I stepped out of the elevator and into the main entrance of the Southfield Center Building and tried my best not to throw up. I knew I had failed my nursing boards. I KNEW IT. I just didn’t know what to do next. I remember being in a sickened haze and walking to my car, but I was in no shape to drive. The car was hot. I had arrived in the morning when it was cool and cloudy, but the exam was 3 hours long and my ice water was now warm and leaking onto the passenger seat.
I decided to call my sister-in-law. She had been a nurse for just a few years and still remembers taking the exams. She was very comforting in her advice of: “Did you feel like you were raped in there? I did. Go get drunk and forget it. I’m sure you did fine! If not, fuck it. Try again, right?”
Sure. After 4 years of work and weeks of studying, I can just try again. Maybe.
I was exhausted but I had to drive home. I texted hot-wife about how I felt and she said that she was positive that I didn’t fail… but I knew better.
That evening, I was felling much better. The kids were in bed, we had full glasses of wine, and I was ready to let my brain forget the day while watching some bad TV.
“Lets check your test score!” said my wife.
“Come, on! You can check it, right?” she asked.
“Yes, but I don’t want to ruin my evening! Besides, it costs $7!”
It sounded ridiculous when I said it, and she knew it, too. There was no way out of it. I had to pull out my wallet and purchase an online message that said “YOU FAILED.” That feeling of sickness started to come back, but I knew that after I got this over with, I could calm down and have a glass of wine.
I clicked the purchase button and waited… when the screen refreshed, there was a wall of text to read, and I was glad that the program was allowing me to review my missed questions.
But, there were no missed questions to review. Just an explanation of rules for nurses and in green letters: passed.
“I TOLD YOU!” she yelled at me. “I knew you passed, jackass! Now, go get some bourbon so we can do a toast and watch Game of Thrones.”
“I don’t understand.”
“Shut-up and get a drink, sweetie! I knew you would pass!”
Four years of hard work… And at that moment I had no idea how I pulled it off. Now comes the next hurdle: getting a nursing job in Detroit!