Monday, December 19, 2016

what could go wrong you ask

I graduated Saturdayday! 14 years after I set out to obtain my BSN degree - but only three years after actually starting my core courses (after the four pre-req's that I procrastinated on - which took me a year while I was working and raising an infant). After all the obstacles that I've had to overcome to get to this point, it seems surreal.... it seems so ordinary now to be sitting again on my couch again.

From the point of the night before our trip, anything and everything that could go wrong DID GO WRONG!!!! And I'm not exagerating either.....

#1 - we decided that since I hate ironing that I would take hubby's clothing (two pairs of dress pants and one of his shirts - the one colored shirt that matches my uni's color) to the dry cleaners who did their stuff in-house because it would get done faster and stuff wouldn't get lost..... well when I returned the night before (at the time directed), they could find only his pants and lost his shirt.... we went through the entire line looking for the shirt and couldn't find it. I was so overwhelmed I didn't know whether I should cry or vomit... The woman was perplexed as to where the shirt could have gone. She "suggested" that I come in in the morning to see if the shirt could be found - which I explained that would be VERY difficult considering we were leaving at 3am!!! So she said that if we got to our location and bought another shirt, to keep the receipt, that they would reimburse us for the shirt.... yep, we'll see.

#2 - Hubby suggested that we put the nursing pin in my luggage to keep it safe. And he didn't realize that our luggage could be taken as a carry on and he did it as a checked baggage. He figured that since we had a connecting flight that that would make this easier that lugging it around everywhere. Made sense at the time. Problem was that that pin was vital for the pinning ceremony that was due to occur several hours after we landed!!!! I'm sure you can imgaine what happened next.... yep our baggage somehow does not land at our destination with us but seems to go to the next.... and must do a back track at a time cost to us of approx. 2 hrs!!! This causes major emotional trauma to me because when they said they didn't even know where the bag was at first and whether they could get the bag back in time, I PANICKED!!!!!!! I called the chair of my program to see if they had extra pins in case MY pin didn't arrive in time. Plus, we still had travel time that had to occur. So ya, talk about stressed out!

Thankfully the bag does arrive and we get on the road and arrive and get ready. Too bad my husband doesn't listen to me and wears whatever he wants to wear and so I think I'm going to be disappointed with the picture that occurs. But I'm very happy with the ceremony. There were 44 nursing students there. There were only 5 distance LPN-BSN students - from our 16 graduating class that showed up, so disappointing in my opinion. Hell, I'm from Canada and I showed up, and another was from Maryland and she showed up - and we had to go all the way to Indiana to have this pinning and graduation! I figure, with the amount of time, money and dedication that I and we have put into it, I would think that they would make every effort to attend. But that's just me - my opinion.

So during the pinning ceremony the dean of the nursing program recognized the members of Sigma Theta Tau (Nursing Honor Society) to which I was the only one in our program and one of only fourteen of the 44 that were there. I felt special in that moment. Especially considering I knew that I wouldn't be recognized in our graduation for getting honors, all because I was a "transfer" student and hadn't stepped foot on the university. It didn't seem fair. Hell, I've paid $75,000 (no lie or exageration!) to this university, it really doesn't seem fair that I get jipped because I wasn't able to step foot on this university.

#3 - I preordered my gown and cap - yep not there. So then we had to scramble to see if we could find one that would fit. Thankfully we did. Too bad there's not enough time that I can decorate it :( That part really does make me sad. While we were there we did some purchasing of uni-related items to wear for times to come or items to use from this point on. Things to remember that I put in the time and effort and I made it!

#4 - So we are told that we have name cards that we fill out and we have to tell the speakers out to say our names phonetically and then hold on to until we get to the front of the line just before we get onto the stage and are to hand it to the speakers. No problem! We're told that when we get to our seats in the auditorium that there are booklets that we get to keep and while we're bored during the commencement that we could look through the booklet and keep ourself occupied. Ok, sounds great. Well I was seated with three others from my class and one other of my class we hit it off and were chatting it up and so I put my name card into my booklet because just before it was our turn to stand up and go to get our fake degrees, we figured that we would make sure that our caps were on straight and our tassel was on the right and well her cap was definately not on straight so I gave her my booklet to hold for a sec so I could give her a hand.

When she handed it back to me, it was time for us to go and when I went to find my card, it wasn't there. We went page by page, we shook the damn booklet.... we looked around. I was so friggin panicked! The rest of my row was just walking away!!!! Well one of my professors (alumni) turned around, ripped a page out of his booklet, gave me his pencil and told me to write my name on it and tell them how to say my name and I would be good to go.... Thank God for him! And yes, I was. They said my entire name correctly. I was soooo flustered that I wasn't quite paying attention and I tried to shaked hands with a person I wasn't supposed to, and I didn't get the chance to really savor the moment. That's what makes it sad for me.

The other bit that makes me sad is that when they announce the name is that after the name they say whether they received honors (sigma cum laude, cum laude, etc...) and because of the issue of not setting foot on step on my uni, I'm not eligible for even though my grades are high enough! Makes me so sad. But I have to remember that at least I'm receiving my degree and that's what's important.

#5 - My damn shoes gave me blisters on my baby toes and on my heels - pretty crappy considering I chose flats! I should have chosen the heels I was going to go with but I didn't want to worry about "tripping and falling" like most of us ladies do.

#6 - When we go to leave for Canada we get to the airport at 3:45am for our flight at 6:25am. Our airline was Aircanada and they had ONE kiosk with ONE lady manning the damn desk. Unfortunately, the people in front of us were on student visas in the US and were connecting through Canada on their way home to China and were having MAJOR issues. so by the time that we got up to the front it was like 5am and figured that we were good to go.

We were Canadians, travelling on Candian passports (no visas or anything). Usually if we have problems, we have it when we travel INTO the US not Canada!!!! Hubby has a name that raises flags and causes delays and they usually have to call TSA because hubby doesn't have a middle name to differentiate him from all those other people who do the terrible, potentially dangerous things and so it always causes the agents to have to make LONG calls to people who eventually tell them that he's ok to get on the damn plane.

Weeeellllllllll this time it took them over two hours and many many many tries to get his passport to go through on their system. When they would try, it would just say no. Not declined or call so and so. Just no. It was so frustrating! And of course hubby was getting frustrated. So because of hubby's issues it held the line up too..... and so they had to hold the flight up.... but low and behold, the flight was held up anyway because the heater on the plane broke because the temp had dropped so quickly overnight that the plane couldn't adapt and so it broke and it needed to be repaired first.

So the kiosk lady told me to go on through security/customs and head to boarding. When I got there that's when I had found out about the heater being broken. But when I arrived I greeted the lady there thinking that the rest of the people were already on the plane and such. Nope, we were still to wait around. So I had a few minutes to get myself situated and calm again. I told her about myself and hubby's situation and told her his name and when I was done telling her that the pilot and crew showed up. Well low and behold it was a female pilot!!!! Awesome!

I greeted her, telling her about how wonderful it was to see a woman pilot and that it was great to see her stick with it through what I'm sure was a difficult education and getting into a male dominated field. She indicated that she appreciated that acknowledgement because so often most people look down upon female pilots and think less of them. I indicated to her where I was from, and she had said that she was very familiar with it and had flown into it numerous times. I told her about how when I was in school there and saw female pilot students (in my hometown there's a pilot school program in the college there), I would encourage their perseverence because I'm sure it's not easy, even now.... She said that when she was in school she was absolutely looked down upon by other pilot-to-be's and that she would put them in their places because she figured that she had just as much right to be there as they did! I really liked that about her. Thats the sort of personality that I have. But back to my story...

I saw that the pilot and one of the crew had a starbuck's in their hands and asked where they found it because the starbucks in the main area wasn't open and I hadn't seen another one, so they gave me directions. I asked if I had time before we boarded and the crew member indicated that she believed so if I hurried so off I went, because I figured that if the heater wasn't quite up to par, the plane was probably going to be quite chilly and the drink would probably keep me and my hands warm! So off I went!!! I got my white hot chocolate (they didn't have the toasted pecan flavor shot unfortunately so it wasn't quite as yummy) and made just in time to get onto the plane. Before boarding, I asked if my husband made the flight. She said she didn't know, but she said that they were waiting on one more person. Boy did I pray that it would be him!!!

So I'm sitting in my seat, saying a silent prayer and looking out the window and everyone had boarded the plane. The crew member has handed out the declaration cards (that are usually handed out in mid-air) because she has the time now to do it! and counts heads. It seems like she's about to close the door, the plane sounds as though it's revving up and getting ready and everything. And the lady from the desk inside comes onto the plane, seeks out my field of vision and tells me that hubby didn't make the flight, that he would be catching the one at 2:40pm - I was so sad! Oh the thoughts that were going through my head!!!

So I'm sitting there sipping my hot chocolate and filling out my declaration card and MY HUSBAND SHOWS UP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WTH?! Well it turns out that when the lady made the new reservation for hubby for the 2:40pm flight, that's when the passport went through! How stupid right?! So she radio'd through, telling them that she was sending him, and told hm to hurry through customs/security and he raced through and then pounded on the door like 5 times to get their attention in order to get on the flight!

#7 - We get to Toronto and we're supposed to be picked up by our car. Problem is is that the night before, we got freezing rain and no one bothered to check the car our and see if it was frozen over. Therefore, they had to turn our car on, leave it there and pick us up in their own car (a car service) and then bring us to our car which was semi unfrozen. So then we had to use our scraper as a pick axe to break up the ice and try to get it off our car. Yep fun times!

Finally we got home and crawled into bed and made up on the sleep the I was deprived of while we were away. I was very thankful that I went but boy I couldn't believe what happened while we went!

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