and Emergency would be ideal, 4 weeks at a walk in centre would also provide invaluable experience. The one placement that I am agonising over is the possibility of 4 weeks at a major trauma centre 240 miles away from my home. Commuting would not be an option so I would have to find accommodation in the area.
This would be a fantastic opportunity and I have already made enquiries concerning the possibility of a 4 week placement. My other half has said he is happy to take full responsibility for our daughter’s school drop off’s and pick ups during those four weeks should I choose to go ahead with the placement. But the one thing that holds me back and stops me committing 100% to pursuing this possibility is being away from my family. The longest I have been away from them is 3 nights when I went to Congress last year. The second night I cried as I was missing them so much. I know I could juggle my hours so I could get to spend 2 days a week at home, but I would still be away from them for 5 nights. I would miss putting my children to bed; I would miss my daughter as she develops and grows and discovers what life at primary school is like.
On the one hand, it would be a superb learning opportunity, on the other hand, the thought of being away from my children for four weeks, especially when my daughter is just starting school I find upsetting.
I have to decide by the beginning of April. My head is telling me it would be a fantastic experience; my heart is telling me to put my family first. I’m not sure which one will win.