The nursing curriculum here leaves little time for extra curricular material.  They have pretty effectively filled the entire schedule with information packed material to best prepare us for passing the NCLEX exam as well as competent compassionate care.  I am lucky to have a small window of wiggle room due to my previous degree and certification.  I decided to seize the opportunity and hop into a class just for fun this semester, and what a joy it has been.  I do have a few Liberal ed requirements to fill, and this one class marks three such requirements off my list.  My current class just for fun, is Native American Literature. 

This class, I thought, had very little to do with my future nursing career.  I am finding that there is over lap and relevance as the semester runs at full force into conclusion.  My reasons for choosing this class are numerous and somewhat selfish.  For one, I am a total bookworm.  Ever since I picked up my first chapter book in elementary school, books and I have had an ongoing love affair.  Of course, we’ve had a few brief separations… caring for newborns while holding down a job has a way of leaving little time for pleasure reading.  However, we resumed our relationship when I was contemplating a jump back to school.  I acquired several of the books on the recommended reading list set up by the ACNM.  (if nurse midwifery is of interest to you, I highly recommend the list they provide.)  From there I have had sporadic chances to squirrel myself away with a book.  Signing up for the class has given me the chance to work novels that peak my interest into my necessary course work.  When I get tired of reading about colostomies or catheters, I jump back into my books written by contemporary native authors.  Both in my bi-weekly discussions and in my quiet time dedicated to unfolding and digesting the material I have found a happy place. 

We have reached a point in the semester where our classroom time has essentially ended.  Our final grade is a ten page creative writing piece that incorporates extensive research into a specific Native population of our choosing.  To give everyone a chance for focus reviews of our rough draft, our class has been divided into small groups that will meet once in the month of April during class time.  In turn, we have no regular classes while all the reviews are in session.  I have decided to writing on my own ancestry, Ojibwa, Ojibwe, or Anishinabe culture.  I am focusing my research on traditional women healers, and the material I have come across has been energizing to read.  On some level, I find the concept relatable as I have recently discovered my own desire to heal and care for others.  Dedicated time to research my own culture is a gift all its own.

Aside from my literature class, I am surviving my gym class, and really enjoying my nursing curriculum.  One thing is for certain, I am happy to be where I am, and know that going down this path to obtain my BSN was the right choice for me.  On my next post, I will list my reading list for class along with a few of the materials I have discoverd in my personal research for any interested persons who would like to delve into Native written books.

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