So, I've started a new semester in nursing school and I've had several orientations that all last several hours long and SAY they are going to go over this and that, but really just spend the whole day talking about how difficult this next year is going to be. At times, I wondered if they were using some sort of reverse psychology to inspire us or something, but it just kept getting more depressing and then there were even moments where they told us to "Get more responsible" and we haven't even had the chance to be IRRESPONSIBLE yet. It was sort of depressing and not nearly as exciting as the blindly happy and optimistic orientations the first year had been.
I'm starting clinicals in Atlanta and I live in north Georgia. That means a whole bunch of driving. Which is distressing for many reasons, but the most for me is the whole getting lost thing. Because I do. Get lost that is. Often. Even with GPS. There is no hope for my cause, I have just learned to live with it and mostly it is never a problem, except when you have to be in Atlanta at 6:30 in the morning and you live about 65 miles away.
Yesterday, I woke up at 4:00, drank some coffee, put on a wee bit of makeup and left with plenty of time for traffic (which doesn't really exist that early, who knew?) and getting lost time. I didn't get (very) lost on the way to the first location and all was good and well. Yay, I thought to myself, my troubles are over. But no. Then they announced that we were to go to another location in Atlanta and it only took 20 minutes to get there and we were to have lunch on the way and had an hour before we were to arrive. We would have to wait on everyone to get there to begin, so if we are the last one to show up then everyone will be waiting and angry and watching that person.
That was all that was needed to get my anxiety into full swing. Not only do I have direction anxiety, but I HATE being the last person to walk into the room and everyone look at me. Ugh. I feel chills now just thinking about it.
So, I thought, alright, all is well. I have the address, I will put it in GPS, I have a whole hour to get there. All will be fine.
I started walking towards the lobby and got confused already. Where did I park? Oh, I will follow the other students. Then I hear them saying that they parked in the visitors parking and I had parked in the staff parking. So I walked back trying to find a friendly face to walk out with and there was no one to be found. To make an entirely too long story shorter, suffice to say that I spent half an hour in a creepy parking deck looking for my car. That is not an exaggeration. I was on the wrong parking deck for 20 minutes before I found the scary looking tunnel that looked like it went to a dungeon that actually led to staff parking. Then I spent another ten minutes walking around frantically clicking the button on my key ring hoping to see my lights flicker.
By the time I found the car, I was literally sweating in my "professional attire" with my white lab coat. I tried to plug the address into GPS only for it to tell me that it didn't exist. I started to feel real tears threaten my eyeballs. Only half an hour! AND I had to catch a shuttle to the hospital from the new parking deck? I started driving around Atlanta getting mixed up before my phone argued with my GPS and offered the suggestion that perhaps the address was actually Decatur instead of Atlanta? So while I tried to plug the new information in I almost ran a red light and got killed. But I didn't. I'm still alive.
I got to the new parking deck and saw a bus start to head off so I ran uphill, in my "professional attire" with my damn white coat flapping in the breeze, in the middle of the damn day, in the Atlanta (Decatur) heat, to catch this bus and the driver opens up the door and I ask if it is shutting to the hospital and NO it is not and then I hear my name called and turn around and there are 25 other students sitting in a cool, glassed in room, watching me make a red-faced sweaty fool of myself.
So everyone ended up looking at me anyway. The end.